Nagas are integral part of Manipur: Biren

Imphal, August 31 2017: The attempt of some Naga people to project Naga community as living outside the ambit of Manipur since the past is nothing but an attempt to distort the history of the land, asserted Chief Minister N Biren . A closing function of the patriots’ memorial month observed under the aegis of […]

Imphal, August 31 2017: The attempt of some Naga people to project Naga community as living outside the ambit of Manipur since the past is nothing but an attempt to distort the history of the land, asserted Chief Minister N Biren . A closing function of the patriots’ memorial month observed under the aegis of […]

Nagaland: NPF was not formed to serve “individuals and vested interests:” Achumbemo

KOHIMA, Aug 28 (NEPS): NPF (Shurhozelie) said the party had changed its nomenclature from time to time but it’s “Flag, Cock symbol and Motto” remained “unchanged.” The core of the party was to protect the identity of the Naga people and for the solution of the Naga political issue and to serve “individuals or some vested […]

KOHIMA, Aug 28 (NEPS): NPF (Shurhozelie) said the party had changed its nomenclature from time to time but it’s “Flag, Cock symbol and Motto” remained “unchanged.” The core of the party was to protect the identity of the Naga people and for the solution of the Naga political issue and to serve “individuals or some vested […]

Tripartite talks scheduled on July 10

SENAPATI, Jun 28 : The tripartite talks involving the United Naga Council (UNC), the Government of Manipur and the Central Government on the district creation issue will be held on July 10 at Ukhrul district headquarters. Sources from the UNC disclosed to Newmai News Network that Government representatives informed the UNC leaders this afternoon that […]

SENAPATI, Jun 28 : The tripartite talks involving the United Naga Council (UNC), the Government of Manipur and the Central Government on the district creation issue will be held on July 10 at Ukhrul district headquarters. Sources from the UNC disclosed to Newmai News Network that Government representatives informed the UNC leaders this afternoon that […]

Peeking through the FA pact Onus on the NSCN (IM)

If what The Week has published is anything to go by then the NSCN (IM) will certainly have a task at hand to sell their ‘idea’ of a settlement to the Naga people. By all indications, the idea of sovereignty seems to have been dropped for good and while no one knows what the final […]

If what The Week has published is anything to go by then the NSCN (IM) will certainly have a task at hand to sell their ‘idea’ of a settlement to the Naga people. By all indications, the idea of sovereignty seems to have been dropped for good and while no one knows what the final […]

IM not happy with media expressions

The post IM not happy with media expressions appeared first on  KanglaOnline.com.Nagaland , DIMAPUR, August 24 (NNN): In its attempt to answer to the seeming verbal attacks on the outfit through media on the question of the freedom of expression, the …

The post IM not happy with media expressions appeared first on  KanglaOnline.com.

Nagaland , DIMAPUR, August 24 (NNN): In its attempt to answer to the seeming verbal attacks on the outfit through media on the question of the freedom of expression, the NSCN-IM asserted today that the outfit is no less than … Continue reading

The post IM not happy with media expressions appeared first on  KanglaOnline.com.

IM not happy with media expressions

The post IM not happy with media expressions appeared first on  KanglaOnline.com.Nagaland , DIMAPUR, August 24 (NNN): In its attempt to answer to the seeming verbal attacks on the outfit through media on the question of the freedom of expression, the …

The post IM not happy with media expressions appeared first on  KanglaOnline.com.

Nagaland , DIMAPUR, August 24 (NNN): In its attempt to answer to the seeming verbal attacks on the outfit through media on the question of the freedom of expression, the NSCN-IM asserted today that the outfit is no less than … Continue reading

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Chief Minister of Nagaland: Neiphiu Rio appeals underground groups to uphold commitment for peace

The post Chief Minister of Nagaland: Neiphiu Rio appeals underground groups to uphold commitment for peace appeared first on  KanglaOnline.com.Aug 15 Nagaland also joined with the rest of the country in the 66th Independence Day with Chief Minister N…

The post Chief Minister of Nagaland: Neiphiu Rio appeals underground groups to uphold commitment for peace appeared first on  KanglaOnline.com.

Aug 15 Nagaland also joined with the rest of the country in the 66th Independence Day with Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio appealing the underground groups to uphold their commitment for peace and re-conciliation among themselves. Unfurling the Tricolour at the civil … Continue reading

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All Naga Students’ Association, Manipur on 48 HOURS TOTAL BANDH IN NAGA AREAS

PRESS STATEMENT OKING TAHAMZAM,      15TH JUNE, 2012 The All Naga Students’ Association, Manipur (ANSAM) fully endorses the call of the United Naga Council(UNC) for observation of 48 hours total bandh… Read more »

PRESS STATEMENT OKING TAHAMZAM,      15TH JUNE, 2012 The All Naga Students’ Association, Manipur (ANSAM) fully endorses the call of the United Naga Council(UNC) for observation of 48 hours total bandh… Read more »

