The Naga people living in Delhi are deeply concerned by the recent events in Manipur that have led to the arrest of United Naga Council (UNC) President Gaidon Kamei and his Information and Publicity Secretary S.K. Stephen by the Government of Manipur on grounds of economic blockade for nearly a month in the state. “The arrest is highly condemnable as the action amounts to dismissing Naga people’s rights over their land and age old customary law.
The UNC is a respected apex institution of all the Nagas whose territory falls within the jurisdiction of Manipur State pertaining to land, culture and customary law,” said the statement. “Therefore, the protest launched by the UNC leaders was to safeguard the indigenous land of the Naga people against the State arbitrary decision without any consultation and its complete disregard to the past Memorandum of Understanding signed with the Governments of Manipur and written assurance from Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, on the 24th November on issue of Sadar Hills and Jiribam,” the statement added.
To voice a strong protest against the highly condemnable action of the State Government of Manipur, Naga Students’ Union, Delhi (NSUD) has formed a Committee for Joint Naga Civil Societies, Delhi (CJNCSD) on 28 November, 2016 in collaboration with various Naga Civil Society based in Delhi. The Committee has a representation of Naga Forum Delhi (NFD), Naga People Movement for Human Rights, Delhi Sector (NPMHR), Naga Lawyers’ Guild, Delhi (NLGD), Naga Students’ Union Delhi (NSUD), Forum for Understanding the Naga-India Conflict & Human Rights (FUNICH), Naga Scholars’ Association (NSA) and Naga People’s Union for Civil Liberties (NPUCL).
To look upon the on-going situation in Manipur, the newly formed committee had called on Kiren Rijiju, Minister of State (MoS), Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on 29 November, 2016 in New Delhi and submitted a memorandum to draw centre Government attention with two focus point.
Firstly, immediate and unconditional release of United Naga Council (UNC) President Gaidon Kamei and his colleague Stephen, who are presently under Manipur police custody. And secondly, moratorium against any unilateral readjustment of administrative areas by Government of Manipur, particularly involving Naga areas, considering the Framework Agreement signed between Government of India and National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN) in the presence of Honourable Prime Minister on 3rd August, 2015.
“The Committee will launch a democratic movement in New Delhi for immediate and unconditional release of the UNC leaders and demand for direct Centre Government intervention in the present Manipur crisis,” the press release said.
CJNCSD alleged that the present State Government of Manipur has completely failed to represent and address the genuine concerns of various ethnic communities of the State. Instead of maintaining social harmony in the State, the State Government of Manipur chose to steer ethnic tension which could erupt violent ethnic conflict as it has been witnessed in the past. It is led to believe that the present crisis is churned out as State Government’s ill intention to come back to power at any cost.
President of Naga Hoho Chuba Ozukam and his team on their visit to New Delhi for the similar issue and on the mission to pressurize Centre Government for early settlement of Naga-India Framework Agreement lent their support and participated in the meeting of the leaders of various Naga Civil Societies.
“The Committee will relentlessly resort to various democratic movements unless the goals are met in releasing the UNC leaders and timely intervention of the centre government to resolve the ongoing crisis,” added the statement.