Sinlung /
07 March 2016

Mizoram: Lest We Remember

By Shekhar Gupta

The Mizo insurgency was no picnic and the two sides matched each other in brutality. China and Pakistan continued to help the MNF.

March 5, 2016 was the 50th anniversary of the Indian Air Force (IAF) strafing and bombing Mizoram, or more specifically, its capital Aizawl, and has thrown up an interesting question: Was Indira Gandhi right to use air power against her own countrymen, the only time it’s ever been done?

Also, should “India” now apologise to the Mizo people? This needs a fairer debate in this season of alternative histories.

Put yourself in Mrs Gandhi's slippers on March 5, 1966. She had been prime minister for just six weeks, following Lal Bahadur Shastri's unexpected death in Tashkent on January 11. India was passing through the worst crisis years of its history. Its biggest war yet (in September 1965, with Pakistan) had just ended in a mutually withering stalemate.

This was when the country was still recovering from the humiliation suffered in the war with China in 1962, the Hazratbal crisis and Kutch skirmish. The Dravida movement was openly secessionist and Naga insurgency was raging with open Pakistani and Chinese support. The Chinese, who had issued India an ultimatum during the 1962 war, were still threatening our borders.

This when India was going through a series of famines and lived a ship-to-mouth existence, while nursing a post-war economy. This is when Laldenga's Mizo National Front (MNF) insurgency broke out, fully with armaments and tactical help from the then East Pakistan. Remember, there was no Indian Army in the Mizo hills then, only a couple of scattered battalions of the paramilitary Assam Rifles. In Aizawl, its officers and troops lived in the garrison with their families.

The rebel blitzkrieg took the key positions of Aizawl and faraway Lunglei — two major habitations.

In Aizawl, the rebels took over the treasury and put up a “sovereign” MNF flag on it. The Assam Rifles garrison was holding out, young officers leading suicidal counters to delay being run over and left to the rebels’ mercy along with their families. But it was just a matter of time. Their SOS was a reality.

The nearest Army units were at least a day’s drive away, and were sure to be blocked on the way. It was in this situation that Mrs Gandhi, then made fun of as “goongi gudiya” (mute doll) decided to use the IAF. To buy time for the Assam Rifles garrison and to slow down rebel gains in Aizawl.

The IAF didn’t have many fighting resources in the east. So a couple of old Toofanis (too obsolete to be used even in the 1965 war) and Hunters were spared for serious strafing. The rest of the strafing, to just create nuisance, panic, and to buy time, was assigned to small Caribou transport planes based in Silchar in the Cachar planes. Crews simply put explosives in the backs of these slow propellor planes, dived over Aizawl and opened their rear, cargo hatches for these to fall randomly. These Caribou pilots included two names that later became more familiar in their political innings: Rajesh Pilot and Suresh Kalmadi.

The rebels fled temporarily. Until the first units of five Paras, commanded by then Major VK “Tubby” Nayar, fought their way through to Aizawl from the plains.

This is the reality. If you want to read this in much greater detail, please refer to late Nirmal Nibedon's classic, The Dagger Brigade. It will bring to you the picture of how grim that situation was. And what a tough but inevitable decision it must have been for a very new prime minister in crisis times. That should place this history in perspective.

Should the Centre now apologise for this? I think apologies were due from both sides. The government gave a free hand to the Army to use the most brutal methods, including the inhuman and degrading regrouping of tribal villages, following the British doctrine in the Malayan insurgency.

The rebels were not nice people either, shooting soldiers, high civilian officials including the ambush of a governor and once broke into the office of the IG of police, killing him, his DIG and SP special branch. The Mizo insurgency was no picnic and the two sides matched each other in brutality. China and Pakistan continued to help the MNF.

There were many rounds of behind-the-scenes peace talks, particularly after Brig T Sailo became chief minister. One of his sons, by the way, was in the group that successfully attacked the IGP office. The first round of peace was a partial success although the amnesty brought several key fighters over ground and mostly in the political mainstream. The full peace was achieved later, in 1985-1986 under the Rajiv Gandhi-Laldenga accord. It fully ended the fighting.

In the election that followed, MNF founder Laldenga became chief minister and unfurled the tricolour on what may have been the treasury in 1966. All apologies, regrets were now mutually exchanged and buried. Mizoram has been totally peaceful since.

The group that massacred the police top brass had an accomplice, the IG’s secretary, Vanlalzari. She was caught, convicted and awarded a very long sentence. She wrote a diary in jail which, called “Zari Diary”, had become a kind of cult document of the rebellion.

I had an English translation that I referred to often, and was always curious to meet her. Now was my opportunity. She was among those released and pardoned as part of the amnesty. I believe the issue was closed with great dignity and mutual self-respect between the Mizo rebels and the government. This peace accord was a great achievement for Laldenga, Rajiv Gandhi and Brig Sailo who had worked relentlessly for it. His son also came overground, was pardoned and became a successful contractor.

