Post Mortem

Irony of Naga nationalism: An observation

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 5/27/2019 12:12:17 PM IST

 Call me ignorant, benighted and unknowledgeable for my understanding and observation of the very proud movement of the Nagas. I am pretty confident that many Nagas, young and old, take pride in the movement. There have been occasions where I am baffled by the enthusiasm of the younger generation on the Naga Nationalist movement. Maybe because I underestimated them by perceiving that they are more into pop culture thingy and don’t really pay much attention to their history or they are brainwashed to be unreasonably patriotic. 

It is with no doubt that the Naga Nationalist movement had come a long way with countless patriots giving up their lives for the cause. It gives you chills when you hear or read about the struggles our forefathers, or for some, their own fathers, brothers, and uncles had sacrificed their lives for our better tomorrow. After all these sacrifices, one is left with no choice but to continue the legacy of our dear and near ones and finish the unfinished goals. This is one of the many reasons, as to why this movement is held up till today and, of course, not forgetting that much has also changed in the nature of the sacrifices made by the older generation of patriots. To be brutally blunt, our predecessors who had made so many sacrifices in the struggle were truly for the cause of Naga Nation unlike most of the present pseudo-Nationalists who are parts to the innumerable factions solely for their individual benefits. 

There were true stories of the Naga freedom fighter then who would hide in the jungle for years, hungry and worn-out to protect the village just so that we can have a peaceful sleep and undisturbed harvest, and the villagers in return provide food and safety. But the irony now is that nowadays the Nation workers live in skyscrapers (maybe by our Naga standard) and eat the best Indian food. While on the other hand, most of us go through sleepless nights because these so-called freedom fighters think we, the citizens, owe them a tithe of our hard earned income just because they are fighting for a cause (which is already discredited). Many would agree with me, in spirit, of what I have just mentioned but probably would never admit it for fear of not having a share in the benefits.

The idea of having one’s own country with complete sovereignty (politically, socially, and economically) is very fascinating and endearing. Who would not want to be politically, economically, and socially independent? However, one must not overlook what it entails to be truly independent, especially in the context of the Nagas Nationalist Movement. This is where I find that most of the Nagas (i.e. intellectuals, pseudo-Nationalists, and the mass) do not want to acknowledge or are consciously ignorant to admit that attaining sovereignty is a lost cause. We only like to bask in the idea of being independent because it is easier said than done, and why not, because in many ways some are independent economically, socially, and politically in a very narrow sense.

Whenever we talk about gaining independent or having one’s own country the first thing I visualize is having our own currency. 

(To be concluded)

Pakinzinliu Chawang Salikyu

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