Columns – Eastern Mirror https://easternmirrornagaland.com The latest and breaking news from Nagaland, northeast India, India and the world. Current affairs and news of politics from around the world, latest updates on business news, sports, arts and entertainment Mon, 04 May 2020 19:52:31 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://easternmirrornagaland.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/cropped-FavIcon-32x32.png Columns – Eastern Mirror https://easternmirrornagaland.com 32 32 Instinct For Survival Will Bring New Ideas https://easternmirrornagaland.com/instinct-for-survival-will-bring-new-ideas/ Mon, 04 May 2020 19:51:44 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=310833 Business and industry, irrespective of size and scale, are the lifeline of the economy. A lot is being said and written about the impending doom and gloom, massive job losses, lack of fiscal and monetary relief. Well, some of it is true but a lot of it is mere conjecture and polemic. Transplanting solutions from other countries is not the ideal way to remedy an illness or provide succour. A $ three trillion economy in a country of 1.35 billion people has little leeway, especially in a year where government revenues will be down by 30 per cent. If you print notes and monetise your reserves, what will happen to inflation and the currency? Further, what happens if the crisis lingers on for a year or more which is likely. Some relief measures are indeed called for but all this talk of putting 5-10 per cent of GDP through deficit financing is a gamble which can go horribly wrong. There are no simple solutions. It is a game which will be learnt as we play along. There will be grave difficulties and suffering but we cannot wish them away in TV debates and Webinars. All will have to pitch in....

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Business and industry, irrespective of size and scale, are the lifeline of the economy. A lot is being said and written about the impending doom and gloom, massive job losses, lack of fiscal and monetary relief. Well, some of it is true but a lot of it is mere conjecture and polemic. Transplanting solutions from other countries is not the ideal way to remedy an illness or provide succour. A $ three trillion economy in a country of 1.35 billion people has little leeway, especially in a year where government revenues will be down by 30 per cent.

If you print notes and monetise your reserves, what will happen to inflation and the currency? Further, what happens if the crisis lingers on for a year or more which is likely. Some relief measures are indeed called for but all this talk of putting 5-10 per cent of GDP through deficit financing is a gamble which can go horribly wrong. There are no simple solutions. It is a game which will be learnt as we play along. There will be grave difficulties and suffering but we cannot wish them away in TV debates and Webinars. All will have to pitch in. Each one of us will have to do with less. The day the balance shifts in favour of livelihood against lives, we are in for an unimaginable tragedy.

AI, automation, 3D printing and robots are now something which will be there right in front of us. Big data and surveillance will be an accepted norm. Some business models, in fact businesses and professions, have outlived their utility and viability. The pandemic is only pushing their expiry date forward. It is the healthy businesses, large, small and micro which must be saved first so that tomorrow they continue to employ more and more and keep the wheels of the economy moving. Newer occupations are emerging. Redistribution of resources-natural and human, is imperative. The Covid-19 pandemic means a new ecosystem for both supply and consumption. Our needs as consumers, manufacturers, service providers, employees, citizens will change. Businesses must prepare for the change. This clamour of opening up to me appears unthought out.

There is large scale joblessness which will only increase in the months to come. We talk of repatriation of migrant workers. How do you take 30 per cent of your population back to the places from where they escaped to avoid utter poverty and despair? Let us concentrate on filling the gaps in our social welfare system. Let us provide food and at least minimum social security through Direct Benefit Transfers (DBT) and Public Distribution System (PDS).

This is the time to leverage the India stock via JAM (Jandhan, Aadhaar, Mobile). Entourage economy (one person working accompanied by sundry hangers on ) is not tenable. Fake celebrity will hopefully take a knock. Facetime, Skype, Zoom and Teams are a part of the normal as is working from home. Multiple shifts of and staggered hours at work, play, and entertainment is here to stay for a long long time. Society and lifestyles are bound to change. Diehard habits will alter. Imagine a world where health and safety will mean more than convenience. Pilgrimage and visits to places of worship, workplaces, factories, malls multiplexes, restaurants, bars, markets — wholesale and retail — schools and colleges, travel, hospitality, conferences, meetings, dining, weddings, funerals, family get-togethers, festivals, shopping and even hanging out, all will be underlined with precaution and trepidation.

Holidays will be tentative and to begin with closer to home and in less crowded places. Travel will be cumbersome with health checks, social distancing and staggered seating. We will still travel but with caution. Newer, less crowded destinations will emerge. Travel groups will be smaller. Amusement parks, fairs, and exhibitions and other public events will come with social distancing measures. Entertainment will slowly but surely shift to homes –TV and online. Cinemas will be for occasional outings for special films. More personalised. Content is the way ahead. Biased and partisan news, screaming anchors and tele-pontification will lose their appeal as viewers search for facts and information instead of bluster and dogmas.

Writing in his book The future in plain sight, Eugene Linden says succinctly, “In stable times, people look outward; in unstable times societies turn inward. When instability rules, people take out “insurance” of various sorts. They turn to families, tighten ties to community, and accept the trade-off that these deeper entanglements limit opportunities for exceptional wealth for any one individual. Expertise becomes more important. Amid renewed xenophobia, people tend to cluster with their own.”

We are headed into uncharted territory. Ingenuity and survival instinct of humans will come up with new ideas beyond just a cure and vaccine for the virus. Keep the windows of your mind open and let hope drive you towards a better day after tomorrow. Tomorrow is a misty morning.

Amit Khanna is a writer, filmmaker and social commentator

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Savings and Infrastructure in the Post Covid-19 World https://easternmirrornagaland.com/savings-and-infrastructure-in-the-post-covid-19-world/ Sun, 26 Apr 2020 18:32:16 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=308364 As we see even more of the global impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on healthcare and economics, a healthcare and financial catastrophe of such magnitude will impact current economic and financial trends and create new ones as well. From an Indian perspective, it would be prudent to watch out on three issues that will impact the Indian economy and deserve vital attention. Firstly, given the plunge in global nominal yields with the ten-year US treasury yielding south of seventy basis points the requirement for returns or relatively higher-yielding assets, will be exacerbated in short to medium term. More specifically, the demand for real assets such as infrastructure assets will see further growth. Investors, pension funds, insurance companies and indeed all savers globally will require access to real assets, especially in the infrastructure space, that can generate cash flows to meet the target rate needed in the face of plunging yields all around. The impact of Covid-19 will lead to further slowing down in growth in the near future, which will mean interest rates will remain lower for quite some time now. The world will look towards younger countries such as India to potentially create assets that can help meet the...

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As we see even more of the global impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on healthcare and economics, a healthcare and financial catastrophe of such magnitude will impact current economic and financial trends and create new ones as well. From an Indian perspective, it would be prudent to watch out on three issues that will impact the Indian economy and deserve vital attention.

Firstly, given the plunge in global nominal yields with the ten-year US treasury yielding south of seventy basis points the requirement for returns or relatively higher-yielding assets, will be exacerbated in short to medium term. More specifically, the demand for real assets such as infrastructure assets will see further growth. Investors, pension funds, insurance companies and indeed all savers globally will require access to real assets, especially in the infrastructure space, that can generate cash flows to meet the target rate needed in the face of plunging yields all around.

The impact of Covid-19 will lead to further slowing down in growth in the near future, which will mean interest rates will remain lower for quite some time now. The world will look towards younger countries such as India to potentially create assets that can help meet the demand from local growth, while also providing investment avenues for savers. While the demand growth is contingent upon a gradual recovery in India, an opportunity to invest in Indian infrastructure will be even more critical for the global investment community moving forward.

For India, clearing the clutter in the infrastructure space to allow savings and investment pools to finance the assets will be the key to bridging the infrastructure financing gap. Mainly, in a world with collapsing returns, especially in the fixed income space, the next few years will provide opportunities to attract both domestic and global savings. Clarity in policy and expedited conflict resolution as the hallmarks of the new Indian infrastructure age are what is needed.

Secondly, we must realise that while liquidity and a higher quantum of money flow are essential drivers of economic growth, especially given both the demand and supply shocks from the Covid-19, productive usage of the additional capital is, if not more, as important. As the RBI expands liquidity in the system, to assess the impact one needs patience. Prudence in lending, especially with the hangover of NPAs, is much needed. While providing credit to a highly constrained economy is the lifeline, credit availability must not be at the cost of credit quality. Otherwise, we risk even greater problems from an avalanche of NPAs, a situation that is avoidable at all costs. Credit demand will see a pickup, however, only as consumer demand picks up and more importantly, the future path of action has greater clarity.

Thirdly, the recent happenings of a large mutual fund company in India shutting down certain debt funds once again bring to the focus the issue for investor suitability, liquidity and investor education in the context of the retail investment landscape in India. Balancing the need to provide savers with avenues to deploy their savings and allowing corporates to utilise the capital for productive use is both important and a desired underpinning of the modern economy. However, what needs additional focus in the years ahead is whether funds that invest in relatively illiquid corporate credit can provide short-term liquidity to their investors.

Essentially, investor suitability and investor education must be underscored. If a debt fund pays 200 basis points more than a bank FD, the question is: does that make the debt-fund a better investment option for the investor? Retail investors must understand that spread differentials must compensate them for the additional risk taken, and so on. Overall, providing market infrastructure that improves liquidity and pricing of credit in the market along with greater investor education constitute the vital components of further building the credit markets in India.

Effective mobilisation of savings into productive usage of capital must be the mantra for the Indian economy going forward. The Covid-19 outbreak has been a tragedy, but as we emerge from this tragedy India’s capacity to offer attractive risk-adjusted returns on real assets and get its credit markets in order, will be crucial drivers of the economic growth that is much needed. An environment that makes room for savings to craft the much needed and critical infrastructure for assuring returns to savers and growth prospects for businesses is the most optimal way the economic wheels can deliver value. The current global environment offers India an opportunity for a fresh start towards the coming decade.

(The views expressed in this article are personal and that of the author. The author heads Development Tracks, an advisory firm. You can contact him at taponeel.mukherjee@development-tracks.com or @Taponeel on Twitter)

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Tribute to our people https://easternmirrornagaland.com/tribute-to-our-people/ Sat, 07 Nov 2015 17:35:21 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=48404 Naga Archives & Research Centre, Dimapur, Nagaland. November 7, 2015. Niketu Iralu C Rajagopalachari was the first Indian to be Governor General of India. He was the last Governor General of India as after him the title was discontinued. Rajaji, as he was usually called, visited Shillong in I think 1948 soon after India’s independence. Representatives of various tribes and communities from all over Assam came to meet him. Before he met the people lined up outside the Raj Bhavan, an official announced that each delegation was allowed only a few minutes to say a few words. Pfürhitsü Terhüja and AZ Phizo had come to represent the Nagas. Pfürhitsü stood erect and looked straight, displaying the striking colours of his tribe. His right hand held a shining spear thrust into the ground at an angle. His words to Rajaji, the respected “warrior from the South,” clarifying the Naga political position, were strong and clear. After listening to his first authoritative sentences Rajaji turned to Phizo who was translating him, and asked, “Who is he?” Before Phizo could reply, Pfürhitsü looked at the VVIP and declared with deliberate firmness, “I am a man!” His English came from his years as a...

