Central Nagaland Tribes Council (CNTC) and Yondon Youth Association Pangti (YYAP) have flayed the unprovoked firing by 28 Assam Rifles at Okotso village on October 23, which resulted in the death of one GPRN/NSCN member and another injured.
CNTC media cell in a condemnation note, appealed NPG cadres to remain in their designated camps to avoid such unfortunate incident. It also appealed Assam Rifles to live up to its tag “Friends of the Hill people in all actuality and thus act accordingly”. Further, CNTC extended its solidarity to the Lotha Hoho (Lotha Hoho organized protest rally against rally against the firing on October 26 at Wokha), saying that it cannot remain a silent spectator when such atrocities committed within its jurisdiction. CNTC also appealed to all to adhere and respect the ceasefire ground rules keeping in mind the peace and tranquillity of the land. CNTC expressed condolences to the bereaved family members and wished speedy recovery to the injured.
Meanwhile, CNTC condemned the forceful occupation of Mekokla Baptist Church by the 28 Assam Rifles on October 22. It urged the state government to take the matter with the Indian army and Cease-Fire Monitoring Board to ensure that such activities do not take place in the future.
YYAP: While condemning the “brutal attack”, Yondon Youth Association Pangti (YYAP) said that it failed to understand the intention of Assam Rifles.
In a press statement, YYAP president Mhonjan Ngullie and general secretary Rendemo Ngullie said that such un-thoughtful action of the AR would derail the ongoing peace process between the Nagas and the government of India.
Therefore, it asked AR who claimed to be the Friends of the Hills, to respect the ceasefire ground rules, so that peace and harmony would prevail in the land. The association expressed sympathy with the bereaved family members and wished speedy recovery to the injured cadre.
NTCA, NSA condemn forceful occupation
Two more associations- Nagaland Theological Colleges Association (NTCA) and Naga Scholars’ Association (NSA) have condemned the forceful occupation of Mekokla Baptist Church and guest house by 28 Assam Rifles on October 22.
NTCA said that the action of the AR so called “Friends of the Hill people” defying the sanctity of the religious place, has demonstrated its true color “Foes of the Hills people.”
The association expressed surprise that despite being offered the community hall for accommodation by the village leaders, the commander-in-charge refused.
NTCA questioned the commander that who had granted him authority over the village and particularly the church? Is he a commander-in charge or a “communal –in-charge”? NTCA asked. “You’re welcome to the church for worship but not for trespassing”, said NTCA.
NTCA also reminded army personnel that they were supposed to be disciplined, respectful and protectors of the people and not to misbehave as it will brings irreparable damage to the image of the Indian army.
Further, the association demanded necessary measures from the responsible authority so that such unwanted action on the part of its personnel of any rank could be avoided.
NSA: Naga Scholars’ Association (NSA) while expressing solidarity with the local people has demanded stern enquiry and action on the “misguided and insensitive attitude and approach” by the Assam Rifle commander.
NSA president, Dr.Zuchamo Yanthan and general secretary Dr.Gideon Shadang in a press statement urged the right thinking citizens to introspect seriously on the “alarming” statement made the commander “(who stated that since Mekokla falls under his jurisdiction he has the right and authority to do whatever he wishes)”. They said that such forceful occupation of church premises by men in uniform, who were supposed to protect the sanctity of all religious places, had hurt the sentiment of the Naga people and also damaged the image of the Indian Army and Assam Rifles in the region.