Assam Rifles
Assam Rifles personnel and villagers at the spot. Image - Northeast Now

The working committee of Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs) has termed the May 25 ambush on an Assam Rifles convoy in Mon as a blatant violation and disrespect to Naga people’s hope for an honourable and acceptable political solution to the Naga problem.

An Assam Rifles convoy was attacked near Changlangshu village in Mon district of Nagaland allegedly by a Myanmar-based armed group.

Two Assam Rifles personnel were killed and four others injured in the attack.

In a statement issued by its media cell on Wednesday, the committee the ambush was a clear indication that some elements are hell-bent on sabotaging the ongoing political negotiations between the NNPGs and the government of India.

Also read: Post-attack on Assam Rifles: Protest rally at Tobu town in Mon

According to the committee, the elements carrying out ambushes on Indian paramilitary forces do not know the value of blood or the price of peace.

“For their inglorious action, innocent Naga villagers are paying the price and bearing the brunt of enraged Indian forces,” it said.

Also read: Eerie silence at Tobu in Mon after attack on Assam Rifles

Terming the “present hour” as a crucial time in Naga history, the NNPGs stressed that the Naga people on the Indian side cannot afford to have gun-toting elements running amok when political negotiations are critically placed.

The release said seven NNPGs had formed the working committee and negotiating with the Centre, adding the Naga civil society groups and tribes are expressing solidarity and prayer support to the groups.

The committee said the Naga people’s renewed demand and call for honourable and acceptable peaceful political solution reverberated across India and Myanmar and accordingly the “agreed position” was eventually signed between it and the Centre on November 17, 2017.

“The transparent, consultative and progressive nature of the dialogue thus far was clearly visible even to eternal pessimists and critics alike,” it said.

It also described the attacks and ambushes on Indian paramilitary forces and vice versa as anti-people, anti-peace and anti-solution.

The committee said in spite of extending olive branches on many occasions to come forward for negotiation along with the NNPGs, these elements never responded as they really had little concern for the people, especially the younger generation.

“Yet, they resort to another bloody war that is condemnable by all. Why are the Nagas made to feel like a sandwich in their own land?” it asked.

The committee conveyed to both India and Myanmar that the indigenous Nagas were one by blood and they inhabited their ancestral land and claimed that their land, culture and heritage are their own.

The committee asserted that usurping centuries-old tradition, administration, deciding their future and dividing their land without their consent would forever be opposed peacefully or violently.

The committee stressed that as on Indian side of Naga homeland, political dialogue and negotiations with Nagas in Myanmar too must begin by “accepting, respecting and recognising” their historical and political rights.

It also demanded that the Naga people in Myanmar must be made masters over their land and natural resources with guaranteed legislative, executive and judiciary powers to administer their ancestral land.

Bhadra Gogoi

Bhadra Gogoi is Northeast Now Correspondent in Nagaland. He can be reached at: bhadragogoi@yahoo.com

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