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Mizoram: Gorkha census underway as community waits for OBC status

AIZWAL : Mizoram’s Home Department is currently revising a Gorkha/Nepali census even as the government awaits a Cabinet nod for declaring the community as OBCs. The state’s Gorkha community has been demanding OBC status in the state made up almost completely of Scheduled Tribes, or STs, for about two decades, soon after the Mandal Commission’s recommendation for reservations for OBCs in government services was implemented in 1993. Some non-government organisations and student unions in Mizoram have opposed OBC status for the Gorkhas of Mizoram, however. Replying to an un-starred question by opposition MLA Lalruatkima in the state assembly, state Home Minister R Lalzirliana said the “Gorkha approved list – 2001” shows there are 4,453 Gorkhas in Mizoram. “These are made up of Gorkhas who have lived in Mizoram before January 26, 1950 or their descendants,” he said. He also said the current efforts at revising the Gorkha census seeks to include all Gorkhas living in Mizoram, who will be categorised into “X, Y and Z”.

The “X” category will include all Gorkhas who lived in the state before January 26, 1950. The “Y” category will include those who are not in the former catergory but who are permanent residents while the “Z” category will include those Gorkhas who live in Mizoram because of work or other reasons. “A permanent body set up to consider the Gorkha’s demand for OBC status has recommended the status for them, and the Home Department has submitted an agenda to the state’s Council of Ministers for consideration based on this recommendation,” he said. The Home Minister also said the Gorkhas were OBCs during the time present-day Mizoram was under a District Council as part of Assam, but that the list of OBCs was not adopted once Mizoram became a UNion Territory in 1972. He said the UT government of Mizoram never issued an order to adopt the OBCs list from Assam.
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