Warn the Allege Anti-Naga in Public

-Dr. R.B.Thohe Pou
“A good leader is good as your good parent but the bad leader is bad as your unconcern parent”

Should we request the Naga National workers (NNW) to give warning to the allege anti-Naga person before the death penalty is given or should we continue to snub their present system and live a happy life? The dead man has no more voice to give his own statements; the public start to question and lose the trust. But should we blame the flawed system or the inefficiency of the individual leader? The Naga National Workers regardless of any factional group may need to gain more support from the Naga public but it can be done only if their present system is changed and improve the efficiency of their leaders’ work.
In this transitional stage of struggling to get the Rights to Self-determination (RSD), we need to build a good rapport between the Naga National Workers and the Naga public. It is frequently alleged by the relatives of the victims that the NNW did not serve any warning before his or her death penalty and the NNW also to use to allege of warning be given before the death penalty; so it comes two different versions and whom to trust now as it is a game of secrecy only. The NNW were not formed illegally; as they are legally working for the Naga people, they may have the right to serve notice or warn any individual publicly without playing the game of secrecy. The game of secrecy and ambiguity brings only suspicion in the mind of the people.
The NNW leaders may have the right to serve notice or warning to any allege person who is working against the national interest. But it would be a great shame to serve a death sentence when so called rich or businessmen failed to pay extortion money or whatever you named it. It may be important to note that the Naga people have different factional groups and we can’t deny that the people support only one factional group. It may be impossible to survive different factional groups without fratricidal or bloody feud without the people support and intelligent work given by the public. So it is clearly shows that the Naga publics are also divided into different groups according to the different factional groups.
The recent killing of late Khathing by NSCN-IM and charge sheet given to Khathing’s son and the question rise by Khathing’s son regarding the charge sheet clearly shows the misunderstanding between the victim’s kin and the NSCN-IM, which also gives mystification in the mind of the public. In this particular case, if the warning would have been given publicly – the victim might have changed his attitude or the victim’s kin might have not rise any question against the NSCN. But now the consequences in the mind of the public may not be the same as they unconsciously assume to be as many Nagas might have different opinions about their system prevailing now. In every society or nation – different opinion or misunderstanding means more disunity only. There would be many other similar cases in Naga history commencing from Sakhrie killing to present stage of Naga struggles for sovereignty, when the victim’s kin alleged that they did not get any warning from the NNW before the death penalty is given to the victim but some of the victim’s kin silently suffered without raising any question against them or seeking any justification. In a very mystery case in 2008, the death penalty was given by so called the NNW to one person without giving any warning but due to God’s grace the death penalty was revoked mystically by the highest authority of the national workers as he was found to be an unblemished person. Oh! What a mystery it is. Anybody who is working against the interest of the Naga people may deserve the severe punishment but warning should be served before any death penalty is carry out so as to bring better relationship between the public and NNW.


Do the Naga national workers need to warn the allege anti-Naga publicly? Why the NNW need to warn in public or openly (local dailies) to the allege anti-Naga person before the death penalty is given? The national workers may have the right to serve the notice secretly to the allege person involved in any anti-Naga activities but it will definitely have better rapport and unity among the public and the leaders if the warning is given publicly. Some of the important aspects that need to warn publicly can be highlighted briefly as:
Firstly, to stop anti-national work: In the name of NNW, the warning may be issued to any allege anti-Naga person. But the main purpose of warning should be to stop the work of any kind of anti-national interest and to work for the nation together. We don’t have to give any warning if we want to kill him or her secretly out of jealousy or trivial crime. So the warning may need to be given to him or her also to the family; at the same time it may require to be warned publicly in local dailies.
Secondly, allege person to repent: The allege person who is working against the national interest will understand the seriousness and change automatically for our life is more than anything else in this world. In case of any differences can be brought before the national leaders; the public leaders can also study the fact and judge or give support to the national workers or to the allege anti-Naga person. However many times the victim’s relatives alleged that not a single warning was given to him or her, which gives a doubt in the mind of the public on national workers till NNW clarify with some evidences. We know that it is always better to have trust and good rapport than rebuilding the good rapport after losing trust.
Thirdly, to accept death penalty: The victim’s kin may accept the death penalty if the warning is served to the family members before the death penalty is awarded to him or her. However in some cases, the victim’s alleged that there is not any warning given to him or her. If the national workers give warning to any alleged person, it may require having the acknowledgement note from the alleged person so that there will be not any accusation from the victim’s kin after death penalty and bring doubt to the mind of the public.
Fourthly, public are the witness: Advantage in warning the alleged person in public is that the public may become the witness of the warning given to the alleged person working against the national interest. When there is witness – nobody can claim and send out any erroneous propaganda against the national workers.
Fifthly, good rapport between NNW and the Public: It would definitely bring better rapport between the national workers and the Naga public in the process of struggling to get the Rights to Self Determination. Unless there is transparency in the system – anybody can take advantage of the defective system and bring more disunity among the Naga people.
It is not only the Naga insurgent but any insurgent group claiming to work for their nation may need to warn the alleged person in public so as to bring better rapport between the insurgent and the public. Let the people trust and give you support for whatever you are doing and sacrificing for the nation as you show the transparency and sincerity in your works.


