On the occasion, Naga Mothers called for the recognition of Naga Flag under which thousands have “laid down their lives” and a working constitution that will protect Naga identity of social, cultural traditions and practices, basic Naga laws, land and resources.
The Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) in collaboration with the Naga Students’ Union, Delhi (NSUD) on Saturday took out ‘A Peoples Rally’ under the theme “Call for Peace” in New Delhi.
The rally was participated by members of the Federating Units, Nagas in Delhi, leaders, church pastors, elders, well-wishers and people from mainland India who supports the cause of the Naga movement.
NSF president Kegwayhun Tep in his address underlined the purpose of the rally stating “Nagas call for peace in its essence is simple; it is a prayer for harmonious and peaceful coexistence. It is a symbol of our inherent desire to pursue building peace, both within and without.”
According to a press release, the NSF president also called on the “government of India to honour its political commitment. He categorially sated that there should only be one solution as there is only one Indo-Naga political problem. He further asserted that the proposed political settlement should be inclusive, honourable and acceptable that recognises Naga people’s identity which should be brought to its logical conclusion at the earliest.”
The message of the Naga Mothers’ Association (NMA) was read out by Fabiola Chinir on behalf of the NMA. The NMA stressed on the killings and atrocities committed by the Indian armed forces in the Naga Homeland. “Today, we call upon the Government of India to honor the peace negotiations and bring about sustainable peace in our Naga homeland by an honorable, acceptable and inclusive solution, to the Naga people at the earliest.
Naga Mothers called for recognition of our Naga Flag under which thousands have marched and laid down their lives and a working Constitution that will protect our Naga identity of social, cultural traditions and practices, basic Naga laws, our land and resources.”
The Naga Mothers also reiterate their demand for the repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, which has violated every form of human rights in our Naga homeland.
K Elu Ndang, General Secretary, Naga Hoho called on the Prime Minister of India not to backtrack from his commitment in resolving the Naga issue. The Naga Hoho also appealed to “all communities and nationalities in India” to extend their fullest support in resolving the decades old protracted Indo-Naga political issue.”
Gentleson Vashum on behalf of the Forum for Naga Reconciliation stated that, “The experience of yesteryears has shown India’s ability to accept the Naga historical and political rights. This has resulted in what seems like an enduring stalemate where aspirations were conveniently side-lined and people turned to mute spectators. The Government of India’s quest for peace was fraught by political one-upmanship, political manoeuvring and political mismanagement which did not lead to any constructive, meaningful or transformative outcome. Rather, it led to a botched peace where Naga life was turned upside down and basic fundamental rights suppressed for decades.”
Kh Pou of the Global Naga Forum underscored that, “Nagas did not attack India or create problems for India. Nagas are not anti-India. What the Nagas have been doing, since the British left the sub-continent, is merely to stand up for our birth-rights as human beings. Nagas wanted to safeguard our God-given autonomy and freedom in the lands of our birth, just like Indians and Burmese did in theirs. Nagas wanted no trouble with India or Myanmar.” The Global Naga Forum stressed that “inclusive and honorable” political solution for the Naga people and expect an honorable solution based on the following: respect for Naga historical and political rights, official recognition of Naga Flag and the Constitution, inclusive solutionnot part solution, but solution for all the Naga areas, repeal of AFSPA and demilitarization of the region and complete autonomy in governance over all the ancestral Naga homeland.
Thirtung Wanglar, President of All Naga Students’ Association, Manipur (ANSAM) noted that the Nagas “were placed under two nations and put under four states on the other, arbitrarily divided the Nagas to suppress and repress our aspiration.” And emphasized that the “adversaries had been trying to divided and crush the Naga people with different design and scheme that suit their interest.” He stated that, “They had drawn artificial boundaries, they had militarized our land, they employed different economical packages and other means to subdue us ever since she gains her independence. Despite all these, Nagas stood firm until today and shall remain as one people.”
Tapan Bose, former Secretary General, South Asia Forum for Human Rights and member PIPFPD also sent a solidarity message stating that the Nagas are “one of the most upright, honorable, compassionate and peace loving people.”
Vijayan MJ, General Secretary Pakistan India People’s Forum for Peace and Democracy underlined that “Peace is neither a generosity of the occupier state nor a subject matter of solicitation or negotiations! Peace is a right of all civilised people and communities. Peace in that sense is not just the absence of armed conflict ad ear , but the establishing of dignity, people’s rights, democracy and justice.”
He also urged the government of India “to adhere to the understanding and agreements reached with Naga groups. Any betrayal of such commitments will only make South Asia more vulnerable to violence.”
Neingoulo Krome, the Secretary General of the Naga Peoples’ Movement for Human Rights (NPMHR) reminded the gathering of the various stories of human rights violations and atrocities committed by the Indian armed force. He stated that, “Naga history is written in blood, fire and ashes.” And “every Naga family has lost son, or daughter, or father or mother.” But in recent years Nagas has become stooges of divisive politics. He also cautioned the youths not to be “caught up with ego- tribal egos, degree egos”.
The rally saw the participation of all the Federating units of the Naga Students federation (NSF) and also the constituent units of NSUD along with the members of Delhi Eastern Nagaland Students’ Union, Delhi (DENSU).
The event was chaired by Siipuni Ng Philo, General Secretary of the Naga Students’ Federation and the rally concluded with a mass sloganeering. The NSF also sent a representation to government of India seeking urgent attention to the Indo-Naga political issue.