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Naga Archives & Research Centre, Dimapur, Nagaland.
November 7, 2015.
Niketu Iralu

C Rajagopalachari was the first Indian to be Governor General of India. He was the last Governor General of India as after him the title was discontinued. Rajaji, as he was usually called, visited Shillong in I think 1948 soon after India’s independence. Representatives of various tribes and communities from all over Assam came to meet him. Before he met the people lined up outside the Raj Bhavan, an official announced that each delegation was allowed only a few minutes to say a few words. Pfürhitsü Terhüja and AZ Phizo had come to represent the Nagas. Pfürhitsü stood erect and looked straight, displaying the striking colours of his tribe. His right hand held a shining spear thrust into the ground at an angle. His words to Rajaji, the respected “warrior from the South,” clarifying the Naga political position, were strong and clear. After listening to his first authoritative sentences Rajaji turned to Phizo who was translating him, and asked, “Who is he?” Before Phizo could reply, Pfürhitsü looked at the VVIP and declared with deliberate firmness, “I am a man!” His English came from his years as a DB of the British DC in Kohima.Well trained in handling such situations the Naga spokesman continued with increased vigour. His allotted time was over and the official on duty said so and tried to stop him. Rajaji turned to the official and said “Why are you disturbing? I want to hear what this man has to say”. Pfürhitsü was able to say what he had come to say taking the time he required. About two years ago I gave a talk in Guwahati at the Vivekananda Institute of Culture of the Ramakrishna Mission. I was asked to speak on the Nagas, their history and their culture. The audience was made up of Assamese, Bengalis, Marwaris, Punjabis, and others. They were men and women who were doctors, lawyers, engineers, businessmen, professors, writers, journalists, government servants, and so on. I narrated what Pfürhitsü had said to Rajaji in Shillong over 50 years earlier and said the heroic struggle of the Nagas represented our people’s attempt to tell India and the world that we understood ourselves to be a people and a nation as justified by the facts of our history and the sacrifice we had made to defend our identity. And our defense of what we believe to be important for ourselves does not mean we are against India or any other nations in any way because we regard ourselves as an honourable neighbour with a history that deserves to be respected, though we may be very small in size and number.
At the end of the talk the distinguished Assamese physician who had chaired the function said to me, “That story of the Naga leader saying ‘I am a Man’ to Rajaji has touched me”. He said it made clear the reason for the Naga struggle and the human crisis it has produced. The understanding and goodwill he showed touched me and gave me hope. The memory of that occasion has never left me.
What we are doing here today is very important for us. In establishing Archives to preserve collected documents on what has happened in our recent history, we are affirming to ourselves that our aspirations and beliefs and our struggle for them are important to us. Aspirations and dreams felt and understood in human hearts, minds and souls set human beings apart from all living beings and define our unique common identity we call humanity.
But mankind today is threatened by the chaos and destruction produced by the clash of aspirations of different peoples, nations, cultures and civilizations.
It is natural and important for our proper growth in all dimensions of life that we too, like others, aspire and dream and struggle to consolidate our identity as we have done. We regard this inaugural function today as a humble but serious attempt to pass on “a legacy of hope” from the meager progress made thus far to the coming generations. It represents our assessment of ourselves, and our determination to learn to go forward with others as we should. Yet we are keenly conscious that Nagas are just at the start of their journey in a world where others far larger, much more experienced, than them are shaping the course of events. I am saying this to say we consider the coming of our two closest neighbours, our distinguished guests from Assam and Manipur, to be with us on this occasion as a highly valued gesture of friendship and goodwill. You have accumulated so much more than us from your wider, longer encounters with others in the world from which we need to learn for our own future growth.
Now coming to paying tribute to our people, I start by expressing my sincerest appreciation to Rev Dr VK Nuh for his pioneering initiative in getting this Archives established today. It is a priceless contribution to our society.
Conscious as I am of our serious shortcomings and of the consequences of our mistakes and wrongs we have done to ourselves and to others over the years of our crisis, I do believe the pioneers of the Naga struggle did the right thing in launching their struggle. I do believe also that by taking their stand to desperately defend their identity based on the facts of their history, the Nagas have achieved something, they have covered some distance, namely, that they are a people and a nation. To limit the status of nationality only to those who have become members of the elite club of the UN is a conceptual construct made by a few old nations in a hurry. Membership of this Club is not the final word on the stories of peoples and nations. The world and mankind are going to discover possibilities for societies and communities to live together than what have prevailed thus far.
So I pay my humble but deeply felt tribute to our people for the tenacity and courage they have shown thus far to assert what they believed was true, right and honourable for themselves. They launched out without counting the cost because they could not know what it was going to be from their limited exposure to the wider world.
What I want to emphasize is that we urgently need to know ourselves correctly without fear or pretense. If compared to others we have discovered we have completed only up to Upper Primary School level, we do not need to waste our time and resources and damage ourselves by regretting we are not able to do what others who are University graduates are capable of doing and achieving! We need to discover what we have achieved and know that we are not more than what we really are. But we need to rejoice and find confidence in the fact that we are not less than what we are. The Nagas of today should be humble, compassionate towards one another, realistic, responsible, and intelligent enough and build on the foundation your grandfathers and pioneers have achieved and passed on to you.
Feeling for one’s own identity and defending it, at the same time accepting joint responsibility by all to help one another to learn to live together in mutual trust and goodwill is now the toughest challenge for all mankind. For that way alone we will be able to grow safely together on this planet earth, our common shrinking, threatened sanctuary.
I want to end with Cardinal John Henry Newman’s well-known observation:
“To live is to grow. To grow is to change. To grow fully is to change often”.
This surely is the clear unquestionable roadmap we have to understand and accept for the challenging years ahead.

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Spiritual Healing https://easternmirrornagaland.com/spiritual-healing/ Sat, 05 Sep 2015 17:14:21 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=45096 Ambrose.J. Chakre Surely He took our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we consider Him stricken by God, smitten by Him and afflicted. But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that bought us peace was upon him, and by His wounds we are healed. We all like sheep have gone astray each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity us all. Isaiah 53:4-6In sin we were born and liable to perish as sinners. The moment we became believers, the desire to go back to our old ways became our biggest temptation. The reason we like to sin is because we love sin. The sad and scary truth is that many sinners has gone to their graves unsaved and many are awaiting their fate as death stalks them. I pray that everyone who reads this will not suffer the torments of hell. As humans we have a tendency to become worldly and are vulnerable to spiritual wounds. Just as our flesh is vulnerable to the wounds of the flesh, our spirituality is also as delicate as our flesh. The moment we receive the...

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Ambrose.J. Chakre

Surely He took our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we consider Him stricken by God, smitten by Him and afflicted. But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that bought us peace was upon him, and by His wounds we are healed. We all like sheep have gone astray each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity us all. Isaiah 53:4-6In sin we were born and liable to perish as sinners. The moment we became believers, the desire to go back to our old ways became our biggest temptation. The reason we like to sin is because we love sin. The sad and scary truth is that many sinners has gone to their graves unsaved and many are awaiting their fate as death stalks them.
I pray that everyone who reads this will not suffer the torments of hell. As humans we have a tendency to become worldly and are vulnerable to spiritual wounds. Just as our flesh is vulnerable to the wounds of the flesh, our spirituality is also as delicate as our flesh. The moment we receive the gift of salvation we become in sprit with Christ. However even after we become one with Christ, we tend to ignore His Word and drift far away from Him.
We don’t have to fret and condemn ourselves when we fall into temptation. The desire to sin will always be before us but f we let it reign over us our lives will be destroyed by it. We all make mistakes but we should learn from them. The truth is that we grieve the Spirit whenever we sin. Fretting over our sicknesses and ignoring the doctor’s advices will only aggravate our situation. The sins we commit shouldn’t deter us from becoming what Christ wants us to be.
Being aware of our sins is the first step towards deliverance and confessing our sins is the first step of strengthening our relationship with God. God has promised to forgive our sins if we confess our sins.
Sometimes in our desperation to do good we end up doing the forbidden things. The life I lived is a reflection of all the trails and temptations sinners have to go through. It’s hard to always live by the Spirit but it is rewarding if we do so. No one will know how much I love Jesus but I am the only one who knows how much I hurt Him.
Trust me I had been wounded so many times but the Lord has always been with me at all times. The truth is that I strayed far away from Him. And I suffered the consequences for my own folly.The truth was that I was not only wounded but I was also grieving the Spirit. I lay flat on my face and pleaded with God to have mercy on me. I prayed for forgiveness and for divine empowerment. As I got deeper into prayer I heard the voice of the Lord which said “Have you forgotten me? Have you forgotten that I died for you? Have you forgotten that I love you? You have hurt me and you have grieved me but I still love you just as you are. Return to me and I shall direct your paths.
Those words were all that I needed to hear. I was convicted from within to renounce evil and to come back to the path of righteousness. I confessed. I prayed. And I cried till I was convinced that my sins were forgiven. Inspite of the mess I made with my life I was forgiven which is the evidence of His great and unfailing love. He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities, the punishment that bought us peace was upon Him and by His wounds we are healed.
The Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. No matter how great your sins may be, He has already suffered for you and He is ever ready to forgive you. To deliver us from the bondage of sin was the sole purpose of His crucifixion. Our sins was what He had to die for. All that we have to do is to repent of our evil and turn back to God. He has promised healing to those who are in need of it. And it is in His nature to fulfill all the promises which He made for now and for eternity. Receive the spiritual healing which He offers now and enjoy the blessings which you will receive. Jesus loves you.

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Zeliangrong loses laurels https://easternmirrornagaland.com/zeliangrong-loses-laurels/ Sat, 29 Aug 2015 17:40:19 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=44784 (In remembrance of Haipou Jadonang’s martyr’s Day of 29th August 1931) Zeliangrong has incurred great losses: the hero of the ‘Naga Raj’, the Haipou Jadonang; the never ever going to be born-again-figure; and the Naga Rani, the Rani Gaidinliu, the sacrificial voyage that undertook for the motherland. It is unthinkable, it is unimaginable that such Avatars would be sent to the people of Zelaingrong, the descendents of one single parent called Hoi of Makuilongdi (Zeliangrong-wikipedia.org). A day of “29th August 1931” has come again! A time to reminisce has come again: A time for contemplating and enlivening our nonpareil history has arrived again. Or else, our history will go into the mouth of adversary.The “seer”, the “social reformer”, the “freedom fighter” and the “messiah” are the appellations given to Haipou Jadonang by Indian writers as well as by Western writers. These titles just don’t come from the pens of authors, but from the hearts of those who admired and lamented on the unjustified sentence meted out to him on 29st August 1931 at Imphal Jail for propagating the dream of Naga nationalism. Regardless of territorial coverage, Haipou Jadonang fought for the ‘Naga Raj’ though initially sought help from Indian leaders...