Contribution of late Khathing towards Naga movement

I would like to highlight a few contributions that Khathing made during his lifetime to the Naga movement. He resigned from his govt. service to serve the people as a social worker, first as the Phalee village secretary. He contested the Manipur state Assembly elections as one of the leading proponents of ‘Naga Integration’. He became the first chairman of the Autonomous District council, but relinquished the post for the Naga national cause. During the Prime Ministership of Indira Gandhi, he went twice to the NSCN General Hqrs, Kachin in erst. Burma, risking his own life, and met with the NSCN Chairman, Isaac Swu, Vice chairman, S. Khaplang and Gen. secy. Th. Muivah to mediate a peace settlement between the NSCN and the Govt. of India. Though he was elected again, he was booked under the NSA and put behind bars for more than a year, and apprehended several times for his proximity with the NSCN. He stood for MLA election while being imprisoned in the Varanasi central jail. Many Indian politicians tried to win over Khathing by offering some appointments or inducements. But he preferred living as a poor, upright nationalist than leading a luxurious life of a renegade. Thus, his family (seven children and now deceased wife) had to live from hand to mouth and discontinued their studies, while he had to live like a fugitive, as the enemies were always on a look-out for him; he was picked up, detained and tortured many a times, and was also among the hit-list of anti-NSCN groups. His eldest son who was doing graduation at Patkai Christian College joined the Naga freedom struggle in 1984. He as well as his 4-5 first cousins sacrificed their lives for the cause. Many of his close relatives are still in the forefront of the movement. Khathing was also denied ticket by many political parties to contest a seat in the Assembly for his linkage with the NSCN. He later contested the Tangkhul Naga Long presidential election and campaigned for peace-talk between the NSCN and the GOI, but was defeated by an anti-NSCN candidate. Khathing was called to Shillong by the NSCN leaders on several occasions, before and after the cease-fire agreement. He was sent to Delhi twice to lobby Indian policy-makers for an honourable, lasting solution to the vexed Naga issue. He disagreed with some NSCN leaders regarding the political strategy of participating in Indian electoral politics by sponsoring candidates to raise the Naga Integration issue in Parliament and state assembly. He opined that the GOI would easily see through, and thus NSCN’s bargaining power would be drastically diminished, if not lost. But till his last breath, he stood for the Naga national cause, the long cherished Naga Dream; its fulfillment had been his only mission in life. He would often say, ‘It is not an illusion, but a reality; not just a desirable thing but a complete necessity”. You can call him any namso, the worrying thing about this political murder is: if a person like Khathing who had sacrificed his career, his children and his everything, did not deserve even a room for discussion, a charge or a warning or a trial before execution, we all can well imagine what is in store for other Naga civilians. If 4-5 decades of dedicated service and commitment could not earn him even a single chance for forgiveness (even if he had committed a crime), we can understand how grateful and forgiving our People’s Republic can be. It speaks volumes about the people’s government, its machineries, the future of the movement and the fate of those propounding the cause. Like a mirage or rainbow, we may never find it. May the dream not die with him! May his spirit be with us all through the journey!

P. Shimreisa, political associate of Lt. Khathing, Viewland, Ukhrul.


Why was Mr. Khathing not awarded the same treatment?

 A Naga International Support Center, NISC, www.nagalim.nl

A human rights organization

Amsterdam, May 29 2009

 The Naga International Support Center, NISC, deplores Hopeson’s (NSCN) murder of Meitei officials and Khathing’s execution for being a warned traitor  

 Specializing in the rights of the Naga Peoples the Naga International Support Center is a human rights organization. NISC, founded to defend and highlight the rights of the Nagas internationally, supports the Naga Peoples in their just quest for self determination. As they know them well, Naga organizations are expected to live by them.