I had done a story on the accord for India Today from Mizoram 30 years ago. Please also note my little chat with Vanlalzari of the Zari Diary fame, who was now a free citizen of India. And the immortal line she spoke to me: “We fought for sovereignty. But sovereignty doesn't guarantee freedom. Poland is sovereign, but is it free?” This was 1986.

The writer is a veteran journalist and author


Unknown said...

Store your ornaments in athletic boxes. If you can acquisition them, use appropriate boxes with dividers. Blanket the brittle ornaments in tissue cardboard and backpack them in these abstracted compartments. Over the summer, accomplish abiding your ornaments are stored abroad from acute calefaction or dampness.

Payday Loans Chicago

Unknown said...

You can leave the lights and ornaments on an bogus tree, if you accept a abode to abundance it. If so, be abiding to angle the hooks closed, both on the ornaments and the limbs, and blanket the timberline in a ample bogus bag to abundance (available for alive timberline disposal). Move the timberline aback in abode abutting year, and add some new touch, such as a wire-edged award or appropriate new ornaments. New account hit the abundance shelves every anniversary season.
auto title loans fresno online

Unknown said...

People who are in atrocious charge of banknote generally resort to borrowing from their ancestors or friends. If you are unlucky, again this advantage will not be accessible to you. It can be absolutely adamantine to borrow in today's times because it is adamantine to find. Getting a accommodation is additionally not the best of annual because you will be answerable interest. If you are in this position, it would be best your best advantage to administer for payday loans.
cash advance

Unknown said...

The Home Disinterestedness adaptation is the best advantage for those who own their house. Borrowers in Britain accept abundantly underused the Home Disinterestedness adaptation advantage and they are not acquainted of the bulk of their homes in breeding banknote for actual use.
cash advance

Unknown said...

Now accumulate the money the coffer profited on their "overdraft protection" from my son on this transaction and accumulate that by the 11 defalcation fees over the 7 canicule he acclimated the agenda afore he knew he was overdrawn. These are the simple truths about the industry that are generally times glossed over by the industry critics.

Unknown said...

With the present bread-and-butter bearings that we are accepting appropriate now, it is a affliction actuality that our expenditures are accepting greater than our savings; what is added is that about anybody are afflicted by this. And with the bound account earning that we are having, we absolutely accept to plan things properly, that is why a abrupt emergency that will agitate our account plan sometimes irritates us and makes us agitation back at first, we do not apperceive how we will affected such. This is why the attendance of payday loans in our lives now is absolutely a accustomed and an accepted thing.
Cash Advance

jhon said...

The most important thing to remember about payday loans is that they must be repaid on time in order to avoid paying insane fees that could potentially equal or surpass the amount of the loan itself! It is the renewing of the loan and failing to repay it on time that can create a major financial dilemma for the borrower.
check cashing costa-mesa

Kamagra bulk supplier said...

Great Post with lots of information. I was not aware of many information provided.
modafinil bulk supplier

رواد الحرمين said...

شركة كشف تسربات المياه بالرياض
كشف تسربات المياه بالرياض
شركة عزل اسطح بالرياض
شركة عزل خزانات المياه بالرياض
شركه عزل مائى بالرياض
شركة عزل حرارى بالرياض
شركة ترميم منازل بالرياض
شركة مكافحة حشرات بالرياض
شركة رش مبيدات بالرياض
شركة تسليك مجارى بالرياض

Unknown said...

Amazing stuff you have shared and discuss with me and everyone. This is all about lest you remember and you describe in this post your writing style of this post is amazing.
white vinyl roll stickers Australia

Pharmacy Drop shipper said...

Very nice post. You described everything very nicely. Thank you for your post.
Kepp updating.

Unknown said...

i put this comment cause i feel content your provide very useful. thanks you very much. obat infeksi saluran kemih

Unknown said...

very good article and useful once for my admin and pardon me permission to share articles herein may

be useful and helpful Cara menyembuhkan amandel


Unknown said...

Ever wanted to play Play Station Games, PPSSPP and Cross Fire Games on your Mobile and Windows PC? Happy Chick is the new Game Emulator that fulfils all your wishes. Just download Happy Chick Game Emulator to your Android/iOS/Windows PC and start playing. The app is not available on App stores but you can download it directly from below.

Happy chick emulator for iphone
Happy chick apk download android
Happy chick app
Happy chick app download
Happy chick emulator apk
Happy chick emulator for pc
Happy chick for iphone

alicetaylor123 said...

Thanks for the best was very useful for me.keep sharing such ideas in the future as well. Thanks for giving me the useful information. I think I need it!


car title loans chicago said...

