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Naga Army asks 11 MLAs to withdraw support to CM Pema Khandu over ‘anti-Naga’ allegations

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ITANAGAR: The Naga Army has asked the 11 legislators of Tirap, Changlang and Longding (TCL) districts to withdraw their support to Chief Minister Pema Khandu and Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein, accusing the duo of acting against the interest of the Naga people.

“The MLAs who fail to uphold the right of the Nagas in Arunachal Pradesh” would be considered “anti-Naga,” said the outfit in a press communique.

Among the 11 MLAs from the TCL region, three are cabinet ministers.

The remark is in response to Deputy Commissioner Bani Lego of Longding’s circular informing the public about the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Amendment) Bill, 2021, which deletes the term “Any other Naga tribe.”

In the future, ST certificates and permanent residency certificates will be awarded in the name of the district’s Wancho tribe, rather than “any other Naga tribe.”

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The bill was passed by the central government in August, amending the constitutional list of STs to include the indigenous tribe names of Monpa, Sajolang, Sartang, Tai Khamti, Mishmi-Kaman (Miju Mishmi), Idu (Mishmi), Taraon (Digaru Mishmi), Nocte, Tangsa, Tutsa, and Wancho, as recommended by the Arunachal Pradesh government. The words ‘any other Naga tribe’ were removed.

Naga army

The deletion of the word “Naga” from the amendment “has clearly offended and humiliated the sentiment and rights of the Nagas of Tirap, Changlang, and Longding districts in particular, and the Nagas in general, which is unacceptable,” according to the press statement.

“As it has willfully undermined, twisted, and rejected the Naga people’s rights, identity, and existence. Nagas have never posed a threat to any human being. The circular order, on the other hand, poses a threat to the Naga people,” the statement continued.

“Nagas, wherever they are, shall voice disagreement to such indiscriminate note of circular order. We will never accept such derogatory order from a person in the office of DC Longding,” it stated.

Cautioning the government that the outfit would “not keep watching like sitting duck,” the statement said “even the government of India recognized the uniqueness of Naga history” during the tenure of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, it added.

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