Nagalim: NSCN-IM Criticises Troops Deployment
The group said the PWG was an organisation “fighting for the rights of oppressed people” and not a terrorist group. “It is not the will of the Naga people to fight against people who are fighting for their legitimate rights,” read a communiqué from the NSCN (I-M) steering committee.
The 9 India Reserve Battalion (IRB) of the state police was sent to Chhatisgarh to counter the PWG, active on the Chhatisgarh-Andhra Pradesh boundary. More than a thousand IRB jawans left for Raipur in two batches last week.
Earlier, some NGOs too had expressed unhappiness over the deployment.
The NSCN (I-M) criticised the government on the grounds that it was unfair to send Nagas to fight against “oppressed people” in the midst of the ongoing Naga peace process with the Centre. Instead of sending armed policemen to fight the Naxals, the state could have suggested peaceful alternatives to resolve the conflict, the NSCN (I-M) said.
The state government, however, argued that the Centre had allowed raising the IRB on condition that the jawans could be deployed anywhere in the country.
The IRB men from Nagaland are considered among the best in the country and requests for their services come from several other states, sources added.
The Naga troop came into prominence after the Kargil War when the regiment’s performance on the Kashmir heights earned plaudits.
However, senior officers are afraid of the jawans sustaining injuries during the Chhatisgarh assignment, since the PWG is known to use landmines, yet they are confident that the men would do their best “with guns and daos (machetes)”.
The NSCN (I-M)’s reaction has been on expected lines, for the outfit maintains solidarity with several other militant outfits in the Northeast and elsewhere. During the outfit’s general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah’s recent stay in Delhi, he is believed to have met leaders of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi.
Besides the NSCN (I-M), other Naga rebels, including the NSCN (Khaplang) faction, are also known to have links with several outfits in Manipur, Assam and Meghalaya.
Meanwhile, the NSCN (I-M) came out with a special message on
July 4, the American Independence Day, asking for US support for the Naga cause.
The message stated that Americans were known for protecting the democratic rights
of the people and the outfit looked up to them for “understanding the
Source: The Telegraph