TODAY -
Neiphiu Rio harps on Naga unification at Christian meet
Source: The Sangai Express / Daniel Dovi

Senapati, October 08: The first Christian conference under the aegis of Naga Christian Forum, Manipur which began on October 6 at Tahamzam (Senapati) Mini Stadium came to a close today after many renowned religious leaders preached on the theme, "Oneness in Christ".

The conference was also attended by official dignitaries both from Manipur and Nagaland.

Today's unveiling of the monolith was led by Nagaland CM Neiphiu Rio.

The chief minister was accompanied by his wife, two cabinet colleagues and two parliamentary secretaries.

From the Manipur side, Francis Ngajokpa, Minister, Power, Hort.

& Soil Conservation and DK Korungthang, minister, health & family welfare were the official dignitaries.

Speaking on the occasion Neiphiu Rio stated that he has come here as a fellow Naga and lamented placement of the Nagas under different administrative units which he said is due to the unfortunate history situation.

Acknowledging the increasing desires of the Nagas to remove administrative boundaries and to live together under one administrative unit, he stated that the Nagaland State Assembly, the Naga Hoho, students body and other NGOs have also expressed in unequivocal terms the need and desire for integration of the Nagas.

"Britishers divided us in different administrative units but it was purely for their convenience.

Nevertheless, they recognized the uniqueness of the Nagas," he said and further stated that it was the British who introduced inner line permit system in Nagaland which was to safeguard Naga culture and identity.

The same has been done by the govt of India by introducing further measures such as article 371 (A) of the constitution and RAP/PAP for the protection of the Naga culture and way of life, he added.

On issue of affiliation of private schools in Naga areas of Manipur to Nagaland Board of Secondary Education, he said govt of Nagaland has no objection to it and the matter has been forwarded to Indian govt for appropriate action.

Also having received no positive response from the Indian govt and realizing the gravity of the situation and in response to the desire of the student community, he said that his govt had decided to make special arrangement for the students who are willing to appear HSLC and HSSLC examinations under NBSE.

Terming violence among the Nagas as one obstacle in the reconciliation process of the Nagas, he wondered why Nagas as followers of Christ are finding it difficult to promote sense of brotherhood.

Mere integration of territories is meaningless without unity, he added and suggested religious platform as one agent to heal the wounds.

Most Rev Dominic Lumon DD, the Archbishop of Imphal also delivered sermons .

Later in concert session, Don Bosco College, Maram enthralled the audience with "The Miracle Man" a musical opera.


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