The four northeastern states share a 1,643-km border with Myanmar.
Guwahati: After the NSCN (I-M), the Naga Hoho — the apex body of tribal organisations in Nagaland — has now opposed the construction of border fencing along Myanmar and Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram.
The Naga Hoho, in a statement, said Nagas can’t allow any authority to divide their history and remove the feeling of oneness among the Naga family between India and Myanmar. “Nagas can’t accept the imaginary boundary fencing between India and Myanmar,” the Hoho said.
The reaction of the apex council has come close on the heels of the NSCN (I-M)’s hard-hitting statement, that said: “We shall no longer accept any policy to further divide the Naga family in the form of artificial boundary fencing between India and Myanmar. The Nagas will defend their ancestral land at all costs.”
The NSCN (I-M) spokesperson said: “The NSCN seriously viewed that overriding and ignoring the will and interests of the people may give rise to an unfavourable situation with heavy consequences and the sole responsibility shall be borne by both India and Myanmar.”
The NSCN (I-M), which recently signed a framework agreement with the Government of India to resolve the decades-old conflict, said: “When the two sides are at the threshold of a final solution, the motive behind the construction of artificial fencing along the Naga areas is highly questionable and unacceptable.” The outfit, engaged in peace talks since 1997, said: “The Naga people have the right to maintain and protect their territory, identity and social and political institutions.”
The four northeastern states share a 1,643-km border with Myanmar. The NSCN (I-M) describes the Naga-inhabited areas of Myanmar as Eastern Nagaland.
Referring to the McMahon Line, a line agreed to by Britain and Tibet as part of the Shimla Accord, the Naga Hoho said a treaty signed in 1914 had become the basis of boundary demarcation between India and Myanmar and thus the Nagas were forced to divide in the eastern sector.
Pointing out historical facts in its statement, the Naga Hoho said: “It was an undeniable fact that Nagas were divided through unilateral decision of Nehru and U Nu through aerial survey in 1953, which the Nagas had never accepted.”
Asserting that there was no cultural divide or ideological differences among Nagas to live together, the Naga Hoho reiterated they have the inherent rights since time immemorial to be together.