- NET Web Desk
Amid the escalating demands to repeal the controversial law, Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) 1958 from different quarters of Northeastern regions, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Thursday extended the “Disturbed Area” status along the entire Nagaland state. The concerned move has been strongly condemned by several tribal bodies.
Likewise, the Naga Hoho have expressed its resentment on the same, and called-upon the citizens to stand unitedly in voice and stay prepared for any eventualities to come.
The apex tribal body ‘Naga Hoho’ has expressed its strong resentment on the Central Government’s stand on the Oting massacre.
“The Naga Hoho is extremely shocked by the attitude of the Govt. of India for ignoring the voice of the Naga people as a whole. It is a direct challenge and a message from the Government of India to keep on crushing the inalienable rights of the Nagas. If India is truly a democratic country, then the voice of the people should have been heard. Whereas, on the contrary the dignity and rights of the Naga people is simply not respected neither considered as fellow human beings.” – stated a press release issued by the body on Thursday.
Signed by its President HK Zhimomi, the release further reads that “even after slaughtering Naga brothers on the 4th & 5th December 2021 at Oting village, the government of India still continues to ignore the pain and cry of the Naga people. It is a proven fact that, the extension of AFSPA for another 6 (six) months in Nagaland in the midst of the people protesting against the inhuman act is nothing but an act to dehumanise the Naga people.”
“Our identity and our lives cannot be compromised in the hands of the Indian security forces but to stand up for our God given rights. We will decide our destiny but not by the Government of India.” – added the release.
Its worthy to note that demand for AFSPA repeal renewed after the tragic incident of December 4, when innocent civilians identified as coal-miners were gunned down by security forces in Mon district of Nagaland.
The unfortunate incident is basically the repercussion of botched army operation, which mistook the civilians as insurgents from the Yung Aung faction of the banned militant outfit – National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Khaplang (NSCN-K).
Furthermore, on June this year, the Centre had declared Nagaland as “Disturbed Area” and further extended the operation of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 for 6 more months. The AFSPA has been in force in Nagaland for several decades.
Disturbed Areas (Special Courts) Act, 1976, asserts that once declared “disturbed”, the area has to maintain the status quo for a minimum of three months. Under this act, in a “disturbed” area, an officer has full power to warn, or open fire and other kinds of forces against the person who is acting against law.