Kohima, Sept. 25: Around 5,000 citizens from all walks of life gathered at Kiphire ground to protest against growing factional violence in the state.
The rally was organised by the United Sangtam Organisation to usher in peace.
A representative of the Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation (ENPO), S.K. James, while addressing the gathering, said forgiveness is in everybody’s hearts but people don’t know how to forgive one another as Christians. Citing the example of Gandhi, James said India got Independence through non-violence and not through violent means and asked the factions to shun violence.
The vice-president of the United Sangtam Organisation, Yangkhaba Sangtam, who chaired the programme, said it was time for citizens to safeguard peace and asked all the 11 ward members to take necessary action against erring cadres if peace was threatened. “Often our discussions with different factions have so far failed to bring peace. So, we have decided to intensify our movement.”
Reading out from the ENPO Resolution of September 13, 2012, Sangtam said action should be taken against those who violate the resolution.
Coming out strongly against factional violence, vice-president of the Yimchungru Tribal Council, Inato Yimchunger, said under the pretext of the movement for independence, peace is threatened and they have no peace even in their own homes. He said Kiphire being the youngest district with only 1,666 government employees, everyone should work for peace and development.
Leader of Sumi community of Kiphire town, Tokuho Sumi, said unity among citizens in Kiphire is breaking up because of factional violence.
Despite strong opposition from the people, there has been sporadic factional clashes between Khaplang and Khole-Kitovi factions of the NSCN. The two outfits are currently engaged in a turf war to control Kiphire. The Khaplang group today accused its rival of vitiating the peaceful situation in Kiphire.
Factional feuds erupted after the split in the NSCN (K) on June 8 last year.
There has also been a standoff between security forces and cadres of the NSCN (Khole-Kitovi) at Thipusumi village in Phek district since last evening. Naga organisations are trying to defuse the tension.