Mizoram faces shortage of medicines, writes to Centre on blockade

Mizoram faces shortage of medicines, writes to Centre on blockade

AIZAWL: The Mizoram Health Minister has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home and Health Ministers to intervene as the state has been facing severe crisis of medicines including life saving and Covid-19 related drugs due to the “economic blockade” on the National Highway-306.

Mizoram Health and Family Welfare Minister Minister on Tuesday said in Aizawl that the hilly state has been facing acute crisis of vital medicines and urged the Prime Minister, Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya to intervene at the earliest to prevent any health crisis that may soon engulf Mizoram and which would be beyond the control of anybody.

Lalthangliana wrote separate letters to the Prime Minister, Union Home Minister and Health Minister detailing the medicine crisis due to the “economic blockade” on the National Highway-306, which connects the hilly state with the rest of the country via Assam.

Lalthangliana said that following the border dispute and clash on July 26, the Assam government on July 29 summoned all the transporters (in Guwahati) who have been operating between the two states to stop transporting any goods into Mizoram due to “security concerns”.

“This resulted in to a complete halt of any type of goods coming to the state including basic medicines, life saving medicines and Covid-19 medicines as well. Even oxygen cylinders, oxygen plant materials, and Covid-19 test kits have been blocked.” The Minister said that never before in the history of this country has anyone resorted to such a draconian and inhumane act to his fellow citizens.

“The basic fundamental right to life as guaranteed by the Indian constitution which includes the right to basic health care and medicines have been denied by the belligerent activities of the Assam government,” Lalthangliana said.

He said that despite having endured this problem for almost a week, there has been no response from the central government on this front. “As true citizens of the country, we are entitled to amicable and positive response and intervention from the Central government at this critical time.

“Every citizen of this country has the right to medical care and medicines and denial of this right is contrary to the basic laws of this country. No citizen of Mizoram should lose his or her life because of the non-availability of medicines which are man-made as is being done by the Assam government,” the Minister added.

Mizoram Chief Secretary Lalnunmawia Chuaungo said that the state government had taken up the issue of “economic blockade” with the Union Home Ministry. “We have understood that the MHA would be able to convince the Assam government to lift the blockade in southern Assam.

“Mizoram’s 95 per cent supplies come through the National Highway-306, which is the lifeline for our state,” he told the media. In a letter to Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla, Home Secretary Pi Lalbiaksangi also requested that the Centre may intervene and instruct the Assam government to take necessary action for the immediate removal of the blockade.

The ever most violent clashes along the Assam-Mizoram border on July 26 left six Assam Police personnel dead and around 100 civilians and security personnel of the two neighbouring states injured, including an Inspector General of Police in Assam and Cachar Superintendent of Police Vaibhav Chandrakant Nimbalkar, who was shifted to Mumbai.