Solution and Peace for Development?
Of late, many Indian leaders (as well as some Nagas) have been stating and re-stating that solution and peace are necessary for development. Outside the context of the Indo Naga invasion and the resultant conflict, this is a very true statement. It is also true that the 16 Point Agreement brought in a lot of developmental activities into Nagaland. A second type of 16 Point agreement might also bring in a boost of developmental activities.
But in the context of the Indo-Naga invasion issue, a statement that an economic oriented solution will bring peace and development to Nagaland is totally untrue and also impossible. This is so because Nagaland did not take up arms to defend her developmental activities. Far from it, Nagaland took up arms to defend her very existence as a nation. Also, note that Phizo was not elected President of the NNC to lead a Naga Development Committee. From its inception on Feb. 2, 1947, to the outbreak of war in 1954, I have not come across a single NNC record of developmental activities even when hundreds and thousands of our people were dying from diseases and starvation when their villages were burnt into ashes and they had to flee into the jungles of Nagaland.
As for the economic condition of the Nagas prior to this holocaust, Nagas were not an affluent nation but they were very surely a self-sufficient people dependent on nobody else for their economic survival. The terraced fields around our villages and the cycled jhum cultivations all across our mountains stand testimony to this fact. A vey virile people with a very hard working culture and living in the midst of a big fertile land; we were a sovereign kingdom of Village Republics. Then first the white man came only to be followed next by the black man. This white and black man came and despoiled our paradise on earth with their political ideologies of colonial rule and currency notes.
Speaking from a modern Asian context Chinese peasants, Vietnamese peasants, Korean peasants and Cambodian peasants etc. were all busy tilling their fields to grow grains for their yearly requirements and yearly festivals when communist Russians and so called Democratic westerners tried to establish their colonial rules over these peoples and turned these peaceful lands into killing fields. Families were driven out from their ancestral lands and permanently re-settled into North Koreas and South Koreas etc. In its tracks they left thousands of civilian peasants dead from the tragedies of war and starvation.
In the same way, Nagaland too has been uprooted and torn asunder into pro-Indian State citizens, pro-Socialist citizens and pro NNPGs etc. And in the midst of all these dissections and torments, are we expecting a political solution that will bring a magical development into our war torn landscape?
Instead of running after such an impossible dream, let us instead- rid our Naga world all its exploiters and tormentors who are masquerading as genuine Peace seekers. Looking back into history, the world today is a far better place to live in because people got rid of Stalin’s, Hitler’s, Mussolini’s, Saddam Hussains and many of their likes.
As for the Indo-Naga war, the issue is Naga Independence which was declared before India’s declaration of her own independence. If the present Peace Talks are not going to address this issue, than the whole exercise would be no different from expecting that a Sparrow will somehow lay down a big Ostrich egg-fully developed! Please therefore do not confuse yourselves or others by projecting that Nagas are seeking for a political solution with India so that they can develop themselves economically. On the contrary, true development can never take place in a situation of invasion and war.
Kaka D Iralu