Naga Flag and Constitution in our Identity


Everything has its own name and identity. Every nation has its own Flag and Constitution. We recognize and acknowledge different entities through their distinct culture and identity. What is the Naga identity as a Nation without a Naga Flag and Constitution? A flag is a national symbol. A national flag represents and symbolizes a country. It will be difficult to name a country without its flag and a constitution. Every country has got a specific flag as their national symbol. The Constitution is the fundamental blueprint of a country; it helps the government operate and also protect the rights of the people in the country. It explains their obligations. For Nagas, the people have a unique history with the Naga National Flag and Constitution as our identity and that is the reason why our Naga national movement continues to live on and it is why the Government of India recognized our unique history.

Naga National Flag (Zhie-ralha) and Constitution (Yehzabo) is our identity and also our road to sovereignty. The Naga Flag was first hoisted on 22 March 1956 at Parashen, near Sendenyu village, Rengma Region, Nagaland, when the Federal Government of Nagaland (FGN) was formed. Unless we get our own Identity there is no reason for the Nagas or for any Naga negotiator to accept any kind of economic package. Nothing less than the Naga Flag and Constitution should be accepted by any Naga negotiator or by the common people. We Nagas have our National Flag and Constitution, and if the GOI is sincere and committed to their Framework Agreement in recognition of Naga unique history, they should also recognise the Naga flag and constitution.

Both Nagas and non-Nagas have talked extensively about the Naga integration, and some Nagas presume that a Naga Flag and Constitution without integration is meaningless. However, what would you prefer – Naga integration under the Constitution of India or a Naga Flag and Constitution outside the Indian Constitution? Obviously, its always better to have our own Naga Flag and Constitution with integration outside the Constitution of India – which means having our own national identity. Our Naga flag and constitution is our identity – the symbol of our Naga nationality. Economic packages and Naga integration cannot be our Naga identity.

Naga integration without Naga Flag and Constitution

Accepting Naga Integration without Naga Flag and constitution could lead to the Naga national movement dying a natural death. Naga integration without Naga Flag and Constitution would be the same as the present state of Nagaland or like forming a state with same commumity or like the state of Mizoram where all the Mizos live together under one unit under the Constitution of India (their national identity is lost). A temporary Naga physical integration is insignificant without the Naga Flag and Constitution. Accepting Naga integration within the Constitution of India as a Naga political solution will be a suicidal step for the Nagas and a big blunder for the GOI as well.

Naga Flag and Constitution without Naga integration

The present artificial political boundary is not a serious problem or threat as Nagas want to live unitedly under one administrative unit. Nagas can always come together when our national identity represented by the Naga Flag and Constitution is duly recognized by GOI. The reason why GOI is always apprehensive of bringing the Nagas under one administrative unit is because that could unite the Nagas and pave the way for Naga sovereignty one day. Which is why GOI always strives to divide the Naga using various means and will continue to mislead and break up the unity of the Nagas so as to weaken and smother the Naga National Movement (NNM), but it is also the responsibility of our Naga people to stand strong regardless of the adverse weather they may encounter.

In conclusion, our Naga leaders and the common people should clearly understand and know that no Nation has ever negotiated for its Flag and Constitution after the Peace Settlement, and one needs to understand that it will be unfeasible to negotiate further for our rights to self-determination democratically when our Naga National Flag and Constitution is compromised by the present peace talks. It is also important for the Nagas to remember that it took years to come around to creating a Framework Agreement and to reach the present stage of negotiation because our leaders never compromised on the idea of sovereignty (Naga National Flag and Constitution), otherwise the Indo-Naga strife could have ended within a few years simply by accepting some economic packages or integration of Naga people under the Constitution of India. Our Naga national workers have had peace talks for the last 22 years, and we should be ready to continue to support the peace talks for another 22 years if the present talks could not bring about an honorable Naga Political Solution.

Nagaland govt organised ‘consultation’ make organisations wary


Morung Express News
Dimapur | August 2

Two days after the Chief Minister of Nagaland declared that an NLA resolution passed on the Naga political issue has been “unanimously endorsed” by the Naga civil society, some organisations claimed that they had not signed their nod to the resolution.

“We are not a signatory to the NLA resolution,” stated the Sumi Hoho, alongside the Western Sumi Hoho today. The 9th session of the current Nagaland Legislative Assembly passed a 5-point resolution on the Naga political issue on July 27. On July 31, the Nagaland Legislators’ Forum (NLF) brought it to Naga civil society organisations for “consultation.” However, they were “unexpectedly” asked to “endorse” the resolution.

