Nagalim Voice May 2022
During the tumultuous stages of the Naga political movement, there are exceptional revolutionary personalities that help define the course of the Naga political struggle. They took passionate stance against the then existing system and forged a path which inspired others to jump on the national bandwagon by making a difference on their own in order to save the Naga nation. They have the courage and the love for motherland, ready to give their blood for Naga’s freedom. We have reached this far because of their dedication, commitment, sacrifices and visionary leadership.
On the occasion of the 43rd Republic Day celebration, the 21st March, 2022, highly distinguished national personalities were decorated with the highest national awards.
We have two outstanding figures whose story of their struggle for our freedom will chill our blood. Their fight for our freedom is like their breath of life. They are none other than our late CHAIRMAN MR. ISAK CHISHI SWU and GENERAL SECRETARY MR. THUINGALENG MUIVAH.
Their brief account as freedom fighters testifies to the truth of their love for the Naga nation.
When the infamous Shillong Accord was signed on the 11th November, 1975, they were in China. When they returned home they wasted no time as they played a steering role to condemn the Shillong Accord at the National Assembly at Suphao.
Isak Chishi Swu and Th. Muivah along with many others were arrested after the declaration of the Martial Law for condemning the Shillong Accord. While others were released later on, Isak Swu and Muivah were kept under military custody for eighteen (18) months. They were ordered to dig their own graves on three occasions.
After they were saved from the military custody, they formed NSCN to carry forward the Naga political struggle.
Their lives were once again attempted by the treacherous Mr. SS Khaplang in 1988 but saved by God.
Determined to broaden the base of the Naga political struggle, they went on whirlwind tour and crisscrossed several countries.
On January 23, 1993, they were successful in presenting the historical and political legitimacy of Nagalim before the UNPO (Unrepresented Nations and People’s Organization) and Nagalim was rightfully given bona fide UNPO membership.
Riding on the UNPO membership, they attended the UN (United Nations) Human Rights Conference five times and presented the Naga case.
They were successful in prevailing upon the Government of India the political legitimacy of the Naga struggle under the banner of the NSCN, leading to the signing of the historic Second Indo-Naga Ceasefire on the 1st August, 1997, and thereby brought peace in Nagalim.
They are the symbols of patriotism, sacrifice, dedication, commitment, bravery and peace. We are proud of them and thus, the Yaruiwo and the people of Nagalim conferred the Nagalim Star, the highest civilian award on Isak Chishi Swu and Th. Muivah, in recognition of their selfless service in saving the Naga people’s right from capitulation, internationalization of the Naga political issue and for bringing peace in Nagalim.
GENERAL KHOLI MESESHU
Gen. Kholi was a high profile revolutionary leader who exercised his mind fearlessly as dictated by his conscience and situation. After the declaration of the Martial Law led Lt. Col. Supong in 1978, they made reckless propaganda against the principles of the Naga freedom movement targeting to execute Mr. Th. Muivah and Mr. Isak Chishi Swu. They plotted charge sheets against them, but they could not succeed because of the strong opposition from the Konyak national workers led by Maj. Kholi.
As a senior national worker, Maj. Kholi was appointed as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) during the Martial Law. Initially, Maj. Kholi was reluctant to accept such a critical post. He accepted the high profile assignment only after getting the commitment from the Naga Army officers that they would fully cooperate and support him and obey his command.
Kholi, however, was a tough man as he proved himself a hard nut to crack when it comes to doing something which pricks his conscience. He was illiterate, but he never allowed officers to exploit his position to meet their treacherous plan to take the lives of Muivah and Isak Swu. He showed himself that natural and untaught people had more of the just intuition that was needed at such critical hours. He kept some boys who could read before him the charge sheets filed against Muivah and Isak Swu in English and asked them to translate into Konyak. In this manner he was able to know how they hatched a plot to kill Muivah and Isak Swu. This prompted him to declare that Muivah and Isak Swu are dedicated Naga revolutionary leaders who have given their lives for the Naga political cause and issued the order that he will not allow anybody to touch them, and not even a single piece of hair from their heads be allowed to fall in Konyak soil. Going further, he issued strict instruction that not only Muivah and Isak Swu but not a single drop of blood from any national worker be spilled in Konyak soil.
Kholi was a person who knows how to take the right decision at the right time. It was under such a revolutionary leadership of Kholi that the lives of Muivah and Isak Swu and many other national workers were saved.
In recognition of his valour, the Yaruiwo and the people of Nagalim awarded him the Victory Cross (VC).
BRIGADIER THUNGBO PANGMI
Brig. Thungbo was the first Naga Army Chief under the banner of the NSCN. He was a man with heroic heart ready to sacrifice his life at any moment if the situation demands. When he was asked to launch operation against the Shillong Accordists it became his most challenging task. Unfortunately, his operation headquarters at Langnok was attacked by the combined force of Shillong Accordists and Village Guards (VG) of Nagaland, on the 27th September, 1980. More than 70 (seventy) NSCN cadres including Kilonsers were left dead.
With his lion hearted spirit befitting a true revolutionary commander, he refused to yield to the traitors. He boldly stood his ground as he takes the field himself and performed many heroic deeds until enemies’ bullets caught him in the ambush. He embraced death to set the footprints of his most determined valour.
For his valour in defence of our motherland, Nagalim, the Yaruiwo and the people of Nagalim awarded him the Victory Cross (VC).
GENERAL NINGKHAN SHIMRAY, MC, VC
Gen. Ningkhan is a person who embraced the revolutionary ideas with enthusiasm. With all his good qualities as a dedicated freedom fighter he is a man who could take clear view of the political horizon and recognize his nation’s limitations and necessities to push forward the Naga freedom movement. This makes him a restless man when he was a young Naga Army officer as A 2nd Lieutenant. When the Naga political movement entered the thick of storm, his known zeal for the cause of legitimacy as much as his reputation as an officer marked him out for commands/missions. He was arrested twice while on missions and escaped twice from jail. His last escape was from Guwahati Central Jail in 1988. Being a jail escapee, he had no place to go and hide. However, his revolutionary determination and never giving up spirit prompted him to take the decisive and daring step to leave India in the manner that could happen only in imagination. He undertook the journey to reach Thailand via Burma on foot after a month trek in October, 1988.
Once he settled down in Bangkok, he was appointed as the Bangkok Office Coordinator. Later on in 1991, he was appointed to take charge as the over-all Commander of the Alee Command (Foreign Command). On account of his commanding position, he was able to set up contacts with many revolutionary groups in South East Asia and established meaningful friendship with them. It was a historic turning point for the Naga political struggle when Ningkhan Shimray reached China and re-established the relationship between China and the Nagas represented by NSCN.
Our diplomatic relationship with China comes at no better moment as NSCN was passing through the darkest chapter after the 1988 crisis. Ningkhan collected arms and ammunitions in terms of thousands from the international markets and brought to our base in Bangladesh in three consignments. This saw the rise of NSCN like a phoenix from the ashes of 1988 crisis. He himself drove the boat with a single engine and without radar from China over the Indian Ocean risked his own life and reached Bangladesh. It would probably have been an impossible mission but he pulled off an extraordinary feat.
Today, the Yaruiwo and the people of Nagalim, awarded the Victory Cross (VC) to Gen. Ningkhan Shimray, MC in recognition of his dashing courage for bringing thousands of arms & ammunitions from the international markets by risking his own life when the Naga nation was passing through the darkest chapter.