 Considering the many threats to their long struggle, not only against oppressors who deny them their rights but also against opportunists who do not stop at killing innocent people as well as leaders, the Nagas who defend the nation and the rights of the Naga People are pushed to their limits. While the National Socialist Council of Nagalim, NSCN, negotiates with the Government of India an honorable settlement to this overdue conflict, they have to take the pressure and the tactics to split the Nagas. Taking this into account NISC understands the strain, the bitterness the NSCN leaders experience. Still, when at peril and the going gets really tough, the defender of the people’s rights, the NSCN as the representative body, should set the example. But, the NSCN’s execution of Khathing fails that as the NSCN fails to live up to its own standards. Unfortunately it shows it can act like the Government of India does with the dreaded Armed Forces Special Powers Act.

 Understandably the people of a nation, under siege for six decades and on ceasefire for over twelve years, feel cornered when money talks and weapons speak. And, extended ceasefire, with soldiers training in camps but with nothing much else to do, make discipline fade away. When opportunists then quickly profit from the cracks forged by Naga adversaries, who grow in numbers, it is a a formidable, almost insurmountable task  to keep the ranks closed.

 Considering that process, does this mean the Naga customary rights system of justice collapsed?

No, because it is laudable that Hopeson of the NSCN, responsible for murdering officials in Manipur, was taken into the custody of the NSCN. After confession the NSCN investigated to collect evidence for a court of justice which on the basis sentenced him.

 But why was Mr. Khathing not awarded the same treatment? Why was he awarded the death penalty without public prosecution instead? Were accusations of Khathing being a traitor and murderer enough to warrant capital punishment?

 Yes, because according to the NSCN Mr. Khathing was a treacherous person. The people and the NSCN were never against him even though he was given many times many clues to correct his ways, his behavior and to understand the desire of his people. Years ago, a decade, before he defected he worked all out for his people and the NSCN trusted him to deal with the Indian leaders. But after this he changed and began to speak and act against the NSCN and openly stated he was against the organization who seeks solution outside Indian constitution. His motives with evil intentions did not end there. If he had just spoken what he believed in, the NSCN would have left him alone. But, he went further and collaborated with the enemy and other traitors and went as far as attacking and killing his own people. The NSCN questioned him: “Who is Khathing to judge his people and decide for them as he shouts from the military camp of the enemy and in the process betrays his own wife, children and the Nagas. Are we to be dependent on his mercy? Khathing is responsible for killing his own people; in the hands of the enemy his own relative among them, they were treated worse than animals. Khathing betrayed and killed his own people and we question;  is that not against the human rights? Who is to judge that killing a traitor is against human rights? Khathing violated the human rights of the Nagas!  The NSCN is bitter about those who don’t mind betraying their own, those who have no regard for sacrifice of life. The NSCN, now or in the future, will not allow people like Khathing to mislead or misguide our own people. The NSCN with our people stands and fight for our just cause, till the end!

No because according to NISC Mr. Khathing may have been guilty on all accounts put forward by the NSCN, accounts like siding with forces of the Government of India, standing with the Meiteis for the integrity of the state of Manipur, or worse for purchasing weapons to fight against the sovereignty of the Naga People, but just like Hopeson should have been arrested, charged and brought before a court of justice, a Naga Customary Rights Court. Why?

Because, apart from raising suspicion that the NSCN took the law into its own hands and hands down capital punishment at will, killing him outright, apprehending to publicly prosecute him would expose not only himself but also all concerned who collaborated with him; those who were involved. Handing Khathing over to the Ministry of Justice of the Government of Nagalim consequently the NSCN would have achieved clarity and credibility. The majority of Nagas are Christian and capital punishment is the opposite of turning ‘the other cheek’. Thou shall not kill!

Any government acts on behalf of its people and is accountable to the people. Justice for all is the foundation of a true nation and the Government of Nagalim is no exception to that. Consequently severe punishment for selling out the rights of the Nagas and violently turning against his own yes,

Capital punishment no.

 The Naga International Support Center in recognizing the immense and growing difficulties the NSCN is facing and has to deal with, calls on the wisdom of the leaders to be the example of the Naga People, to live by what it professes and to show the world that in the heat of pressure it does not deter it from its just cause.

 For more information visit our website www.nagalim.nl or email nisc@nagalim.nl

NSCN (I-M) convicts ‘Lt. Col’ Hopeson (NPn)

DIMAPUR,   “General Court Martial” (GCM) of the NSCN (I-M) after thorough hearing of the murder case of Dr.Kishan and his driver Aribam Rajen and an official Y.Token, who were killed February 17 near Senapati, has convicted ‘Lt.Colonel’ Hopeson Ningshen, the then “Commanding officer” of Kiusumong Battalion Naga Army posted in Wung Tangkhul Region (WTR).

