A chronic patient down with cancerous symptoms has any chance of reliving normal healthy life only on two conditions: (a) Admitting to truth that he/she is seriously ailing (b) Accordingly, goes for the right treatment.
Contextualised in Tangkhul situation, we would rather pretend and in fact, we have been masking ourselves as fit and strong, up and going only to cover up the rot eating away vitals of our society. When it comes to fixing the ailment, serious as it were, those of us who determinedly arrogate to ourselves the role of absolute mastership in shaping and guiding the CSOs sheepishly point finger to all the rest on the streets except to ourselves.
Imperfaction that rules the order of humanity begets history that is replete with instances of blessings of Unity, Peace and therefore Progress. However, these blessings stand apportioned to those who untiringly strive to have their way forward driven on the wheels of ‘Mutual Trust, Mutual Respect and Mutual Cooperation’. Tangkhul Nagas, much against the historical testimonies, have over the last few decades, strived tenaciously to prove ourselves exception to the natural order of human imperfaction and therefore giving no space for ‘mutual trust, mutual respect and mutual cooperation as the basis for societal progress.
We Tangkhuls live in a social order structured on ‘Divisive not on Cohesive, on Personalised not on Socially Harmonized Culture’. Such self contradictions lead to emergence of two extremes viz (1) The very few beyond the law(moral/legal) and therefore beyond accountability (2) The vast majority used to being dictated to and loaded with penalty of responsibility for all the ills in the society. This is how we end up with leadership that refuses to see anything beyond their nose, conditioned as they are to themselves, for themselves and by themselves. They remain obsessed with concerns to keep their names in the limelight and of course, to keep their positions/interests well entrenched.
Briefly I would submit the following:
- Modelled on Awo-Ayi custom/practice of having anyone excommunicated for crime considered heinous doesn’t gell well with human moral standards and most importantly with Christian ethics. In the pre-civilizational era, what they needed was actionable eye-catching evidence to deal with crime they considered serious. In the Christian era coupled with modernity in settling public issues of this nature, there are ways far more refined and yet far more effective like denying public position, denial of publicly pronounced benefits etc. To me, the issue in question, shouldn’t have been taken that far as by no stretch of legal/moral yardstick the case fits into ‘heinous’ category. On principle and as a matter of conviction, I have been consistently against the practice of Khanga-reng.
- Practice of righting the wrong with the wrong is simply self defeating and counterproductive for it readily fits into a vicious circle of one wrong leading to another wrong only to end in never ending wrong. In such a scenario, there is simply no place for humanity. Humanity as ordained in divine scheme of things, would thrive and manifest himself/herself fully on the strength of innate human goodness and justice. Otherwise we degrade ourselves to animalism.
- The only one way forward to regaining our lost image and recapturing our place as a forward looking people, we have no choice but to unburden ourselves of extra baggages loaded on our back as ‘self-righteous, arrogant and incorrigible. Our steadfast refusal to unshackle ourselves of extra baggages has erroneously got us into reinventing ourselves as self-annointed on self-exalted position. The Bible in Prov. Says ” Pride comes before destruction; a haughty spirit before Fall”. Self Destruction and Fall don’t drop like a bomb shell – clearly preceded by self induced pride and haughtiness.
The most dangerous trend looming large on our society is the aggressiveness with which we go about pronouncing verdict/decree in absolute terms even on trivial issues. Where there is no space for retrospection and introspection, self-critiqueing, self-correction and self improvement, the bubble like fragility of our society is just a needle away from poked-bursting and vanishing in thin air.
Thanking you all and God bless.
Sword Vashum. Retired additional deputy comptroller and accountant general. Views are personal.