Over 200 technocrats gather in Kohima to attend 2 day IRC

May 31,  5:42 PM In Nagaland, over 200 top technocrats from across the country have gathered in Kohima to attend two day Indian Roads Congress (IRC). The aim of the meeting is to find out technical solutions to deal with heavy monsoon, rainfall and …

May 31,  5:42 PM In Nagaland, over 200 top technocrats from across the country have gathered in Kohima to attend two day Indian Roads Congress (IRC). The aim of the meeting is to find out technical solutions to deal with heavy monsoon, rainfall and challenges of landslides on hill roads of the northeastern region. Addressing the inaugural […]

At 91, Politician Remembers the First Parliament – New York Times (blog)

New York Times (blog) At 91, Politician Remembers the First Parliament New York Times (blog)… more »


New York Times (blog)
At 91, Politician Remembers the First Parliament
New York Times (blog)
Mr. Keishing comes from the conflict-ridden northeastern state of Manipur and is a Christian and a Naga, one of the tribal groups in the area. His long political carrier encompasses six decades of Manipur state and national politics including two

Click for full details

 

Why Meitei Ethnonationalism?

By: Dr Irengbam Mohendra Singh I am very moved with this email from EMMI SERTO,… more »

By: Dr Irengbam Mohendra Singh

I am very moved with this email from EMMI SERTO, especially by the noble task he is undertaking. There are very few people like him in Manipur. “He writes: Sir, proud to have a son of the soil giving away his best resources to one of the most world’s riches and developed country… For the white people, you are a blessing.”

“While appreciating your noble contribution to the people of theUK, I would also like to make a special mention on your valuable “Diaspora column” in the Sangai Express. I am always the first of the first person of the family to grab the paper on Sundays and Saturdays just for a reason to be the first to go through your column… most of the articles give weight on Social change…”

 

“Well! I am helping a few orphans in my own set up orphanage for social change, in a remote village called Sangang, C’cpur Dist. I have sweet 17 orphans from 9 different communities of Manipur. I do enjoy working the whole day in the paddy fields for their tomorrow… I am spreading the message of |Love, Humanity and Tolerance through this humble service to the deprived children… We can uphold each other in our prayers. Thank you once again for being a kind-hearted to your motherland. My salute to you.”

Meitei ethnonationalism is necessary for a negotiating agreement in the God basement-bargain with Manipuri Naga, without giving in. They feel that it is the best way to deal with the Naga people’s problem to prevent them from rising. They think that it would help both peoples to have a good relationship and think of each other as partners in negotiation rather than adversaries.

 

Before 1949 there was a Manipuri nation or the Manipur state. The Meitei always had a concept of a ‘Manipuri nation’ – Manipursanaleibak, encompassing groups of ethnic people who have different cultural, traditional, ritualistic and religious traits, all living together.

 

A nation describes a geographical place that is defined by its borders and/or by a variety of cultures and a shared language. With the ascendancy of a new concept, Manipur is now a “proposition nation” ie groups of ethnic people who are united by a common ideology rather than a common ancestry.

Ethnic people mean the status of belonging to a particular group having a common cultural tradition. There are such 36 ethnic groups in Manipur.

The English word ‘nation’ in the Manipuri nation, is related to birth, not merely geographic or political boundaries. You are ‘native’ of the land of your birth. Manipur has a geographical boundary and any ethnic group born in Manipur is a native of Manipur. The Manipur Naga are Manipuris. Nationality is a legal concept while ethnicity is a cultural concept.

 

This thesis examines the Meitei ethnonationalism in Manipur and the influences that sustain it. It is a brief historical reconstruction touching on historiography – theorising parts of history and relying on idealistic epistemology.

 

Meitei ethnonationalism is fairly new. I am trying to write a bit of its history without an inventive approach to the truth.  Old histories might change over time. At the physical level, truth is absolute. But the account of human affairs that we call History, and that we make the subject of college courses, has little to do with truth. It is information that our rulers want us to have.

For example: Irom Sharmila’s fast to death for the past 11 years will not be Indian history, but the recent 12-day fast of Anna Hazare in August 2011will be.

Most people are aware of the continuing tension in Manipur, tensions centrally animated by the

strained relationship between the Majority Meitei and second majority Tangkhul Naga.

Ethnonationalism is where the ‘nation’ is defined in terms of ethnicity, incorporating ideas of culture and shared language. It denotes both the loyalty to a nation deprived of its own state and the loyalty to an ethnic group, embodied in a specific state, particularly when the latter is conceived a nation-state” like Manipur. It may thus be used interchangeably with nationalism.

 

A “nation-state” is defined as a sovereign state of which most of the citizens or subjects are united by factors which define a nation, such as a common language or common descent. The nation-state implies that a state and a nation coincide. Manipur was a nation-state united by a common language

 

The central tenet of ethnic nationalism theoretically is that each ethnic group like the Meitei, Tangkhul or Kuki is entitled to self determination for an autonomous entity or for an independent sovereign state.

 

Broadly speaking, nationalism is a term that refers to a doctrine that holds a nation, usually defined in terms of culture and language though consisting of a number of ethnic groups. Ethno-

nationality is thus a breakdown of nationality.