“It is not that we are against the points but we cannot immediately take a decision on such matters without consensus from our people,” said representatives of the SH and WSH. “We were put in an awkward situation.” For them, it was important to have stated that any solution should be “inclusive” of all political groups, with consultations going “down to the roots.”

The Forum for Naga Reconciliation (FNR) did not endorse the resolution either as its “role is to facilitate reconciliation and it is up to the tribal hohos to endorse such a resolution, or not,” said a representative of the FNR.

Civil society members present at the meeting on July 31 noted that as in a consultation, there was no “back-and-forth” of opinion—time was given to tribal hoho leaders to speak, after which the resolution was introduced and was asked to be “endorsed” by a show of hands without taking note of opinions expressed.

The Eastern Naga Peoples’ Organisation (ENPO), and its affiliates, for instance, stood by their stance of “unity before solution,” among other things, but this was not introduced into the resolution nor made a mention of (ENPO gave its endorsement to the resolution nonetheless). Some expressed how the resolution was not shown to them, nor the content discussed.

No actual consultation happened, thus, bringing to question why such a resolution was passed, or needed to be endorsed after it was passed in the Assembly. As is usually the case with government “consultations,” a pre decided agenda with an unclear motive was brought to the table for approval within two hours.

“Do they represent the Government of India or the NSCN (IM)?” asked an observer, further wondering “who will they submit these resolutions to?” The points made in the resolution have been reiterated before by Naga civil bodies separately and independently.

“Having taken oath under the constitution of India, making a resolution on the Naga political issue is crossing the line,” noted a leader present at the meeting. If they wanted to play the role of “facilitator” to the Indo-Naga talks, there are “other ways” to do so, he said, finding this “taking of consent” business a “bit confusing.” This made some organisations wary. The next day, they were even more confused by the Chief Minister’s statement in the newspaper claiming ‘unanimous endorsement.’ No NGO was present at the press conference when this was declared.

Similar resolutions on the Naga political issue have been adopted by past governments in Nagaland. The reiteration of this resolution, however, has made sceptics out of organisations that worry that such “consultations” will be used as “final consent” to a settlement whose modalities remain largely unknown to the people. The resolution was passed soon after the arrival of the Parliamentary Working Committee on the Naga Political Issue of the Nagaland State Government from Delhi. The NLF claims that the consultation is part of a continuing dialogue on the Indo-Naga peace process that would bring on board Naga people from outside Nagaland as well.

AAPSU digs out facts on Tirap & Changlang

ITANAGAR, Apr 18: All Arunachal Pradesh Students Union (AAPSU) has pounced upon a letter written by former Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru which justifies the claim that people of Tirap and Changlang are indigenous tribal of Arunachal and not Naga as claimed by underground groups of Nagaland. In recent days Naga People’s Front (NPF), the largest political party of Nagaland has controversially decided to start its Arunachal unit claiming that people of Tirap and Changlang are being discriminated by government of Arunachal Pradesh.

AAPSU managed to dig out a letter written by Nehru dated 18th November 1958 in which first prime minister of India had clearly addressed the tribal’s of these two districts as Nocte, Tangsa, Wancho and Singpho. There is no reference of word Naga in the letter, which shows that government of India had recognized tribal’s of Tirap and Changalng as Nocte, Tangsa, Wancho and Singpho from the time of Nehru. AAPSU President Takam Tatung in a release today said this letter should end the debate about identity of people of Tirap and Changlang.

“History tells that people of these two districts are indigenous tribal of Arunachal like any other tribes. Even first prime minister of India Nehru had acknowledged it,” said AAPSU president Takam Tatung. He further added, “People of Tirap and Changlang were caught in-between Naga and Arunachalee identity for long. They got humiliated in their own home. Documents like this could have gone long way in helping them preserve their Arunachalee identity. It’s shocking why our state government hid this letter for long?”
Further Tatung questioned whether government of Arunachal is hell bent on selling Tirap and Chanlang to Naga insurgent group. “Arunachal government never used old documents like this letter to counter the claim of Nagaland based UG group’s nefarious design to break our state. It seems they are willing to part away with these two districts. But AAPSU will not let even inch of Arunachalee land being given to any outsider,” said Takam Tatung.

AAPSU President also urged Nagaland based underground and political groups to stop claiming people of Tirap and Changalng as theirs. “If Nehru had recognized people of these two districts as Arunachalee tribal, who they are to claim them as theirs? Being tribal we share some similarities with all indigenous tribes of NE region. But that should not make people to claim other’s area as theirs,” stated Takam Tatung.