‘Stop This Madness’: Naga Mothers Condemn Violence Against Women In Manipur - Eastern Mirror
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‘Stop this madness’: Naga mothers condemn violence against women in Manipur

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By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Aug 13, 2023 12:43 am
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A portion of the crowd during the protest violence against women in Manipur at the Police Headquarters Junction in Kohima on Saturday.

KOHIMA — Hundreds of Naga women gathered at the Police Headquarters Junction in Kohima on Saturday to show their solidarity with the people of Manipur, condemn the atrocities against women and censure criminal acts like burning of houses and religious places.

The participants also prayed for peace to prevail in the violence-hit Manipur during the programme organised by eight apex tribal women organisations of Nagaland, including the Angami Women’s Organisation (AWO), Chakhesang Mothers’ Association (CMA), Lotha Eloe Ekhung (LEE), Pochury Mothers’ Association (PMA), Rengma Mothers’ Association (RMA), Sumi Totimi Hoho (STH), Watsü Telongjem and Zeliang Mpui Organisation (ZMO), and supported by the Central Nagaland Women Association (CNWA).

Adorned in their traditional attires, the participants condemned the crimes against women and mothers in Manipur, particularly the two women who were “paraded naked,” one of who was reportedly raped by a mob.

“That, women in the 21st-century modern civilised society should be subjected to such tormenting and demoralising acts is highly condemnable,” said Pihali Swunetho of Sumi Totimi Hoho.

She asked if the perpetrators have forgotten that the women are their own mothers, sisters and daughters, the very hands and hearts that had nurtured their being.

Condemning the crimes and the atrocities inflicted upon women, she said what is even more unsettling is that there are reports of other brutal acts of atrocities against women that are still unreported.

The mothers of Nagaland are making a bold intercession for healing to sweep over the neighbouring state of Manipur and to the hearts of the wounded souls, she prayed.

President of RMA, Sojule Tep, said, “We are witnessing a situation where the state is being pushed to the brink of a civil war.”

The mothers of Nagaland appeal to stop “this madness,” to lay down arms and embrace dialogue, Tep said.

She further appealed for respecting each other’s rights and dignity; upholding the values of democracy and secularism, and to remember that all are human beings.

The mothers also appealed to the state and central governments to urgently intervene and address the root causes of the conflict; urged the authorities to listen to the voices of all stakeholders, especially the women and youth, who are the most affected by the violence.

Tep added that the mothers from Nagaland believe that peace is possible in Manipur and is necessary.

Naga Mothers

A representative from the Pochury Mother’s Association termed the issue in Manipur as a universal and humanitarian crisis. She observed that it is ‘terrible’ and an absolute tragedy that two women were used as pawns in a political game and their precious lives were thrown away under the most terrible circumstances.

“We should not only condemn but also make it an absolute unified mission as human beings and as Nagas, to send out a strong message that never again should the lives of women, the lives of human beings be put at risk and used as pawn for political and cultural issue,” the mother added.

Another representative from Lotha Eloe Ekhung (Lotha women’s organisation) said the gathering was to show solidarity and pray for the people of Manipur and condemn the crime against humanity.

Condemning the violence against women, she said merciless raping and killing of women and parading them naked have no place in society.

Naga Mothers

Zeliang Mpui Organisation representative stated that one cannot and must not remain mute spectators to atrocities but speak up against social injustices.

CMA president Zhonelu Tunyi also said that mothers must make others know that women have their rights too. From the beginning of the clash till date, women have been the victims, she said while appealing to all to stand up and fight crime against women.

A representative from the Watsu Telongjem said that true progress and development cannot be at the cost of bloodshed and barbaric destruction of communities. She called upon all the citizens to be the building blocks for dialogue towards the cessation of all conflicts and differences.

Vice president of Angami Public Organisation, Neivor Rutsa, who also addressed the gathering, reminded that violence begets violence and hatred begets hatred.

“Both the Kukis and Meiteis don’t have a comma or full stop. In every issue, there must be a comma and there must be a full stop,” he added. Representatives from the Angami Women Organisation and Central Nagaland Women Association also spoke during the programme. A special mass prayer for the victims and their families was also held.

Also read: Rapists should be given harshest punishment, says Central Nagaland Women Association president

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By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Aug 13, 2023 12:43:27 am
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