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Arunachal team seeks FNR help for peace
Staff Reporter DIMAPUR, JAN 29 (NPN):
Published on 30 Jan. 2011 12:47 AM IST
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While the Covenant of Reconciliation as agreed to by three factions had practically ended factional clashes, it was not so in Arunachal Pradesh where clashes and various acts by the factions has created an unwanted situation in the state.
The disturbed situation in Arunachal Pradesh especially in the light of the recent clashes between the NSCN factions in Tirap and Changlang districts of Arunachal Pradesh has led a seven-member delegation representing various civil societies in Arunachal to seek FNR’s intervention for restoring peace in the area. The delegation also met the leaders of both the groups at Khehoi and Hebron and apprised the leaders about the gravity of the situation and appealed for immediate halt to the armed conflicts.
The members included social activist Dr. Bani Bath, advisor Global Human Rights Organisation Yorjum Riram, coordinator Women Power Connect Jaya Joram, chairperson Arunachal Citizens Rights (ACR) Bamang Tago, vie-chairman NEFA Indigenous Human Rights Organisation Domin Loya, associate researcher ACR Rita Taku and advocate Asha Michi member of ACR. It may be pertinent to note that the delegation consisted of non-Naga tribals.
Interacting with media persons at Hotel Saramati on Saturday, the members expressed deep concern and shock over the renewed factional clashes of ‘higher magnitude’ between the two NSCN groups. While lauding the reconciliation process, the delegation lamented at the spiraling violence within their state and sought FNR’s intervention. The delegates also expressed apprehension that the turf war could turn worse with potentially damaging prospects to finding a solution to the decades old Naga problem.
It was also revealed that the fallout of the serious fallout of the clashes, was that Khonsa (district headquarter of Tirap) is totally under the control of the cadres where business and administrative activities were paralysed. The delegates also informed the factional clash on January 14 claimed the life of Ozakho village chief, who was the only son of his parents while earlier, his father had also been killed by some cadres on May 23, 1999. The killings of father and son has wiped out entire generation of the chief of Ozakho village, they said.
It was also stated that many people in Arunachal had lost their lives or maimed due to factional clashes during the past two decades. Even government officers have been threatened or intimidated thereby hampering developmental activities.
Maintaining that since November last year, tension and fear psychosis pervades among the people, especially in the villages. “ As a result, unlike the rest of the world, the villagers could not even properly celebrate the last Christmas and New Year” they said. Further, they also pointed out that some remote villages were still under the control of some factions and their movements restricted and even mobile phones seized. Moreover, the latest spurt of incidents has stopped people from going to their fields, they added.
The delegates also cautioned Nagas to remain vigilant against ‘internal and external forces’ who they said, were attempting to derail the hard earned Naga reconciliation.
When asked about the response from the Arunachal Pradesh government, one of the members said the situation was not so conducive due to varied situations and that the government was very much aware. “If we approach, more paramilitary forces will be deployed” he said.
Denying any political move whilst seeking FNR’s intervention, the members clarified that it was a ‘people to people’ contact and urged the groups to also abide by the covenant of reconciliation in Arunachal.
FNR Convener Rev Dr. Wati Aier admitted that at times cadres were not properly briefed by their higher ups but maintained there was no justification for violating the covenant of reconciliation. Terming the visit of the delegation as a humane desire , Wati pointed out that there was no harm in civil societies coming together to find peace. He also further urged all the signatories to abide by the covenant of reconciliation wherever they are in order to fulfill the aspirations of the people.

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