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Protective Thinking: Are Nagas ready to face its Hostile Neighbours?

By - Pakinrichapbo (Advocate)
Samziuram Village, Peren, Nagaland

In recent times, numerous articles in our local dailies have frequently mentioned about the unique history of the unconquered Nagas and their historical rights to remain a sovereign Nation, as it was before the arrival of Colonial British power.
One finds little scope now, to argue whether Nagas have been conquered or not in its history or whether Government of India would recognize its sovereign status as staunch tribe oriented Naga Nationalists often lament on GoI refusal to recognize the 14th August declaration of Naga independence.      
But I do find enough scope to argue on the topic, “Are Nagas ready to face its hostile neighbours?”
It is also a historical fact that hostile neighbours had in one way or other prompted many Naga tribes to fully support the national movement. And now the traditional hostile neighbours want to maintain its traditional authority over the Nagas and are hell bent on giving any administrative autonomy to the Naga tribes living in their GoI created states.
 If the media reports based on press statements from negotiating parties are accurate, Nagas in Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh would be given territorial council. Here the public have no knowledge on how much autonomy will be granted to these territorial councils. Yet, what we know is that the ethnic groups of the three neighbouring states would go to any extent to prevent any sort of administrative arrangement by-passing its state’s legislative assembly for the sake of Nagas living in their respective states. Forget about Sovereign Naga Nation, Flag, and Constitution, even little adjustment of the current status in terms of state boundaries and administration is bound to invite fire and blood from hostile neighbours, and these hostile neighbours are ever ready to face any eventualities.
On the other side of the spectrum, the regional minded Nagas still believe and hope their negotiating parties and GoI would give them the best solution by the end of November. It is time that Nagas living in three states of Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh move their hands and legs before regionalism and tribalism swallow Naga nationalism, for I see no other option. Wished I am proven wrong later.
Maybe for the first time in our history, the hardcore Naga guerrillas have given up some of their core demands and agreed to pursue their political goal, i.e. territorial integration through democratic process. In such reality, the Nagas left outside Nagaland have to rise up and keep moving until administrative autonomy is achieved. 
The left out Nagas must think twice in the term of contemporary political realities as defined by some Naga stalwarts. History often than not have shown us that it is the people aspirations and joint efforts that ultimately continue to build new political realities. At the height of the British Empire, who would have imagined that someday the powerful British Empire would collapse like a house of cards? But indeed it was brought down by the joint efforts of people from diverse background as time passed by. 
The first primary duty of left out Nagas is to struggle for administrative autonomy and it is worth struggling if the people want to live under their own administration. Taking the example of Manipur State, Naga people living in Manipur would be placed at great disadvantage to score any political gain once the Manipur railway project is completed. 
The left out Nagas faces opposition not only from the hostile neighbours but even the Indian National Congress (INC) as well. INC have jump in with warnings that any changes to Manipur geography and any other north-eastern states will be opposed. It is also worth checking the reaction of interim Congress president Sonia Gandhi, right after signing of the 3rd August 2015 Framework Agreement. 
In-spite of Congress opposition, if interlocutor RN Ravi does not mean what he said regarding the change in states boundaries, the people can sit quite, relax and fully depend on the outcome of the final agreement. But in politics, only a fool will fully depend on his adversary. Can one really trust a spy?
Therefore the time is ripe, and the people have to do more than burning candles to see Naga State emerged as a power house in Northeastern region or let the so called contemporary political realities hammered down the last nail in the coffin of the Naga Nationalism. 

5 comments

  • Mangal
    Mangal Saturday, 09 November 2019 21:51 Comment Link

    U need to prove so called Naga unique history in the context of Manipur. For your knowledge every country has their own belief n ethos as Greek scholars coined individuals riggts, Germany follow the concept of nation first but for manipur our concept is history first. N u can't compare a six scheduled state to a nation kingdom. Got it dear Lolo adv.

