NTIMES 22APRIL: Serious breach of trust: NPMHR
DIMAPUR, APR 21 (EMN): Stating that it considers the ongoing campaign against the National Socialist Council of Nagalim as a serious breach of trust between entities
that agreed to a ceasefire and to sit across the negotiating table, the Naga Peoples Movement for Human Rights (NPMHR) has called upon Indian representatives to press forward for a resolution of the Naga issue.
In a statement issued Saturday, the Rights body sought to point out the gains made in dialogue processes with different Naga national groups which had been leading to increasing levels of trust among Nagas and Indians, while stating that the one important step towards strengthening this is to rein in ‘The Friends of the Hill People’ and halt its provocative tendencies against Naga national groups.
The statement also underlined that there appears to be a clash of interest between India’s political leadership and her military establishment as far as resolving the Naga political issue is concerned. Over the years, India’s political leaders, cutting across party affiliations, especially during the last fifteen years, have generally demonstrated the will to resolve the issue through a process of dialogue. However, the approach of India’s military, especially the Assam Rifles, a paramilitary setup to deal with internal strife during the British about 177 years ago, leaves one to question the overall motives of India, it said.
India’s military continues to function with immunity, protected by such laws like the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, and infringe on even the basic rights of civilians, it added.
Further referring to reports of increased surveillance, including house raids, frisking and arrests all over Naga areas by Assam Rifles, NPMHR pointed out that this force that operates under the command of the Home Ministry and Army are supposed to be ‘aiding’ civil authority and not take upon itself the job of ‘policing’. Even high ranking Nagaland government officials are being subjected to frisking in places such as Kiphire, even as there is increased movement of troops in Naga areas including Mokokchung, Zunheboto, Ukhrul, Chandel, Tamenglong, Dimapur and elsewhere, it said.
The NPMHR has also urged the Naga national groups to exercise restrain in the face of actions by India’s security agencies that are apparently tuned to provoke while calling for continued vigil over ‘designs that are aimed at denying the Nagas to reconcile, integrate and live together as one nation’.