Kuki bodies decry ‘order’, question Govt motive
KANGPOKPI, 14th Oct: Enraged over the alleged ‘illogical, unconstitutional and prejudice order’ of the Home Department in connection with the erection of memorial stones for Anglo-Kuki War (1917-1919) Centenary Celebration, 2019, all Kuki chiefs, Kuki Inpi Kangpokpi District and other CSOs have on Monday resolved to resist the order at all cost.
The Home Department had issued an order on October 13 evening directing all the DCs and SPs to remove immediately any memorial stone with the inscription of ‘In defence of our ancestral land and freedom’ erected in connection with the centenary celebration of Anglo-Kuki War, stating that it is an ‘objectionable inscription’ and there is apprehension of breach of peace and possibility of law and order problem.
It may be mentioned here that the centenary celebration of Anglo-Kuki War (1917-1919) will be held at C Aisan village in Saikul Sub Division of Kangpokpi District on October 17 under the aegis of Anglo-Kuki War Centenary Celebration Committee. In connection with the celebration, Kuki Inpi Manipur had instructed all Kuki chiefs to erect a memorial stone with the inscription ‘In defence of our ancestral land and freedom’ in their respective areas, few months back.
A large number of Kuki chiefs in Kangpokpi District under the aegis of Kuki Inpi Kangpokpi District and various CSOs including Kuki Women Union, KSO, etc., had an emergency joint meeting on Monday at Kangpokpi in connection with the Home Department’s order where Kuki chiefs, Kuki Inpi and other Kuki civil bodies strongly opposed the order and resolved to resist it by all means.
One of the Kuki chiefs said that the Naga Independence Day was celebrated under the banner of South Nagalim right under the nose of the state government in soil of Manipur but it remained a mute spectator. But when it comes to the centenary celebration of Anglo-Kuki War or the Kuki Rebellion, the longest freedom movement of India, the state government under the one-sided chief minister N Biren Singh is taking into account the immature pressure of a particular community and impudently issued an order to remove the memorial stone erected in commemoration of the great Anglo-Kuki War.
Another chief said that the preparation for the grand centenary celebration of Anglo-Kuki War had begun few months back with inscription in its logo, etc. and the chief minister himself had happily accepted the invitation of the Kuki Inpi and organising committee to attend the commemorative event as chief guest but now he has found the inscription ‘objectionable’ only after one particular community without proper knowledge raised an objection and issued an order in the eleventh hour of the celebration when all preparations are set. ‘It is obvious to all the biased nature of the N Biren Singh led Manipur Government going ahead with the ‘unconstitutional’ decision in favour of a particularly community”, he added.
Another chief maintained that while CM’s advisor Rajat Sethi, who attended the Centenary Celebration of Anglo-Kuki War at Delhi, recognised the Anglo-Kuki War as the greatest resistance by the frontier tribe against the colonial rule and pointed out that though it is very late, the war must be given proper recognition as part of the larger fight to expel the British from India, CM N Biren bowing to the pressure mounted by a particular community by doing anything to degrade the great Anglo-Kuki War is unfortunate.
Considering all ideas and thoughts shared during the meeting, Kuki Chiefs, Kuki Inpi and other civil bodies ultimately resolved to resist the order of the Home Department. They also resolved that all the Kuki chiefs shall protect the erected monolith at any cost.
Speaking on the sideline of the joint meeting, Thangminlen Kipgen, president KSO Sadar Hills, flanked by Kuki Inpi Kangpokpi and KWU Sadar Hills representatives, denounced the Home Department’s order as ‘Illogical, unconstitutional and prejudice’. He also reiterated all the Kuki chiefs, Kuki Inpi and CSOs have decided that no inscription on the monolith of Anglo-Kuki War commemoration shall be changed and no monolith shall be removed whatsoever.
He further said it was also unanimously resolved that all the Kuki chiefs should prepare for peace and at the same time they should prepare for any untoward incident.
He went on to say that ‘it is a historical fact, not written just by ourselves but established and found even in the British archives where it is mentioned clearly about the resistance the Kuki chiefs had shown when the British attempted to throw us out of our land during the 1917-1919’ while adding that ‘this fact cannot be changed by any CM, by any organisation, by any community as we will live by this history and die with it’.
The Home Department’s order has only aggravated the situation as the icons of most of the social groups operated by Kuki community have been changed with the logo of the Anglo-Kuki War Centenary Celebration since October 13 evening in condemnation and the same floated in all social media groups.