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(In remembrance of Haipou Jadonang’s martyr’s Day of 29th August 1931)

Zeliangrong has incurred great losses: the hero of the ‘Naga Raj’, the Haipou Jadonang; the never ever going to be born-again-figure; and the Naga Rani, the Rani Gaidinliu, the sacrificial voyage that undertook for the motherland. It is unthinkable, it is unimaginable that such Avatars would be sent to the people of Zelaingrong, the descendents of one single parent called Hoi of Makuilongdi (Zeliangrong-wikipedia.org).
A day of “29th August 1931” has come again! A time to reminisce has come again: A time for contemplating and enlivening our nonpareil history has arrived again. Or else, our history will go into the mouth of adversary.The “seer”, the “social reformer”, the “freedom fighter” and the “messiah” are the appellations given to Haipou Jadonang by Indian writers as well as by Western writers. These titles just don’t come from the pens of authors, but from the hearts of those who admired and lamented on the unjustified sentence meted out to him on 29st August 1931 at Imphal Jail for propagating the dream of Naga nationalism. Regardless of territorial coverage, Haipou Jadonang fought for the ‘Naga Raj’ though initially sought help from Indian leaders so that British’s power could be driven out from the soil of Naga inhabited areas. For this, he is regarded as one of the honourable entrants in the Indian History for fighting against the British Empire. A.Z. Phizo and some of the Nagas of Burma did the same when Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose had sought help from him to enter into the territory of Kohima in 1943 Second World War when he was in Tikkyi, Burma. A.Z. Phizo, in return asked Netaji’s help for a separate independent Nagas’ homeland which Netaji assured him to look after only after the India is liberated first from the British rule. Unfortunately, Netaji and INA were defeated by the allied forces of British because of the involvement of Nagas and their intelligentsia in the allied military forces. A question creeps up in my mind why didn’t majority Nagas support Phizo and Netaji’s INA while a decade earlier Jadonang’s movement was already on the verge of climax and bursting? Had majority Nagas happened to join Netaji and Phizo, the story of Naga nationalism could have been different today. Alas! They supported the adversaries and now begging from India for independence (or recognition) without extending any help to India when even all helpless independent kingdoms were merged to India to fight against the British under one banner. This undoubtedly reveals flame of nationalism was less felt at that time as pointed out by Neivetso Venuh in his book called British Colonization and Restructuring of Naga Polity in page 78. In this context, I take the apologetic privilege to correct a statement made by respected A. Lanunungsang, Professor of Sociology, NEHU in his book called ‘From Phizo to Muivah’ in page 42. He writes, “The Zeliang Movement is one of the historic examples that demonstrated their political aspiration under the leadership of Mr. Jadunang. He was apprehended by the British force and later on hanged at Guwahati, Assam”
Truthfully, Jadonang’s movement was never called a Zeliang movement, nor was Jadonang, a Zeliang biologically. He was born as Rongmei blood in Puilon (Kambiron in Manipuri), Tamenglong in the south western Naga Hills. He was hanged at Nambul River, behind Imphal Jail, Manipur, not Guwahati, Assam, as written. This is grievous mistake! Extensive research is intended. Honestly speaking; history of Zeliangrong is never intended by other Nagas to touch and bring up in the forefront like other history of Naga nationalism. They don’t want to undertake serious research on it. Instead, they want to undermine the history just because the history belongs to Manipur Nagas. But remember, Manipur Naga areas at that point of time were under the inclusive part of un-administered areas of Naga Hills. According to Memorandum submitted to the last Viceroy of India, Lord Luis Mountbatten by Naga people says, “The district (Naga Hills) was carved out arbitrarily for administrative purpose. But the Naga people are spread over & wider area and they are to be found in the Naga Hills District proper, the unadministered area between Assam and Burma, in the small native State of Manipur and in Assam, in the North Cachar hills and even in the contiguous parts of Burma. The area covered by the Naga people will extend to some 30,000 sq miles though the Naga Hills covers 4000 sq mile” (Glimpses of Naga History by Bendangangshi, page 51, under ‘The Land and the People’ ”).This is a literary exercise Zeliangrong people should do. Our history should not be allowed to swallow up by other literati.
Rani Gaidinlu is another Avatar who followed up action unfinished by Haipou Jadonang. It is beyond imagination that just a mere illiterate village damsel in the tender age of 16 would take up such a dare devil challenge to revolt against the British Empire. I am dumfounded to recollect her guts and heroism stored up for such a challenge against the mighty British Empire. Commendably, she fought relentlessly and fearlessly because of which she was arrested by Captain Macdonald from Pulomi village on 17th October 1932, and Mr Higgins, the Political Agent of Manipur sentenced her to life imprisonment in Tura Jail. For such a gallantry act, Jawaharlal Nehru in 1937 gave her a befitting title called “Rani of Nagas” (Indian leaders took Nagas as a whole without discriminating as today). When India declared independence in 1947, Jawaharlal Nehru commanded the Premier of Assam to release Gaidinlu immediately from the Tura Jail, and accordingly she was released; and Rani Gaidinlu
came out from jail with her head held high. An illiterate Gaidinlu didn’t go to all mainland areas of India like Delhi, Punjab, Mumbai, Lucknow, Calcutta, Madras etc to meet the leaders of that time like Nehru, Sarda Bhai Patel, Gandhi, Subhas Chandra Bose, Bal Ganghadar Tilak, Lal Bahadur Sashtri etc to fight together under the same banner of congress, yet wherever she lives and fights against the British, her bravery work was recognised by Nehru in particular and by the Indians in general. Instead of arguing of her territorial coverage, the nature of her revolt wherever she does is the evidential proof of her recognition. Irrespective of territorial coverage, nature of the revolt should be taken into consideration and should be recognised by Nagas today whoever did it and wherever it did. Was there any Naga woman who came out from the comfort zone of home and revolted against the British in forefront? Gaidinlu did it. She didn’t simply resist from home, but came out from home and fought it: Resisting from home is done even by Chicken. Gaidinlu is such a woman that recognised today to the Indian history as well as to the western for her revolt against the British wherever and whatsoever works she did. No doubt, she could be the awardees of Tamrapatra award, the Padmabushan Award, the Vivekananda Seva Award and Birsa Munda Award, for her bravery work from the Naga Hills of un-administered areas. Mohammad Ali Jinnah was once an Indian who fought under the banner of congress, but he is the liberator of Pakistan now. It is intolerance to demean her by religion while constitution grants freedom of religion. I respect it as a Christian. Religion has nothing to do with her recognition of her works. We cannot remove any more of those four awards. Concerning the attack on particular faction of underground long decades ago, one can justify himself on the ground of fratricide committing still among the factions of Naga underground. Could those killers be regarded as nationalists? This is not new thing! The above faction might also have committed the same.
Zeliangrong has lost unrecoverable losses indeed: When 77th Indian national congress plenary session was going on In Kolkata in 1983, Rani Gaidinlu with her P.A. Thonku Rongmei also went to meet Shrimati Indira Gandhi in Guest House before the actual meeting begun to submit a memorandum for Zeliangrong statehood under ZPC. Going through the memorandum, Indira Gandhi shockingly said, “Aunty, Nagas’ statehood was already granted by my father (Jawaharlal Nehru) after the reorganisation Acts of North Eastern states”. She was referring this to the grant of Nagaland Statehood. When Rani Gaidinlu, through her P.A. made her clear that the Zeliangrong area was not included in the present Nagaland statehood, and then Indira Gandhi ruefully replied, “Why didn’t you say then before? It is too late”. Pooh! Clauses of 6 of 9 Point Agreement and 13 of 16-Point Agreement were diverged! While Nagas of abortive state are being fully fed, Nagas of other states are deprived of their lion-share.
Unexplored and un-administered Naga areas where the two Zeliangrong liberators born were left out! Jadonang and Rani Gaidinlu’s sacrificial laurels were lost. Nagas of Nagaland today don’t want to admit the two Zeliangrong Avatars to be the leaders of Naga nationalism and instead talks of territorial politics. This becomes chronic disease now. I still feel inspired to recollect when Late Dr. Hokishe Sema spoke in a national live TV telecast when he was invited to 50 years of Golden Jubilee of Indian Independence in 1997 at New Delhi. He said that Jadonang and Rani Gaidinlu were the initiators of the Naga nationalism. Deputy Commissioner, S.C. Deb, in Preface of the book,” Nagaland” mentions, “Nagas’ history cannot be completed without Jadonang and Rani Gaidinlu”. Yet, Zeliangrong people have lost unrecoverable losses: the dream of “Naga Raj”, the utopian kingdom (sovereignty) and homeland (statehood) except lamenting aspiration for the brighter future.
R.Kamei

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Socialism versus Syndicalism https://easternmirrornagaland.com/socialism-syndicalism/ Mon, 20 Jul 2015 17:38:41 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=42998 Jonah Achumi Socialism is a social and economic system characterised by social ownership of the means of production and co-operative management of the economy as well as a political theory and movement that aims at the establishment of such a system. “Social ownership” may refer to cooperative enterprises, common ownership, state ownership, citizen ownership of equity or any combination of these things. The term “socialism” was created by Henri de Saint-Simon, one of the founders of what would later be labelled “Utopian Socialism”. The term “Socialism” was created to contrast against the liberal doctrine of “individualism which later came to be known as “Liberalism”. The word ‘Socialism’ finds its root in the Latin word “Sociare,” which means to “combine or to share”. A socialist economy is based on the principle of production of use, to directly satisfy economic demand and human needs and objects are valued by their use-value as opposed to the principle of production for profit and accumulation of capital. In the traditional conception of a socialist economy, coordination, accounting and valuation are performed in a kind by way of using physical quantities by a common physical magnitude or by a direct measure of labour-time in place of financial calculation. For distributing output, two alternative principles have been proposed: to each according to his contribution and from each according...

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Jonah Achumi

Socialism is a social and economic system characterised by social ownership of the means of production and co-operative management of the economy as well as a political theory and movement that aims at the establishment of such a system. “Social ownership” may refer to cooperative enterprises, common ownership, state ownership, citizen ownership of equity or any combination of these things. The term “socialism” was created by Henri de Saint-Simon, one of the founders of what would later be labelled “Utopian Socialism”. The term “Socialism” was created to contrast against the liberal doctrine of “individualism which later came to be known as “Liberalism”. The word ‘Socialism’ finds its root in the Latin word “Sociare,” which means to “combine or to share”.

A socialist economy is based on the principle of production of use, to directly satisfy economic demand and human needs and objects are valued by their use-value as opposed to the principle of production for profit and accumulation of capital.

In the traditional conception of a socialist economy, coordination, accounting and valuation are performed in a kind by way of using physical quantities by a common physical magnitude or by a direct measure of labour-time in place of financial calculation. For distributing output, two alternative principles have been proposed: to each according to his contribution and from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. The Original Socialists condemned Liberal Individualism as failing to address social concerns of poverty, social oppression, and gross inequality of wealth. They viewed liberal individualism as degenerating society into supporting selfish egoism that harmed community life through promoting a society based on competition. They presented socialism as an alternative to liberal individualism that advocated a society based on cooperation. The modern definition and usage of the term “Socialism” settled by the 1860s, becoming the predominant term among the earlier associated words such as “Co-operative”, “Mutualist” and “Associationist”.

Socialism is where the factors of production—labor,capital goods and natural resources are owned equally by everyone in the society. They can be represented by a cooperative, a public corporation where everyone in the society has shares, or a democratically-elected government. These factors of production are valued for their usefulness to people. This includes not only individual needs but also greater societal needs such as preservation of natural resources. That means most economic decisions are made by central planning as in a command economy. A society may decide to define the common good as including caring for those who can’t directly contribute to production, such as the elderly, children, and their caretaker.Socialism basically says let’s have a kinder, gentler society. Let’s share things. Let’s have an economic system that produces things not because they’re profitable for some corporation, but produces things that people need. SOCIALISM SUPPORTS THE POOLING OF SURPLUS PROFIT THROUGH MEANS OF PROFRESSIVE TAXATION TO REDISTRIBUTE THESE FUNDS TO PROVIDE SCOCIAL WELFARE, INCLUDING PUBLIC HEALTHCARE, PUBLIC EDUCATION AND PUBLIC HOUSING. It advocates nationalization of strategic industries and services.  It emphasizes the need for a MORALLY CONSCIOUS ECONOMY based upon the principles of service, cooperation, and social justice while OPPOSING POSSESSIVE INDIVIDUALISM. Ethical socialism is distinct in its focus on criticism of the ethics of capitalism, and not merely criticism of material issues of capitalism. Its founders denounced the self-seeking amoral and immoral behaviour that he claimed is supported by capitalism. The system opposes what it calls the “acquisitive society” that causes private property to be used to transfer surplus profit to “Functionless Owners”.

