‘First official round of Mizo govt-HPC talks before Christmas’

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AIZAWL, Sep 25 (PTI): Mizoram home Minister R Lalzirliana on Monday said the first round of official level talks between the Mizoram government and the Manipur-based Hmar People’s Convention (Democrats) is likely to be held before Christmas. The two sides have been working on the modalities for signing a peace accord as also the powers, functions and autonomy of the proposed Sinlung Hill Council. Expressing optimism on the outcome of the talks, Lalzirliana said that both the sides are sincere about finding a permanent solution to the Hmar political crisis. The official level talks between the state government and the HPC (D) in Aizawl concluded on Friday last on an optimistic note, according to leaders of delegations of both sides. During the two-day parleys held in Aizawl since Thursday last, the proposed Sinlung Hills Council Bill, 2017 was deliberated in detail, state additional secretary for home and leader of the government delegation Lalbiakzama said, adding, there was a general consensus on the bill and the decision was being sent to the government for approval. The bill sought to give more autonomy to the present Sinlung Hills Development Council and rechristen it as Sinlung Hills Council and the powers, functions and autonomy of the council including election to the members were discussed on detail, Lalbiakzama said. “The peace talk was held under conducive atmosphere and mutual trust, and we hope that the talks would be resumed at the political level during the next round as almost all the modalities have been finalised,” he said. He added that details about the rehabilitation package, surrender of around 60 militants belonging to the HPC (D) insurgent group as also the resettlement plan had been discussed during the course of the talks that commenced from August 10 last year.

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