Let us accept our differences and come together as “One Naga” that will be stronger and vibrant, says Dr. Kekhrielhoulie Yhome, MLA, Advisor-School Education and SCERT, Nagaland.
By Tennoson Pheirei, TFM Ukhrul Correspondent
The 30th edition of Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) General Conference kickstarted on 24 August 2023 at Ukhrul Headquarters under the theme “Solidarity Beyond Borders”. NSF President, Kegwayhun Tep, along with the president of respective federating units hoisted the NSF flag.
Dr. Kekhrielhoulie Yhome, MLA, Advisor-School Education and SCERT, Nagaland unveiled the monolith to commemorate the 30th edition of NSF Conference 2023 at Nayi Kaphung, Ukhrul on Friday.
Dr. Kekhrielhoulie Yhome stated “It is a privilege for me to be in the presence of Naga leaders from Nagaland, Assam, Arunachal, Manipur and other parts of the country. This monolith will be remembered in the days to come. We also thanked the donor of this land especially the Hunphun for giving us this piece of their heart to honour the Naga people and our journey for a common goal. And on this day, the 25th of August 2023, I hereby dedicate this monolith in the greatest glory of our people in the hopes, in the dreams, which has been there along with our struggle. I also would like to honour the Naga leaders of today. This monolith is erected to celebrate the oneness of Naga and good wishes for a better future.”
Dr. Kekhrielhoulie Yhome also narrated about the brave Naga warrior who waged a war against the British empire. A warrior however brave , ultimately has to surrender. The British knew that sowing season is coming. Even if we are a brave warrior, we need to feed our stomachs first and only after that we can be a warrior. So the British were calculating that the sowing season is coming and the brave Naga warriors would surely come down to sow his field and prepare for the coming seasons. And true to the British calculation, the brave warriors came down and surrendered and stopped the war against the British empire. Food security was truly important to our ancestors. That was the biggest fear of our brave warriors in the olden days. Today, we have so many fears. The fear of strangers, the fear of not having enough food for the family, the fear of being ruled, the fear of the introduction of foreign laws to suffocate our own customary laws which we now enjoy. The submission of memorandum to the Simon Commission in 1929 is all about our fears. Are we so defenseless? Are we not in the position to defend ourselves? The fear of the 21st century is embodied in the Simon Commission. We are small people. We have no unity amongst us. And this is the greatest fear that will engulf us in the coming future.
Dr. Kekhrielhoulie Yhome added “we have many fears to be fought and overcome. There are some fears which we need to fight collectively. But there are also some fears which need to be fought differently at different levels. It is important to understand the idea floating around us and come out with a solution. We are divided. Nagas is the only word that is binding us together. We need to understand our differences and come together as who we are and what we are. Let us accept our differences and come together as “One Naga” that will be stronger and vibrant.
Since its inception in 1947, NSF as an organisation has been standing for the fact that “Nagas are One People and One Nation.
Speaking on the theme of exegesis, Pro-vice Chancellor, Nagaland University, Kohima Campus, Meriema, Prof. GT Thong, emphasized that “solidarity should be our commitment to strengthen ourselves and care for our people with concern for justice no matter where they are beyond borders.
A sense of solidarity is essential for protecting our collective welfare and for advocating for justice for our people and irrespective of the artificial boundaries, he observed adding that all Naga brethren must be protected from exploitation and maltreatment at the hands of any outside forces. We must stand together and speak up against any and all forms of injustice that affect any Naga person. Through solidarity and unity, we can have a voice and be heard despite being geographically divided by artificial boundaries.
Medovi Rhi from Chakhesang Students Union has been elected as the new President of NSF for the tenure 2023- 2025. The other newly elected executive members are Vice President – Mteisuiding Heraang from All Zeliagrong Students Union, General Secretary- Chumben Khuvung from Lotha Students Union, Assistant General Secretary-Kenilo Kath from Rengma Students Union, Education Secretary- Temjen Toshi from Ao Students Conference (AKM), Finance Secretary – Heikho Rengma from Rengma Students Union, Information and Publicity- Pitongo Shithou from Lotha Students Union, Social and Cultural Secretary-Kaisu Chakre from Mao Students Union, Speaker -Kato P. Awomi from Sumi Students Union and Auditor General Kawoka V. Awomi from Sumi Students Union.