There are many different types of socialism like Democratic Socialism,Revolutionary Socialism,Libertarian Socialism,Market Socialism,Green Socialism,Christian  Socialism,Utopian Socialism,Fabian Socialism,Modern Socialism,Nanosocialism  and National Socialism.

NATIONAL SOCIALISM:

National Socialism believes the State is but an end to a means – the survival of the people and race – and never an end in itself. However, due to the many similarities between certain political movements in the first half of the 20th century, the term “fascism” has been used to describe all of them. Whether this is a good use of the term is debatable.

National Socialism, originally is the doctrine of the liberation of the White race. It represents the soundest means of assuring the survival and advancement of a race. National Socialism was at first a political outlook adopted in several European nations, but evolved quickly into a pan-European vision. It is a form of right-wing thought in that it emphasizes the importance of hierarchy and inequality for the creation and maintenance of civilization. The practical goal of National Socialists today is to convert more people to the cause, in order to be able to create a state guided by National Socialist principles. National Socialists believe in the quest for excellence and constant improvement. MORAL RULE EXISTS TO SERVE THE COMMUNITY: to ensure its long-term survival and prosperity, for the sake of its members. Without morality, living together and cooperating peacefully in a society would be impossible. Therefore, morality is not only a private matter, but of great importance for the state. National-Socialism in practice was not socialism in the same sense as Marxism-Leninism: the state did not take ownership of enterprises. The state, however, did regulate the economy as needed for the benefit of the society as a whole and conducted extensive social programs. National Socialism does not endorse tyranny; that is, a political apparatus that functions contrary to the interests of the people. National Socialism endorses the “leadership principle,” the idea that a nation is best governed by those most capable of guiding their fellow citizens and providing for their common needs and wants. Socialism is the view that the community (the people) embodies the most important value; the individual is a member of the people and has to support his people.

National-Socialism therefore demands the precedence of politics over economics. THE ECONOMY SHOULD SERVE PEOPLE AND STATE, NOT THE INDIVIDUALS. The most important Socialist principle runs: COMMON GOOD BEFORE SELFISH GOOD. Certainly there is deserved private profit, but this must always be subordinate to the well-being of the entire people. If everyone cares only for himself, then the people go to ruin, and every individual along with it. But if everyone devotes himself to the community, then the people thrives and along with it every individual also thrives as a member of the people. In the National Socialist state, there is no longer property with which the individual can do with whatever he wishes.

SYNDICALISM:

Syndicalism was developed at the end of the 19th century out of the French trade-union movement—Syndicat is the French word for trade union. It was a significant force in Italy and Spain in the early 20th century until it was crushed by the fascist regimes in those countries. In the United States, Syndicalism appeared in the guise of the Industrial Workers of the World or “Wobblies, ”founded in 1905.” Syndicalism is an economic system where industries are organised into Confederations (Syndicates); the economy is managed by negotiation between specialists and worker representatives of each field, comprising multiple non-competitive categorised units. Thus, Syndicalism is a form of communism and economic corporatism and also refers to the political movement and tactics used to bring about this type of system.

Syndicalism rejects State Socialism and the use of establishment politics to establish or promote Socialism. They reject using state power to construct a socialist society, favouring strategies such as the General strike. Syndicalists advocates a socialist economy based on federated unions or syndicates of workers who own and manage the means of production. An influential anarchist movement based on Syndicalist ideas is Anarcho-Syndicalism.  Anarcho-Syndicalism is a theory of anarchism which views Syndicalism as a method for workers in capitalist society to gain control of an economy and with that control, influence broader society. Although Syndicalism advocates the control of production units by the workers it does not, as is the case for Socialism, advocate the central control of the economy. Instead Syndicalism advocates the operation of a production unit for the benefit of the workers of that production unit. This means that the workers sell or barter the production of their unit for the output of the other production units.

Although not as well known as the socialist movement Syndicalism has had a notable role historically. In the western United States the IWW, the International Workers of the World, were influential in the mines and were perceived as a definite danger to own or to control the mines. There were laws passed in some western states for the suppression of criminal syndicalism.

Syndicalism is a type of proposed economic system, a form of anti-thesis socialism, a replacement for capitalism. Industry in a Syndicate system runs through co-operative confederations and mutual aid. Local syndicates would communicate with other syndicates through the labour exchange which would cooperatively determine distributions of commodities. National Syndicalism offers rejuvenation with the elements of impulse, rebellion, desire for freedom and an IDENTITY AND RESPECT FOR ONES PEOPLE AND HOMELAND WHICH IS PERMANETLY NEEDED.

So after the in-depth analysis of the two ideologies mentioned above, these two systems are somewhat like a Day and Night and poles apart like the North and the South Pole. One is like a Desert and the other a Rainforest. It has the difference of fire and ice or flood and drought .The first one is for the greater good of one’s own countrymen and people but what we are experiencing in our homeland now in praxis is completely opposite of the very name of its ideology The theory and the practical seems to be completely in contrast with one another. While the second one is the ideology where all the basic tenets it is supposed to stand for is completely absent here. Our own workers, farmers and entrepreneurs are being choked and snuffed by this system. The ones who should be standing for us are now completely conniving with others and trampling our own people .I believe not even a single Naga dreamt or hoped for this kind of system where we would be pushed, shoved and sidelined here in our own land just because of some people who wants to monopolize and capture the market for their own selfish gains .Those people who patronise this Syndicate System must honestly ask their own conscience and before God if this is the kind of freedom they want to give to their own people and the coming generations. A very big question comes to the mind of every present generation that’ If the stake-holders who has christened themselves with the word ‘Socialist’ ,then the Syndicate System which they work hand in gloves for their own profits is just much in contrast to that very term ‘Socialist’. While Socialist ideology stand for social welfare, especially the working class, Syndicate System stand only for some privileged few and only few gain from it. In our land it is responsible for putting an end to so many young dreams of becoming self-dependent or self-reliant by promoting self-interests in the guise of Sovereignty .Much in contrary to Socialism, Syndicalism stands only for a certain segment of group or circle and not for the people as a whole.

Today, all fingers point towards the much opposed, disliked and the infamous Syndicate System for dashing the hopes and dreams of the tomorrow’s children. Whatever maybe the reason for all these fallacies and maladies in our present society, we all have to re-think and re-devise the policies which the society are now finding it as anti-native programmes or policies. There has been a tremendous increase in unemployment and when government jobs have reached a saturation stage, the youths have no other alternatives to find their source of income, except to fend themselves at the mercy and whims of a reticent and a resilient society that does not seem to care as long as life goes on without any hindrance or enjoy ones’ fruits without a care for his fellowmen. What if, tomorrow, the children of those Guardians of this system who want to take up some business activity or become self-employed are all choked, snuffed and trampled by others of their own kind who promote this kind of ideology for their own personal benefits? Would they be happy in their old age tomorrow when they see their own flesh and blood suffers from the system that is happening today, which some now so staunchly profess and defends and forces it in a tyrannical way upon others’ children of our blood, soil and our own native land? A Great Native American Indian proverbs says “WHEN THE BLOOD IN YOUR VEINS RETURN TO THE SEA AND THE EARTH IN YOUR BONES RETURN TO THE GROUND, PERHAPS THEN YOU WILL REMEMBER THAT THE LAND DOES NOT BELONG TO YOU BUT IT IS YOU WHO BELONGS TO THE LAND…………WE DO NOT INHERIT THIS EARTH FROM OUR ANCESTORS BUT WE HAVE BORROWED IT FROM OUR CHILDREN.” We will be forever remembered by the tracks we leave behind. How you wish to see your children tomorrow, do the same on others’ children of today. Only then you can be called a rebel with a cause and a true salt of the land. A true patriot is the one who sacrifices himself for the good of others. His task is to take care of the elderly, the defenceless and those who cannot provide for themselves and above all the children, who are the future of humanity.

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Politics, economy and world peace https://easternmirrornagaland.com/politics-economy-and-world-peace/ Mon, 29 Jun 2015 17:44:19 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=41954 Dr. Xavier P Mao In what follows, I wish to explore, analyze and critically examine the relationship between politics, economy and world peace. It is historically true that politics and society emerged at a very late stage in human civilization. The idea of economy and world peace is a later date development. For many years and centuries human beings were living solitary life throughout the world. It was only after industrial revolution in Western Europe particularly Great Britain that the world economy began to be inter-connected. Lionel Robin and Adam Smith gave the slogan that human wants are unlimited. Such slogan appears as if as a matter of fact, human wants are unlimited and innumerable. But attentive reflection will show that Lionel Robin and Adam Smith were offering a prescription about human wants. It is this: human wants ought to be unlimited. It was a necessity of large industrial revolution and consequence of large scale production. Therefore, produce more and consume more was the clarion call. In pre-industrial period humankind was producing only that much whatever was necessary to keep one’s body and soul together. But industrial revolution with large scale production posed a problem. How to consume and sell...

