IMPHAL | Jul 1: NSCN- IM while alleging some Kuki writers for distorting the history of Kuki community in Nagaland with a political motive, the organisation has stated that the truth has to be told.
A release issued by ministry of information and publicity stated there are some people and nations that have sold out their histories to become a part of the colonial powers. The Kukis were brought to Naga country by the British political agent, Col. Mc Culloch from the Chin Hills in Burma to use as mercenary forces in fighting against the sovereign independent Naga villages that were ruled by the Naga kings like that of the Greek City-states, it said.
The British power could occupy a part of the Naga territories, but the rest part called ‘free Nagas’ remains as free as ever, it said. Armed by the British with muzzle loading guns, the Kukis plundered many Naga villages and massacred many Nagas which the British authorities later regretted and disarmed the Kukis, it stated. In spite of this fact, our generous and noble fathers allowed the Kukis to settle in our lands on the basis of payment of loyalty land tax, it added.
“We have hundreds of documents in support of this. The Kukis are nomadic tribe and we quote Sir James Johnston, ‘Kukis are nomadic,’” it said.
Further it said that in 1957, the Government of India gave generous relief funds to the ‘Kuki refugees’ from Burma who had come to settle in Naga areas of Manipur state. In the subsequent years – 1963 and 1988, thousands of Kuki refugees from Burma came to the Naga areas for shelter, it added.
“With the departure of the Britishers, the Nagas in the British occupied areas declared their independence on 14th August 1947 and joined forces with the free Nagas and that is what is called the uniqueness of Naga history. But, on what kind of historical basis the Kukis are trying to build ‘Kuki homeland’ in Naga country? They may have every right to do so in Chin Hills, but not here in Naga areas,” it stated.
You may also like to read: Kuki-Naga ethnic conflict: The search for definitions
The release further stated that soon after the departure of the Britishers, the Indian and the Burmese states occupied Naga territories where the Naga people put up tough resistance against their aggression for decades. History will ever speak of it that the Nagas have neither been a part of Union of India nor that of Burma either by conquest of the two occupational forces or by consent of the Nagas, it said.
The Nagas are living in their own land, not in any other peoples’ lands, it further said adding they are the owners of their land. The history, politics, identity, culture, the social system and the economy of the Nagas is land-based, it stated. They can never part with their land, which is their inheritance from God, it added.
“However, the Nagas never view the Kukis as their enemies. As our fathers accommodated them to live together in days past, so we are also prepared to do so if they admit the hard reality. In fact, we are giving room to the Kukis to be part of the Naga nation,” it said.
You may also like to read: Naga-Kuki conflict: The search for definitions
But, Naga people will never allow and tolerate any attempt by the Kukis to carve out Kuki homeland from Naga territories in collusion with the Government of India and Manipur government, it maintained.
The Naga people are prepared to talk with them on any issue if they acknowledge land ownership of the Nagas, it said. “We believe the Government of India will not commit the political blunder of playing politics over the land of the Nagas to appease the Kukis or others for its vested interest,” it said. Let this be known to the whole world that the Nagas will never part with their God given portion of land and defend it eternally against any aggressors big or small, it added.