Post Mortem

Significance of Naga flag and independence celebration

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 8/10/2020 1:45:05 PM IST

 The Angel of God said, “In the beginning, God reserved the land of brave and barbarous Nagas engaged as British Government Labour force during French war.” During the first world war between France and Germany, about 2000 Nagas were deployed, belonging to various tribes. They were, Sumi 1000, Lotha 400, Ao-200, Rengma 200 and Chang 200, and other trans-frontier tribes. Nagas joined the allied force and won the battle, they earned a good reputation and returned to Nagaland in 1918. And henceforth decided that all the Nagas should come together under one political umbrella, so they formed a Naga Elders Union. 

In the meantime, there was a British Club at Dimapur, Nagaland. The Naga elders requested the British for acquiring the club, after it was granted to them, they shifted it to Chotobosti, Kohima, at present mission compound and called it Naga Club. From the Naga club Flag with a prayer. This historic moment was witnessed by C.R. Pawsey, D.C. Naga Hills, Rev. George Supplee Chaha, Missionary, Naga Hills and Mr. A. Kevichusa along with the Naga club members. Soon after the prayer and hosting of the Flag, a beautiful Rainbow appeared clearly over the Naga club building. Therefore, the Naga club flag was enshrined with the Rain-bow shape and colour as the Rainbow was believed to be a divine revelation from God, a sign to the Naga Flag peace with God (As published by Thepfulhouvi Solo, I.F.S, Retd. Principal Secretary two years back). 

On 10th January, 1929, during a visit to Naga Hills undertaken by Sir. John Simon Commission including Mr. Clement Atlee MP and Mr. Cadegan MP, they asked the Naga leaders about their future in the event of British Government departure from India. Mr. Nizhevi Sema, DB Naga leader then replied to the British without any hesitation, that in the event of British Govt. departure from the Naga Hills, Nagas will not remain under any country domain and shall remain independent as in the days of Naga ancestors. 

Accordingly, by the 1935 British, India Parliament Bill, Naga Hills was declared Excluded Area equivalent to Independent.” on 19th July, 1947, a five team delegation of Naga Hoho led by Mr. Zapu Phizo met the late Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the Indian Nation at New Delhi and told him, “We the Nagas not join the Indian Nation.” To which Mahatma Gandhi replied, “We will not force you to join, we have fixed 15th August as Indian Independence Day, you can fix 14th August as Naga Independence Day”. Gandhiji declared that Nagas had every right to be Independent of India if they chose to do so. Further he declared that he would oppose with his life if India decided to take Nagaland by force. Because he understood that Nagas were not Indians, but were different in race and culture.

So, as adviced, the Naga Hoho delegate returned to Kohima and discussed with the Naga elders, CR Pawsey, D.C Naga Hills and Rev. George W. Supplee, Missionary, Naga Hills, declared Naga Independence Day on 14th August, 1947, one day ahead of the Indian Independence day.

The message of the declaration of Naga Independence was sent to the then king of England, the Secretary General of the UNO, the office of Embassies at New Delhi and Government of India. Hence, Nagaland celebrated 50 years pilgrim pentecost Jubilee of Nagaland for Christ peace with God on 14th August 1997. Today many Nagas especially the present younger generation are unaware or ignorant of the values and significance that our Naga National Flag upholds and symbolizes. Many Nagas are also in the dark or are least concerned to know of our historical rights, why we Nagas celebrate or observe our Independence day, a day prior to Indian Independence day.

Therefore, to inculcate and instill the spirit of patriotism among the Nagas and to convey the message to every citizen about our duties and responsibilities towards Naga Nation and the significance of our historical facts, we humbly urge each Naga individual to observe 14th August as a day of prayer so that our Almighty God intervenes and deliver us free from the forceful oppression and subjugation of the cruel rule of India. Kuknalim.

K. Kikheto Wotsa, 

Kilonser, NSCN/GPRN

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