 

The word ‘nationalism’, strictly speaking, refers to either separatist or autonomist movements developing outside or against, the existing state. Theoretically, this is true for the Meitei, Tangkhul or Kuki.

 

Walker Connor (1994) defines the ‘nation’ as a self-differentiating ethnic group. Thus, we have the ethnic Naga nation, ethnic Meitei nation and the ethnic Kuki nation.

 

In reality, ethnos and nation are equivalents: the former derived from ancient Greek, the later from Latin. It then follows that the term ‘ethnonationalism’ is largely tautological, since ethnicity permeates nationalism any way. It is the same thing. But in Manipur it is not.

 

The Meitei ethnonationalism was born by a break-up of the ethnic components of Manipur, creating a lot of tension by the ethnic activists who try to have a historical construction of their activities.

The educated post-War Meitei began in earnest, to secularise and adopted the principle of multiculturalism based on a notion of ‘social reform’ in which programmes were introduced to redress the disadvantages of minority communities. This included the present titular king Laishemba, who reintroduced the Merahouchongba festival. He is a likeable and serious young man.

There are many major players in the ethnic movements who continue to act out their familiar roles in a secessionist policy. While efforts are made to bring back the Tangkhul and Kabui Nagas back to the Manipuri nationhood but so far failed, notably in their refusal to set up ADCs, which is aimed to somehow reconcile a ‘distinct society’ status with provision that all the districts are to be treated equally.

 

The Manipuri Naga’s demand for separation of Naga inhabited (not absolutely) areas of Manipur to integrate with the nationalist movements of the Naga of Nagaland is a redundant ethnonationalism. It is a confusion of state and nation, and they imagine that nationalistic identification can refer state loyalties.

 

Ethnicity normally refers to a belief in putative descent: that is, a belief in something which may or may not be real. It is a perception of commonality and belonging supported by a myth of common ancestry.  Therefore it does not necessarily suggest tangible elements of culture.

 

Connor (1993) has stressed the subjective and psychological quality of this perception, rather than its objective ‘sustenance’.

 

More generally, identity does not draw its sustenance from facts but from perceptions. Perceptions are as important or more than reality when it comes to ethnic issues (Connor 1997).

By perception I mean, the feeling, the consciousness that “I am a Manipuri”. The Naga need a longer term understanding to avoid misunderstanding.

The break-up of Manipur is not negotiable to the Meitei who have an embryonic concept of Ima (mother) Manipur embracing the hills and the plain. To them it is not like a marriage bond, where there is a legal frame work with which a spouse can divorce the other whenever he or she feels like it.

 

The Manipuri Naga ethnic challenges have shattered genuine Meitei pluralism and increased the tension between the need for cultural-ethnic distinctiveness and integrative tendencies. The Meitei began to think in terms of Meitei nation or ethnonation. It was a crucial time when the territorial integrity of Manipur was seriously threatened as never before, with internal ethnic politics and the territorial ambition of Nagaland.

Meitei needed to re-establish their cultural history and began looking at their history backwards.

They were aware that behind their bravado lurks one of the great political challenges of the next two decades in this extra-ordinary diversity of ethnic identities and political views in Manipur.

 

Manipur is inhabited by the Meitei and other 36 tribes plus a sizeable community of Pangals. The question of what it means to be a Manipuri and how far there are overriding values to which all can and must subscribe has moved on since the Naga ethnonationalism.

 

The Meitei liberal policy has been unable to persuade some tribal groups into a Manipuri national identity. They have demanded plural political identities, tolerance and openness from all the ethnic peoples. That has included intermarriage.

The struggle for the ethnic Naga to disintegrate Manipur began to crystallise the Meitei resolve to keep Manipur intact. Various civil organisations such as AMUCO, UCM have sprung up to shore up a united Meitei, non-Naga tribals and Pangal opposition.

 

Manipur is as much for the Meitei as is for all the tribes and Pangals living in it from times immemorial. The Meitei thus felt that they had to reinvent themselves with a search for their

indigenous origin in Manipur, first in the hills and then in the plain. This was how Meitei ethnonationalism was born.

The high-octane pursuit of Meitei ethnonationalism and a keen interest to safeguard the integrity of Manipur were reflected by the greatest sacrifice given by 18 Meitei on the June 18 2001 uprising.

 

Meitei remain vigilant against Naga nationalism and Manipuri Naga ethnonationalism especially because (1) their demand has nothing to do with economic disparity but ethnicity; and lately (2)

the NPF’s Constitution, Article II (21) reads: “To work for integration of all contiguous Naga

inhabited areas under one administrative roof…”

 

Daniel Converse challenged the dogma of economism as the cause of ethnonationalism.

Ethnonationalism appears to operate independently from economic variables and that

perceived economic discrimination is just a choice of battle ground. The economic issues at the centre of the analysis means to miss the primary point, namely that ethnic movements are indeed ethnic and not economic.

 

India has a large socio-cultural diversity. So has Manipur. Among this diversity the Meitei need a strong ethnonationalism, which will be bound together by equally strong bonds of common objectives and affection with other fellow Manipuris.

