- Kahuto Chisi Sumi 

To understand anything properly, one must take into consideration the circumstances under which it takes place, is said or is done. Anything taken out of context does not reflect reality. Murdering a man is uncondonable, but killing a man in self-defence is acceptable. Gold is valued by everyone, but worthless to a man dying of thirst in a desert. 
Therefore it is incumbent for every person living in India to understand the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, in the context of the prevailing scenario in Nagaland. That the AFSPA is a law that violates every known or established norm of a free, modern democracy is a fact. 

But Nagaland is a long long way from being a free, modern democratic state. It is a state where citizens are not free to express themselves, a state wherein its people dress and own the trappings of modernity, but are governed by people with antiquated views and frog in well mentalities and a state where democracy is purchased by common thieves. Nagaland is a state which is run by totally corrupt legislators and bureaucrats, where its once respected and honoured organisations and institutions have been hijacked by common crooks and where every Tom, Dick and Harry set up self-styled organisations, which issue diktats in violation of every known parameter of a democratic society, and a state overrun by financial freedom fighters, who carry out their illegal activities under the guise of “Naga Nationalism”. 

In this maelstrom of lawlessness, where lawmakers and law enforcers break multiple laws on a daily basis and the Constitution of India is flouted at every turn, the AFPSA is the only law that brings some fear into the minds of the criminals and their associates who rape and pillage Nagaland.

Gone are the 1950s and 1960s when the Indian army murdered, raped and tortured under the protection of the AFSPA. The Indian Security Forces, presently operating in Nagaland, are very cognizant of the prevailing situation and have operated perfectly in accordance with ground realities. Hundreds of thousands of ordinary Nagas are either unaware or unafraid of the AFSPA. The only people and organisations who are howling for the removal of the AFSPA are those who are connected with the web of corruption, theft and extortion woven by the Government of Nagaland, in cahoots with various insurgent factions and their puppet organisations (e.g. the Naga Students’ Federation).

The tragedy lies in the fact that ever since the ceasefire agreement was signed with various Naga Insurgent Factions, the Security Forces have never ever used the AFSPA proactively, it is used only to cover their blunders. They have never arrested anyone of consequence on the basis of funding insurgency in Nagaland, despite having information on multiple extortion cases, they have never taken concrete action in any case; the most they do is arrest the accused and hand them over to the politically emasculated Nagaland Police, who file suspiciously weak Charge Sheets, which see the accused out on bail within a short period of time.

Indian National Parties in power at the centre have always sacrificed National Interests for short term political gains in Nagaland. The Congress (I) did it in the past and the BJP is doing it today. By removing the AFSPA from parts of Nagaland maybe they think it prepares the ground for victory in the upcoming State Assembly Polls of 2023. If so, they could not be further away from the truth, for Nagas vote for money and money alone, because all those who contest elections are thieves and the electorate know that there’ll be no development, jobs or opportunities, so they sell their votes to the highest bidder. Removal of the AFSPA from any part of Nagaland will only give the corrupt the opportunity to tighten their stranglehold on Nagaland.

But maybe this is the game plan of the Indian Authorities, maybe the Government of India wants to see how far and for how long the people of Nagaland will tolerate and accept the spurious “elected” legislators who form the Government of Nagaland, the fake tribal and social organisations that infest Nagaland and the ever-multiplying “freedom fighters” who function in tandem and accordance with each other.

The honourable Mr. R.N. Ravi was the only person who understood that corruption lay at the root of insurgency in Nagaland, and his removal as the Governor of Nagaland expunged all hope of a real and durable solution to the Naga Insurgency. Now removal of the AFSPA, whether from all or parts of Nagaland, will further strengthen the nexus of corruption and insurgency in Nagaland. My only advice for the many insurgent factions is to spare the ordinary citizen and honest businessman from your “taxation”; extort from the corrupt ministers, bureaucrats and contractors, for they have taken all the money that the Indian taxpayer has given to the people of Nagaland.


Kahuto Chishi Sumi is a village chief, social observer & activist and authority on Naga Customary Law. Watch his commentary on events and politics in Nagaland - The opinions expressed within the content are solely the author's and do not reflect the opinions and beliefs of the website or its affiliates. ALSO READ - 5 REASONS WHY MIZORAM LOVES NAGALAND
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