Kohima: In a significant development, Khango Konyak, the ‘impeached’ ‘chairman’ of the NSCN-K, reportedly entered India through a remote village in eastern Nagaland from his base in neighbouring Myanmar on October 16.
Call it a security lapse for India or a well-planned effort to bring the militant faction closer to New Delhi ahead of the proposed Naga peace talks, the 70-year-old leader reached his native village in Tobu sub-division in Mon district of Nagaland last week. The 70-year-old militant leader, wearing a formal suit and a hat, was given a hero’s welcome by the local residents.
Later in the day, Konyak addressed the representatives from civil society members and NGOs from eastern Nagaland in a programme held in Yongkhao village.
Pictures and videos available with EastMojo further reveal that village elders, women groups and members from civil society took part in the programme in large numbers to welcome the NSCN-K leader, who was heavily escorted by around 80 armed guards. Kids in school uniforms were also seen joining the programme to welcome Konyak.
It is speculated that Konyak, who is leading the Nagas of Indian origin, might soon join the peace process with the government of India.
The NSCN-K has already been divided on the lines of ‘nationality’. In August, the militant outfit ‘impeached’ Konyak, who became the chairman after its leader Shangnyu Shangwang Khaplang died in June last in a Yangon hospital after prolonged illness.
Konyak, who is a Naga of Indian origin, was replaced by Yung Aung, who, like his late uncle Khaplang, belongs to the Hemi Naga community of Myanmar.
The recent visit might have some political implications too, as reports say that Konyak was not averse to signing a ceasefire with the government of India. However, whether Konyak would be joined by other insurgency groups operating in Nagaland or he would form his own group is still not known. It is also not clear if the leadership of the new faction of the Khaplang group will allow other Northeast Indian rebel groups to retain camps in their base area in Taga in Myanmar.
However, immediately after Konyak’s visit, the NSCN-K faction headed by Yung Aung circulated a ‘letter of appeal’ to the Nagas on Saturday alleging that in order to remove the word ‘sovereignty’ from the Naga dictionary, critical attempts have been made by the government of India and their agents. This is being done to disintegrate and destroy the NSCN/GPRN and sabotage the ongoing struggle by creating splintered groups through skillfully designed ‘divide and destroy’ policy, the letter said.
The Yung Aung-led NSCN-K also declared to uphold the spirit of the principle of Naga sovereignty and carry forward the freedom torch passed by its predecessors. It also vowed to redeem every inch of ‘Nagaland’ as it was in ancient times.
Incidentally, BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav had recently revealed that more groups like the NSCN-K were expected to join the Naga peace talks soon and a solution could be reached at the earliest. Madhav was addressing the 7th BJP state executive council meet at Mokukchung in Nagaland on October 9.