 

The writer is based in the UK

Email: imsingh@onetel.com

Website: www.onetel.co.uk

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NAGAS STANCE ON SADAR HILLS : A CHRISTIANITY PERSPECTIVE

By: Songthu Raymond Chongloi When Sadar Hills districthood issue begins to catch the headlines of … … some regional dailies I felt the need of understanding some of my Naga… Read more »

By: Songthu Raymond Chongloi

When Sadar Hills districthood issue begins to catch the headlines of … … some regional dailies I felt the need of understanding some of my Naga colleagues mindsets on the deadlock. The reason : several Naga organisation came in chorus warning another communal flare up in the state; like the one witnessed some two decades ago. So, without disclosing my identity in detail I approach a Naga student leader if I am new to the issue. Before going deeper on the topic we briefly chatted. In the meantime I came to know that he was an active member of the church during his stay in Imphal, and did not hide being consulted often on every subject of the Nagas there in Manipur.

Then we proceeded. He spoke a lot about the Nagas love for independence,the rich cultural and traditional heritage,the extend of territories ,the historical records. etc.etc. which I find more to do with the Angamis ,Semas ,Lothas and Konyaks. On being enquired anything worth mentioning about the Manipur Nagas contribution towards the movement,he begins with the breakup of the NSCN in the 1980s,and keep on glorifying every action taken up by Sir Th Muivah. He continued,and blame the the Indian government for the Nagas ethnic cleansing drive on the Kukis in 1993.He also fired several accusations against the intelligence agencies for fueling the war. At some point of the interaction he was almost willing to admit that the government agencies collude with the Naga outfits.

Taking advantage of his statement I went deeper referring to the involvement of intelligent agencies in 1993 clash; the license issuance of about 600 single barrel guns by the then Deputy Commissioner of Ukhrul just before the outbreak of the clash,the accusation made against Chief Minister, Shri Rishang Keishing, as on the governor’s report that time,and some more. Interestingly as expected, he strongly disapproved .Instead he blamed the media for maligning the image of the Nagas. Then without a pause, he jumped over to the Sadar Hills issue which I too find more worthy to be discussed than the bygone years. As in the case of the war,he put a heavy load on the media. Also criticize the state government attitude against the Nagas. He continued,”there are nine districts in Manipur of which five are hill districts ,and the remaining four districs are dominated by the Meiteis. Out of the five hill districts one belongs to the Kukis and the other four belongs to the Nagas. This is not a propaganda but If you need datas its with me,”he assures.

While he was totally lost on the topic I calmly opened my bag;took out a map of Manipur indicating the proposed map of Greater Nagaland, and showed to him with a wink on my eyes. With that he exclaimed:’ that’s our long cherished dream…., “he took the map and have a surprise look on it.

And next –a map of Manipur indicating Senapati district and Sadar Hills in different shades. I showed at him. As expected his mood totally change all of a sudden. He was so disappointed, yet maintains his calm. “From where did you get that,” is his query on the map to me. He continued,”we believe in respecting others sentiment. So people ought to respect ours . In the event of declaration of Sadar Hills as a full fledge revenue district without Nagas consent …bloodshed is inevitable. All to be borne by the state government there. This is all we need to understand.,”he warned. Now I put some of my queries and his replies:

Query:If Sadar Hills has been included in the proposed map of Greater Nagaland,it could still be a Naga district even if it is declared a full fledged district?Am I right?
Reply:Not so. Sadar Hills , off course ,is dominated by the Kukis . I don’t think people favour merging it with the proposed Nagaland. The Kukis have been in the forefront opposing the Nagas movement now and then. For your knowledge Sadar Hills has been much apart of our ancestral land. This is a fact.

Query: Respecting other sentiment is one that Nagas believe. So if the Nagas continue this hell-bend attitude over the district hood status,would not it amount to disrespecting ones right ,especially the Kukis?
Reply: No. Respecting others right in no way mean giving away our land to somebody. We have the right to protect our land. We must not be divide by inimical forces.

Query: Then how far would you agree and prove that Sadar Hills is the land of the Nagas? Can you point me some fact or more importantly of its history on defence against foreign invaders-the British?

