Prohibition leaves Mizoram tourism dry
The total prohibition law, imposed in the all-Christian state of Mizoram since 1997, has only made the tourism industry dry, according to state tourism minister S Hiato.
Hiato, while inaugurating a new tourist lodge at Lunglei in southern Mizoram on Friday, was quoted as saying that the Mizoram Liquor Total Prohibition was in conflict with tourism policy.
"Foreign and domestic tourists would love to have Mizos traditional drinks like zufang, rakzu and zupui. It is time that the churches and the NGOs have a rethink on the liquor law," he was quoted.
On the other hand, the prohibition has failed to make Mizoram dry as drinkers can find plenty of liquor from different sources, he pointed out.
Even though Mizoram does not have great historical monuments and buildings, its natural beauty is a good tourist attraction.
He said during the last 12 years, only 5,412 foreign tourists and a little more than six thousand domestic tourists visited Mizoram. However, during the last two years after the home ministry relaxed the restricted area permit, that restricted foreigners visiting Mizoram, inflow of foreign tourists significantly increased.
Mr Hiato hoped that once the multi modal transit transport project, part of the Look East Policy, is completed Mizoram, would have a lot of visitors from the Southeast Asia.
He stressed the need for changing our behaviour towards outsiders to boost the state's tourism industry.