The National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN) on Thursday issued a strong rebuttal to the statement in Parliament issued by home minister Amit Shah on the killing of 14 civilians in Mon district, Nagaland.

“NSCN has taken a strong exception to the irresponsible statement of the Union Home Minister … when all Nagas are in a state of mourning in solidarity with our Naga brethren belonging to the Konyak community in Mon district,” the group said in a statement. 

In a situation like this, NSCN said, “Amit Shah was expected to show political maturity and practical statesmanship to cool down the socio-political upheavals. Ironically, he poured fuel to the burning issue by standing behind the Para Commandos under his command with his fictional sleuth stories supporting the Para Commandos for their heinous act of killings. This is like rubbing salt and chilli in the wounds of the Nagas.”

“(t)here was no signal to stop the pick-up van of the coal labourers as mentioned by Amit Shah in Parliament. One of the survivors, Sheiwang, who is undergoing treatment at the Assam Medical College and Hospital in Dibrugarh, said, ‘They shot right at us, no signal to stop, we did not flee.'” 

NSCN called the operation “a deliberate mission to kill and nothing to do with ‘credible’ intelligence of the NSCN movement in the area.”

“What is most sinister is when the Army was found stripping naked the dead bodies of the Naga civilians with military dress to give the impression in the eyes of the media and the world that they have gunned down the militants. Luckily, they were caught red-handed by the villagers before they succeed in their plan,” the statement added.   

NSCN said it has now been “driven to the point to take the stand on the draconian Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 (AFSPA).” 

“This notorious AFSPA has given the Indian security forces the license to shoot and kill anyone on mere suspicion. We Nagas have endured the insults heaped on our human dignity for too long. The Nagas have had the bitter taste of this act on numerous occasions and it has spilt enough blood. Blood and political talks cannot go together. The Nagas can no longer be made the laughing stock in the eyes of the world. No political talks will be meaningful under the shadow of AFSPA. Let human dignity take control and be made an integral part of the Naga political peace process. Unfortunately, the Oting killing has become a threat to the Nagas’ longing for Naga political solution,” the statement added. 

“(I)f the Government of India (GoI) wants to do justice to the Naga people, AFSPA must be immediately withdrawn and investigation for proper prosecution must be immediately constituted. The investigation must be independent and transparent…the Indian soldiers are emboldened beyond measures and they have been treating the Nagas like sub-human beings without fear of any scrutiny of the court of law. Therefore, this time round, the Naga people expect that the judgment must be transparent and must be swiftly delivered. This is the only way to establish absolute fidelity between the Naga people and Government of India.” the statement said.  

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