The Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) has accused Nagaland Governor RN Ravi and Centre’s interlocutor for Naga talks of distorting the “historical truth” of the Nagas.

Quoting RN Ravi’s Independence Day message, the federation on Wednesday said, “In the autumn of their rule, when the British conspired to partition India and give away Northeast India to Pakistan, the leaders of Naga Hills stood in solidarity with the rest of the country and thwarted the diabolical colonial conspiracy.”

“Naga leaders played significant roles in the constitutional evolution of India,” the Naga Students’ Federation said in a release issued by its media cell.

The students’ body said ‘his continued glorification of the Naga People’s Convention and the 16-Point charter of demands which had long been disowned by the Naga people through his various acts of patronizing its founders and leaders is another matter of great concern to the Naga youths and students’.

Stating that the Naga youths and students are fed up with Ravi’s rhetoric with the intent to divide the Naga people, the NSF said his ‘claims’ and ‘successive misadventures’ only reveal his shallow understanding of the Naga history and also ‘the narrow walls within which he has been trying to solve the vexed Indo-Naga political issue’.

“It undermines and belittles the very people he has been assigned to have a political dialogue in order to pave the way for lasting peace and tranquillity all over the Naga homeland,” it stated.

The federation reiterated that ‘with such a divisive mind at the helm of affairs from the Indian side in the political negotiation, the current peace process becomes doubtful to be enduring’.

It said the Naga people declared their independence on August 14, 1947, and the same was ratified through a Naga national plebiscite in 1951.

“It is historically clear that the Naga homeland came to be a part of the existing Indian Union neither by consent nor by conquest. The Naga people’s assertion for self-determination is in line with the inherent ethos, values and customary systems of the Naga society and not otherwise,” it stated.

According to the federation, the Government of India’s policies and attempts to muzzle the voices of Naga people through militarisation are causing much harm to the Naga society.

It appealed to Ravi to refrain from furthering the old ‘carrot and stick’ policy and adopt a more pragmatic approach in order to ensure that the interests of the two entities are upheld through the political solution.

Bhadra Gogoi

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