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Dr. Xavier P Mao

In what follows, I wish to explore, analyze and critically examine the relationship between politics, economy and world peace. It is historically true that politics and society emerged at a very late stage in human civilization. The idea of economy and world peace is a later date development. For many years and centuries human beings were living solitary life throughout the world. It was only after industrial revolution in Western Europe particularly Great Britain that the world economy began to be inter-connected. Lionel Robin and Adam Smith gave the slogan that human wants are unlimited. Such slogan appears as if as a matter of fact, human wants are unlimited and innumerable. But attentive reflection will show that Lionel Robin and Adam Smith were offering a prescription about human wants. It is this: human wants ought to be unlimited. It was a necessity of large industrial revolution and consequence of large scale production. Therefore, produce more and consume more was the clarion call. In pre-industrial period humankind was producing only that much whatever was necessary to keep one’s body and soul together. But industrial revolution with large scale production posed a problem. How to consume and sell the excess products? The market place available in Great Britain was not enough to absorb all the surplus therefore new markets had to be found out. The leaders and captains of society and producers tried to discover markets to sell their products. Sea voyages were commissioned and some people were asked to find out routes to Africa, Asia in general and India in particular. In the year 1600 A.D some British merchants came to India and contacted the then Mughal Emperor to allow British traders to carry on trade and commerce. Initially British came to India as traders and merchants and gradually colonized not only India but major parts of Africa. So economy gave rise to a new kind of politics like colonialism and imperialism. This is how growth of science and technology gives rise to a particular economic development and economic development gives rise to colonialism and colonialism in turn gives rise to a particular type of politics. Such emergence of political order is either conducive or detrimental to world peace is to be seriously examined and reflected upon. Therefore, I wish to argue that science and technology give rise to a particular type of economy and economy in its turn gives rise to a particular national and international order. This trend and tendency are very much prominent even in contemporary period. The two world wars are witnesses to this type of socio-economic development. Willy-nilly various nations and countries of the world became parties to these two world wars. Till date this tendency to world politics is very much current. The only thing is that the nature and color of the problem has undergone sea change.It may be stated in this connection that the emergence of family, society and state in the evolutionary process has done both good and bad for humankind. Emergence of family took care of children, and children were no more left to the whim and caprice of nature. Emergence of family and state is another step. Protection of people and the need for collectivity have led to the formation of state. Further, with the state formation not only civilized people but 2 protected them. The appearance of Kingship and Monarchy is the milestone in this regard. But in course of time, the growth and development of state gave rise to subjugation and exploitation. Kings, rulers and monarchs were no more satisfied with their kingdoms and territories. They wanted to extend the frontiers of their kingdoms. Thus conflicts, chaos, confusions and ultimately conquests of territories and subjugation of people and state became the normal phenomenon. It is not that the idea of controlled and guided economy is the concept of modern time. In other words, the idea of controlled economy and enhancement is as old as state formation. The powerful leaders, kings and monarchs began to extend their territories. Thus the idea of forming a world empire is not only the dream and fantasy of the so called Alexander the ‘Great’. He wanted to realize his dream and in the process thousands were slaughtered and killed but the travesty is that the poor Alexander died in Baghdad while returning home. When he was in dead bed he realized the futility and meaninglessness of his dream so he instructed his attendants that they should put his both hands and feet showing to the people that Alexander came to this world with empty hands and going back to the other world empty handed. Even if the realization was belated it is an open declaration of futility and meaninglessness of war, slaughter, murder and creation of very big empire. We should realize this message and truth.
It is a fact that monarchy and kingship are being replaced by democratic form of government the world over. Today democratic form of government is the slogan of the day by social scientists. Rudimentary forms of democracy are experimented in some places here and there in Arab and African countries. It is surprising that subjugation and exploitation appears and reappears in the subtle form throughout the world. Further, throughout the world the slogan today is: sell more and purchase less. Let me begin with India the slogan of the present government is “make in India”. We should produce almost everything not only our consumption but sell every conceivable item outside India. Look East Policy is no exception, economic program is to have economic relation with the neighboring countries, even China is also no exception to this type of policy. The great organization like W.T.O controls the trade and commerce among countries. In ancient and medieval times some countries had flourishing trade with the west like Rome. Rome was the market place for Indian goods. It is said that Tamilnadu, Orissa, Kalinga then, Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal had flourishing trade with the western countries. The Arab merchants dominated and controlled the land route from Europe to India. The Arab merchant did not allow the European merchants to use the land route for the simple reason that European merchants would stand as keen competitors with the Arabs. So Europeans tried to discover sea routes to India. This is how many sea voyages were financed by European kings and queens to somehow discover routes to India. Discovery of America by Columbus or West Indies was just an accident. The queen of Portugal financed Columbus to discover sea routes to India. Before that Bartholomew and some other mariners in their attempt to discover sea routes came up to Cape of Good Hope and went back with 3 disappointment. It was only after the Suez Canal came into the pictures that the sea routes to India became convenient. We all know the impact of such discovery and exploration on politics, economy and state formation. Seeing from this angle it is very difficult to say that discovery of sea routes and exploration were out of desire to know things beyond one’s frontiers. As a matter of fact, they were economically determined. If we look at the contemporary politics throughout the world, we come across economic issues and consideration taking the front seat. I may be allowed to state in this connection that Arunachal Pradesh is a disputed territory between China and India today. It is also a fact of history that in the very dim past state boundaries were not clearly drawn or demarcated. In other words, there were no states with clear cut boundary lines. When Buddhists were persecuted and tortured in India, they migrated to China and other South-East Asian countries. The institution of passport, visa and permission is a recent day phenomenon. Time was the world and the earth was one. Anybody could live, move and settle down anywhere. This is how the Red Indians walked down to America. Large scale movements of people from one part of the globe to another part enriched the world civilization. This is how scholars and explorers like Huen tsang, Fa hien and other scholars travelled from China to India and have left an account of India. But today such things are not possible.
Nobody from China can visit India and no Indian can visit China and move freely and observe and note down their experiences today. In today’s world the travel of Huen Tsang, Fa hien, Megasthenes etc. are practically impossible because of too much restriction and controlling of free movement of people. Let us think and reflect for a while what we have done? Was the so called modern civilization and socio-economic order have given this bondage of free movement and free interaction? Let us think, ponder and reflect. Ibonbatuta traveler from Moroco came to India on foot. Today we suspect each other. The natural resources that were created and deposited underneath the earth over millions of years are being mindlessly exploited and used to satisfy the unbridled greed of human beings. Mountains and forests are being denuded of trees. There were variety of flora and fauna which were destroyed beyond replenishment. Come to Indian case of water, the so called sacred rivers like Ganga and Yamuna are absolutely contaminated and polluted beyond repair. Valuable flora and fauna found on sacred mountain Himalaya are being destroyed and extinguished very fast. It may be mentioned in this connection that all the great rivers in India were treated as sacred. Likewise the highest mountain peaks like Himalaya and Vindhya are regarded as the abode of 33 millions of gods and goddesses. Lake Manasoravar(at present in China) is also regarded as the abode of gods and goddesses. Till date in India, the common people treat these mountains and rivers as sacred places. Whatever is beneficial, useful and permanently beneficial were regarded as sacred. Even the aboriginal and tribal traditions throughout the world regard great rivers, oceans, mountains and lakes as sacred. This kind of native wisdom of human being that has been handed down to us for thousands of years is destroyed today. Now let us think what we 4 have done to nature? What I wish to suggest in this connection is that human beings can use nature for their basic necessities but not for conspicuous consumption purposes. In other words, mindless use and exploitation of nature is the consequence of greed and avarice of human beings. Nature has sufficient to satisfy our needs but it cannot afford to satisfy our greed. Time has come to make clear cut distinction between need and greed. Further, greed is parasitic on a particular kind of growth and development of science and technology. I may be allowed to draw the attention of the audience on the most important aspect of scientific knowledge is that the understanding of nature in detail as the basic objective of science. Only when it is absolutely necessary then science should be put on day to day use of human beings. The unbridled growth of technology has created serious problems for humankind and such technology driven by greed has induced the philosophy of consumerism. Consequently, produce more and consume more has become the philosophy of life throughout the world. I wish to suggest in this connection that the distinction between enjoyment and renunciation propagated by all religions should be revived and put into practice. Great men and philosophers like Confucius, Laostii, Buddha, Mahavir, Socrates and Christ etc. advocated such ideology. According to them, whatever is necessary consume only that much whatever is necessary to keep body and mind together. This might appear outdated and outmoded, but I am of the firm opinion that this type of philosophy of life is necessary to solve the present predicament faced by human beings. I urge upon the captains of society to examine and reflect on these issues.
Manufacture and compilation of arms and ammunitions have been disturbing world peace and affecting world economy and politics to a very large extent. The two devastating world wars is an eloquent testimony to this. Mindless or directionless researches in science and technology have contributed mainly to this type of devastation. In nutshell, the development of science and technology with great ambition on the part of some nations to expand and extend their territories and to control world economy and politics has given rise to world wars in the past. The growth and development in physical sciences leading to the discovery and exploitation of atoms ultimately have given rise to manufacture of atom bombs. It is sometimes argued that science is dispassionate discovery of knowledge. The politicians make use of the researches for their egoistic and megalomaniac feeling like in the case of the atomic theory that ultimately resulted in the manufacture of atomic bombs dropped in Japan. Some politicians like Nehru argued that preparations for war are great preventive to war, one may not actually fight but one should be ready to fight. It appears innocuous but this intrinsically is dangerous. It is sometimes argued that war is closely associated with avarice, greed and desire to control others. A detailed and critical examination of philosophy of war is a must. The uncontrolled passion and lust for power and fame give rise to war. The primitive human beings were fighting with each other for food and shelter. The modern men fight for victory, territory, profit and control over world economy. It is estimated that the amount of money spent on production of arms and ammunition throughout the world if preserved and spent on social measures for 5 5(five) years then poverty, hunger, disease and squalor will be eliminated. This is the naked truth. Many countries earmark a substantial portion of their budget on defense preparedness. It is interesting to note in this connection that in many countries the defense budget and expenditures are not subject to detailed discussion and debate in the respective parliaments, Congress and assemblies. In this connection I am of the opinion that border disputes will continue among the contiguous countries of the world. The great epic of Mahabharata that led to devastation and complete destruction of all imaginative time and intensity was the result of such desire for land and territory. This epic may not be a historical account but it has a great message and relevance for human being today. Similar message is available in Greek epics. The fact that land or territory has not been created by human being rather it has been there and in the process of evolution separate territories have been created. The modern humankind should realize this important truth and act accordingly so that all disputes related to territories and land should come to an end to the reasonable and rational legitimate benefits of all concerned. International body such as the UNO should take immediate and appropriate action in this regard. But unfortunately it is not happening with the stigma of the so called modern human being and modern civilization. It may be repeated in this connection that it is the unbridled greed that is solely responsible on territorial and other disputes between nations.
Religious fundamentalism breeds terrorism of all types in contemporary period. In the past various groups and tribes in the name of religion fought with each other. But in due course of time serious thoughtful individuals like philosophers, saints, and statesmen gave new insight about religion. It is this: Religions contain many dimensions of human existence. Religious metaphysics that is, worldviews, rituals and value systems are integral part of any religion. But what is happening today in the modern world is that ritualism is taking the primary place in religion. As a result followers of religions have started treating religious metaphysics and rituals as primary. Further, particular religions are being politicized so much so that some fanatics have started floating the idea of supremacy of Hindu faith, Islamic faith and so on. In the process, religious values are being neglected and thrown overboard. There is a sense in which the value systems of all religions are universal. But what had happened today is that politically inspired religionists have sacrificed the religious values. In important and significant sense there is no difference between Hinduism, Islam, and Christianity and so on. But the fundamentalists are unwilling to accept this. Humankind will improve, thrive and prosper only when the religious leaders sit together and shed their superficial differences so that a new era could dawn on the earth. The way religious fundamentalism is raising its ugly head, the day is not far off when the posterity will spend their time and energy to fight religious war. What is to be done? How to save the situation? I would like to suggest in this connection that our educational system stands in need of overhauling. It is not true that education begins in the schools and classrooms. As a matter of fact, family is the first school and mother is the first teacher. Therefore, in the family where the child is brought up should be taught the value of religious tolerance. Our text books 6 in this regard stand in need of revision and rewriting. With such measures may be in due course of time things will improve. The dichotomy between secular and religious is not sustainable. To be truly religious means not to superficially practice and preach any particular religion. In other words, to be truly religious means to have control on one’s self and to lead an absolutely austere life. This dimension of life is not taken care of. No amount of international collaboration including expansion of trade and commerce is going to solve the persistent human problem. I am of the strong opinion that there should be greater trade can be exchanged among all communities and countries of the world without exploitation of the other. To conclude, I wish to suggest that politics, economy and state cannot survive and sustain unless and until ancient and age old moral and religious values are revived, preached and practiced. This May sound utopia and idealistic but this is the only solution. If human beings wish to survive we have to come back to our eternal values advocated by saints, seers and prophets.

The writer is Professor, Department
of Philosophy
NEHU, Shillong.

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Thought assortments https://easternmirrornagaland.com/thought-assortments/ Sat, 20 Jun 2015 16:32:02 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=41622 Khekiye K. Sema These intervening period of being immersed 24/7 in the assignment as a Member of the High Power Committee (HPC), constituted by the Government of Nagaland has generally kept one out of the loop. Now that HPC has formally submitted its report to the Chief Minister of Nagaland on the 10th June 2015 one is relieved to revert to an interactive mode. Having been given the first hand opportunity to take a journey to the depths of the rotten core of the prevalent system, simultaneously being perpetuated by the NPGs and the Government machinery at the cost of the silenced majority, the HPC, like everyone else, has been left wondering whether the present Government has the political will and the courage to follow through the various findings and recommendations of the HPC to reform and streamline the process in a transparent manner. At this stage it is but a matter of an honourable responsibility on the part of the HPC to strictly maintain absolute confidentiality and not divulge its contents in any public forum or print media to afford a reasonable time frame to the Government to act or react…but the Government is humbly reminded not take the...

