UNC seeks change in outlook

The United Naga Council, the apex body of Nagas in Manipur, on Wednesday urged the Centre to give up its traditional policy of looking at the Naga resistance movement from a security point of view.

By Ngangbam Indrakanta Singh in Imphal
  • Published 13.09.18
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Imphal: The United Naga Council, the apex body of Nagas in Manipur, on Wednesday urged the Centre to give up its traditional policy of looking at the Naga resistance movement from a security point of view.

In a statement, the UNC said the "Naga national movement" is basically an emerging nationality's struggle for a political identity of its own. Hence, no amount of money pumped into the Naga territory could put an end to it as the Naga national struggle is not aimed at economic development. It said the struggle continued for more than half a century basically for political recognition of the Nagas as a distinct nation. The government of India ultimately realised that the Naga issue is basically a political one and wouldn't be solved through military or monitory means. Having recognised the unique history of the Nagas, the Naga Framework Agreement was signed on August 3, 2015 in New Delhi, it added.

Citing the Nungba incident of September 3, the UNC said there was a deep social divide and psychological division in Manipur and the mistrust would continue until and unless history is mutually honoured and respected. History, it said, is the root cause of every problem and the present problem is the product of two different people from different origin and history living together. Several attempts have been made politically, socially and culturally for decades to maintain social harmony in the state but these have been unsuccessful. People of different origin and history are different all the time and there shall be confrontation on every issue, big or small. The deep animosity, distrust and confrontation between the two ethnic groups is hotting up, it added.

Condemning the communal tension in the state, it said the state government should try to reduce it, particularly in the Imphal Valley. Saying that the Naga people exercise maximum restraint, it issued a word of caution that they can face any challenge.

The UNC said the law and order situation in the state has become worse and the Naga people were striving for restoration of peace and communal harmony so that they can all live together like good neighbours. It said a final settlement of the Indo-Naga political issue at the earliest was the only way to bring durable peace, security and stability in the region.

The statement comes in the backdrop of the 100-hour blockade imposed by the All Manipur Students' Union (Amsu) along National Highway 37 at midnight in the intervening night of September 8 and 9, demanding razing of NSCN (Isak-Muivah) camps in Manipur and arrest of the outfit's cadres who allegedly harassed an Amsu team at Nungba in Manipur along the national highway on September 3.