Views & Reviews
Has the day of reckoning finnaly caught up with Nagas?
Kaka D. Iralu
We all know that life on earth is not one long holiday where we can avoid our earthly responsibilities and hope to get away from the consequences that inavitably follows such irresponsible behaviour. On the contrary, though holidays have its place in life, we should all have known that holidays have to be first earned through hard work. In real life, we can have holidays only when we have first done our responsibilities to ourselves, our families and our society.
However, if we take a sweeping look of our lives and our society over the past fivety two years- that is, from the signing of the 16 Point Agreement to the present (1960-2015)-we will discover that we have gone on a long holiday without attending to our inescapable national responsibilities and duties.Now individuals in the world are not like the similar sand grains in a common sea shore. Unlike the similar sand grains on a seashore, human beings have their collective itentities as nations with different histories, cultures and habitations. To put it in other words, human beings have different political and geographical identities based on different anthropological and historical factors. As such, human beings are not all alike, like the sand grains on a seashore.
Like any other nations on earth, we Nagas were also not ignorant of these facts and factors of life and collectively put up a very courageous stand to defend our political and geographical identities when India invaded us in the mid 1950’s. But after the treacherous sell-out of our national rights through the 16 Point Agreement of 1960, almost all the educated Nagas who graduated from the colleges and Universities of India got absorbed into the goverment set up by the Indian government in our lands. The trend continued unabated; untill all our educated youth disappeared from the unfinished task of our own nation building. In fact, they all ended up, building a Nagaland for India under Indian political dictates and heinous Indian laws.
Educated Nagas have indeed taken up a long, long holiday of 52 years serving this foreign government in our lands. As a result of this long holiday from responsible stewardship to our God given national identity and our own motherland, where are we now? Surely, God would not give us a national and geographical identity and then grant us a long holiday from responsible stewardship to those two tremendous identities and responsibilities? Or are we going to argue that guardianship of those two identities and responsibilities have been given to India and Burma by God so that we can have a long holiday.
Yes, the glaring question that is presently accosting us through the sound of renewed gunfire is this question: Where are we now headed after our long half a century holiday with India?
Here, I hope every Naga who has eyes and memories are also seing the things I am seing. I mean the camouflaged military convoys all draped with anti- grenade nets, escorted by armoured vehicles with alert Bren Gunners manning their positions in the convoys; the machine gun bunkers and the sharp barbed wires rolled over the walls of military camps; the foot patrollings that are now being done by the Naga IRB’s while the para-military patrols occasionally zip by, hidden behind armored plated vehicles etc. And on top of this, that familiar sound of gunfire which has re-erupted after a prolonged cease fire and peace talks. For the second time in my life of 59 years, I am again seeing things that I had seen in my childhood and youth.
In my opinion, the present scenario is one where, on the one hand, a desperate attempt is being pursued to find a soluton with only one faction in the struggle; while on the other hand, the Indo Naga war has re-erupted again.
For now, it is only the occasional ambushes and small skirmishes, but if neighbouring hands from both within as well as outside our borders are indeed in the fray, a full scale open war may soon explode into our very faces. We shall only then know that our day of reckoning has finally caught up with us because we have, for too long, taken a long holiday from our national duties and responsibilities.
Though I detest wars and killings (even that of the enemy), sadly in our case, I think only the sound of gunfire and exploding bombs will re-awaken the present Nagas from their long holiday of 40 years -i.e. from the signing of the Shillong Accord in 1975 to the present.
As for me, the question that I am grappling with is this: “Can a nation indeed run away from its national duties and still hope to find peace inside the belly of another nation?”This question has in fact, haunted me for the past 18 years ever since I picked up my pen to contribute my mite to the national struggle.