18. MIZORAM is surrounded by Myanmar in the east and the south, and Bangladesh in the west, making it an area of great strategic importance in the north-eastern corner of India.The total area of the state is 21,081 sq km with a total population of 891,058 . Aizawl is the capital city and the principal language are Mizo and English.
History and Geography
Mizoram was annexed by the British in 1891.Lushai Hills in the north was placed under Assam, while the southern half was under Bengal. Both these parts were clubbed in 1898 into one district called Lushai Hills District under the Chief Commissioner of Assam. After independence it was one of the districts of Assam till 1972 when it became a Union Territory andthen went on to become the 23rd state of the Indian Union in February 1987 after the signing of the historic memorandum of settlement between the Government of India and the Mizo National Front in 1986 . Mizoram has great natural beauty and an endless variety of landscape. It is rich in fauna and flora. Most of the Mizos are Christians. Mizo language has no script of its own. The missionaries introduced the Roman script for the Mizo language and formal education. Literacy is the second highest in the country. The state government is striving hard to attain the top position in the near future.
About 80 % of the people of Mizoram are engaged in agricultural pursuits. The main pattern of agriculture followed is Jhum or Shifting cultivation. About 25% of total land is suitable for cultivation of horticulture crops. The existing area under different horticulture crops however is only 6.55 per cent of the estimated potential area. This indicates the vast scope for horticulture crops to flourish in Mizoram. The main horticulture crops are fruit crops viz. Mandarin Orange, Banana, Passion Fruit, Grapes, Hatkora, Pineapple, Papaya, etc., and flowers like Anthurium, Bird of Paradise, Orchid, Chrysanthemum, Rose and other subsidiary seasonal flowers. Spices like Ginger, Turmeric, Black Pepper and Bird's eye Chillies are also grown. People have also started extensive cultivation of oilpalm, medicinal and aromatic plants.
The ultimate surface irrigation potential is estimated at 70,000 hectares of which 45,000 hectares is under flow and 25,000 hectares by construction and completing 70 pucca minor irrigation projects and six lift irrigation projects for raising double and triple crops in a year.
New Industrial Policy of Mizoram was announced in the year 2000 has chaged the scenario of the entire Induastrial sector in the state.The Policy has identified thrust areas in Electronics and Information Technology, Bamboo and Timber based products, Food and Fruit Processing, Textiles, Handloom and Handicrafts, etc. Infrastructural development bodies like Industrial Growth Centre (IGC) at Luangmual, Aizawl, Export Promotion Industrial Park (EPIP) at Lengte, Integrated Infrastructural Development Centre (IIDC) at Pukpui, Lunglei and Food Park at Chhingchhip are nearing completion. Scientific cultivation of Tea has also been taken up. Establishment of Apparel Training and Design Centre, Gems cutting and polishing are in the pipeline to encourage setting up of Export Oriented Units (EOUs). Of the cottage industries, Handloom and Handicrafts are given high priority and the two sectors are flourishing to meet consumers demand in the state and in the neighbouring states of Meghalaya, Nagaland, etc. With the opening up of border trade with Myanmar and Bangladesh, and the 'Look East Policy' of the Government of India coupled by peaceful condition of the state industrialisation process is going to substantially gain momentum in the near future.
Construction of Tuirial HEP (60 MW) which is in progress,Survey and investigation works of Kolodyne HEP (500 MW) is completed by CWC are going to provides inland water transport facilities for the region besides generating 500 MW of power . 3 MW capacity Tuipanglui and Kau-Tlabung SHPs were commissioned recently will enhancer the state's hydro generation by 15 MW capacity. Works on Maicham-II (3MW), Serlui 'B' (12MW) and Lamsial (0.5 MW) SHPs are in progress and expected to be commissioned in 2007.
Aizawl is located at nearly 4,000 ft above sea level, and is a religious and cultural centre of Mizoram. Champhai is a beautiful resort on the Myanmar border. Tam Dil, a natural lake with virgin forests, is 60 km from Aizawl and 10 km from Tourist Resort of Saitual. Vantawng Falls, 5 km from hill station Thenzawl, are the highest and most beautiful waterfalls in Mizoram. The Department of Tourism has opened Tourist Lodges at Aizawl, Lunglei, Champhai, Saiha, Lawngtlai and wayside restaurants at Thingdawl, Hnahthial, Kawlkulh, recreational centre at Beraw Tlang and Alpine Picnic Hut at District Park near Zobawk