Kohima, May 24 : A visit to the Seithekima Village in Nagaland's Dimapur District reveals how angry locals are over the recent factional clashes in the state.
Blaming militant groups for harming their interests and for the loss of innocent lives, residents like Visanyu, Seithekima say that it is hard to understand why these clashes between cadres of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland NSCN (IM) and the NSCN (Unification) keep taking place.
"People are really suffering. We have been subject to suffering for long by these factional killings. So, I appeal to all the villagers to come together and react strongly against such mindless killings," Visanyu says.
Ngulo Kapfo, another villager says: "Right now, two factions are fighting in the village, so it is a period of pain for us. We are not supporting any group. Their (factional groups) has disturbed school-going children, disturbed farming activities, and non local labourers have run away. So, the undergrounds fighting with arms have brought life to a standstill. We want them to go to the non-residential areas and not disturb normal life anymore."
Seithekima is not the only village at the receiving end of such group clashes. A few weeks ago, children of a public school in Dimapur were also caught in a cross fire.
Nearly 40 people, including civilians and students, have been killed during the past two months in stepped up factional fighting between the two groups of NSCN.
"Our villagers are suffering, especially the school children. They are unable to go to school. Villagers are lying indoors, labourers in the farm have fled, and domestic animals have been killed in the crossfire. So, we appeal to the State Government to protect us with forces," said Keneingulie Seyie, a village chief.
The State Government has remained a mute spectator to the ongoing factional clashes.
Immediately after the killings of 15 people in Seithekima village, hundreds of people attacked the monitoring cell office of the NSCN (IM) in Dimapur.
State Home Minister Imkong Imchen described the factional clashes as "unfortunate" and appealed to warring groups to maintain ceasefire ground rules, or face stiff action. By Vibou Ganguly