There are totally extremely insignificant measure of paper works included which can be finished in 5 minutes of time. It sounds simple right!! Pause. Simply clutch your breath.

Freedom Apk said...

wat remover windows 7
windows 7 wat remover
Click Here
removewat windows 10
wat remover windows 7

Lisa said...

AvriqPrinter RepairPrinter InstalltionWifi trouble shooting
Software InstalltionI have learned a lot from this post which will help me in future.
Virus removal


astrologer in Delhi said...

What an amazing article...Such a good information...Thank you for sharing this important info...astrologer in Delhi

reiki training in india said...

Thanks for sharing your experience. such a nice post. Thank you again

Healing World said...

Thanks for sharing your experience. such a nice post. Thank you againmindfulness meditation in india

best reiki healing in india said...

Very nice information... Such an amazing post

Unknown said...

Generic Viagra

Keshav said...

Prospectus Patrachar Vidyalaya
CBSE Forms
CBSE Patrachar Delhi

devinkapas said...

thnks for sach a great article .. we know are some nformationbest online news in india the universal post is creating and curating stories, research to take you to the real facts truth behind every step, every statement given by so called - Pseudo Intellectuals who think India is intolerant. Join us in our journey and we promise you to clear your thoughts and you will celebrate Independence Day every day in India. hindi news moneycontrol
the wire india post
abp news google news

Mobile app Development Company in Mumbai said...

Thanks for sharing this blog, this blog is very helpful information for every one.

Archana The best Call Girl said...

Hi friends ! I'm Archana Kumari. I like to have bed relationship with different persons rather than with a single man for the whole of life. I do it for enjoyment. If you are interested in me then,
Please follow me on the links given bellow.

Mumbai Escorts
Mumbai Call girls
Escorts in Kolkata

Escorts in Kolkata
Escorts In kolkata
Jaipur Call girls

Kolkata Escorts
Call girl in Kolkata
House wife escorts in Kolkata
Just go ahead to... !

Mobile app Development company said...

Very Informative blog, Thank you for this Information.

Mobile app Development company in Lucknow said...

Very Informative blog, Thank you for this Information.

Unknown said...

gbwhatsapp apk
ac market apk
ac market downloading
whatsapp plus apk
videoder apk
blackmart alpha apk
OG YouTube apk
360root apk
happy chick apk

Unknown said...

It is so interesting and containing useful information. Thanks for sharing.
SEO Services in Gurgaon

Digital Planner said...

Hi,,, This is such a good post. An amazing information is given in this post. Thanks for sharing. I also want to inform something to you. if you want SEO Services in Gurgaon and want to grow your business. Then you can contact us. Thanks again.

Jhon Perker said...

Awesome post.
Bitdefender Support

anonymous said...

nice info about mizoram we want to organise a event for you check belowEvent Management Company In Delhi NCR

joe said...

Great post D-link support

App Developers in Noida said...

Thanks for the article may be useful for everything

Vero Herdiansyah said...
This comment has been removed by the author. said...

I’m so grateful for this informationAwesome piece of work.Thank you for your works.
Your blog is great. It’s very interesting

acmarket said...

Very much impressed with this post.
Please do find the latest apk's.

Araya said...

Best Valuable Information check this Latest Mod Apk's

officecomsetup said...

Thanks for sharing this marvelous post. I m very pleased to read this article. ||

officecomsetup said...

Thanks for posting this info. I just want to let you know that I just check out your site and I find it very interesting and informative. ||

martinkemp714 said...

Thanks for sharing information and best post.

Proprietorship Firm Registration
FSSAI Food License Online
IE Code Registration
MSME Registration Online
ISO Certification
Digital Signature Certificate

Best Coaching Centre in Bahadurgarh
Best Coaching Centre in Bahadurgarh
Best PG in Bahadurgarh

Rogerblack said...

This article gives the light in which we can watch the truth. This is exceptionally decent one and gives indepth data.
Religios art
lord ganesha statue

Kundli Software said...

Leo Star is the most comprehensive Kundli Software Online, available from the house of Future Point. With charts and calculations available at lightning fast speed, the Online Horoscope making software can help astrologers ace their knowledge of Vedic Astrology.

wwwofficeoffice said...

www.OFFICE.COM/SETUP DOWNLOAD, INSTALLATION AND ACTIVATION FOR OFFICE SETUP. Microsoft Office suite contains reliably used ventures and organizations. The most used tasks of Microsoft Office are Word, a word taking care of program, Excel, a spreadsheet program, PowerPoint, a presentation maker, and Access, a database application

wwwofficeoffice said...

www.OFFICE.COM/SETUP DOWNLOAD, INSTALLATION AND ACTIVATION FOR OFFICE SETUP. Microsoft Office suite contains reliably used ventures and organizations. The most used tasks of Microsoft Office are Word, a word taking care of program, Excel, a spreadsheet program, PowerPoint, a presentation maker, and Access, a database application

CRM Software in Mumbai said...

