Memories of the tragic end of Sir Akbar Hyderi and the violent political conflict that ensued as a fall-out of his backtracking of the Naga-Akbar Hydery (9-Point) Agreement, 1947 is still fresh to every fellow Naga.
Framework Agreement 2015 is the output of a concerted effort, hard talks and vigorous negotiation made between India and the Nagas involving 5 Prime Ministers and many other interlocuters in order to address the long-drawn Indo-Naga conflict. This Agreement rekindled a new hope to restructure a new and lawful relationship with India in as much as it recognizes the unique history of the Nagas and their national struggle for a country which will provide the right to freely associate and share sovereign powers with India as a separate entity.
However, every right-thinking Indian and Naga are totally taken aback by the sudden appointment of RN. Ravi (Interlocutor) as Governor of Nagaland in 2019 and his malicious statements made thereafter. His recent statehood day statement, “…there shall be only one national flag and constitution in India…” is self-explanatory to the very fact that there is only one national system in India which the Nagas knew crystal clear from early days and that Nagas’ national identity, rights and interest cannot be accommodated in the existing Indian system. This is one primary reason why the then Federal Government of Nagaland (FGN) under the visionary leadership of (L) A.Z. Phizo and the Naga people outrightly rejected the 16-Point Agreement as there is no suitable political structure of step by step nation making process for the Nagas within the rigid one country and one national system of India.
The national stand of NSCN (IM) since Pre-ceasefire Agreement (1997) is said to be evidentially found consistent and compatible to the agreed terms made in FA. On the other hand, the mischievous claim of Naga political issue as a law & order issue by the Hon’ble Governor in his letter addressed to the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Nagaland dated 16th June, 2020 r/w government memo. dated 7th July, 2020 coupled with the recent statehood day episode are a well calculated strategic move to completely overturn the recognition of unique Naga national history in the Framework Agreement of 2015 which he signed as an interlocutor on behalf of the Govt. of India.
The whole exercise, therefore, unveils the covert design of defeating the ongoing Indo-Naga peace process by showcasing the present Nagaland state as the bedrock of Naga society and the dead-end of making a unique Naga national history. False depiction of the weakness of the state cabinets headed by the Hon’ble Chief Minister by the Governor who is otherwise bound to act as per their advice is quite unfortunate. This unprecedented act of the Governor is ultra-vires to the constitutional mechanism of governance which is also in total contrast to India’s contemporary approach to the Naga issue as manifested in FA.
Narendra Modi, the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India has proudly proclaimed the Framework Agreement in his overseas’ speech. It appears that the interlocutor cum Governor is misguided by very few Naga leaders whose agenda may be wholly to discredit the hard-earned Framework Agreement boldly signed by the NDA government.
History reminds us that (L) Mahatma Gandhiji, father of the nation stood with the Nagas whereas (L) Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and (L) Mrs. Indira Gandhi, former Prime Ministers were also not averse to application of any international model for honorable Indo-Naga solution taking cognizance of Naga nationality except complete independence.
We wonder, who then really is a preposterous liar? Is it not another shrewd dilatory tactics to reverse the blame upon the Nagas for this let-down? Can such an autocratic Governor cum interlocutor truly give a just and honorable solution to the Nagas? Nagas on our part are made to realize that it is not the shrewd and cunningness from alien rule and culture but that of the most superior divine wisdom, understanding, gracious power & intervention of the living God through the gospel of Christ that has enabled the Nagas to come thus far, accomplishing a collective construct of a common Naga national identity already acknowledged as an international issue.
At this nick of time, Nagas cannot but humbly seek God’s providence over and over again to conquer our own Jordan river-like challenges to reach the promised land. India’s peace initiative should not be a ploy to further divide and destroy the Nagas as it was witnessed in the years 1960, 1964, 1975 & 1988. Unwanted neighboring influences should not drive the Nagas away from the common goal.
Nagas need to further institutionalize the peace processes at different prospective levels within and without. It’s high time for all Nagas and their kindred tribes to elude all forms of negativism and unitedly move forward. Hence, NIPA fervently appeals all concerned to make a prudent approach in finding a just, lasting and honorable win-win Indo-Naga solution without further delay. Give peace a chance!
Naga Indigenous Peoples Alliance (NIPA)