For the effective realization of the unification of Naga Homeland, it is imperative for us to interrogate and overcome the myths surrounding the questions around State Territorial Integrity and State Sovereignty.
Conceptual and Historical Dimensions
Of Unification of Land in Naga Context
Seminar on Integration/Unification of Naga Homeland
Zonal Council Hall, Kohima
14th-15th October 2004
by Aküm Longchari
The presence of such an honorable gathering of people from the length and breadth of the Naga homeland for this Seminar called by the Naga Hoho is the manifestation of our spiritual and physical oneness in our common aspiration to live as one people. It explains the depth of the pain we all carry in our hearts to see the Naga people and its land torn apart by State imposed artificial boundaries calculated by a spiteful ideology with an intention to divide and isolate.
It is in circumstances such as these that we come to understand together with better clarity that we are in the grip of a system that divides us, one from the other through State imposed artificial boundaries, which can only be sustained by the use of force and containment, thereby, denying all of humanity – for both oppressed and oppressors alike. This gathering therefore, is a historic process of creation that must focus in elevating our purposefulness to reaffirm that we are ONE people intent on becoming a living reality, with all its self-determining capacities that embodies human dignity and human worth.
The denial of human dignity experienced by Nagas is the direct result of oppression and subjugation perpetuated by the structures of political domination. We are being conditioned to attitudes and suspicions defined by a history which is not of our making. Indeed, a frightened peoples cannot reflect or act clearly and therefore the domination ideology defies all human values and with resolute single mindedness attempts to perpetuate a permanent order of fear in our minds. In doing so, it hopes that the people might be deceived into supporting the instruments of State oppression.
Our conscience therefore demands that we protest against it, that we oppose it and that we alter it through peaceful means. Hence, the paramount need is for us to have the freedom to define and determine our own minds and to generate ideas and solutions to the problems that lie before us. In accordance to the compelling necessities, we are being asked to rise out from being the objects of history to becoming conscious creators of our own history.
We need to acknowledge the paradox of human history and its tribulations. When a people are completely overwhelmed by compelling circumstances they cannot be regarded as free, in spite of the fact that they are entitled to such rights. For instance, just because the Naga people are entitled to be free, does not necessarily mean they are free when overwhelmed by the circumstances of the situation. Similarly, just because Nagas have right to land does not mean that such a right is enjoyed when the land is overwhelmed by the forces of domination and exploitation. The core ideas of rights hence, is not simply that you are entitled to these rights and that no one can take them away from you, but most importantly, that you are able to exercise and enjoy those rights.