‘Thou shall not kill’
[dropcap]N[/dropcap]aga International Support Centre (NISC), an NGO, has in a press communiqué, expressed shock at the killing of Jonathan Kashung, a presidential candidate of the Tangkhul Naga Long (TNL), on September 18. Nagas are predominantly Christian. They know the Ten Commandments by heart, yet like it has become a fact of life, murder is committed on a regular basis.Quoting the Bible “Thou shall not kill” (Exodus 20::13) which is the sixth of the Ten Commandments, the NISC has emphasized that this also applies to those who claim to represent Nagas in their quest/struggle for sovereignty and political aspirations. The NISC has questioned: “Who are they to decide on the life of others?”
The NGO wanted to know also wanted to know as to why the late Jonathan was not tried in a Naga customary court if he had done anything wrong. It countered with a suggestion that perhaps the Naga organisations (national workers) claiming to represent Nagas with regard to India, to arrest a highly-placed Indian and charge him for waging war against the Naga people. But that is not done against the “real enemy” of the Nagas who are fighting for their right to self-determination.
The NISC further wants the NSCN(IM) to “come out clear” as the victim’s family has pointed to it as the party responsible for the killing. It reminded that in a just society, no stone would be left unturned to hunt the perpetrators down so as to bring them to justice. As the saying goes, “silence is golden” but that does not apply in this case.
Reminding the leaders of NSCN(IM) that when they intone “Praise the Lord,” the Lord has also puts it to them “Thou shall not kill,” the NISC added.
Meanwhile, the Tangkhul Hoho Nagaland (THN) has also condemned what it describes as “barbaric act.” Expressing shock and not only over the killing but also dumping the body in a jungle on the outskirts of Ukhrul near the Tolloi-Kahisbat road junction which is “an indication that the killers do not value human lives any more but consider as carcass of animals.”
The THN has clearly made its stand that whatever the reasons may be behind the killing, it will always stand against “killing culture” by any group. Besides, late Jonathan was a social activist who had served the Tangkhuls in various capacities as student leader in his prime days, the press statement said.
The THN has rightly appealed to all concerned citizens to refrain from violence and use of brute force through gun culture. They should, instead, try and create space for dialogue to resolve differences and misunderstandings.
In fact, practically everyone of note wonders what is wrong with us Nagas? On the one hand we say we want independence, and on the other hand we say that we want peace but we kill each other off in between. As of events now, to keep harping on Naga nationalism has become a contradiction especially when the various groups who think that they are perhaps the only ones fighting for fulfillment of Naga aspirations but keep indulging in intimidation, taxations and other questionable activities while the majority of the Naga people are made to bear the unwanted burdens. The Naga people’s first and foremost desire is peace—the rest can follow.
Let us keep in mind that as of now, the entire world is keeping an eye on how we, despite all our negative indulgences, are going to continue our overall movement on the way to accomplish our cherished objectives.