You have a real ability for writing unique content. I like how you think and the way you represent your views in this article.

lara jill said...

The great knowledge you have shared admin this is one of the best blogs I have ever read…
Looking for setup of Norton to ? The Official Norton Site for setup, download, reinstall is my where you can enter and activate your product key setup your account
Norton setup

Isa Bella said...

Office Setup includes high-end applications like Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, One Drive, Access and on your PC, Publisher, and Access. Everything you need for home, school, and office downloaded from |

Anonymous said...

Female Eggs Donors needed with the sum of $500,000.00,Email:
Watsap: +91 8754313748

CRM Software in Mumbai said...

You have a real ability for writing unique content. I like how you think and the way you represent your views in this article.

freya maya said...

Over 2,400 deaths and rising:
85,000 cases in 30 plus countries and counting.....

iAir Travel can protect you and your loved ones....

Kavya Tripathi said...

this is amazing blog keep sharing!!!

Daniel Ryan said...

Thanks for sharing this kind of data, it is so valuable.

Nice Post thanks for the information, good information & very helpful for others.
Visit for more website: | |

Cynthia Strickland said...

Thanks for sharing data very helping information is more valuable post please continue update.
Visit for my website:

Rajan Mhatre said...

I have study your article, it is very informative and beneficial for me. I recognize the valuable statistics you offer in your articles. Thanks for posting it and is.
Visit us for custom cake packaging boxes.

Peter said...

McAfee account has an important part in multiple activities such as registration, activation, renewing subscription, and many more. If you reach the mcafee com activate and enter the key, then you can create your account from the register option. Also, there are many other situations when the software or McAfee related works will ask you to enter the account details, then also you can create an account. Here are some easiest steps that you can follow and create McAfee account | | mcafee activate

domnic wade said...

I am virtually impressed about the data you provide for your article. I have to say am enormously crushed by your whole story. It’s not easy to get such exceptional statistics these days. I sit up for staying right here for a long term.


Linh said...

trung tâm tư vấn du học canada vnsava

công ty tư vấn du học canada vnsava
trung tâm tư vấn du học canada vnsava uy tín
công ty tư vấn du học canada vnsava uy tín
trung tâm tư vấn du học canada vnsava tại tphcm
công ty tư vấn du học canada vnsava tại tphcm
điều kiện du học canada vnsava
chi phí du học canada vnsava

OGEN Infosystem (P) Limited said...

Thanks for sharing this valuable information. For a creative website designing and development services, visit Ogen Infosystem in Delhi.
Website Designing Company in Delhi

All in One Xpert said...

epson connect printer setup utility

how to install Norton antivirus on Windows 10

how do i reinstall norton 360 without disc said...

Mizoram is a state in northeastern India, with Aizawl as its capital city. The name is derived from "Mizo", the name of the native inhabitants, and "Ram", which means land, and thus Mizoram means "land of the Mizos" said...

Mizoram was the match of two sides the Pakistan and china to help the MNC. china and Pakistan are the good friends.

stephennicoisa said...

Staying connected to the internet has become necessary as most of the tasks are carried out with the internet’s help. Cybercriminals may inflict harm to your device and steal your banking details. Once cybercriminals access your device, they can manipulate or delete your important data and steal your personal details. It is hard to combat cyber risks without an advanced antivirus program. McAfee offers advanced security-enhancing features that will avert hackers. protects your device from cybercriminals and keeps it safe from viruses, malware, and data breaches.

officecomsetup said...

Articles on this site were knowledgeable and enjoyable to read. I like how well they have put up the factual information. I am Alice , and I have a blogging site of my won. Do visit my to learn some more mind-blowing facts.

officecomsetup said...

Hi! I am Alice . I always get inspired by motivational blogs and articles. This site gave me excellent content. If anyone is interested in reading about data security, take a look at my site

GoodBoy said...

افضل شركة ترميم حمامات بالرياض
افضل شركة ترميم منازل بالرياض
افضل شركة ترميم حمامات بالرياض
شركة ترميم منازل بالرياض
افضل شركة ترميم بالرياض منازل وفلل وحمامات
اأسباب اللجوء إلى شركة ترميمات بالرياض
شركة ترميم منازل وفلل بالرياض
اسعار ترميم المنازل والفلل بالرياض
شركة ترميم البيوت بالأقساط فى الرياض

Online Astrologer said...

Nice Post, download app for Online astrologer

Online Astrologer said...

Nice Post, download app for Online astrologer

Post a Comment