Post Mortem

Replying to Naga Hoho

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 9/6/2020 12:23:56 PM IST

 The Naga Hoho could not react to my first article carried by local papers dated 5.8.2020 through which I questioned as to whether the Hoho stands for the Naga political solution or for procrastination of the political negotiations between the GoI and the two groups of the Naga negotiators with reference to the Hoho’s representation to the PM of India dated 28.7.2020 that appeared in local papers dated 30.7.2020 by which the Naga Hoho demanded the removal of the present Interlocutor Mr. R.N. Ravi, the Honorable Governor of Nagaland as one cannot fail to discern the intention of the Hoho from the statement quoted herewith beside other controversial comments. In the Naga Hoho’s July 28, 2020 representation to PM of India and I quote “With the appointment of Sri. R.N. Ravi as the Governor, it was hoped to expedite the peace process. Instead, he is breaking the hard-earned trust and faith of the people and rendering the 23 years of negotiation meaningless by smearing the Naga history….” “We feel that peaceful settlement cannot be achieved with an Interlocutor (Mr. R.N. Ravi) without empathy and without understanding our people, our history and our aspiration.” Unquote. The quoted statements are the indictment of the Interlocutor so as to discredit him with the hope of disqualifying him from his continuance as the Interlocutor. Whoever is for early political solution would not even dream of replacement of the Interlocutor at the moment. Whereas, if at all the Hoho, in its smearing campaign, manages to convince the PMO for replacement of the present Interlocutor, there will be paradigm shift in the style of managing the nitty-gritty of the negotiations under the new dispensation. Such major shuffling at this crucial moment may even become the vibrant factor by which the progress of negotiations so far made is retrogressed. Having analyzed the intention of the Naga Hoho, one cannot avoid concluding that it is nothing else but desperately attempting to thwart the early settlement of the Naga cause and prolong the negotiations indefinitely. Being critical with the Naga Hoho in view of its relentless efforts to sabotage the political solution as observed as above is never out of the blue. Had I not been compelled so, what do I gain from hating the Hoho? 

Meanwhile, to my utter surprise, the Naga Hoho President made a complete U-turn statement in Hindustan Times on August 12, 2020 and I quote “We have no connection with NSCN(IM)’s statement and there is no question of favoring or not favoring removal of Ravi as Interlocutor from our side.” Unquote. This statement was reported by Utpal Parashar and edited by Sabir Hussain, Hindustan Times, Guwahati.  In that article, how and what was the question so posed to the Hoho President was not published except the answer. Besides, the Communication Cell of Naga Hoho’s response to my article titled “Why Naga Hoho has backtracked?” dated 26.8.2020 which was published yesterday, the 5th September, 2020 by local papers in which it quoted its President’s statement as “we have no connection with NSCN(IM)’s statement of favouring or not favouring “Ravi” as Interlocutor from our side” is found incomplete. What the President, Naga Hoho stated was published in Hindustan Times dated 12.8.2020 and I had quoted it from the paper without mincing and not as evasively quoted by the Communication Cell, Naga Hoho as the words “and there is no question” after the word ‘statement’ and before the word ‘of favouring…’ were found omitted. If the quoted statement runs without the omitted words, the implication becomes less intensive, and perhaps the omission was intentional and not by inadvertent mistake. 

Secondly, if Naga Hoho’s intention is “never to delay the Naga Political Solution but it is our solemn prayer to bring Indo-Naga settlement at the earliest possible time” I am to question the wisdom of the Hoho as to how the replacement of the present Interlocutor Mr. R.N. Ravi, the Honorable Governor of Nagaland would expedite the process of solution? If what was stated is the faith of Naga Hoho, why had Hoho undermined the 31.10.2019 meet at Kohima between the two Naga negotiating groups and the Interlocutor in which the parties had agreed to have solution as reportedly known by stating that “…nor is there any progress in the political talk” in its July 28’s representation to the PM of India? Is Naga Hoho scare of solution?

Yes, the original Motto of NSF was “For greater and glory of the Nagas”. We realized the absence of the predicate in the sentence. Five Shillong based Naga scholars were entrusted to find a correct version. Thus, the word ‘lim’ (land or country in Ao) was inserted. Nevertheless, by means of having NSF background I am not bound neither to subscribe to falsehood nor to uphold wrong philosophies. I am a sinful man and the most imperfect man and yet I do struggle to uphold what is real and practical. In my strong believe, the two foundation agreements, namely, the 3rd August, 2005 Framework Agreement of   NSCN(IM) and the 17th November, 2017 Agreed Position/ Preamble of WC, NNPGs respectively with the GoI could evolve only after the Naga negotiators agreed to understand and appreciate the position of the GoI and vice versa. Therefore, my understanding of the ground realities is that out of the possible political solution, there will be no Sovereignty and no Naga Integration. In other words, the status quo remains, the Nagas in Manipur, the Nagas in Arunachal Pradesh, the Nagas in Assam and the Nagas of Nagaland will have to remain in our respective States. The signatories of the above basic agreements had already signed it in 2005 and 2017 respectively for the said status quo. The proposed solution will therefore be under the Constitution of India. 

(To be concluded)

Z. Lohe

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