December 11, 2021 10:26:50 pm
Massive protest demonstrations were held across Manipur in districts inhabited by Nagas on Saturday against the recent killings of 14 youths of Oting village by the Army in Mon district of Nagaland. The protest was spearheaded by All Naga Students’ Association Manipur (ANSAM) and supported by United Naga Council (UNC), the apex body of the Nagas, and Naga Women’s Union (NWU).
Nagas from different walks of life, including students, staged sit-in demonstrations in their respective districts. The protestors displayed placards that read: “Union Home Minister must retract false statement”, “Repeal AFSPA 1958”, “We Condemn the Massacre of Innocent Civilians by Indian Para Commandos”, etc.
ANSAM general secretary A Thotso said the killing of innocent people on the pretext of “mistaken identity” as stated by Union Home Minister Amit Shah was unacceptable and we demand that he retracts the “false statements” he gave in Parliament.
“It is unfortunate that a leader of such a big nation like India is misleading the people. We urge the Government of India to end the undeclared war on the Naga people and bring an acceptable and honourable solution to the Indo-Naga talks which has been going on for more than two decades,” Thotso added,
UNC president Kho John said: “We demand the repeal of AFSPA (Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act) at the earliest possible. This act has been in force for the past 62 years. It is high time the Government of India realised that we are living in a civilised age.”
The ANSAM, UNC and NWU have also drafted a memorandum addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding repeal of AFSPA as the “pre-condition” to the forthcoming Indo-Naga settlement. “The incident of such brutality is not new and we will not be surprised by more such incidents in future so long as the AFSPA is not removed,” states the memorandum.
On Amit Shah’s statement on Nagaland killings, the memorandum states: “When the Home Minister stated in Parliament on December 6, 2021, that the firing took place because the vehicle carrying the victims refused to stop, he rubbed salt on the collective wounds of the Naga people. Was the Minister’s statement sourced from AFSPA empowered agencies or from the eyewitness survivors and civil administration? The record must be set straight and the onus for the same lies on the Government of India.”
The ANSAM general secretary said the memorandum has been sent through an email to the Prime Minister’s Office and the same will be sent via post also.
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