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Khekiye K. Sema

These intervening period of being immersed 24/7 in the assignment as a Member of the High Power Committee (HPC), constituted by the Government of Nagaland has generally kept one out of the loop. Now that HPC has formally submitted its report to the Chief Minister of Nagaland on the 10th June 2015 one is relieved to revert to an interactive mode. Having been given the first hand opportunity to take a journey to the depths of the rotten core of the prevalent system, simultaneously being perpetuated by the NPGs and the Government machinery at the cost of the silenced majority, the HPC, like everyone else, has been left wondering whether the present Government has the political will and the courage to follow through the various findings and recommendations of the HPC to reform and streamline the process in a transparent manner. At this stage it is but a matter of an honourable responsibility on the part of the HPC to strictly maintain absolute confidentiality and not divulge its contents in any public forum or print media to afford a reasonable time frame to the Government to act or react…but the Government is humbly reminded not take the matters of serious concerns reflected therein, for granted without recourse. At the end of the day the public is bound to claim their right to know. This much is being placed on record to affirm with absolute conviction that the Nagas cannot remotely hope to take a positive step forward under the present non-transparent operative norms without accountability. So much for HPC for now…A great many events and issues of public importance have floated by these past few months with assortments of views that merited public discourse and debates having already been expressed. Be that as it may, one is still tempted to revive the first focus on the “All Party Government” sans Opposition Bench. That this is a broad daylight rape of Democracy in the open street of Nagaland is a foregone conclusion that needs no further analysis or comments. Oh yes…Nagas are a race of pathfinders. The Nagas once showed the Indians how deftly they could circumvent the existing regulations to cross the Assembly defection floor…until the Parliament further barricaded this exit route. The Nagas now hold another dubious distinction of teaching not only India but the world how an opposition-less democracy can function. All credits go to Honb’le Chief Minister, boss of an overwhelming single party majority in the House, who had no option but to honourably induct their pre-election coalition partners into his ministry which of course was politically and ethically correct. Yet he walked the extra mile not into the camp of his sulking comrades but into the shabby hutment of the Congress and shook their hungry ‘Hand’ thus finally capping his achievement with an “All Party Coalition Government” without an Opposition Bench despite the odds being heavily stacked in his favour to comfortably run a Government free of any unnecessary coalition encumbrances. By any given standards, it is a portrayal of an ‘unparalleled talent’ in the art of a power struggle on a political chess board of mismanaged intrigues. It is indeed an exceptional stage now set with a wide open field for an unrestrained all season turkey shoot without opposition. In order to justify their diabolic game of survival, the comical reason proffered for public consumption for setting up such a Government is to collectively find a lasting Naga Political solution to a protracted negotiation. Towards this end the newly inducted Ministers, Parliamentary Secretaries and Advisors, emulating their already entrenched peers, will have by now minutely assessed their respective Departmental budgets to ascertain what extent they can find their lasting political solution in their protracted negotiation with their voting constituents…so there is a ring of truth to it after all! But more on a realistically serious note the question is: How do they propose to achieve the other real political solution as an all party conglomerate? The State Government has never been acknowledged as a negotiating partner by the GoI all these past years and has thus far been an inconsequential spectator with inconsequential initiative. The only distance of involvement covered so far by the State Government in the matter of Naga Political negotiated settlement is the “equi-distance” and “equi-closeness” political party debates on the floor of the June July August House. Dr. S.C. Jamir received bullets of gratitude from his equi-distant friends while Mr. Nephieu Rio harvested rich dividends through his equi-closeness business for two terms as Chief Minister and had only his miscalculated bottomless pocket to blame for messing up his and Mr.T.R. Zaliang’s political equilibrium during the third term. Now that both ‘equi-distance’ and ‘equi-closeness’ policies have merged, we the citizens of Nagaland must tighten our belts and brace ourselves to silently face the onslaught of ‘equi-plunder’ nexus that has reached our shores. The difficult responsibility of the Opposition Bench in a democracy now squarely rests with the people of Nagaland. Unfortunately however, we are not going to be much of an opposition because the only characteristic response we have left in us is our gutless passive silence even as we grovel to collect the crumbs from the Master’s table by humbly listening to the Master’s voice.
Creating a Joint Legislative Committee (JLC) can only be seen as a charade to create a politically correct picture for public consumption in the absence of a chartered vision with real substance of intent and purpose. It would be a huge waste of time and money if the sole purpose of JLC is to collectively go up to Delhi on a shopping holiday and ineffectually plead with the Prime Minister of India on the side for an early solution without a bargaining clout. Then flood the daily papers on their return with pictures of JLC presenting a huge bouquet and a Naga jacket to the Prime Minister smiling from ear to ear for the gullible Nagas to gloat over. The State Government may not be sitting on the main negotiation table but it has a tremendous potentiality to steer the course of events toward a more proactive conclusions by generating a mass movement based on true and fair understanding of our history. No one in their right frame of mind would endorse the existence of so many factions as a right step towards finding a lasting solution. The mushrooming of Factions focused on bleeding the populace with their camouflaged multiple sovereign taxes rather than focus on the real issue of self-determination has only helped to vitiate the already complex proposition. The uncontaminated truth is that we as a race have been thoroughly compromised beyond redemption. The political parties have diluted their existence by hobnobbing with one faction or the other for their political survival at the cost of the greater good of our people. The Church leadership has equally become redundant as they hide behind their simplistic theological definition that the Church has no role to play in the affairs of the State as if their congregation is living in outer space. The audacity lies in their adoption of double standards by fearlessly meddling in the affairs of the State on the issue of prohibition because the State cannot point a gun at them. Yet when the Church and its congregation have effectively been silenced by the guns of the NPGs, the Church leaders would rather fear the gun than the Lord that they profess only on a pulpit on Sundays. It is about time for the State and the Church leaders to get their acts together by coordinating and mobilising mass movement in line with the efforts of FNR and ACAUT and work hard for an all Faction unity. This is the only possible way forward towards a final solution.
There is an imperative need to recognise that the times have changed. The GoI has unequivocally shifted gear from outright arms conflict with the Nagas to defining this problem as a political problem requiring political solution and finally acknowledging the “unique history” of the Nagas officially. The credit for the indispensable role played by the NPGs in inducing this critical shift of understanding within the mind frame of the GoI distancing itself from direct conflict to that of negotiated settlement must honourably be given where it is due. However, despite this altered circumstance there has been no change of attitude in the NPG mindset which is purely guided by monitory and egocentric driven priorities. At this point in time it has become a common knowledge that age has necessarily taken over its natural toll on Mr. Isac Swu who now only serve the purpose of a window dressing to cushion a top heavy Tangkhul establishment with a semblance of Tribal equilibrium facade. For all practical purpose therefore, it is Mr. Muivah and only Mr. Muivah who is calling all the shots within the NSCN (IM) set up under a convenient garb of a voiceless, submissive Collective Leadership. Be that as it may, no one will deny that NSCN-IM has kept the flame of negotiation alive thus far. It is the overwhelming arrogance in keeping the masses blindfolded as to what is being bartered with their future without their knowledge that is the damning aspect which is utterly unpalatable and unacceptable. It is incumbent upon the State Government to therefore take a responsible initiative to filter the honest will of the people. The destiny of the Nagas of Nagaland cannot be used as a bargaining chip to solve the problems of other sectors and keep us dragged in the dirt for so many years.

The writer is IAS (Rtd)
Forest Colony, Kohima

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Problematizing the challenges of the Naga Nationalism https://easternmirrornagaland.com/problematizing-the-challenges-of-the-naga-nationalism/ Wed, 06 May 2015 16:46:21 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=39099 Dr. Xavier P Mao Abstract [dropcap]T[/dropcap]he word Naga came into currency for the first time in the late 17th century in the Ahom Buranji(Chronicle) referring to the Nocte, Wancho and Tangsa tribes of Arunachal Pradesh who are part of the larger allied and cognate groups of the konyak Nagas like the Tenemia groups of people. Naga means highlanders with pejorative implication from the Ahom word Kha which in Assamese is pronounced as Ga or Naga. In the past Nagas used to refer to themselves by their village name. Nagas are not one linguistic group but are an ethnic group. If one looks at the ancient cartography of India till the British coming to the Naga hills: the present day Nagalim was never a part of Indian or Myanmar kingdoms or empires. By and large till the British occupation of Naga Hills in1880 Nagas were not subjugated by any group of people for whatever the reasons may be. It is from this spirit of carefree and freedom loving lifestyle that the Naga political struggle for complete and sovereign independent Nagalim arose in the early 20th century. During the last 60 years of struggle, there are so many social, economic and political...

