Dec. 20: On a day that NSCN (I-M) general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah arrived in India, the factional feud between the militant groups in Nagaland came into sharp focus, with the Khaplang faction threatening to assassinate Muivah if he enters the state.
Muivah arrived in New Delhi from Amsterdam late tonight and has decided to spend Christmas in the national capital.
Immediately on his arrival at New Delhi, Muivah fired his first salvo at the Manmohan Singh government.
He stated categorically that the current “state of affairs does not allow us (the Nagas) or Indians to go ahead with pretensions”, reports our special correspondent from New Delhi.
Talking tough, he made it clear that Nagalim, as conceived by the NSCN (I-M), will not be part of the Indian federation; instead, what he wanted was a federation of Nagalim with India.
He added that the Prime Minister, by inviting the Naga leaders to come to India, has showed that he was seriously concerned and does not want the issue to go out of hand.
Delhi’s negotiator, K. Padmanabhaiah, was at the airport to receive Muivah.
Nine NSCN (I-M) leaders, including Tongmeth Wangnao, Phunthing Shimrang and Kraibo Chawang, were in New Delhi to receive Muivah.
They will camp with their leader in the national capital during Christmas.
A 500-strong Naga students’ contingent in traditional attire received Muivah at the international airport in New Delhi late tonight, greeting him with Christmas carols and folk songs.
Nevertheless, an ominous threat hung in the air as NSCN (K) spokesman Kughalu Mulatonu told The Telegraph in Nagaland this afternoon that his “boys” were ready to attack Muivah if he tried to enter the state.
He said around 60 activists had been deployed in and around Dimapur, the state’s commercial capital and a stronghold of the rival faction, to carry out the assassination.
Muivah has decided to visit the Hebron camp of the NSCN (I-M), which is located near Dimapur, on or around New Year’s eve.
Warning Muivah not to visit Nagaland, the NSCN (K) leaders said they would continue to slap “quit notices” on the Tangkhuls — the tribe to which Muivah belongs.
Mulatonu claimed that 10 years of talks between the Centre and the NSCN (I-M) have yielded “nothing” and blamed Isak Chishi Swu and Muivah for trying to “hoodwink” the Naga people. He said his organisation would not allow “anti-Naga” elements to sell out the Nagas’ right to self-determination.
One of the NSCN (I-M) leaders brushed aside the threat from the NSCN (K), saying they knew how to protect their leader.
“They should realise that such posturing will not go down well with the people of the state,” he warned.