Mar 24, 2011

Nagalim: “Nobody Can Rob Naga Rights”

NSCN chairperson Isak Chishi calls for Naga unity in the struggle for the recognition of the historical and political rights of the Nagas in India

Below is an article published by The Times of India:

NSCN (IM) chairperson Isak Chishi Swu has said the rights of the Nagas can neither be robbed of by invaders nor be stolen by any other power. 

"We will never give up our rights which God has granted us. We will determine our own destiny," he said while addressing a gathering of people on the occasion of the outfit's 32nd "republic day" celebrations on Monday [21 March 2011]. 

Expressing gratitude to the Forum for Naga Reconciliation (FNR) for ceaselessly working towards the reconciliation process, Swu said the NSCN(IM) has always been committed to the cause and has fought for the Nagas' "historical and political rights". 

"Nagalim will always belong to the Nagas. The Nagas cannot be divided in order to please the enemies of solidarity," he said, stating that the Nagas should be reconciled and united "on the basis of the political and historical rights of Nagalim". Swu said the reconciliation was not for disintegration of Nagaland, but meant for unity and integrity of Nagalim. The NSCN (IM) chairman said they have been negotiating for peace with the Centre since 1997. "But until an honourable settlement is arrived at, the Nagas will continue to struggle. We will not give up our rights nor will we stop defending it." 

Swu also expressed gratitude to international organizations for helping the NSCN(IM) to internationalize and to secure recognition of its cause. He asked people to not forget that Nagalim was divided and sub-divided and the present Nagaland state was just a part of it. "It is to think that Nagaland is one whole state. It is a misunderstanding and ignorance as Nagalim embraces all Naga ancestral domain," he added. About the rich cultural heritage of the Nagaland, the NSCN (IM) chief said this heritage had been a vital binding thread to keep the Nagas alive as a distinct nation. 

Calling upon Nagas for "absolute solidarity", he said, "All Naga people should look forward to the formation of Nagalim with one mind and one voice." Swu also stressed upon establishing good relationships with neighbours and other nations and urged the Nagas not settle for a compromise at the expense of their national rights and principles when they seek interdependent relationship with any group or country. 

He also called upon every citizen of Nagalim to participate in the struggle for the liberation of Nagalim and uphold the national cause. 

The outfit's general secretary, Thuingaleng Muivah took time to explain the stand of the NSCN (IM) and the progress made in the talks with the Centre to resolve the Naga problem. He told the gathering that numerous talks with New Delhi had yielded positive results, including recognition of the unique history of the Nagas, which he said was a positive step towards finding a solution. 

"If they don't follow the Naga history, we will not accept anything. There will be no solution," he said. Muivah informed the gathering that the NSCN leadership has rightly rejected anything short of sovereignty. The NSCN (IM) general secretary also said the Nagas had no right to blame the Centre always. 

"There are issues for which the Nagas are to blame. Let's appreciate the Centre's to address our issues," he added.