The Chin State Chief Minister Salai Lian Luai unveiled a statue of Vum Thu Maung in a park also dedicated to the Chin anti-colonial leader on Monday morning in Mindat Township.
The 3-acre area located on the Mindat-Matupi road is meant to commemorate the life of Vum Thu Maung, who was active in Burma’s struggle against British colonialism and Japanese occupation in the 1940s. He also served as the first Chin affairs minister of the Chin Hills in 1947.
“We want our new generation to remember our Chin national leader, to understand how he sacrificed for his country and people,” chair of the park’s establishment committee Salai Kee Shein told Khonumthung News.
The park and statue were constructed in December of last year, paid for by a loan from a private company. According to Salai Kee Shein, the loan will be returned with private donations collected from the Chin community within and outside of the country.
Vum Thu Maung was born in Vum Thu village in Mindat in April 1900, the son of Maung Thang Pet and Lal Mang Rawng. He was named Thang Pet Maung, but took the name for which he became known from his home village. In the anti-colonial struggle, he became known as Thakin Aung Maung, with “thakin” meaning “master” in Burmese. The movement was an attempt to take back the term that the British made their colonial subjects refer to them by.
Also in attendance at Monday’s unveiling was Zo Bwi, speaker of the Chin State parliament and other government ministers.