COMMITTEE FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS
185/3, FOURTH FLOOR, ZAKIR NAGAR, NEW DELHI-25
CONDEMN THE ABDUCTION AND ILLEGAL DETENTION OF ANTHONY SHING THE HEAD OF THE FOREIGN AFFAIRS OF THE NSCN (IM) WHICH HAS BEEN HOLDING PEACE TALKS WITH THE GOVERNMENT OF INDIA!
RELEASE IMMEDIATELY ANTHONY SHING UNCONDITIONALLY!
It is with deep concern that the CRPP has been observing the ongoing tragedy of the deliberate kidnapping and illegal detention of Anthony Shing, Head of Foreign Affairs of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-IM) with whom the responsible actors of the Government of India has been holding talks for the last 13 years! The farcical nature of the whole incident is evident from the fact that the person who is being kidnapped and kept in illegal detention was on his way to be part of the peace talks with the Government of India to be held in the last week of September, 2010. It is beyond the comprehension and reason of any discerning mind to fathom the gravity of the action of the Indian State which is gearing for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council as well as being touted as the largest democracy in the world!
Under no stretch of imagination can it be termed a responsible behaviour of statesmanship from a government which vouches by the principles of democracy, accountability and fair-play for everyone even when one has differences. More so, when India is signatory to Internal Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). It should be noted that the Nagas under the NSCN (IM) has been holding talks with the Indian Government cutting across various political parties as well as streams for 13 years to bring a lasting solution to the political aspiration of the people residing in Naga areas. More than 70 rounds of talks have happened at the highest level.
At this juncture to indulge in kidnapping of a high ranking official who is central to the talks, to deny the illegal detention for more than a week and finally accept his illegal custody smacks of arrogance and utter irresponsibility not to say a complete lack of purpose on the side of Government of India and those at the helm of affairs when it comes to the important question of the political aspirations of the Nagas. The action of the Government of India goes a long way in saying that they are not interested in solving the issue with justice as the central principle and is much keener on scuttling the peace process. Further to keep such an important personality in illegal custody for days shows the ulterior motives of the Government of India as one fears substantial threat to his life if he refuses to submit to the strong arm tactics of the Indian Government.
The statement of facts regarding the person Anthony Shing while he was on his way to India is as follows. Also attached is a detailed profile of the person vis-à-vis his role in the peace talks so far: Anthony Shing, known among his people as Ningkhan Shimray, is the Head of Foreign Affairs of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-IM). NSCN-IM has been holding peace talks with the Government of India since 1997. Anthony Shing went missing after he landed on 27 September, 2010. He was on his way to India to attend the next round of peace talks scheduled to start on 29 September 2010. He was to take the flight to New Delhi on the morning of 28th September 2010 to join the peace talk. He flew from Bangkok with Royal Nepal Airlines flight number RA 402. Two acquaintances and the driver of the hotel’s pick-up service waited for him at the airport for hours, but he did not appear nor did he get in touch with the hotel or anyone else of his contacts in Kathmandu. They waited for long hours since they were informed that he had departed from Bangkok.
Seven days after his disappearance, on October 2 the Indian Intelligence informed that Anthony Shing is the custody of National Investigation Agency(NIA); a federal agency of Indian government to combat terrorism.
It is important that all democratic voices in the subcontinent and worldwide should condemn unequivocally this fascistic anti-people attitude of the Government of India and demand the UNCONDITIONAL RELEASE OF MR. ANTHONY SHING IMMEDIATELY HERE AND NOW. We appeal to the International Community to take up this issue with all its earnestness to ensure that the political aspirations of the Naga people are addressed with sincerity and integrity by the Government of India instead of indulging in ways and means akin to uncivilized and undemocratic behaviour with political will taking a backseat and strong arm tactics of the lawless agencies of the government taking precedence with the sole purpose of scuttling the talks that have been on for years!
We call upon the International Community to run a relentless campaign to expose this duplicity of the Indian Government and ensure the Unconditional Release of Mr. Anthony Shing.
Secretary, Public Relations