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Nagaland legislator late Toshi Wungtung remembered at state funeral; accorded guard of honour

By Henlly Phom Odyuo Updated: Jul 03, 2021 7:17 pm
Funeral service of Toshi Wungtung in Dimapur on Saturday. (EM Images)

Our Reporter
Dimapur, July 3 (EMN):
A refined gentleman endowed with wide knowledge, cheerful personality and a promising leader who genuinely cared for the people; and whose death was painful and difficult to accept, was how late Toshi Wungtung, Advisor of Information and Public Relations, SCERT and Village Guards, was remembered by the people during the state funeral service held in his honour in Dimapur on Saturday. 

His wife Lipokla Toshi Wungtung remembered him as a man who was generous, patient, compassionate, easy to listen to; who made friends easily and a man of faith who was passionate about the environment and encouraged local produce.

“Even when he was in poor health, he never complained but his weakened eyes were full of kindness and compassion. He was my soul mate, confidant, a person with highest calibre for which I was fortunate to have met him and be his wife,” she said.

Wungtung’s elder brother Dokiu Kecham remembered him as a cheerful soul who enjoyed the company of elders, and because of this persona, he was a man of knowledge and gifted with wisdom.

: Nagaland State Police during the guard of honour ceremony for Toshi Wungtung in Dimapur on Saturday. (DIPR)

“He did not believe in amassment but was a generous soul,” Kecham said.

He appealed to the treasury bench and the opposition to unite and work together to take up late Wungtung’s proposal and schemes to remember him and for the people to be grateful towards them.     

Nagaland Legislative Assembly Speaker Sharingain Longkumer, while paying his tribute, said that late Wungtung was a versatile person who left his footprint with a diverse life.

‘A person who was always in the forefront for the state to fight the Covid, his passing away is a big loss to the people of the state and the eastern Nagaland in particular,’ Longkumer said.   

Minister for Planning and Parliamentary Affairs Neiba Kronu remembered the late legislator as a ‘highly intellectual person, whose far-sighted advice the state government had benefited.

‘His depth of knowledge always left us in awe in the assembly,’ Kronu recalled.

“A friend and brother except for the differences in political affiliation, we shared good memories for lifetime” were the words shared by the leader of opposition TR Zeliang for late Wungtung.

He remembered Wungtung as a man of simplicity, who always enlightened the members with his knowledge and a promising leader of the Nagas.

‘He could connect with any group of people and the NLA was fortunate to have him, whose name was synonymous with betterment of Naga society. He possessed a creative mind for the people and not for himself,’ Zeliang said.    

Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) president Chingwang Konyak said that Wungtung played a major role for Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation (ENPO) and for the socio-economic, political empowerment of eastern Nagaland.

‘A social reformer, historian, philosopher and politician by profession, Wungtung had so much to contribute for the growth and development of Nagaland. A person who had done an incredible service of voicing for the voiceless and waving for change in all fronts, a genius of our time, multi-talented, skilled, well versed with strong political acumen’ was how Minister for Health and Family Welfare and also Eastern Nagaland Legislatures’ Union (ENLU) convenor S Pangnyu Phom remembered him.  

Nagaland State Police pallbearers carrying the casket of Toshi Wungtung during the state funeral service held in Dimapur on Saturday. (EM Images)

After so many years of social services for eastern Nagaland in particular and Nagaland in general,  Wungtung’s innings as a member of NLA was an asset for the state because of his wide range of knowledge, Phom said while assuring his late “kokai” to put extra efforts to complete and achieve their dream for a better tomorrow.

ENPO general secretary Manlang Phom recalled late Wungtung as a humble soul who could get along equally with the high and the low, who devoted the best years of his life to the servitude of his people.

‘Late Wungtung enduringly and selflessly carried to greater heights the cause of the Frontier Nagaland to the present status,’ he added.

ENPO advisor Kekongchim Yimchunger said the late legislator was the armour for eastern Nagaland and the state, whose only wish was to see his people happy. Paying his tribute to the late legislator, he requested the government to collectively work to honour him and consider his desire to have a district for the Yimchunger community.  

Principal Secretary Home, Abhijit Sinha, who chaired the state funeral of late Wungtung, remembered him as someone who lived a life less ordinary and brought out life beautifully.

The invocation was prayed by Yimchunger Baptist Church Diphupar ‘B’ Pastor Dr. James and the word of God and benediction was pronounced by state chaplain Rev. TW Yamyap.

The state funeral service concluded with guard of honour.

Late Wungtung breathed his last on July 1 and his mortal remains have been taken to his hometown Shamator for last rites and burial, which will be held on Sunday (July 4).

By Henlly Phom Odyuo Updated: Jul 03, 2021 7:17:11 pm