With this question,it seems,he was blown out of the cold. To my surprise he smiles at his cellphone that never rings; and inquired me to repeat the question complaining the language jargon. In doing so he pleaded,”such questions need an elaborate understanding on history. He keep on with little stumbling ,”those questions are to be asked to our leaders. Its out of my knowledge”. That was how we end the discussion,which perhaps,begins lively but ended without much to appreciate on the claims and stance of the Nagas. Well. As we go through the above interaction,I believe,one may be confused over a Naga leader attitude toward their Christian brethren. Surprisingly,if a leader who claims to be so God-fearing have a warlike attitude to someone then one can easily guess the perception the general Naga population ought to posses? The reason I penned this. Now from the Christianity perspective. Some years back we have celebrated the joy of attaining a centenary-100th year of the arrival of Christianity in Manipur. It was expected that Christianity attains much maturity than before. However much against our expectation things seems to be murkier with the advancing years. The relationship one community maintains over the other is not going to wane easily. This is evident from the present crisis we face and the press statements issued against the other targeting the lesser privileged. To be little persuasive over the present demand I would like to set some record straight in the interest of all. The Manipur (Hill Areas) Autonomous District Council Act, 1971 has a provision for creation of six autonomous districts of which Sadar Hills autonomous council was one among them. Therefore, the question of bifurcating Senapati of carving parts of the district to form Sadar Hills never arise. The provision was made for administrative convenience; the same case that Senapati have. Under such circumstances Nagas communal tone over the issue is something hard to digest. Reason in defense may vary,but one may be pointed out. The sanctioned district has a mix population. No particular community could claim suzerainty over it. Off course the Kuki groups maintains the majority status with Nepali,Naga and Meitei community filling the leftover composition. But there is nothing to be so much to be alarmed off. Implanting fear to the general public is never to be encouraged. One assumption may be, Naga leader fear of similar repercussions of what they did to the minority Kukis in the areas where they hold majority two decades back! If so,the Kukis stance on Sadar hills issue till date is clear-there is no communal tone from Kuki civil organisation like Kuki Inpi , KSO etc, except KPF statement rebuking Naga civil society stance on the issue. Such is a clear indication that there is no hidden political agenda from the side of Kukis. Instead it is the general populace who wholly back the move. To keep in mind, the trend of one community dominating a district is a normal trend we have in the present day administration,yet we don’t find any ill consequences a result of such demarcation. Instead a mixed population is believe to have provided a better social environment due to intermingling of different colours. This also have proved to broadens one’s mindset to a large extend. 0

Taking advantage of the presence of a fraction of Nagas land with a scattered population of about 10%, Sadar Hills has been included in what is called the homeland of the Nagas thereby forcefully ignoring the rightful claims of the Sadar Hillites. As understood,the idea of gaining control of Sadar Hills is not a recent origin. The first open attempt came in the form of ethnic cleansing drive against the Kukis who constitute the bulk of the area, in 1993. To the disappointment of Naga leaders things could not be materialized as planned. Thank God! The second such attempt came: the present deadlock.

Never mind,our human mindsets are such that we don’t feel being bad as long as things are in our favour; but act harshly on things which deviates slightly against our wish. This type of perception full of egos –me,myself-is never to be found in the principle of the Christian faith. Rather it tells us to love our neighbor as we love thyself. Beloved Naga Christians must sense this. While we tries to grab somebody’s right to make up our dreamland-Nagalim, we don’t want an inch of Nagas land to be included in an already sanctioned district which neither means separation or secession. These are the ills that infest Naga nation. It is a society where give and take,compromise and accommodation have no meaning.

We professed to live a life on the principle of a Christian faith which encompasses brotherhood of all mankind. Often,the verbatim like forgiveness,confession,do good,accommodation,peace loving and mutual understanding became the refrain in the church which is never put into practice. While our lip service are sweet with the word of God,our hearts are filled with nothing but greed;our motives are self drive,our mindsets are preoccupied with war, bloodshed and hatred.
So ,until we develop a sense of sympathy for others we have no reason to tell the world –we are proud to be a children of the Lord. Rising up his name without upholding the principles of the Christian faith will only tantamount to insult on the Savior. The sweet motto like ‘Nagalim for Christ” has been used far and wide these days ,however, the banner has been used only to invite hatred upon the Naga society,and more importantly the church image. Let peace prevail !!

The above article is sent to Kanglaonline.com  by Songthu Raymond Chongloi and can be reached at raymond.chongloi[at]gmail.com
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Press Release: Mass rally held at Ukhrul, Manipur

Press Release There was a mass rally held today, 19th. 08.2011 starting from 9.30 am in Ukhrul District and all other Naga hill area in Manipur protesting against the upgradation… Read more »

Press Release

There was a mass rally held today, 19th. 08.2011 starting from 9.30 am in Ukhrul District and all other Naga hill area in Manipur protesting against the upgradation of Sadar Hill District into full fledged District. The rally in Ukhrul was joined en mass by the Tangkhul frontal organization which includes Students, concern citizens, farmers, housewives, senior citizens, civil societies and other various organizations. The rally is mainly spearheaded by Tangkhul Katamnao Long, Tangkhul Shanao Long, Tangkhul Naga Long and Tangkhul Mayar Ngala Long.

The rally which was initiated by United Naga Council (UNC) were seen being participated by thousands of concern Tangkhul-Naga joins hands demanding and making a firm declaration that – without the consent of the Nagas not an inch of the Nagas land could be touched by an outsider, part away and alter in creation of Sadar Hills District. The Tangkhul- Nagas strongly condemn the devisive policy of Ibobi’s led Government to infuse communal hatred among the peaceful co-existing tribals. They call upon the government of Manipur to respect the previous MOU which was sign between the government of Manipur and the Nagas apex social organization on 1981,1982,1996 and 1998.

