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From guns to music for Mizoram chief minister

Aizawl, Oct 21 (IANS) From a dreaded separatist guerrilla to one joining politics and now making musical waves, Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga has come a long way.

2007-10-21T10:56:00Z

Aizawl, Oct 21 (IANS) From a dreaded separatist guerrilla to one joining politics and now making musical waves, Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga has come a long way.

A worship song composed by the chief minister is making ripples in Christian-dominated Mizoram and the audio album cut by renowned local gospel crooner Joseph Zaihmingthanga has become an instant hit.

'It's a worship song and can also be called as a prayer song appealing to god for help. I composed the song long back; it was like asking for god's guidance in leading our people,' Zoramthanga said about his composition.

The album was made with a fusion of Western musical arrangements and traditional Mizo tunes.

'The chief minister was very particular about the song and he asked me not to change the tune or even a single note. It was a tough job, but after it was released people here loved the song as much as I do,' Zaihmingthanga said.

Zoramthanga, 55, was a former separatist guerrilla leader and was the second-in-command of the Mizo National Front (MNF) that surrendered en masse in 1986 after waging a 20-year bush war against the Indian government. But the same people who knew him as a guerrilla are now singing along with his tune.

'The chief minister said everyone needs someone as a guide. He said the song was for everyone, adding that every soul on earth needs someone to guide us, especially elected leaders,' said a family member of Zoramthanga.

Music plays an integral part during electioneering in Mizoram - the state is scheduled to go to the polls in the middle of next year.

'The MNF is already using the chief minister's composition as the party's theme song,' said Zoa Tlau, a local showbiz reporter.

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