The NSCN (I-M) through a statement issued by its MIP Thursday said that as per Naga Army Act of Rules and Regulation (NAARR) 2002 “Lt.Colonel” Hopeson Ningshen bearing Army No. ST-28014, was convicted guilty of abduction, illegal detention and ultimate murder of Dr.Kishan and his two associate Aribam Rajen and Y.Token under Article 70 Clause 3, Sub Clause V Article 76 Clause ii of NAARR. The MIP release further said that GCM was satisfied to terminate “Lt.Colonel” Hopeson Ningshen with immediate effect from the service of the Naga Army.

The GCM has also dismissed all his services rendered to the Nation, including all military decoration and ranks awarded to him has been stripped off, it stated.
Further, the MIP informed that he would undergo rigorous imprisonment for seven years starting from the day he was arrested.

Beside he would also have to pay a fine of Rs. 50,000 to the GPRN. In default of which he shall undergo simple imprisonment for another one year six months, MIP/GPRN added.


Why issue charge sheet after killing?

A charge sheet dated 9/4/09 against my father, late J. Khating had been delivered to the family members by a messenger of GPRN after 15 days of execution. In true sense and correct definition, a charge sheet is to be issued for a trial, to a person who is alive, so that he can defend himself against the allegations either false or true, to surrender or to plead, to persecute or to forgive in the final judgment.. However, being the son of the deceased, I am compelled to give my views on my father’s political thoughts and activities. My father’s personal versions in response will be different if he had been given a chance to survive.

Had my father taken the course against the national interest, security and political rights of the Nagas, why the soldiers of Nagalim for Christ had masked their faces, chosen a dark night for awarding punishment? A nation’s heroes should be vice-versa. To kill an aged man, 72 years old, with masked face and in the dark night is not digestive and impressed created and blurred. And why the hand of the eliminator could not write the words charge sheet before execution to keep away the family members and public from confusions? Was it an intention or a strategy to shroud the murder of my father? When I enquired many high ranking officials and seniors of NSCN-IM about its responsibility of the incident, I got negative response from every quarter. But, why today, the GPRN (IM) has taken responsibility for the killing? Doesn’t it mean that every NSCN-IM is empowered arbitrarily or given license to kill according to his own wish? Or else, is GPRN a government without a system of governing body? It indicates that someone with hidden agenda, vested interest and personal grudges against my father did mastermind and conspire the killing.

My father is also alleged to have leaked very secret and confidential matters of NSCN to the enemy. Who are your enemies? I would like to know the details of leakage by my father.

Every individual has the right to have his own political ideology, principle and convictions and my father too had. No doubt, my father was a very outspoken person. He believed that participation in Indian election during cease fire (peace process) by NSCN is a political suicide for the Nagas as Indian Govt. is always trying to lay traps and hypnotize the Nagas with temporal power and wealth. He also did not believe the principle of Non-Stop Cease Fire notion (NSCN). He felt that Indian Govt. is taking advantage of ‘longer period, lesser security, more talks more mistakes’. But all his convictions, sacrifices and contributions towards the Naga movement had fallen into pits of adversities because he had no gun power and money power in his hand. He always disagree the NSCN’s principle of refusing to accept the Constitution of India, but contradictorily, participating in the Indian Govt. elections which are held within the Constitution of India. He took it as a contradiction of political ideology and principle of NSCN-IM.. It shows losing of revolutionary spirit and the concept of sovereignty. So, he openly opposed the NSCN-sponsored candidates in every election. Here cropped up a question of my father’s killing just on the eve of MP Election. He is wrong and fit to be awarded with befitting penalty, if all these concepts of my father are anti-Naga and anti-revolutionary for the Naga people.

None of the family members were aware of the repeated warnings served to my father as claimed by the GPRN. Even at his last juncture of life, he pleaded even to his killers – “What wrong have I done? Let us reason together” but he was given no time to do so.

Let us know the truth from any organization if my father had any collaboration with any outfit, i.e. anti-Naga and anti-NSCN. Let the whole world know the truth about the capital punishment awarded to my father if any organization can justify his collaboration with anti-Naga and anti-NSCN.

I wish the blood of my father will bring everlasting peace and permanent solution to the Indo-Naga problem. Every drop of his blood has the right to claim for the peace he had sacrificed and contributed. He died fighting for his political ideology and conviction and they killed him for a nation’s goal. God is always with us to answer the right judgment and every Naga has the right to have their own conclusion in their hearts and mind.

J.P. Temper

S/o Late J. Kathing

Phalee Village

Ukhrul Dist. Manipur