  • Nao Pam
    Nao Pam Saturday, 09 November 2019 08:14 Comment Link

    Manipur has got its own history of independency both in written and myths. The period of epic history also cannot be neglected. Boundary of Manipur is well defined and further proved in the books written by the British administrators. In the hills of Manipur, tankhuls, maos, marams, chothes, marings as well as khongsais, thadous were inhabited. History of Manipur is well evidenced from its cultural aged long cultural heritage still practised. Mera houchongba, lai haraoba Festivals, Meite's marriage ceremonies, mera wayungbas, etc., are a few of the concrete examples. Whereas, nagas where did reside also found in the books also written by the British administrators. Let us live together in peace. Don't believe the words of hypnotiisers being they have the hidden idesa of making themselves Kings over their fellow brothers and sisters.

  • Jazz
    Jazz Saturday, 09 November 2019 05:06 Comment Link

    I love the so called Nagas neverthless the Kukis too but the NSCN IN and Shri Muivah ji. ... huh in the name of Christ ..just see theTen Commandments .................
    1 I am the lord your God ......ok
    2 You shall not take the name of your lord in vain.....who cares
    3 remember to keep holy the Lord's day.....ok
    4 honour your father and mother....ok
    5 you shall not kill...ha ha ha who cares...
    6 you shall not commit adultery ...... he ha ha who cares..
    7 you shall not steal....ha ha ha who cares.....
    8 you shall not near false witness against your neighbour.....he ha ha who cares......
    9 you shall not covet your neighbours wife.....who cares..
    10 you shall not covet your neighbours goods.....what ? .....then fuc* the Ten commandments.... out those NSCN IM Amen......

  • LP
    LP Saturday, 09 November 2019 01:20 Comment Link

    The Manipur situation is a difficult one. Manipur has existed as a political entity before India was formed. Independent Manipur kingdom merged (Aannexed) to India only in Oct 1949, two years after India got independence in 1947. All Manipur tribes (Nagas (Tangkhuls, Maos, Marams, Zeliangrongs, Kabuis and others), Kukis (Thadou, Khongsai), Mizos, Paites or others) contested and represented in the duly elected Manipur Assembly from 1947-1949 with a separate state Constitution and a Flag of its own. Manipur Nagas did not participate in the Nagaland plebisite or movement then.

    Manipur Nagas got involved into the Naga movement only after Manipur was annexed by India, and after a highly chauvinistic hindu elites evolved at Imphal. Nagamization of small Manipur tribes began in the late 50s, 60s and 70s and still going on. The Nagalim map was drawn only in 1989 or so, which also include the Myanmar side.

    Subsequently, the Kukis also have drawn a Kukiland map, which is pretty much the hills of Manipur including Naga areas. Kukis reside in all districts of Manipur (less in some areas after the 1990 Naga Kuki clash). So, there will be a conflict of interest/overlap in the Naga and Kuki map in Manipur. Meiteis, ahh the so named enemy of IM after the 1997 Peace agreement, has a holistic view of Manpur. They do not claim any additional land in Manipur and reside in the valley, which is only 8% of the state but provides 65% of the Manipur peoples abode including Nagas, Kukis, Hmar, Mizos, and Mayangs (Indians).

    Therefore, from Manipur's point of view, an exclusive ethnic-based politics is a NO GO. Nonetheless, a reasonable settlement of the Naga issue including Manipur will benefit the people of Manipur. However, the content of the agreement is unknown to anyone in Manipur, therefore, the people have to object to the document so called Peace Aggreement. Time will tell what is in the mind of GOI - can they bulldose Manipur under Presidents Rule to implement its desire for One India One Constituion and Flag. But, Manipur is no Kashmir, the people will not remain lockdown inside their homes. They will come out to protest, even at the lost of numerous young lives.

    Recently, the Nagaland tribes have come to terms with these real situations in Manipur and political changes in India, but the Manipur Nagas are at a very precarious condition, as they can't be settled in Nagaland as indegenous tribes.

    Hopefully, once the contents of the agreement is produced to the people of Manipur, and the contents are discussed openly, then only there may come a compromised solution. By keeping it secret, it is not going to WORK in Manipur. Blood will flow.

    That is just a thought on this issue of GOI-IM agreement. Nothing to do much with the Nagaland state. Manipur Nagas need to keep a mirror in front of them so does the Kukis and Meiteis. All are together in this.

  • Amarnat h
    Amarnat h Wednesday, 06 November 2019 19:42 Comment Link

    The words are very deem it can't read comfortably.

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