DIMAPUR, APR 22: Troops of 29 Assam Rifles continued its blockade on Hebron Camp Sunday even as a defiant NSCN-IM refused to budge and return the confiscated AR weapons. Intense frisking of people and strict monitoring of vehicular movements by the Assam Rifles continued at Doyapur and Hazadisa village, near the NSCN-IM CHQ Hebron camp. Despite massive efforts by Naga civil society representatives to defuse the tension, the imbroglio however showed no sign of easing.
Highly reliable sources told Eastern Mirror Sunday evening that another meeting of the Cease Fire Monitoring Group has been called on Monday in another attempt to break the deadlock.
The Naga Mothers Association is also reported to have met the NSCN-IM leaders at Hebron Sunday afternoon. Details of the meeting are, however, unclear.
A Newmai News Network reported quoted a source saying that the matter is now being discussed ‘at the higher level’ in New Delhi
Meanwhile, stating that there is no visible sign of the GoI doing its political responsibility to rein in the AR troops and restraining them from going against the commitment given to the Nagas, the NSCN-IM today said ‘such superficial commitment is dangerous not only for the Nagas but for the entire North East region’.
“Adherence to ceasefire ground rules is the mainspring of ceasefire survival and the haughtiness of the Assam Rifles stands in contrary to the commitment given by the Government of India in solving the Naga political issue with all sincerity and seriousness,” an MIP NSCN/GPRN release said.
It further termed as ‘comforting’ that the CFMG Chairman Maj Gen (Retd) N George has assured the Naga civil society representatives that weapons seized from NSCN-IM ‘card holders’ would be returned. However, maintaining that ‘action should speak louder than words,’ it said ‘winning the trust and confidence of the NSCN and the Naga people in such hour of crisis like this is crucially important to build up his credibility as a person who is expected to exercise his power with strict impartiality’.
The outfit, moreover, said the CFMG Chairman also must take the stand ‘vis-à-vis the AR that this is the time to reciprocate as far as the issue of returning arms is concerned’. “Recalcitrant approach of AR should be discouraged at all cost to preserve the sanctity of the Indo-Naga ceasefire that was signed for the purpose of solving the longest insurgency problem in South-East Asia,” it added.
On the April 19 incident involving the 29 AR troops commanded by one Meitei Maj Sukanta, it said such ‘overbearing attitude’ of the AR towards the ceasefire ground rules is ‘obnoxious in any sense of the term.’ Given the seriousness of the Nagas in getting their political problem solved during this second ceasefire in the history of the Naga political struggle, the NSCN-IM strongly urged that the truce should not be converted into ‘monkey business’ while also stating that the blame will go to AR and not NSCN if ‘something really start going wrong.’
In a separate release, the NSCN-IM has alleged that one of its members, one Capt Yaomi, was tortured to death by the 19 Assam Rifles in Arunachal Pradesh. The MIP release said the member was picked up from the jungle in Holom village in Tirap district and his lifeless body dumped in Khonsa District Hospital. Ceasefire violation and human rights violation in the hands of the notorious Assam Rifles is happening not only in Nagaland but elsewhere also, the NSCN-IM said.
It informed that the body of the cadre was brought to Dimapur with the help of the villagers of Holom and sent to his native village at Tanrui in Ukhrul after conducting a condolence service. EMN