Kohima: The Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) has criticised the statement of Nagaland Minister of Higher & Technical Education and Tribal Affair Temjen Imna Along, saying he has gone “against the stand of the Naga people for a separate flag and constitution’ in the proposed solution to the protracted Naga political issue.
In a statement, NSF President Kegwayhun Tep and General Secretary Supunii Ng Philo stated that Minister Imna Along during the discussion on Naga political issue in the Assembly, came up with the “insinuation that certain Naga political groups are indulging in delaying tactics for their selfish gains; ‘This only reflects the shallow understanding of the issue that is just, fair and righteous.”
It said Along’s advocacy that the Naga solution be within the framework of the Indian constitution, “undermines the founding principles of the Naga homeland” which it said, was unacceptable to the Naga youth and student community.
NSF also slammed Along’s speech in the Assembly and choosing “to be the shadow and echo of the few names he threw around during his eloquently crafted speech.”
It said Along, for his inability to assert the rights of Naga people and towing the lines of those “truly responsible for the delay in honouring the ‘unique history and situation’ of the Naga people.”
Accusing Along of indulging in rhetoric that “pleases his political bosses at the centre,” the NSF claimed that the Minister has “forgotten the blood, sweat and tears of those who gave up everything in order to usher in a solution that is inclusive, honourable and acceptable to every Naga individual.” The NSF condemned Along’s comments and expressed grief that the elected people’s representative failed to truly comprehend the larger issue at hand and “chooses to be the shadow and the echo of the few names he threw around during his eloquently crafted speech at the state legislative assembly.” The NSF cautioned the Minister not to speak on issues he has “very little or no knowledge about” and that being an MLA does not “qualify him to make sweeping statements on an issue that is more than a century old and involves the sacrifices of the entire Naga people” and asked him to respect the sentiments of the Naga people.