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Dr. Xavier P Mao

Abstract

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he word Naga came into currency for the first time in the late 17th century in the Ahom Buranji(Chronicle) referring to the Nocte, Wancho and Tangsa tribes of Arunachal Pradesh who are part of the larger allied and cognate groups of the konyak Nagas like the Tenemia groups of people. Naga means highlanders with pejorative implication from the Ahom word Kha which in Assamese is pronounced as Ga or Naga. In the past Nagas used to refer to themselves by their village name. Nagas are not one linguistic group but are an ethnic group. If one looks at the ancient cartography of India till the British coming to the Naga hills: the present day Nagalim was never a part of Indian or Myanmar kingdoms or empires. By and large till the British occupation of Naga Hills in1880 Nagas were not subjugated by any group of people for whatever the reasons may be. It is from this spirit of carefree and freedom loving lifestyle that the Naga political struggle for complete and sovereign independent Nagalim arose in the early 20th century. During the last 60 years of struggle, there are so many social, economic and political forces had taken place within the Naga society. The Government of India conceded some small measures of autonomy to the Nagas in the form of Article 371A. Further, along with the rest of the North-East tribals Naga employees have been exempted from paying income tax if they happen to work in the hill regions of North-East India. However, partly due to the weak political will of the Government of India, even the Constitutional provision of Article 3 could not be used to integrate the contiguous Naga inhabited areas with the Nagaland state although that is the legitimate aspiration of the Nagas in line with the principle of the creation of the different Indian states. Nagas on the other hand, are politically too weak to bargain their cherished desire to live under one political roof. Some of the major challenges and problems confronting the Naga society today are the following:1. There is no serious attempt to develop the Naga languages and literature.
2. The excessive policy of violence used by the Naga insurgents has played tremendous havoc in Naga society having deep and wide negative impact on all Nagas.
3. Bangladeshi influx is another serious issue of concern.
4. Wine, liquor and drug abuse is another major problem facing the Nagas.
My humble suggestions and remedy to the persisting challenges before us are to give up the happy go lucky life style and seriously develop the culture of hard work and industry. We ought to have self-analysis, serious introspection and self-criticism as the Naga problem is not clearly political but economic, cultural, social, linguistic and psychic as well. The culture of peace has to be cultivated. In nutshell, Nagas must change their old mindset so that they could regain their past glory of freedom loving people with the changed circumstances of the world today.
Before writing or speaking anything on Naga it is imperative on us to be clear about the origin, genesis and meaning of the word Naga. At the outset some scholars claim that the word Naga is a Sanskrit origin word. It is a fact that Naga, Nāgā and Nagendra are Sanskrit words. Naga means that which does not move that is, one who is immovable. In this sense tree, mountains, hillocks are Nagas for the simple reason that they do not move from one place to another. The mount Himalaya is known as Naga-Dhirajo. This means the Lord of the immovable. Quite likely the word Naga is derivative of the word Nogo. Further, the word Naga in Sanskrit means snake cobra. In Hindu mythology and tradition Nagas are original ancestors of certain group of people.
It may not be out of place to mention in this connection that the Ahom chronicle compiled by courtiers of the Ahom kings and some family members the word Naga mentioned in the late 17th century means hill people or forest dwellers with very low status. In Hindu mythology Gandervas and Kinaras have been mentioned. These people were forest dwellers and they were very good looking and freedom loving people. Most likely those who coined this word Naga have these things in mind. It may be mentioned in this connection that some words particularly proper name and common name are not meaningless. In other words, there is rich content behind every proper and common name. In the absence of any historical record created by the Naga people about themselves, this meaning of the word may be accepted. For the sake of convenience and explanatory value till date no Naga has written any authentic history about themselves. In the absence of any such authentic document we have to depend on this meaning of the word Naga.
No language is God given. Languages come into existence over a period of time. User and speaker of a particular language is developed over a period of time. In this sense, there is no universal language. First man began to speak and after centuries together the language takes a written form. The oldest record of speech is Vedas. Initially Vedas were not committed to writing that is how the word shruti means that which we hear and remember. Nagas today speak about 50 languages. But they have not been able to commit them to writing or develop their own scripts. What does it show? Without casting any aspersion on any Naga group it can be said that from the stage of wandering, hunting and collecting food from the forest and jungle, Nagas straight away came to modern or ultra modern stage. This quantum jump has been beneficial to them but at the same time it has created problems in linguistic, cultural and socio-economic in nature. In a word, language constitutes the primary basis of identifying a particular group. I may be allowed to state in this connection with a sense of apology that Nagas do not have a linguistic identity of their own. There is no serious action taken to create and develop their linguistic identity. If we look at the Indian situation, majority states express linguistic identities of people, coming under particular state like Bengali, Tamil, Oriya, Gujarati etc. They are linguistic identities. Maithili and Bhojpuri are linguistic identities. Linguistic identity gives rise to a variety of literature and even emotional integration which is lacking in Nagas at present in spite of common political goal. The great Epics of Ramayana, Mahabharata and the 18 Puranas were created and recreated after the Vedas and Upanishads in the regional languages. Nagaland University has set up linguistic department and yet the department did not take any step to compile a dictionary of Naga languages what to speak of compiling a multi-lingual dictionary comprising all tribal languages of North-East. Further, there is no awareness and no effective demand even today to develop their mother tongue. Rather their languages are almost dying and nearly replaced by completely different language which is called Nagamese. They remain happy with English as the medium of instruction even at the primary stage as it is happening in other parts of India. This state of affairs does not augur well for the Nagas. This is most unfortunate that a group of scholars in North-East studying and reflecting on the so called problem of tribal identities are blissfully ignorant of this dimension of Naga problem. It is high time that all the Naga tribes must sit together and chalk out plan to develop their languages and literature.
Whatever may be the origin of the word Naga, Nagas as a group of people were within the British Empire. Even today the fact remains that we are helplessly within the Indian union and within the Myanmar union. It is necessary to mention in this connection that right from 1918 some Naga leaders demanded sovereign, independent and separate Nagaland. History of the recent times showed that a lot of bloodshed and terrible destructions both physical and psychological took place in the Naga society. A. Z. Phizo led the movement for a complete sovereign, independent and separate Nagalim with a well trained fighting force with the sophisticated modern arms and ammunition. He left for Great Britain for the mobilization of the international support for the Naga cause of the Naga political struggle and towards the end of his life his dead body was brought back to Nagaland. It is not appropriate at this point of time to discuss in this connection whether Phizo was right or wrong because the historical conditions were different at that point of time. Even after 60 years of struggle there are Naga leaders the number may be far and few between still stick to the original stand of separate, sovereign and independent Nagaland. Will such struggle lead to the situations of newly created independent states or we may face the situations of LTTE of Srilanka or Khalistan of Punjab or other completely demolished struggle elsewhere in the world. We need to seriously ponder over this. Another important subsidiary demand is being made from time to time is that other Naga inhabited areas of adjoining states should be integrated with present Nagaland state so as to make complete Nagaland. Further, in this connection demands are being made to give more autonomy to Nagaland in terms of finance, administration and other forms of autonomy to Nagaland. The Government of India simply does not know how to solve this problem and fulfill the demand of the Nagas. From time to time the Union of India set up commission and committee to solve the age old problems of the Nagas. This is the biggest challenge and it poses the greatest problem before Nagas and the Government of India. It may be mentioned in this connection that the first empire building activity or process by Chandra Gupta Maurya started before the beginning of Christian era. Before that the entire sub-continent was divided in to 16 major parts. If one looks at the ancient cartography pictures of Gupta period in the 5th century A.D the entire North-East does not appear in it. Though at the same time Manipur ( Manipur is not the present day Manipur state since the name Manipur was given only in the 17th century) and Kamakhya Chitraganda and Ulupi and Nagakamya are found in the great epics both Ramayana and Mahabharata. The word Prakjyatisour(the present day Assam) was well known with the script writers in ancient India. Incidentally it may be mentioned in this connection that perhaps after Ahom invasion of some parts of North-East, the word Assam came into currency. Though there is parallel version that Assam means unparallel or extraordinary or unique. The other version is Assam is from Ahom. The fact that the North-East does not occur in the map of ancient India is indicative of the important fact that the prince and rulers of great empires were not interested in conquering or coming to the North-East. It is necessary to point out in this connection that kingdoms and civilizations developed on the plains particularly on river banks because of obvious reasons. The river valley of Tigres and Euphrates of Iraq, The Nile valley of Egypt and the Indo-Gangetic plain in India attracted people in large numbers. Civilizations including agriculture, trade and commerce developed in such areas though at present things are different. Historically speaking the Nagas lived a happy go lucky life in the forested, hilly and mountainous regions of the present North-East bordering China, Myanmar and India. At the same time it can be said that the Nagas are a historical group. The historicity of the Nagas cannot be precisely deciphered. Ethnically they resemble Chinese and other related groups in terms of food habit and broad linguistic structure and tonality etc. Nagas like Chinese eat all types of meat and all types of salubrious health giving vegetables. They don’t have any inhibition. Their care free lifestyle is very much highly valued by them. The white Europeans wrote all kinds of things about the tribals in general and the North-East in particular. The words dirty, smelly naked or half naked and ugly looking were very common in describing the North-East tribals. Time has come that tribal scholars must reflect research and write on these dimensions of themselves. It seems to me that the Naga political struggle for complete sovereign, independent and separate state spring from their freedom loving carefree lifestyle. In such lifestyle they have been living for many centuries together. Subjugation is unknown to them. There is a sense in which it can be said that state formation is a kind of subjugation. It is on this understanding that a group of social scientists and philosophers while reflecting on the origin of states claim that force is the ultimate source of the formation of states. Human is free but he or she becomes subjugated to the formation of states. This explains the great resentment and the bloody political struggle of the Nagas coming under the yoke of any state particularly Indian and Myanmar states. I wish to point out that state is evil but a necessary evil. Nagas should reflect on this dimension of state formation in the contemporary period and the present geo-political situation and location of Nagaland. Unless the mindset changes in accordance with the historical and political conditions of the time things cannot improve. The Naga intelligentsia particularly the educated youths should realize and act on this principle otherwise our future may not be optimistic. Democracy in principle is a form of participatory government. Since independence the Government of India categorically and Myanmar rejected the Naga struggle for independent Nagaland. It even used brutal military force in the mid 50s and 60s. Nagas being a small group of people compared to the might of India the loss suffered by Nagas both in terms of psychological and physical is enormous. The Government of India in trying to address the Naga political question decided to give a separate state with some measures of autonomy in 1963 by way of Article 371A without integrating all the Naga inhabited areas. But later on partly due to the heavy dependence of money by Nagaland state on the Central government even the autonomy of Nagaland state being under the External Affairs Ministry had converted into under Home Ministry in1971.The Government of India has adopted many measures to improve upon the quality of lives of tribals through the policy of job reservation and the exemption of income tax if the tribals of North-East happen to work in the hilly region of the North-East. Because of the policy of job reservation now one comes across many Naga university and college teachers and in various other walks of life much better than their counterparts in Myanmar. It is high time that the Nagas should give up their leisurely indulgence lifestyle and do hard work. There is no substitute for hard work. One of the evils among the Naga youths is taking wine and liquor in abundance. Another major evil in Naga society is that the so called freedom fighters themselves have turned out to be a big terror (Frankenstein image) to the Naga public. This is amply borne out by the emergence of ACAUT (Action Committee against Unabated Taxation) and the occasional various forms of open confrontation of the public with the insurgents. Even the Naga tribes of Arunachal Pradesh refusing to call themselves as Nagas due to the excessive extortion and unwarranted endemic violence perpetrated by the insurgents.Time has come for Naga youths to reflect on this and do a bit of self-analysis. Without this no nation can develop and grow. In other words, at this crucial historical juncture without serious self introspection, soul-searching, self-criticism and self analysis we cannot lay the foundation of rapid progress. It is high time for the Nagas in general and the educated one in particular to reflect to examine and reexamine and embark upon the programme of future course of action based upon what is rational and reasonable. No community, no tribe and no country can develop without this.
Whatever may be the socio-economic and historical reasons the fact remains that today Nagaland is an integral of India and Nagas are Indian citizens for all practical purposes though the overwhelming majority of the Nagas are reluctant to be called Indians. To say this is not to accept the hegemonistic idea and principle. It may not be out of place to mention in this connection that India as a democratic country in spirit is based upon the principle of participation, criticism and comments including the voice of dissent. As pointed out earlier historically Nagalim was never a part of India and Nagas are not Indians. Today not only Nagas but other tribals of North-East India have benefited to a large extent by being a part of Indian Nation whereas the other tribals of Myanmar and Bangladesh are much worse off than them. By saying this I should not be misunderstood for pleading the cause of India. But the brute fact must be stated. The state is a contract and each group has its right to secede and form the state of their own. But the demand for secession should be based upon reasoned consideration. Secession for the sake of secession is not reasonable and not acceptable. It is a historical fact that in the past existing nations and societies have been vanquished and people have been slaughtered from their homes. What happened to Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, America and etc.? After the Norman Conquest the native fishermen were slaughtered to pieces. After the discovery of America the Red Indians and the black African people of America were slaughtered to pieces by white Europeans. It is perhaps because of this reason in1998 when there was proposal to celebrate the 500 years of the arrival of Columbus, the natives objected to it saying that the arrival of Columbus in America had caused damage and decimation of the natives. Similar things happened in other parts of the world. Even on the Indian soil such things happened. The conflict between the so called anario Dravidians and Aryans is a case in point. The rig Veda contends the story of such struggle and fight. Indra is supposed to be the leader of Aryans and there is prayer in the Vedas to let the enemy of India be crushed to pieces. The imperialistic and hegemonistic tendency in human being is not totally absent even in the contemporary period. May be in the dim past national borders were not there and even if loose vague boundaries were there they were never fixed. Consequently people from one part of the globe move out and settle down in other part of the globe. This is how the present day ancestors of the Red Indian inhabiting the west coast of America reached there from Asia. Further Buddhists were slaughtered and oppressed in India by non-Buddhists and they reached China and the whole of south-east Asia. With the formation of states in modern times the movements of people have been restricted to a large extent. The very idea of “mine and thine” with respect to country and nation have to be reconsidered and re-examined. Should the international community tell Europeans to leave U.S.A, Latin American countries, Canada, Australia, New Zealand etc to go back to Europe? Similarly all other nationalities who came to other countries be asked to leave the present respective places to go back to their original places? This proposal is not only unreasonable but dangerous. In nutshell, the concept of mine and thine in terms of particular territory has to be very carefully used in connection with nation and nationality. May be the ideal of one world is the evolved alternative which has to be cultivated otherwise border districts not only between states to states and nations will continue forever. In the past the border districts and between nations have ultimately resulted into mutual fighting and warfare causing death and destruction of human beings and properties. Human beings do not seem to learn anything from their past. Further in the context of India there are persisting disputes continue between the states having borders and boundary lines. What is the solution? What is to be done? As far as possible the center and the states should try their best to solve such problems in an amicable manner on the basis of reasonable and rational principle. It is reasonable to think that people of a particular ethnic, cultural and linguistic group should be put together. But if this integration leads to other problems and difficulties then we have to find out other different ways and means. The demand for integration of Naga inhabited areas of adjoining states with Nagaland is a genuine and reasonable demand. In a democracy problem could be solved by discussion and deliberation. Democracy being a participatory form of government it is very different from dictatorship, autocracy, meritocracy, plutocracy and other forms of government that imposes the views of a particular individual or group on others. Historically speaking democratic form of government evolved after many centuries. In principle and ideally the decisions in a democratic form of government are made by the people and not by an individual or groups of individuals. In 1975 we have seen a particular Prime Minister resorted to a dictatorship form of government and we seen the consequences of such an action. By far democracy is the best form of government but party based democracy and electoral politics has done irreparable loss and damage. In parliament or assembly of various states in India decisions are writ large with the interest of the ruling party in power. In the name of democracy and free movement of its citizens to any part of the country under the Constitution and the free flow of foreigners from the neighboring countries I do not wish Nagaland to become another Tripura or Sikkim or Barak valley or complete dispersal of the Koch-Rajbangsi people.
To conclude time has come that the Nagas should seriously reflect and re-examine whether the present form of political struggle should continue or resort to constitutional form of struggle to bargain more for their autonomy and demand more for opportunities for their own intellectual, cultural, economic and social development. Nagas must cultivate the habit of hard work and industry. The Nagas in general and youth in particular should give up and say no to wine and liquor. It is in this connection to remember M.K.Gandhi’s words that wine and liquor have brought ruination in human societies. To begin with manufacture and sell should be treated as cognizable offence. Gandhi had vision not only for India but for the whole world. It is difficult to make a distinction between drinking and drunkenness. Many high officials make clearly the distinction between drinking and drunkenness. According to them drinking is not a crime but drunkenness is a crime. Nagas must reflect and realize this dimension of life. The Naga insurgents are also such a terror to their own people that ordinary Nagas are so fearful to raise their voice of protest and complaint. Internal suppression, oppression and intimidation should be eliminated. Without such elimination the situation of internal colonialism will eventually lead to internal implosion which will be very dangerous. This situation has to change for the freedom of the common people. The non-Naga language is being widely used as the lingua-franca called Nagamese language is fast destroying the true Naga languages thereby Naga languages are in the danger zones of extinction according to the United Nations Report. My humble suggestion as a remedy to the persisting Naga problem is placed for discussion and deliberation before the Nagas today. To sum up the challenges that the Nagas face today are not clearly political but economic, cultural, social, linguistic and psychic as well. In nutshell, Nagas must change their mind-set so that they could regain their past glory of free loving people with the fullest possible development of their talents and potentialities.

