Naga solution and power of constitution
Nagas have a long history and we have always cherished our distinct culture and tradition. As a community – like all dynamic societies – Nagas have settled over the generations in different parts. In the context of North East India too, we are scattered but the Naga aspiration has again been something to cherish. Nagas has proud folktales of stories and valiant fight for survival. The political movement started under the leadership of A Zapu Phizo has also evolved so has the basic political structure in India. In 1963, Nagaland was granted statehood but some of brothers and sisters were still parts of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur. Now in 2022, Nagas are waiting for a permanent peace solution. The dialogue for this marathon exercise started in 1997.
The BJP as India’s ruling party believes in the rule of law and rule of common people. Our respected Prime Minister Narendra Modi has time and again shared his vision of Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas and Sabka Vishwas (A Government for all, by all and which will honour the trust of all) .This is based on the philosophy of Vasudeva Kutumbakam. Even at the world stage now India and our Prime Minister Modiji have made a mark in recent times.
The Government of India has a visionary doctrine called Act East Policy. But the success of this Act East Policy may not be possible without active participation of northeast region. ln this Nagas can have a solemn role to play. Of course, Nagaland as the 16th state of Indian Union also has to deliver, but the onus is more on the Naga people residing across Northeast – Manipur, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and of course our state of Nagaland. But any youngster will say that they depend a lot on peace factor and a good workable atmosphere. Prime Minister Modiji’s Government and the Union Home Minister Amit Shahji are also anxious to take Nagas and other tribal communities on board in country’s developmental journey. We now have for the first time a tribal woman -Draupadi Murmu as India’s President. The Prime Minister and his Team India are anxious to see that normal conditions are restored in areas where troubles have taken place in the past as well as in recent times.
Here, one must express deep appreciation at the Prime Minister’s actions in trying to resolve the Naga political problem. As the Naga talks are progressing at various levels, there is a purpose behind concrete political message. On the other hand, various civil societies, NGO groups and other pressure groups have time and again impressed upon the central government and the Prime Minister to work out a mutually acceptable solution. As a disciplined soldier of the BJP, this signatory will apply all restraints at command. But one thing that goes without telling anyone is that the Nagas want an early solution. This is not being stated from a political point of view of the BJP. Our sincere election promise in 2018 was ‘Election for Solution’. In 2022, we are expected to deliver. All works are in the right direction. The Naga leaders should also be ready to accept a solution which is mutually acceptable and is practical enough. The government has made it clear that the ‘separate’ Flag and Constitution demands were not acceptable. Moreover, for any democratic setup the Constitution of India is sacred and it has a binding on all. In the past we have spoken about the basic structure of Indian Constitution. So any kind of adventurism will have to go through constitutional and legal scrutiny of the Supreme Court and also of the two Houses of Parliament.
Now we are told as per media reports that the centre is keen to usher in a season of festivity and joy in Nagaland during Christmas. Who will not accept such a mean announcement? Everyone is keen for a Solution. On the contrary, there is a craze in Naga patience too. Long years of insurgency and the long period of ceasefire during the last 25 years show people had to face the multiple challenges including extortion. There are also issues related to deployment of central security forces. The status quo has to make ways for a new development. The ceasefire should now make ways for a Solution.
Finally, it is true that the Naga history is great. But like all histories of human race, even Naga history has its sets of mistakes and blunders. Historical wrongs are often like murders. They cannot be erased simply if we wish to do so. These historical wrongs have to be corrected. Having said this, one also needs to lay emphasis that in the end, everyone has to accept the power of Constitution. If Constitution says the Nagaland as a state should flourish and all communities residing in Nagaland state should get justice, these views will have to be respected. Of course, different modules can be worked for Nagas residing in other states and I am sure the stakeholders in peace talks have already taken up these.
M Chuba Ao, National Vice President, BJP