The Steering Committee, which is the highest decision making body of the NSCN-IM, asserted on Tuesday that it will take stand to defend the Naga political issue at all cost.
A statement issued by Maj (Retd.) Hutovi Chishi, who is the Convener of the Steering Committee of the NSCN-IM, said that it will go down in the Indo-Naga history the “vile attempt” made by RN Ravi to pull the clock back of the over 70 years of Naga issue ever since the Naga Independence was declared on August 14, 1947 and 23 years after the second Indo-Naga ceasefire and political talks.
It then alleged that despite such “naked exposure of Ravi’s deceitful agenda, a few selfish Nagas” allowed themselves to be carried away by his “scheming tricks to destroy” the Naga political issue by “desperately” trying to force it into “law and order problem”.
The statement then asserted, “But NSCN will take the stand to defend Naga political issue at all cost”. It further said that the “Naga nation Nagalim” is God’s gift to the Naga people and no force on earth can take it away or destroy it. “Such abominable attempt is against God’s creation of the world community,” it added.
The statement then said that Nagas are passing through the most decisive moment. “We have to choose which way to go either to allow ourselves to be carried away by the wave of anti-Naga forces in collusion with Ravi led forces or choose to stay active defending the historical and political rights of the Naga people. The decision is crucial as the enemies are at work sleeplessly,” it also stated.
The Steering Committee of the NSCN-IM then said that it was taken aback with great dismay as “some of our respectable Naga organizations cheated themselves and Naga nation as they treacherously ignored the historical and political significance of defending the Naga flag and constitution”. It also said that for the past more than 70 years Nagas have gone through blood, sweat and tears fighting under the banner of Naga flag.
“Our constitution (Yehzabo) guides us who we are and how we function as distinct people who will go to any extent to defend our lands,” it further stated. The Steering Committee also said that organizations or individuals who are falling in line with Ravi are to be classified as anti-Nagas. It added that the Naga people will not forgive those who are trying to kill the rights of the Naga people by supporting India’s “suppressive” policy. “We will never sign any agreement that affects the freedom of our future generations. We will not betray our God who gave us the right and conscience to live as a free nation. That was the reason why we adopted the slogan ‘Nagalim for Christ’”, stated the Steering Committee of the NSCN-IM.
According to the Steering Committee, Nagas have come a long way, “the travails that had touched the 74th year ever since we declared Naga Independence on August 14, 1947”. It also said that God “never fails us though we failed” to meet His calling in many ways. It further said that Nagas have gone through two ceasefire agreements with the Government of India. The second-Indo-Naga ceasefire is still in operation that is taking the Indo-Naga political talks to the crucial stage. “We give immense thanks to our Almighty God for bringing us this far,” it added.
According to the Steering Committee of the NSCN-IM, at the international level, “Nagalim is not alone”. It also said that inspired by the leadership in the hands of the UNPO that “stoutly stood behind NSCN, we have many well wishers across the world that played their roles in different capacities”. It also said that Nagas are grateful to them. “We are happy that our Naga brethren abroad stayed connected with the Naga issue. That is the spirit we value the most because they are our ambassadors abroad,” it added.
The committee then appreciated fellow Nagas who “stood firmly” behind Indo-Naga political issue and bearing with “us through thick and thin”. It also said that Nagas need to sail together leaving behind petty divisive politics as prodded by certain forces. “Let us keep in mind that if we mishandle the ongoing Indo-Naga issue we shall be answerable to the future generations because the Naga issue will never die at the hands of any force on earth,” it added.
It then appealed, “Let us uphold one another through ceaseless prayers as we steady ourselves to protect the sanctity of the God-given Naga nation that is being suppressed by the government of India for the last more than 70 years. History will honour us as we prove ourselves as last men standing fighting for the dearest cause of Naga political issue”.
The committee then expressed that it is unfortunate to have many black sheep in the garb of Naga national freedom fighters. According to the statement, they have nothing good to show but devalue the political sanctity of Naga issue. “They are no better than parasites whose main purpose is to survive at the cost of others who are doing the donkey’s job to carry the national load. Posterity will judge them for contaminating the Naga issue,” it added.
According to the statement, after India “unleashed” its security forces to occupy “Nagalim from the year 1956 in the most ruthless manner more than 2 lakhs have died as Naga people refused to surrender their God given rights as a nation”. It then added, “We the living Naga people can never forget the sacrifices to save our tomorrow". It further said, "Our great leaders like Mr. Khodao Yanthan, Gen. (Retd.) Kholi Konyak and Isak Chishi Swu died without seeing the fruition of our long struggle". It then added, "We have to honour them as we intensify our struggle under the Collective Leadership of Q Tuccu, Tongmeth Wangnao and Th Muivah”.