Naga women object to repeal of NMA, 2001 without civil dialogue/consultation with women in the State
Take cognizance that the 2 women MLAs remained silent & abstained from objecting/dissenting to the passing of this repeal bill
DIMAPUR, MARCH 30: Naga women have objected the decision of the Nagaland Legislative Assembly to repeal the Nagaland Municipal Act 2001 without any civil dialogue or consultation with women in the State.
And less than a month after hailing the election of two Naga women MLAs for the first time, Naga women think they have been let down by the two women MLAs after their silence during deliberations on the Nagaland Municipal Act 2001 in the just concluded State Assembly session.
“Naga women take cognizance of the fact that the two women MLAs remained silent during deliberations on this issue in the Assembly session as well as abstaining from objecting or dissenting to the passing of this repeal bill”, said a 3-point resolution passed after an open State level discussion on Municipal election by women leaders, organized by the Naga Mothers’ Association in collaboration with the Department of English, Nagaland University, on March 29 at the Ladies Hall, Nagaland University, Kohima Campus, Meriema.
The resolution also declared that Naga women are in support of the Municipal Act 2001 and First Amendment providing for 33% reservation in urban local bodies.
In her keynote address, Prof. Rosemary Dzüvichü, former Director, Women Studies Centre and Professor, Department of English, Nagaland University, gave a detailed account of the struggles of Naga women relating to the implementation of the Municipal Act 2001 and its first Amendment, which provides for 33% reservation for women in urban local bodies.
The two other speakers invited to the event were ZheviholiSwu, Legal Advisor and Dr. Theyiesinuo Keditsu. Speaking on the topic of ‘Feminism in the Naga context’, Dr. Keditsu argued for the need to identify struggles peculiar to the condition of indigenous Naga women. She contested the idea that feminist consciousness or praxis is a modern invention or western ideology citing various instances of feminist resistance and subversion in Naga traditional culture.
Recognising that it is easier to change oneself than another, Dr. Keditsu discussed the malady of internalised patriarchy and urged all women present to confront this intimate enemy. She stressed the need for peaceful, non-violent strategies to challenge inequalities inherent in patriarchy.
Zheviholi Swu spoke in her capacity as Legal Advisor to the NMA and erstwhile Joint Action Committee. She unpacked the legalities of the Municipal Act 2001 as well as tracing the various legal actions and recourses taken by petitioners, Government of Nagaland and the Court till date. Given that this Act is a constitutional legislation, Swu explained that its implementation was inevitable and that the latest bid by the Nagaland Legislative Assembly to repeal this bill would be viewed seriously as it was sub judice in the Supreme Court. Any person/organisation aggrieved by the Court order can implead themselves into the case.
Speeches were also given by Prof. Lungsang, Director, Women Studies Centre, Nagaland University, NMA founder and current Advisor Sano Vamuzo, Abeni TCK Lotha, Advisor NMA, who is also the Chairperson, Red Cross Society Nagaland.
During the open discussion, party women representatives of NDPP, BJP and other individual party workers as well as representatives of Naga Women Hoho Dimapur, Zeliang Mepui Organisation and Pochury Mothers’ Association shared their views, informed a press release by the organizers.
The programme brought more than a 100 women from across various professions, tribal and other women organisations, academics, journalists, political party leaders, business women, Naga women research scholars from the University and abroad as well as University women students.
(Page News Service)