Nagaland | Lamhainandi shooting incident opens old wounds of intertribal land dispute
The brutal killing of three persons by armed miscreants at Lamhainandi Village under the Peren district of Nagaland on March 22 has opened old wounds of a land dispute between the Zeliangrong people and the Western Sumi.
There are speculations that the Monday killing is related to the years-old land dispute row between the Zeliangrong people and the western Sumi.
In September 2019, some unidentified miscreants shot rounds of bullets in the air at a newly established village of the Zeliangrong tribe - Lamhainandi village.
A few huts, including a Church built by the villagers, were also destroyed and burnt down by miscreants.
The land dispute between the two tribes remains unresolved and, with the recent murder of three persons, communal tension between the two tribes is apparent.
Meanwhile, the Naga Hoho and Naga Students' Federation (NSF) have strongly condemned the brutal killing of the three innocent people and urged the Nagaland government and the investigating authorities to expedite the investigation and book the culprits at the earliest.
"We are made to understand that the land dispute between Kiyevi village and Lamhainandi village has been on for the last few years. We were looking forward to the Nagaland govt to intervene and settle the dispute. However, till today, the dispute is not resolved and therefore, an unwanted situation has taken place recently. We appeal to the state government to act immediately and deliver justice", General Secretary of Naga Hoho Elu Ndang said.
Ndang raised apprehensions over possible communal tension if the land dispute issue is not resolved at the earliest.
He pointed out that after the September 2019 incident, a sub-committee by the Deputy Chief Minister Y. Patton was set up. The committee had issued directives for maintaining the status quo in the disputed area; however, the two villages failed to maintain the status quo.
"We are worried that this dispute may lead to communal tension in the future. Therefore, the government must seriously and sincerely study the case and bring about settlement, peace and justice to the people," Ndang added.
Meanwhile, NSF president Ninoto Awomi also echoed similar views and appealed to the people to refrain from spreading hate messages on social media as this could result in tribal conflict, making the matter worst.
(Edited by Ibankyntiew Mawrie)