The north-eastern states of the country like Mizoram have been known to foster the independent music scene before the rest of the country but even as the tier-1 cities like Delhi, Mumbai & Bengaluru gain traction from formalizing the music scene and reaping the benefits, the north-eastern states have lagged behind. Maybe not anymore.
Mizoram Sports Minister, Robert Romawia Royte on June 23, 2019, announced that the state government would recognize music as an industry so as to earn revenue by including investors in the field which is a positive move.
The Ruling Mizo National Front (MNF) government headed by Chief Minister Zoramthanga returned to the power in the border state for the third term in December 2019.
According to Royte, Zoramthanga government would make all efforts to promote music and music tourism, and music jam rooms and instruments would be made accessible to all interested youngsters.
Royte also commented that music tourism will be good exposure for Mizoram’s brand image and promotion of tourism. He also expressed interest in organizing a World Christmas Concert in the State.
The Entertainment ‘Scene’ in Mizoram
Mizoram has numerous Rock Bands, besides the sea of talented artists who sing church songs. In fact, in Meghalaya, there is no dearth of musical talent and performing arts, but the state government has been selling the tourism aspect since the beginning.
Former Chief Minister Dr. D D Lapang, followed by Dr. Mukul Manda Sangma tried to bring in Bollywood to the state as the next entertainment destination. However, that did not find many takers, as basic infrastructure like hospitality, transportation, security, etc. are missing.
Besides the attempt made by the Don Bosco Museum of Indigenous Cultures at Don Bosco Centre for Indigenous Cultures to document all the dances and culture of the state, the state government is yet to make any attempt in formalizing the entertainment field.
Prasar Bharati, the Directorate of Information and Public Relations, the Directorate of Arts and Culture, and the North Eastern Council, along with selected filmmakers should ideally constitute the Censoring Board for screening and certifying films in the State as it will enable the filmmakers to compete in districts, national and even the International level.
The filmmakers together with the government should constitute the State Film Censor Board to regularize the film and music industry in the State.
The state must focus on developing the infrastructure of the music industry, aspects like human resources and manpower to facilitate it and be an active stakeholder in the industry.
Once the board is constituted, better films and music will be produced from the state which will prove to be the best medium to project Mizoram worldwide, be it for culture, customs or tourism.