Post Mortem

NTC rejoinder to Sira Kharay

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 10/28/2019 12:30:40 PM IST

 Of late, the Indigenous Nagas of Nagaland are being bombarded with bombastic and unbridled bullying statements which used to fill the local press media particularly by those Nagas from Manipur as the Naga political negotiators are on the verge of closing the process and the Nagas are about to face what may be the ultimate fate. Besides, there have been the relentless circulation of similar comments in social media with threats and intimidations of bloodshed mostly by the Nagas of Manipur. What is or are the agendum/agenda of those incendiaries who are frantic to spread such canards laced with hatred and insinuations with the intent to resume fratricide amongst the Nagas? Nevertheless, what authority the Nagas of Manipur have to undermine or intimidate the Nagas of Nagaland or vice versa? Neither the Nagas of Nagaland are born to serve the Nagas of Manipur nor to remain subservient to the Nagas from other States by any legal agreement if not as equals. In today’s context, the superiority of a person is only measured by the scale of how rational, realistic and ethical is one in words and deeds but not by illogical boastings. 

The attention of NTC is drawn to the statement of the Advocate Sira Kharay which was published by local papers on 21.10.2019 and several points raised are found to be baseless, highly irrational, incisive and bombastic. The whole article was for the projection of NSCN(IM) to be the only mandated group while discarding the rest of the other Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs). At the outset, it is for Kharay to understand that the NTC was formed by the aboriginal Nagas of Nagaland in 2013 to protect the interest of the Nagas of Nagaland in particular and of the bona fide citizens of the State of Nagaland in general. As much the Nagas of Manipur had the right to have UNC, that much the Nagas of Nagaland have to have the Council as the non-political platform. 
To specifically react to some points raised by Kharay and to quote “By semantic manipulation of the mystifying term ‘inclusiveness’, the international character of the conflict negotiation is being rapidly localised”. This implies that so long the NSCN(IM) was having the exclusive dialogue with the GOI, the negotiation status was of international. Whereas, when the Working Committee(WC) of NNPGs was invited to have simultaneous dialogue with the GOI, the status of the former was degraded to national level. When the NTC, by God’s grace, paved the way for the WC to have negotiation with the GOI, it was solely for inclusive and equitable process of negotiation without any ulterior motive or prejudice. It is to remind Kharay that the Nagas had not given mandate to a single NNPG to have monopoly for exclusive political negotiation with the GOI on behalf of the rest of the NNPGs in particular or of the Nagas in general. As much right the NSCN(IM) has to have negotiation with the GOI that much right each NNPG has to enter into political negotiation when invited by GOI irrespective of size and calibre. 
Secondly, quote “By politically engaging with the 7NNPGs, NTC, Church leaders and Civil Societies it goes against the ceasefire ground rules, even the fringe voices within the Naga society have been validated to delegitimize the traditional mandate of NSCN(IM)”. 
It is a total lie for Kharay to assert that the invitation of the GOI to WC of NNPGs for simultaneous negotiation had violated the ceasefire ground rules. The ceasefire ground rules have nothing to do with political negotiations except for the parties to adhere to peaceful conduct guidelines. Also, Kharay is confused about who is the negotiator and who is the facilitator. The NSCN(IM) and the NNPGs are the negotiators and the rest civil bodies including the NTC are just the facilitators. The negotiators have been engaged with the GOI for more than 22 years as for NSCN(IM) and just 2 years in respect of NNPGs, whereas, the NTC and the other civil societies are never engaged with the GOI since the roles are different. The negotiators are solely responsible for the political agenda being placed for such process of dialogues on behalf of the Nagas as a whole whereas the role of the civil bodies is to simply extend support to the Naga negotiators without active participation in physical negotiations. Again, it is for Kharay to know that in the contemporary Naga politics, there is neither traditional nor modern mandate given to any particular political group. All the NNPGs including NSCN(IM) are inalienable part of the Naga society, are equals and they do represent the Nagas. The inclusive politics must never be construed as an attempt of anybody intended to ‘delegitimise’ the NSCN(IM). 
Thirdly, to quote “The idea of the term Nagas is thus being gradually bastardised into non-juridical groups of chaotic individuals rather than being treated as a people, a nation at the negotiating table. This is achieved by fostering multiple willing dissident players within the Naga society camouflaged as stakeholders rather than being treated the Naga interest as represented by one entity”. The Naga public sincerely pleaded with the Naga national workers belonging to different groups to reconcile and unite under a common platform, and yet none paid heed. The reason for rejection of much imploring was the group ego that was placed above the national interest. None of the political groups has the right to throw the first stone at the other. Therefore, each Naga political group disqualified itself to become the sole and rightful representative of the Nagas. It is therefore what right Kharay has to brand anyone to be ‘chaotic individuals’ after all who has not committed errors. Every Naga is responsible for the disarray created for ourselves. We are reaping what we have sown. 