 

The Tangkhul Katamnao Saklong (TKS) during an exclusive interview mentioned that the Naga villages under the demand of Sadar hill District cover Naga tribal villages from liangmai tribe, Tangkhul, Thangal , Maring, Mao and poumai. More than around 47 Tangkhul- Naga villages are situated in the said demand of the so-called Sadar hill District. Nagas have been living in their forefather land from time immemorial unlike the Kuki refugees who were migrated mostly from the Chin-Burma (Myanmar) province during the British era as a labourer and who started setting up camps around the places wherever the Britisher’s made their Headquarters mostly in North East of India. In regard to the statement they claim that the Kuki-refugees in Manipur state have no rights to blow their own trumpet to claim a District or Homeland by bifurcating an inch of the Nagas land without the consent of the Nagas.

The Naga people as a mass warn the Government of Manipur (GoM) that they should look into the matter thoroughly and should not take hasty decisions which will resulted in marring the sentiments of the Naga people in Manipur or which will resulted in inter- communal disturbance. If such incidents happen in future it was declared that the responsibility and the consequences will be directly pointed at GoM.

Kuknalim!

The above press release was sent to KanaglaOnline.com by Shimray Alem {shimrayalem[at]yahoo.com}

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NUNG ANIGI MARAKTA SADAR HILLS

By Araba Meitei Politicking on the creation of Sadar Hills, a proposal initiated even before the present legislative members could spell the word “POLITICS”, is wrong. The delay is only… Read more »

By Araba Meitei

Politicking on the creation of Sadar Hills, a proposal initiated even before the present legislative members could spell the word “POLITICS”, is wrong. The delay is only helping the formation of dark clouds looming over the issue from Senapati where the CM was given a foreigner and a land grabber’s welcome. It is unfortunate that the successive clandestine MoUs between the Government of Manipur and Naga NGOs initiated, signed and re-endorsed by Rishang Keishing and whose footsteps W. Nipamacha Singh, a Meitei Chief Minister, toed is tumbling out of the closet much to the amazement of the SHDDC. The government’s intentional disregards only accentuate the suspicion that like his predecessors the CM might have compromise the integrity of Manipur for Naga integration. To make things straight, one may recall the source from where the CM gained political strength to oppose Th. Muivah. Had the present government formation been the same as that of Wahengbam Nipamacha Singh, the government would have crumbled or the CM would have gone to Mao gate to welcome Muivah with garland made of Lotus buds plucked from Loktak Lake.

The delay in the formation of the district aggravates the issue further and by now a stroke of communal colour is painted by the Naga NGOs. All the possible consequences are now laid bare for all to witness. The calculated move to ignite fresh ethnic conflict between the hill tribes is not likely to surface this time round. With the agenda of land annexation in the name of urbanization still fresh in the minds of the hill brethrens, the conflict of interest is likely to result in communal re-alignment among the hill tribes. The re-alignment or unification of the hill brethrens is going to be the sure nemesis of Manipur.

In the politics of Manipur, the Kukis are like ping-pong balls between the Nagas and the Meiteis. The demand for fulfillment of the proposal made in the early 70s is made a ping-pong game between the opposing integrations – Manipur and Nagas on the simple pretext that Kuki population is disproportionately high in the proposed Sadar Hills. For the Nagas, Sadar Hills is a move to curve out generous portions of the district they hope to integrate with Nagaland. For the Meiteis, it is an opportunity to strike a discord and disintegrate the unity of the hill people seen in the form of COPTAM. Between these opposing forces the issue of creating a mere administrative unit is blown out of proportion underscoring the fact that in the politics of Manipur nothing matters more than the politics of the opposing nationalisms of Meiteis and Nagas. However, the balance between the two will be easily tilted in the wake of the Kukis taking a u-turn. Any move to reach a consensus between the Nagas and the Kukis is going to prove highly detrimental to the interest of the Meiteis. Unlike earlier times the consensus is no longer impossible. That will be the end of Manipur’s integration or aspiration for Manipur’s sovereignty.

To maintain the status quo of Kuki political tone is to maintain the status quo of the integrity of Manipur territorial boundary. The use of trifle matters like creation of Sadar Hills district as a pawn to usher in communal hatred should not be seen as the solution to gain inches in the hills. The move to seize settlement rights in the hills and protection of Manipur integrity, at this point of time, will not go hand in hand and it is likely to backfire sooner or later. It sent out a very wrong signal that protection of the whole of Manipur is given up and the government is merely attempting to save small pieces of land surrounding the valley by means of urbanization and human planting.

Therefore, creation of Sadar Hills should be seen as a move to bring about development and administration and nothing more.

