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Mizo charity in full swing

Silchar, Dec. 23: Christmas is a time for giving, a tradition that dates back to the first Christmas, when three Wise Men brought gifts to the newborn Jesus. Itís a time when one delights in the pleasure of sharing oneís good fortune with those we love and with those less fortunate.

In keeping with this tradition, Mizoram chief minister Lalthanhawla has announced gifts worth Rs 1.63 lakh from his official discretionary funds to various orphanages, drug rehabilitation centres and a few shelters for the homeless.

Veteran Presbyterian pastor and former moderator of the Presbyterian synod in the state, Rev. Zosangliana said Mizos donate generously to churches and charities during this time of the year.

A spokesman for the KTP, a church group, estimated that over Rs 45 lakh would be donated to the church coffers for charity this year.

According to sources, the church group alone has disbursed Rs 5.66 lakh to the stateís poor this year.

Aizawlís principal market areas of Burrabazar and Zarkawt are also doing brisk business as people are out Christmas shopping.

The roads in these two localities have been closed to cars from today.

May peace and love settle in each and every oneís heart while they celebrate this holy time, said the chief minister in his Christmas address to the people.

For the first time, the Mizoram government has banned bursting of firecrackers.

Woes for commuters

Commuters in Nagaland are facing a tough time as transport operators have failed to cope with the heavy rush during the festive season.

All educational institutions have closed throughout the state recently for the holidays and the students have added to the increase in number of passengers.

Kohima, which has over 1,000 zonal taxis travelling to different districts, could not meet the demand and the transport operators had to hire private vehicles at exorbitant rates.

The townís taxis, which are not allowed to ferry passengers in areas outside their jurisdiction, are now being allowed to travel on different routes by the state government and taxi associations.