Naga Club reiterates “forefathers’ stand of sovereignty” on Foundation Day
KOHIMA, JANUARY 7: The century-old organization, Naga Club today observed its Foundation Day in the residence of its first president late Rheichalie Pienyü’s great grand-son Prasielie Pienyü in P Khel, Kohima village with a call for Nagas to remain firm on forefathers’ stand of being sovereign.
Peace activist and resource person, Niketu Iralu dwelling on the topic “What the Naga struggle has achieved”, said Nagas have become a people and a nation and that’s the greatest achievement of the Naga struggle under the British regime and the Indian Government.
Because of that the Naga position cannot be wiped off, he asserted while hoping that the main-land Indians are now understanding the Naga position.
He said Nagas have to redefine many things including things that have kept Nagas divided.
He also called upon the Naga Club to carry forward the torch to bring Nagas to an understanding and also make the Indian people understand.
Meanwhile, Iralu said the question on what the Naga struggle has achieved from the immense sacrifice made by the parents and grandparents is going on among the youngsters.
He maintained that “unless the question is carefully answered the Naga struggle though so important to us will gradually destroy us”.
Extending greetings on the occasion, Pienyü said many people assume that the Naga Labor Corp that went to Europe in 1917 on their return at the end of World War 1 (1914-18) formed the Naga Club but that was not so. As told by our great grandfather, Rheichalie Pienyü (Peshkar, DC Office), the Naga Club was formed on January 7, 1918 by some few like-minded salaried people serving in DC’s Office, Kohima, comprising of Peshkar, Interpreter, Clerks, Potdar, Chaprasis, etc., to work for the greater interest of the Naga people.
He expressed extreme happiness to see that today the Naga people have come forward to defend and protect the true history of the Naga Club of which my great grandfather (Rheichalie Pienyü) played a role during its formation and was a mastermind and a signatory of the famous Naga Memorandum submitted to the Simon Commission on January 10, 1929.
“Our forefathers have left this great legacy to all of us and open a new window to look at the world and ourselves. When we look at the memorandum to the Simon Commission, we understand that our forefathers practice and believe in the purest form of democracy. The fruit which it had implanted was for sovereignty to determine by ourself for our tomorrow”, he said.
Pienyü expressed hope that even in the days to come Nagas will carry on with these great ideas and principles so that posterity will understand the values with identity of ourselves.
Naga Club president Kuolachalie Seyie delivering the presidential address said “Our visionary forefathers like Rheichalie Pienyu and his fellow Naga pioneers founded the Naga Club 102 years ago on this day, January 7, 1918.
“Our forefathers, like other pioneer-creators of nations, somehow realistically survived extremely difficult economic, social and political challenges the turbulent changes the outside world brought to them. The founders of Naga Club understood what the consequences of their decisions would be for the generations coming after them”, he said.
“They faithfully and patiently upheld their time-tested virtues by remaining committed with integrity and unflinching courage to what they believed would be best for the Nagas as a whole”, he said.
“We shall at all costs and always uphold their “unique original stand”, namely, “leave us alone to determine for ourselves”, firmly claiming their right given to them by their history as a people and nation never ruled by any power earlier”, affirmed Seyie.
“If Delhi thinks that accepting the Indian Constitution by the Nagas under duress will make the Nagas into Indians or accepting the Indian constitution under duress been treated as so-called “Naga solution” or “Indo-Naga Final Political Settlement”, then Delhi is very wrong but that would be Delhi’s own business, and thinking Indians have begun to understand how the Nagas understand their history”, declared the Naga Club president.
Nagas are clear and justly proud that their struggle was not an act of secession that unlawfully or treasonously violated some solemn agreement or understanding made by them to be a part of the new independent India at any time, nor was it an anti-India reaction as they were acting on the basis of unquestionable facts of their history and their right to choose their own future as a good neighbour of India as justified by the facts of their history, he said.
“If Delhi treats us to be its enemy at all times then we shall remain to be so”, said Seyie.
Chaired by Naga Club vice president Y Vandanshan Lotha, the programme commenced with prayer by Pastor of Konyak Baptist Church Kohima Mankup and Rheichalie’s decedents presented special number.
Pastor of Sum I Baptist Church Kohima Khekavi Yeptho pronounced benediction.
(Page News Service)