The above article was sent to Kanglaonline.com by Mr. Araba Meitei, he can be contacted at araba.meitei[at]yahoo.in

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Sangakpham: We deserve to know

By:  A. Bimol Akoijam In a swift response, the Chief Minister of Manipur said that the terrorist violence that struck Sangakpham on 1st August, 2011 was the handiwork of NSCN… Read more »

By:  A. Bimol Akoijam

In a swift response, the Chief Minister of Manipur said that the terrorist violence that struck Sangakpham on 1st August, 2011 was the handiwork of NSCN (I-M). This is a development which is quite uncharacteristic of the Govt. of Manipur on such incidents or as an editorial in the Sangai Express, a leading newspaper in Imphal puts it, “can’t really recollect the last time that a case of this proportion was laid bare so fast and so conclusively”. However, the said organization, according to a report released by Newsmai News Network from Dimapur, has denied the allegation. Besides, according to a press report, contrary to the statement made by the Chief Minister at the Press Conference on 2nd August, 2011, the Koren (Koireng) Youth Organization has denied that the suspected bomber one Anthony s/o Bonkolung of Sadu Koireng is “a resident of Sadu Koireng Village, Saikul sub-division…and he is not known to the people of Koireng”.

CM O Ibobi Singh inspecting the site of Sangakpam bomb blast. Source: Imphal Free Press

The contradictory reports do not help the citizens who are at the receiving end of such violent and atrocious crime. This being the case, we, as citizens must know the truth as to who is/are behind the dastardly and gruesome act at Sangakpham. The government must put the system and institutions at its disposal to task so as to come out with the truth and bring those who are responsible for the crime to justice at the earliest.

And we as citizens must also know that we must not rest till the institutions for investigations and protecting the life and dignity of the people are made to perform their assigned and expected duties and responsibilities. Only then, we can expect to live with certain sense of normative and institutional mechanisms of a civilized life.

All those who cried out for justice, and those who have statements such as “enough is enough” etc must put their statements into action by seeking and pursuing this: to know the truth and make the above institutions accountable. Only then, can one say that their slogans and outpouring of emotions have some sense and value. Otherwise, those statements shall remain as symptoms of a pathological mind which make them vulnerable to atrocious violence and indignity.

This being the case, we deserve to know:

 

a)      Who is Anthony, the suspected bomber?

b)      What are the material and circumstantial evidences on the basis of which the officials have established the identity of the suspected bomber and the organization of which he was a member or on whose behalf he allegedly carried out the heinous act?

c)       As per the statement of the Chief Minister, the Bajaj scooter (Chetak) which was allegedly used in the blast had a Nagaland number (NL-O1E/1394) registered in the name of one K. Daniel s/o K. Angami of Diphu Par, Dimapur (Nagaland). Now the question is:

i) Was this information based on the recovery of the necessary document(s) from the blast site or provided by authorities in Nagaland?

ii) Has the investigating agency in the state kept in touch with their counterpart in Nagaland on this matter a) to establish the facts of the case and b) to trace the owner for further questioning?

d)      ISTV news mentioned that the Union Home Minister also reportedly blamed NSCN (I-M) for the blast at Sangakpham. (There was one line in Morung express which also reported the statement of the Union Home Minister). If this is so, which agency has given them this news? This is crucial for two reasons: a) The Union Government has been in talks with the said organization and b) for the deeply ethicized and communalized mindset, the words of the Government of Manipur can be subjected slanderous allegation. Moreover, this has serious implication for the “ground rules” of the “cease fire” between the Government of India and the NSCN (I-M), which, as far as Manipur is concerned, is nothing more than a farcical enactment and a part of a make-belief world of those who were ostensibly happy with the withdrawal of the “three words” from the “ceasefire agreement” following the so-called “uprising” in Manipur in 2001.

We must avoid communally charged perspective; what we have seen at Sangakpham is the display of a horrible act of a naked and illegitimate violence that attack the life and dignity of the citizens. Democratic ethos demands accountability of institutions and transparency for a civilized life in the state. And we must work to restore such institutional imperatives, not hollow talks and rhetoric.

By the way, such a note as this one is something that one can legitimately expect to come in media in Manipur. I am sure that many of us have seen such reports and news analysis in media across the globe following such incidents. If it doesn’t come, it only speaks of our media guys just as it speaks of the people of Manipur in general. It’s time to take responsibility, each one of us, for a change.

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Peace and Development in NE India

by Dr. R.B. Thohe Pou Many people talk about peace and development, but how many of us sincerely want peace and development in North East India? Arms Force Special Power… Read more »

by Dr. R.B. Thohe Pou

Many people talk about peace and development, but how many of us sincerely want peace and development in North East India? Arms Force Special Power Act (AFSPA) was introduced in NE regions in 1957 and re-imposed in Manipur and Nagaland in 1985. Nagaland State has again been declared as a disturbed area in July 2011. The draconic law of AFSPA has mentally and physically affected the people in the region, and it will have a great impact even in the future. Some people may allege that there is peace in the region, but controlling the people by a gun barrel cannot be called as PEACE. If you are really talking about peace, let there be peace and development in the region in letter and in spirit.

The government wants to bring peace and development in the region, but it cannot do so while denying the rights of the people. If rights and justice of the people are denied, there cannot be peace and development in NE India; this is true not only in NE India but anywhere in the world. With mutual understanding and knowing the facts of the history, no problem is so abstruse as to be unsolvable.

