The Naga people’s political struggle against foreign occupation went through a very important phase in history. It began with the resistance against the British-led forces when they launched expedition into Naga territory in 1832 under the command of Captain Jenkins and Captain Pemberton. The Nagas resolutely defended and refused to submit to the British Empire. This provoked the British to set off more British military expeditions against the Nagas. The Nagas, however, continued to struggle against the British domination against all odds. Finally, on the 14th August 1947, the Nagas under the NNC (Naga National Council) led by Mr. AZ Phizo declared Naga Independence from the British Rule.
The real conflict with India started when Nagas refused to join the Indian Union when invited to do so in 1950. The Nagas asserted their political determination when on January 24, 1950 the NNC informed the Indian Government, the United Nations (UN) and those countries that had their embassies in Delhi that the Nagas did not accept the Indian Constitution. Going further, the NNC conducted Naga Voluntary Plebiscite on the 16th May, 1951 where 99.9% voted in favor of sovereign Naga state. After this, NNC delegation met the Prime Minister of India Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru on March 11, 1952 to convey the will of the Naga people for an independent Naga state as expressed through the plebiscite. The Government of India under Mr. Nehru was not ready to listen to accept Nagas’ point of assertion for their political rights. Henceforth, the struggle of Nagas against the British Rule became Indo-Naga political struggle as Nehru was determined to use military force to suppress Naga people’s resistance when he sent thousands of Indian troops to Nagalim beginning from 1954 onwards. The Indo-Naga political struggle that finally ran into the historic Framework Agreement (FA) signed on the 3rd August, 2015 completed six (6) decades. The struggle that began with the British Rule is all a different matter. The FA was signed as both NSCN and GoI had agreed to end the violent confrontation once and for all and to usher in comprehensive progress in consonance with the genius of the Naga people.
Let there be no confusion as the FA is talking about the Naga people’s resistance against the GoI that lasted about 6 decades. The genesis of the Nagas’s political assertion and resistance that began during the British Rule entered the second phase under the GoI that continues for about six decades until FA was signed.
This FA became historic and crucially important as it was signed under the direct supervision of the Prime Minister of India, Mr. Narendra Modi in the presence of top dignitaries of the GoI. It was live telecast and the world was made to witness. Every single word was well crafted to reflect the historical and political rights of the Naga people.