Post Mortem

Naga peace process: The unsung heroes

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 1/12/2020 12:37:41 PM IST

 After a tense and uncertain period preceding 31st October, the much awaited deadline to conclude the Naga Peace Talks, entire Nagaland and the whole of Naga community has heaved a sigh of relief and the Sun seems to once again be shining bright for this conflict torn society.  There is a glimmer of new hope everywhere and optimism reigns supreme.  In case everything goes as planned, Nagaland may well be on the cusp of a new epoch, the beginning of a peaceful, progressive, economically vibrant, tribally united and culturally unique part of India.

The print, electronic and social media at state, national and international levels is abuzz with news and analyses of this momentous event.  There seems to be no dearth of takers for the credit in making the impossible happen, NSCN (IM) and NNPGs are claiming to have won the rights for the Naga people, Government of India and the Interlocutor boast of their patience and negotiation skills for having kept this long drawn and tedious process on track and a host of civil society and church bodies and political parties pat themselves for mediating on a workable solution and keeping tempers low.  And above all, the Naga people quietly and rightly claim of having endured this unending and bitter conflict, as mute spectators torn between the two sides.

In this euphoria, one stakeholder seems to have been totally forgotten; no praises, not even a passing reference to this silent and omnipresent participant. The Indian Army and Assam Rifles have endured this conflict from the very first day and will be present even when everything has been resolved to the satisfaction of everyone.  These forces were first inducted into the inhospitable and till then uncharted jungles and mountains to return the call of duty.  Assam Rifles were always there even before the trouble started, as the sentinels of the Indian Frontier in East.  Countless men and officers of Army and Assam Rifles have sacrificed themselves to keep the common Naga shielded from the heat of this conflict. Not only these men and officers made the supreme sacrifices but even their families endure an unimaginable life without their loved ones.  The one constant in the conflict of Nagaland has been the steadfast manner in which men in uniform have stood against all odds.  These men not only fought to maintain public safety but also were the first ones to usher developmental and social welfare projects in the remote and forgotten parts of Nagaland.  They provided relief when relief from any other source was impossible to come by.

At this juncture of hope, it would be prudent to recollect and remember the sacrifice and contributions made by the men in uniform.  Without their contribution and resolve, this dawn of a new era in Naga history may not have been possible.  Let them not be forgotten, as always happens when everything is good and positive, only to remember them again when calamity strikes.  On a sobering afterthought, if analysed pragmatically, there are still numerous places of the jigsaw puzzle to be fitted yet.  The role the security forces will play in relieving the Naga rebels of arms and the subsequent rehabilitation of the various cadres will set the stage for complete normalisation of the situation. And also let us also not forget that few armed groups have still kept themselves away from the peace process and would need to be factored in during the reconstruction process of the state. Therefore the unsung sacrifices and contributions of Indian Army and Assam Rifles must always be remembered by the current generation of Naga society and the generations in future.

Khumlamo Patton, 

Akuk village

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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