Fourthly, to quote “A new Frankenstein has been born in the form of 7 NNPGs and NTC to isolate the mainstream NSCN(IM)”. Kharay had forgotten who initiated the division of the Nagas. It is worthless to dig out the olden histories, and yet why NSCN(IM) sabotaged the Atlanta (USA) meet in 1997? What greater opportunity the Nagas ever missed than the American involvement for our cause? In fact, the NSCN(IM) had exclusive dialogue with GOI for 20 years without taking any NNPG into confidence till 2017. Had not the NTC acted on time, the rest of the NNPGs would have been totally isolated in the process of solution. Kharay should have admitted facts without distortions if he is a real educated person. 
Fifthly, to quote; “Seemingly, the proposed solution can only be within the Indian Constitution because Nagaland is within Union of India”. Is it not futile for Kharay to concoct the actual status of the NSCN(IM)’s Framework Agreement of 2015 and the Preamble/Agreed Position of WC of NNPGs of 2017 and that is it not a figment of one’s imagination that any legal document of such nature where the GOI’s representative is involved could be outside the purview of Indian Constitution? Not only Nagaland but all the rest of the other 28 States and Union Territories including Manipur State are under the Union of India. Yet, not because of Nagaland being a State of Indian Union but because the Naga negotiators had on their own volition agreed to have solution within the Constitution of India in the best interest of the Nagas. The NTC fully endorses both the Naga negotiators to go ahead without hesitation. Kharay’s perception is therefore a misnomer. 
Sixthly, to quote “An offensive psychological warfare has already begun to browbeat NSCN(IM) into toeing the line of its collaborationist Ketovi”. The NTC is not the spokesman of the Convenor, WC, NNPGs and yet the accusation of Kharay branding Mr. Kiitovi Zhimomi, the General Secretary of NSCN (U) to be a collaborationist is the language of a frustrated person. What is the difference between the Chief negotiator Mr. Th Muival of NSCN(IM) and Mr. Kitovi Zhimomi as both are the leaders leading their respective negotiating parties? If Mr. Kitovi is to be accused as collaborationist for being the leader of the ongoing dialogue, can Muivah be free from the same ‘brand name’? What does Kharay gain in issuing derogatory statement against a Naga national leader? 
Seventhly, to quote “Thereafter, India bred the Naga People’s Convention(NPC) into signing of the 16 Point Agreement, 1960 to form the present collaborationist State of Nagaland on 1st December, 1963 by sidelining NNC.” The 16-Point Memorandum and its subsequent result of the Statehood of Nagaland has been the anathema of Kharay and his likeminded people. Kharay will definitely refuse to acknowledge that how many Nagas from Manipur have reaped the fruits of the result of 16-Point Memorandum. How many Nagas of Manipur have made immeasurable wealth from the State of Nagaland and how many Nagas of Manipur could send their children to study in foreign countries with the wealth that belonged to the Nagas of Nagaland? How many Nagas of Manipur have owned valuable properties in mega cities in India because of the hospitality and magnanimity of the indigenous Nagas of Nagaland? How many Nagas of Manipur are living in palatial buildings and XUV cars at the expense of the Nagas of Nagaland? And yet, Kharay calls Nagaland to be a collaborationist State. Kharay, you yourself might not have gained anything from Nagaland and yet if you are a real human, you are supposed to be grateful to God for Nagaland to be the refuge of thousands of the Nagas from Manipur. Do not behave like beast. 
Also, it is a challenge to yourself, Kharay, that the party you support is able to bring better political status than what NPC brought for the Nagas of Nagaland.
Eighthly, and to quote “In the same modus operandi, RN Ravi now finds a new collaborationist in his proxy 7 NNPGS and NTC with a proposed package more insulting than the earlier 16 Point Agreement, 1960”. It is a known fact that not to speak of Naga sovereignty but even the Naga Integration issue is left out in the ongoing negotiations. Yet, the NTC is grateful to God and to GOI for having recognized the political status of the Nagas by means of inviting the Nagas to have years of political negotiations. The NTC does not blame the Naga negotiators for having appreciated the contemporary ground realities. The NTC therefore does not undermine even when package type of solution is evolved under the present circumstances unlike the farcical Kharay. 
Ninthly, to quote “...the 7 NNPGs and NTC have been appealing to the false ontological sense of the Nagaland Nagas on the flawed premise of temporal geography to co-opt their narrower Indianised version of Naganess”. Kharay, when the Nagaland State Assembly had adopted resolutions on Naga integration for no less than 5 times, whereas what you, the Nagas in Manipur, have been doing? Against the backdrop, no other than a Naga leader in Manipur declared that not an inch of Manipur territory will be budged for Naga integration some years back. Can Kharay point out which Naga MLA ever raised the Naga integration issue in Manipur State Assembly? The reality is that the Naga integration is not possible at the very moment, and therefore the status quo will remain. The Nagas of Nagaland, how irritating it may be to you Kharay, it will remain as it is a reality that the Nagas will live in respective States till we are integrated territorially under the Constitution of India one day. Kharay has to remain tolerant and patient too. 
Toniho Yepthomi, 
President NTC & 
Nribemo Ngullie, 
General Secy. NTC

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