The writer is Professor,
Department of Philosophy
NEHU, Shillong-793022.

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Nagas right to self-determination under international law https://easternmirrornagaland.com/nagas-right-to-self-determination-under-international-law/ Tue, 05 May 2015 16:02:26 +0000 http://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=39009 [dropcap]R[/dropcap]evolution, though, may be considered illegitimate in Kantian postulate, is nevertheless recognised as an inalienable right which belongs to the “people” since the American Declaration of Independence, 1776. In like manner, the principle of “right to self-determination” today has been recognized under international law as a “jus cogens” norm constituting an obligation “erga omnes” from which no state can derogate. While a post-nation state dimension of the concept has been rapidly emerging, India has officially reserved the applicability of the norm to any section of people within its boundary for conventional tactical calculations in the Asian geo-political theatre.Nagas declared their independence from British India on the 14th of August, 1947. However, India with its Chinese-itching complex, lately adopted the policy of Northeast expansionism. India invaded the Naga nation and brought its territory under military occupation since early 1950s. Naga nation was forcibly annexed and partitioned thereto. The existing Nagaland state was forcibly engrafted on 1st December, 1963 and a puppet Government was inducted therein. Naga people’s struggle and resistance continue till date challenging India’s armed occupation. However, India by semantic manipulation of the conflict narratives, constantly labels the legitimate struggle of the Nagas as “secessionist” and their organisations as “terrorists”,...

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[dropcap]R[/dropcap]evolution, though, may be considered illegitimate in Kantian postulate, is nevertheless recognised as an inalienable right which belongs to the “people” since the American Declaration of Independence, 1776. In like manner, the principle of “right to self-determination” today has been recognized under international law as a “jus cogens” norm constituting an obligation “erga omnes” from which no state can derogate. While a post-nation state dimension of the concept has been rapidly emerging, India has officially reserved the applicability of the norm to any section of people within its boundary for conventional tactical calculations in the Asian geo-political theatre.Nagas declared their independence from British India on the 14th of August, 1947. However, India with its Chinese-itching complex, lately adopted the policy of Northeast expansionism. India invaded the Naga nation and brought its territory under military occupation since early 1950s. Naga nation was forcibly annexed and partitioned thereto. The existing Nagaland state was forcibly engrafted on 1st December, 1963 and a puppet Government was inducted therein. Naga people’s struggle and resistance continue till date challenging India’s armed occupation. However, India by semantic manipulation of the conflict narratives, constantly labels the legitimate struggle of the Nagas as “secessionist” and their organisations as “terrorists”, “rebels”, “insurgents”, or “guerrillas” to deny the state of “belligerency”.
Be that as it may. The UN General Assembly Resolution 3103 (XXVIII), 1973 regards all “armed conflicts involving the struggle of peoples against colonial and alien domination and racist regimes” as international armed conflicts. Consequently, the Indo-Naga conflict being an armed conflict involving the struggle of people against colonial domination must be considered an international armed conflict which has “locus standi” under international law. Alongside this fundamental recognition, the “right to self-determination” is enshrined in the UN Charter and the common Article 1 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), 1966 and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), 1966 declares that “All peoples have the right to self-determination. By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development”.
Nagas as a “people”
The term “peoples”, however, in the Charter connotes that the right to self-determination under international law is conferred only upon a “people”. The pertinent question is what constitutes a “people”? According to UNESCO Experts’ “Justice Kirby definition”, a group in order to qualify as a “people” must possess some or all of the following common features: (a) a common historical tradition; (b) a racial or ethnic identity; (c) cultural homogeneity; (d) linguistic unity; (e) religious or ideological affinity; (f) territorial connection; and (g) common economic life.” Moreover, the group “must have the will to be identified as a people or the consciousness of being a people”; and it “must have institutions or other means of expressing its common characteristics and will for identity.” Thus, what is crucial for a group in order to qualify as a “people” is the consciousness of the group as being a “people” with distinct identityand the group need not be necessarily large. As opined by the Canadian Supreme Courtin Re Secession of Quebec, a “people” may even include a portion of the larger population of an existing state. However, the term “people” should not be confused withthe “indigenous peoples” or “minorities”, “indigenous peoples” and “minorities” are ordinarily entitled only to “right to internal self-determination” and not to “external self-determination”.
Now the moot question is can the Nagas be said to possess the status of a “people”. Nagas for that matter have no ethno-linguistic, racial, religious or cultural consanguinity whatsoever with India, let alone ideological affinity. More importantly, Nagas have consistently asserted their separate identity with the collective will to be identified as a “people”. The Government of India in fact through its Amsterdam Declaration dated 11.07.2002, officially so recognized by declaring the “history” and “situation” of the Nagas as “unique” – “unique history” in the sense that “Naga nation has never signed any document of accession with India in the history of formation of the Indian Union” and “unique situation” in the sense that “Naga issue accordingly is not a case of secessionist insurgency” and on personal appraisal of these crucial historical facts by the then Deputy Prime Minister of India, L.K. Advani himself, the same was formally so recognised. Thus, there hardly can be any dispute with regard to the established status of the Nagas as a “people” and the same has also been so recognized by other sovereign nations including international bodies such as UNPO. In any case, if the inhabitants of Somaliland could be considered a “people” as distinct from the greater Somali community, the status of “people” in the case of Naga nation is so much the more incontrovertible and legitimate.
Nagas Right to Exercise Self-Determination
It is true that “unilateral declaration of independence” and “secession” in itself are not prohibited under conventional international law. Kosovo for instance controversially declared independence from Serbia on 17th February, 2008, against which Moscow fiercely contested as violative of Serbia’s sovereignty while Washington fully backed the action. However, the International Court of Justice in its advisory opinion dated 22.07.2010, opined that Kosovo’s “unilateral declaration of independence” was not against any principle of international law. Likewise, the Canadian Supreme Court in Re Secession of Quebec observed that “secession” by itself is not prohibited under international law and the federal government of Canada cannot deny the right of Quebec to pursue “secession”, should a clear majority of the people of Quebec choose that goal.
Conversely, from the case of Katangese Peoples’ Congress vs. Zaire, it appears that a racial or ethnic “minorities” howsoever distinct do not have the right to secede from their parent states in the absence of concrete evidence of violations of human rights. The pertinent question is when does the right to secession accrue to “peoples” and “minorities”? The observation of the Canadian Supreme Court in Re Secession of Quebec suggest that a “people” who is blocked from the meaningful exercise of its right to internal self-determination is entitled to exercise the right to secession. Thus, what is crucial for the “indigenous peoples” and “ethnic minorities” under conventional international practice is that denial of due internal autonomy and human right violations may confer on them the status of a “people” entitling them forthwith to the right to secession.
Per contra, contemporary international developments seem to suggest an emergence of a post-nation state dimension of the concept. The Scottish Independence Referendum 2014 in particular is significant in two radical ways in light of the fact that Scotland does not claim Scottish people as oppressed people. First, it decisively alters the requirement of oppression and denial of internal autonomy as the precondition for valid exercise of right to secession. Second, it reinvigorates the relevance of regional nationalism in the contemporary. The permissive state behaviour of Britain in particular arguably demonstrates that “indigenous peoples” and “ethnic minorities” may validly secede if they so desire irrespective of whether or not there is denial of right to internal self-determination or violation of human rights.
The inevitable conclusion is Nagas being a “people” under colonial and alien subjugation are undoubtedly entitled to the “right to self-determination”. Even assuming arguendo that Nagas do not possess the status of a “people” but constitute a mere “ethnic minority” within the Indian Union, the history of armed suppression and the immensity of war crimes and human right violations committed by the Indian armed forces under the regime of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 would unquestionably entitle the Nagas to the right to exercise the right of secession. In any case, if East Timor in the similar case of Indonesian occupation is entitled to the right to self-determination as held by the International Court of Justice, Nagas “right to self-determination” must likewise be assumed to be equally irreproachable.

Sira Kharay
Advocate
Office: A-138, Defence Colony
New Delhi-110024

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