Kohima: We are at a time when a new dawn is breaking for Nagaland –a new Nagaland is going to take birth, said Nagaland governor RN Ravi.
“We have to be prepared to help build a new Nagaland — free from fear of gun and corruption, where foundation is transparency, accountability and rule of law,” he added in the context of the ongoing Naga peace talks between the Centre and Naga groups led by NSCN-IM.
Ravi said this while gracing the 20 years of celebration of the much-awaited Hornbill Festival that kicked off at the Heritage Village in Kisama — 20 km from state capital Kohima — as the chief host. “A new Nagaland will be born only with the cooperation and active participation of the people,” he added.
In his address, the governor paid rich tributes to the Naga leaders who “toiled and sacrificed in the most challenging times” to secure for the people — the state of Nagaland — along with special status of Article 371(A). He said that the special provision is “unique and special only to Nagaland” and remains a matter of envy to other states.
Saying that history has not been kind to those who ignore or forget their heroes and martyrs, Ravi urged the people not to forget the leaders who helped achieve the state of Nagaland.
Acknowledging the rich cultural heritage of the Naga tribes, he reiterated the need to correct certain uncharitable distortions made to the Naga history by some colonial administrators. Recounting how the Naga tribes efficiently managed their social, economic, political and strategic needs, he urged the scholars, especially Naga scholars, to research into the rich history of the Nagas.
In a first-of-its-kind initiative, the Indian Air Force (IAF) headquarters of Eastern Air Command in Shillong flew three superior multi-role state-of-the-art fighter aircraft Sukhoi 30 MKI from Chabua airbase to Kisama, to commentate Statehood Day. The aircraft flying in VIC formation of 102 Squadron, also called as trisonics, were led by Wg Cdr Aditya Suhag and Gp Capt Vipul Mishra.
While defending the country’s airspace, the IAF has been carrying out critical peacetime roles. During the devastating landslides in the state last year, its helicopter init under the headquarters of Eastern Air Command was involved extensively in casualty evacuation and airdropping of essential commodities at Peren, Phek, Mon and Tuensang districts in coordination with the State Disaster Management Authority.
The festival was declared open following the hitting of traditional gongs by the governor and chief minister.
As per official information from the tourism department, 45,142 visitors were recorded on the first day, of which 407 were foreign tourists, 4,954 domestic tourists and 39,781 locals.