TODAY -

Lui-Ngai-Ni begins with cultural extravaganza TR Zeliang endorses Naga integration campaign
Source: The Sangai Express / Mungchan Zimik

Ukhrul, February 14 2016: The two- day celebration of Manipur Nagas' seed sowing festival, Lui-Ngai-Ni began today with traditional lighting of sacred fire at TNL ground, Wino Bazar, Ukhrul.

Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang, who graced the opening session of the Lui-ngai-ni celebration called upon the leaders of Naga from Manipur, Nagaland, Assam and Arunachal Pra-desh to meet together and organize a common Naga festival in the North East region of India with appropriate name.

TR Zeliang appreciated the UNC for organizing the combined Naga festival in Mani- pur like Oriah festival is organised for the Nagas of Arunachal Pradesh.



Mao tribe performing mao traditional folkdance
Mao tribe performing mao traditional folkdance


Zeliang said that the celebration of a common festival will act as a platform to strengthen the integrity and oneness of Naga brethren living across the borders.

The Indian Government's understanding of the Naga issue and its acceptance to resolve the issue through peace- ful dialogue is welcomed, Zeliang said while adding that the Nagas are yearning for a permanent solution.

Exuding confidence that the framework agreement signed on Aug 3, 2015 would be an important step towards the realisation of Nagas aspiration for permanent solution to their issue, the Nagaland CM urged all Nagas to support and extend cooperation so that a permanent solution is worked out.

Although the Nagas are scattered and divided by artificial political boundaries, they have shown enough desire to integrate and live under one single administration, he said.

TR Zeliang also termed the three Bills passed by the Manipur State Assembly in August last year as an attempt by the Manipur Govt to consolidate the valley area for the coming Assembly election.

He urged the NPF MLAs who have tendered their resignation over the passage of the three Bills to pressurise the Speaker to accept their resignation in order to fulfil the demand of the tribals to withdraw the 'anti-tribal Bills' .

"My visit to Manipur is to strengthen the relationships and bond of brotherhood among the Naga brethren in all sphere and to uphold the NPF's principle of cultural, socioeconomic and political aspirations in all the Naga inhabited areas," Zeliang said.

UNC president Gaidon Kamei in his presidential speech reiterated the Nagas' support to the ongoing Indo-Naga dialogue.

The Naga political solution cannot be bartered under any circumstances, he said.

He said that the UNC strongly opposed the three 'anti-tribal Bills' passed by the Manipur Govt last year.

Gaidon said the Bills are unconstitutional and they infringe on the rights of the tribals which resulted in the loss of nine innocent lives in the course of protest against the Bills.

He also stressed the uniqueness of the Naga seed sowing festival.

Guest of honour Major General Srenivas, IG AR (South) expressed delight with the rich traditions and culture of the State and said they are the pride of the nation.

Earlier, before the opening of the festival, TR Zeliang unveiled the Lui-Ngai-Ni monolith at TNL office gate in the presence of all tribes' leaders.

He was accompanied by Nagaland Home Minister Y Patton and Road and Bridges Minister V Kikheku Swu.

Over 1800 delegates from 16 tribes of Manipur attended the festival.

Traditional shows, trumpet blowing were the main highlights of the inaugural session.

The UNC, as a mark of expressing the highest traditional respect and appreciation, gifted Mithun to the chief guest.

Yesterday, UNC president Gaidon Kamei hoisted the Lui-Ngai-Ni festival flag at the celebration venue.


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