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TPO reacts on SAPO bandh against Manipur’s occupation of Kezoltsa

Nagaland News

KOHIMA, MARCH 25: The Tenyimi Peoples’ Organization (TPO), an apex body of the Tenyimi family in Nagaland and Manipur States, today stated the best way to resolve the ongoing boundary dispute between Nagaland and Manipur is to respect the traditional ownership and adjudicate disputes without harping on the State boundaries.
Following the imposition of the indefinite bandh imposed against the State of Manipur from March 23 by Southern Angami Public Organization (SAPO), the TPO president Timikha Koza and vice president Tsela Thupitor issued a statement on Friday, the full text of which is produced below:
“It has been more than 5 years since the “Arbitration Undertaking” was signed in 2017 by the three contending parties in the land dispute of Kezoltsa/Koziirii/Kazing/Dzükou area viz. the Southern Angami Public Organization (SAPO), Mao Council (MC) and Maram Khullen whereby it was unambiguously agreed that the dispute shall be resolved by Naga Customary way and on traditional ownership.
“Since then the Tenyimi Peoples’ Organization (TPO) and its Boards of Arbitrators (BOA) constituted to adjudicate the dispute had, through various communications, made emphatically clear to the concerned Governments that it has no intention to “meddle in the affairs of the States and its boundaries but only trying to resolve the misunderstanding and dispute within the Tenyimi family.
“As such when the Manipur Government had stationed its armed personnel and constructed permanent RCC barracks in the heart of the disputed land apart from various development activities, TPO had written various Representations and had also met the Chief Minister of Manipur appealing for cessation of activities in the disputed areas till such time the issue is resolved.
“Similarly, the three contending parties (land owners) had also written to the Chief Minister, Government of Manipur.
“On 20th Nov 2021, a Joint Representation by the TPO and all the contending parties was sent to the Chief Minister, Manipur appealing for immediate withdrawal of police forces from the area while stating explicitly that non-compliance may compel course of action “consequent to which if any untoward situation arises the Manipur Government shall be solely held responsible”.
“In spite of all these appeals and communications, the Government of Manipur remains hell-bent on defying the good intentions of the people working towards amicable resolution of the dispute and restoration of healthy relationship amongst all concerned.
“t is this total disregard and ill-motive of the Manipur Government which had provoked the SAPO to show resentment and call for the recent bandh.
“The Manipur Government should understand that Naga people are arbitrarily divided into various States and administrative units, whereby tribes and even village/clan lands are divided. There are tribes of Manipur whose lands are put under Nagaland State jurisdiction and vice-versa.
“Therefore, the best way to maintain peace and social harmony is to respect the traditional ownership and adjudicate disputes by trying to bring about understanding without harping so much on the State boundaries so that we can all march together as people and not as varied citizens of states.”
(Page News Service)