Serious and coordinated efforts need be put in if the current peace process is to be preserved by all section of the Nagas and all peace denied peoples all over, no matter their present locations. Consequences of disruption will definitely engulf much larger area of unrest not only in the region but peace-targeted efforts in the long run for the Government of India. War-like situations promulgated by Manipur state government in Ukhrul district is clearly distinguishable calculation aimed at incapacitating the current India-Naga peace initiative. Backsliding from earlier commitment to peace and enduring negotiated settlement by GOI will be accountable for outbreak of whole sale deterioration of peace processes staked by strategy be-set sections all over India.
As a matter fact, incessant bomb attacks, assassinations, encounters, mock ambushes and fake skirmishes in Imphal valley resulting to unnumbered deaths, casualties and psychological disturbances are matter of exercises on daily basis. Surges of such state police actions are motivated and propelled. Indian leadership may be committed for every peace initiative and settlement in different parts of the subcontinent; but when swayed and overwhelmed by propaganda and misdirected sectors, the ultimate always slams down to inflict and disrupt all alike because when force is marshalled in, there is little opportunity for reason to guide. Manipur state is endemic of this kind of management. People-based leaders should be made aware of the flip side of active media stories doing their jobs every day here and there. Many of them are stories from an entirely dissimilar story. If GOI is devoted to, as a gigantic democracy in the world and acclaimed Land of Ahimsa, Mr Okram Ibobi Singh and his cabinet colleagues should be directed to stop advancing incursion into lands of forest people known as ‘tribal areas.’ Defined territories or habitats of indigenous peoples owned, managed and controlled by the ‘first settlers since time immemorial, are being forcibly acquisitioned in the name of ‘new land use policy,’ ‘village development council’, state territorial integrity and vice versa. These so called ‘Tribal hill Areas’ have remained almost totally disfellowshiped and exploited in terms of highly lopsided fund distribution since Manipur attained statehood in 1972. While Indian ‘Look East Policy’ and its allied economic activities, security concerns apart, are being intensified, the indigenous major stake holders still remain uninformed since there is no policy partnership in the power sharing and decision making corridor. Acquisition of 600 hectares in Chandel district of Manipur through coercion and coordination of some unscrupulous individuals in the name of Autonomous District Council and land-grapping policies have completely denied the so called tribal peoples from the Universally declared rights to which India is a signatory. Defying their ‘free and prior consent’ in the matter of land and resources ownership has virtually reduced these ‘tribal’ to pauperisation.
Spurt of despicable and violent situations and chain of unrest is already pronounced by the political activities and protective exploitation policy of Okram Ibobi Singh in Manipur state. Meiteis’ staunch loyalty to Indian Constitution is their right and their job; it doesn’t nevertheless amount to reduction of officially agreed modalities at the Indian Prime Minister level that “The Talk is between two separate entities.” Unilateral abrogation of treaty signed between two politically opposed parties will never warrant negotiated settlement no matter the shrewd management of Okram Ibobi Singh and few ‘so called tribal representatives.’ Dastardly statements of some vested quarters saying that the current cease fire between the Nagas and GOI does not cover Manipur have bolstered the war-like situation in Ukhrul today. However, in the event following deliberate retraction from the declared cease fire will surely jeopardise greater interest of peace initiatives in the region and, the subcontinent at large. This is the concern of Naga people.
NSCN leadership is deeply committed to bargaining peace with Union Government of India. But when leadership at the helm deliberately backtracks from the commitment on cease fire coverage, it is not only politically reproachful; it disgracefully insults the Indian Defence community. Fierce and nasty fighting in other parts of Naga inhabited areas had been fought resulting to loss of hundreds of decorated Indian army officials apart from many contemptible repercussions and casualties. Uncontrolled military actions christened as ‘Operation Blue Bird’ following raid and huge cache of arms and ammunitions from one Assam Rifles station in Manipur Oinam village by NSCN, the ambush of 21 Sikh Regiment at Namthilok between Imphal and Ukhrul district Headquarters in 1982 killing scores and so called total sanitization exercises unleashing horror and one of the most heinous atrocities meted out on civil population; other such military campaigns following encounters and fights and their backlashes; to all these aftermaths apart, hundreds both of Indian security forces and Naga armies have died fighting in Manipur sector. Don’t both Manipur state government and Union Government sponsor the same total disruption of normal life involving immeasurable human rights violations should fighting resumes and talk peace in present Nagaland state? What a ridiculous announcement to declare cease fire being operative in the state of Nagaland only! How far the entire populations in Manipur away from that kind of situation are is imaginable as follow-ups of roll-back. Manipur state is corruption be-set and is reeling under highly militarized conditions. Movements for repeal of draconian laws such as ASPA and endless protests against most loathsome police actions sanctioned by its own lawmakers are the state of affairs today.
Accusation of certain anti-corruption organization against using immigrants, this bureau is constrained to say that inviting impartial participation from all over-sea friends and support groups (non-Naga) to peacefully resolve the longest pent-up case between the Nagas and imposing forces is not unlawful or against greater peace initiative. Any non-Naga or foreigner for that matter, who is a Naga ideological comrade and committing oneself to a universal common issue, should not be termed ‘against the very grain of Naga National principles’. Naga home front, with reference to Dimapur, is on the brink of being swarmed by immigrants calculatingly planted by some personal profit-oriented individuals as well as state politicians to expand their vote banks. The unabated trend of influx portending serious economic, social and political upheavals tomorrow is matter of not mere rash accusation; it invites active, coherent efforts on the part of all stake holders of indigenous peoples on war footing.
Statement of NK Singh, Chairman CFMG saying “cease fire with NSCN-IM is under considerable stress” and reiteration of “cease fire confined within Nagaland,” etc, is unfortunate and therefore, does not fall in line with the shared search for peace. Maintenance of cease fire-friendly environment has been under stress right from the day following revision of the whole text of cease fire ground rules. Evidences testifying infringements of agreed rules are being maintained by both parties engaged. It is this defined purpose that monitoring mechanism was put in place. But when notorieties committed by parties concerned are utilized to derail the whole caravan, the motive is discernible; and the purpose gets not only stressed but served to implement other object. It is regrettable that instead of accommodative discussion across table to curb recurrences, full blast announcement through media indicates immaturity and ulterior ambition given the seriousness of the peace initiatives and result of eventualities following end of peace course. NSCN is bereft of malice towards the Chairman.