Address of Gen. Rtd. VS Atem (VC), Convener, Steering Committee on the 32nd NSCN Raising Day Celebration.
Dated: 31st January, 2011
Let the Nagas rejoice! For, this is the day the Lord has made.
Thirty years ago, on this day, the 31st January 1980, the Naga people under the dynamic and visionary leadership of Messrs. Isak, SS. Khaplang and Th. Muivah in their collective wisdom fired with the spirit of live or die for the sovereign right of Nagalim gave birth to this fearsome National Socialist Council of Nagalim.
Highly respected leaders of the Naga nation on the dais and off the dais and all the highly esteemed comrades in arms both in the civil set-up and the Army, I gave my revolutionary salute and respect to each and everyone of you on this great day of the Nagas for coming together to celebrate the 32nd year of the rising of the NSCN. Our hearts and minds in solidarity have gone out to those brave sons and daughters who have made supreme sacrifices to make this day a day of pride and honor with their own bloods and lives. May their immortal spirit of valor and selflessness for the freedom of the Naga people not only blaze the path of our revolutionary struggle but also continue to guide and strengthen us in every of our strides till we complete our journey to the promised land. Our feelings also go out especially to the widows and their orphaned children. We would like to keep this solemn promise to them and the departed National heroes that whatever achievement we have made so far is not because of our strength or wisdom but because of their sacrifices and the love of Jehovah in whom the poor and unworthy Nagas believe.
Like the life of a man, is the life of a political party too. It has its time of birth and so has its time of death. How the Communist party or for that Marxism which has swept two third of Europe once upon a time has demised so suddenly is a matter of unforgettable lesson for every Naga patriot who also claim to be revolutionaries. Any ideology that fails to continually deliver hope and confidence to the people or when the people are disillusioned with the political party, that very party is bound to meet its ultimate end. No political party can survive without the love and sympathy of the people as fishes cannot sustain themselves without water. So let us not take the people for a ride or for granted. Nagas were in the past simple, straight forward, honest and unpolluted but now with the passage of time and development, our people have become very sophisticated and critical of anything. Innocent obedience is a story of the past. Unless one is intellectually convinced, it will be impossible to lead the people like the dumb driven cattle. In the case of the Nagas vis a vis the Naga National Council, it is not the people who failed but it is the NNC who failed to the people and betrayed the National Sacred trust.
On this auspicious day, I also would like to call upon all the leaders as well as the led to search ourselves, and allow our people to comment us that we are of impeccable character. A corrupt nation cannot be strong rather it cannot survive long. The size of territory and the strength of population or the wealth of a country cannot safe itself if it is ridden with corruption. History tells us how the great Ming dynasty of China was overrun by Genghis khan with all ease inspite of the unbreakable or impenetrable Great Wall throughout the northern and north-eastern China built with untold sweat and tears of the Chinese people. The soldiers who guarded the great Wall or for that, the frontiers of China were corrupt and therefore they were highly vulnerable to the lure of wealth and power. Genghis khan with a few thousands of horse riders exploited the weaknesses of the Chinese to the hilt and Chinese themselves opened the Great Wall for the Mongolian invaders for a few bagful of bribe money. This will not be an exception to us and for that, no nation however strong or big in size or rich in resources can stand corruption. Therefore, may I call upon every cadre of the NSCN great and small to come forward and put our heads together to root out corruption in the first place from the organization, followed by eradication of these menacing social diseases from the Naga society.
It is also pertinent to say this that, we Nagas have been patient enough in engaging with the government of India at the negotiation table to find honorable and mutually acceptable solution to the long drawn-out political conflict between India and Nagalim for more than 13 years. On the part of the NSCN, our collective leadership has done all whatever can be done. No stone have been left unturned in the interest of peace and security of both Indians and Nagas who are to live as neighbors till God and time permit. But on the part of the government of India, kindly allow me to say that, Sincerity and honesty and respect for its own commitment seem to be unavailable in the lexicon of Indian politics and diplomacy. Tricks and intrigues raise their ugly heads here and there and now and then which tend to drive the Nagas away farther and farther instead of winning their confidence and bring them closer. NSCN will not go for a solution or for peace so long as their land and people are kept divided and sub-divided through arbitrary boundaries. NSCN also will not compromise on its inalienable right of distinct identity through its “Unique History”. To protect our land and the right to exist in the community of nations rest with us and if the mighty one’s fail to respect our desire to co-exist peacefully, we have every right to move heaven and earth even the hell. We will even take the devil to cross the bridge. Therefore, every member of the NSCN shall now tighten our belt and prepare for the worst. But let us not fear the might of the world for the living God who has sustained us this far and who has turned many impossibles into possibles will continue to protect us and also lead us till we reach the Promised Land. Everything that has its beginning has its end. So also the national journey of the Nagas that was begun by our forefathers must come to its end by entering the Promised Land. When the darkest moment is over the dawn must break and the morning star shall rise. The veil of bondage shall be lifted from the horizon of Nagalim, wailings and weepings will be gone for the sun of freedom would rise. Only let us stand firm and be true to God and to our people.
May God bless Nagalim! May God bless NSCN !