The BJP government took the initiative in the Indo-Naga peace talks with the senior leaders like Atal Vajpee Bihari. However, the younger generation have different views on the Naga political problem; some are even ignorant about the essential Naga historical facts. There is medicine to kill pain, and we can prescript medicine to reduce it, but a doctor needs to diagnose the root cause and problem, and give the complete dose to heal a patient. Repressing the rising voice of the people through military might is only like a doctor prescribing only the pain killer to be relieved ephemerally.

Mizoram state is becoming one of the fastest developing states in NE and has achieved the second highest literacy rate in India after the insurgent problem was solved. The State has recently celebrated the 25Years of Peace in the State on 30th June 2011. It has become one of the model states in terms of developments and peace in NE. Only those who have genuinely studied the issues and problems can only understand the real cause of the problem and issue of NE India. Recently, Rahul Gandhi – one of the promising future Indian Prime Ministers, says, “Army is not the solution to Kashmir and NE.” Many other Indian Army officers having previously served in NE region also gave a similar report.

When the NE burns, it affects all of India; when the Naxalites affected regions burn, it affects the entirety of India. Unfortunately, only some logical and visionary leaders see this aspect. According to the govt. of India – Home Ministry Affairs (HMA) 1967, NNC was listed as a banned terror group in NE India. On 17th May 2010 the govt. of India released another list of terror groups in India in which more than 100 terror groups are banned like – Maoists, ULFA, NBDF, SIMI, etc., but the NSCNs factions are not included. However, some people alleged the NSCN – the Naga National Workers as terrorist, criminal, extortionist, etc. If the NSCN are terrorist and criminal then the whole Naga civil leaders and Naga people also can be booked under TADA and criminal cases for supporting them to bring peace in the region as an accomplice also can be punished under IPC.

India will become a peaceful Nation and develop more progressively once some of the threats and problems are solved. Today the three biggest problems being encountered by the GOI are –

i). The Jammu and Kashmir issue and problems
ii). NE insurgent Issue and problems (especially the NSCN and ULFA)
iii). Maoist problems (Naxalites) issue and problems

India has been investing a huge sum of money for counter-insurgency. Such expenditures would be reduced significantly if the above three problems were solved, yielding not only peace, but also greater economic prosperity. Those three problems have different issues and problems, and it needs to consider patiently in each case separately. It is high time that the GOI gives serious thought to these burning issues in India. Corruption is another mania in India, but the above three issues are more important than other issues in India. If the GOI wants the Naga political to be solved and to restore peace in the region, it needs to acknowledge and accept the genuine cause of the Naga political problem and prescribe the complete dose to heal the region completely.

The people of NE India yearn for peace and development, but more than 60% of the Indian population does not understand the root causes for the lack of peace and development in NE. One should not think that the problem in NE region is just a law and order problem. While considering the size of the region and demographic aspects, some people may want the Seven Sisters to become one nation, but there is no historical basis for such a union. Why has the giant India had a ceasefire with the small Naga army since 1997? The size does not matter but the historical fact counts.

It is well-known that NSCN is considered as the mother of insurgents in Northeast India, and everyone who loves peace and development in the region needs to extend support to resolve the Naga political and ULFA problems. Then someday the beautiful greenery of the NE States of India can become one the best tourists’ destinations, and also become one of the commercial hubs of India. The people around the world want peace and development in the region and in a recent Annual Gathering in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, the World Baptist Alliance (WBA) which consists of 120 Nations support Naga Reconciliation. NE people have suffered enough for more than 50 years under AFSPA and the insurgency problem, and it is time now for everyone to think more positively and to have the desire to the most pressing issues and problems in the region.

The Naga Political problem is not problematic only to the Naga indigenous people; it affects the whole NE region and India. Directly or indirectly, development in the northeastern region is depending upon solving the Naga Political and ULFA problems. Once the Naga Political and ULFA problems are solved, we can see the dawning of development and peace in northeastern region of India. It is alleged (reported) that the Naxalites have a link with the ULFA, and the network may continue to enlarge as times passes. It is also alleged that the NSCN is giving shelter to the ULFA cadres some where in the border of India and Myanmar. So in one way or another, all three groups are closely linked, which shows the insurgent epidemic in the future in India.

Solving the NSCN and ULFA problems in NE will bring solace to India and in particular to northeastern region. The GOI and the people of northeast need to understand not only the factual issues, but also to acknowledge and accept the genuine cause of the Naga Political problems. In previous Central-NSCN-IM Peace-talks, the Chairman of NSCN-IM said that the Peace-talks are coming to most crucial stage, and in more recent talks (18 July 2011), NSCN Special Emissary V.S. Atem told the Telegraph, India, “The talks were positive and we now enter the most crucial phase of the negotiation.” Moreover, it is also reported that the Naga political problem will be solved in “shortest possible time” and the solution will be based on “the uniqueness of Naga history and situation which was recognized by the government in 2002”. After more than 60 rounds of Peace-talks held in different countries and in Delhi, now it is showing a positive result in their Peace-talks. Consequently, the people of Naga-land and NE India should be in euphoria and extend their support to the ongoing Peace-talks to bring a long-lasting peaceful solution in the region.

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