Janjati Faith and Culture Protection Forum (JFCPF) appealed to the Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh to provide safety and security to the affected people in NC Hills of Assam where many people have died in violent clashes. In a memorandum addressed to the Prime Minister, the Forum said the killing which erupted on March 19, 2009 in Tungje Jeme village swallowed the lives of 36 Jemes and 13 Dimasas till June 25 in the attacks and counter-attacks reportedly between Jewel group of Dima Halom Daogah (DHD-J) and both the factions of National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN).
“A total of 580 houses including 221 Jeme houses and 359 Dimasa houses have been burnt and a total of 10803 persons including 6510 Jemes and 4293 Dimasas have been rendered homeless. They are forced to live in 29 relief comps, 19 for Jemes and 10 for Dimasas. Within last four months of turmoil (19.03.2009 to 18.07.2009) not even a single militant has been captured though they are freely moving in the area with arms. The militants are avoiding direct encounter with each other and that is why, they are safe. They are also avoiding clash with army and security forces. That is why; army and security forces are passive and inactive. The Political leaders including Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi are contented with issuing press statements. Even the tough warning by Union Home Minister Shri P Chidambaram has also not brought expected result. The militants and anti-national elements have ignored the warning. Meanwhile, the Christian missionaries from Nagaland and other neighboring states are pro-active to fish in troubled water. In the name of providing relief materials to victims of militant uprising, the Church is trying to convert Dimasas and Jemes both to Christianity. This is a violation of human rights and an insult to our Constitution. This is also against the secular ethics of the country,” the memorandum dated July 17 said.
The memorandum signed by Shri BB Jamatia (president) and Shri Jaleswar Brahma (secretary) said the Dimasas and Jemes have many practices common in tradition, custom and religious rites. The inter-marriages are allowed. They want to live in peace. There is no hostility between both the communities. Both have been living in complete harmony from centuries. Both of them are against conversion and formation of greater Nagaland. This is the reason that Church and Naga militant organisations are allegedly trying to create division between Dimasas and Jemes so that plan of Christian conversion and dream of greater Nagaland can be fulfilled.
The memorandum alleged that instead of providing safety and security to innocent villagers, the state government has proposed to form 12 clusters, 6 for Jemes and other 6 for Dimasas. This proposal will cause more harm than benefit. It will uproot the villagers. Moreover, the empty villages will be torched by the militants. Who will guard empty villages?. How will villagers work in their distant fields which is life-line of villagers in hill area? The schools and hospitals can be shifted but what about Jhum-cultivation (shifting cultivation), their land and their private forests? Where will their cattle go?
This is the sowing season of paddy in this monsoon but most villagers are in relief camps. Those who are still in villages they are also scared of going to field fearing the militant attacks. The state government has miserably failed to arrest the culprits, provide safety and security and relief materials etc. No sanitation, no proper medical care. The new born babies, mothers and young children are victim of mal-nutrition and lack of medical facility. There is every likely-hood of spread of epidemic in make-shift relief camps, the memorandum added.
The memorandum demanded enough relief materials including food commodities etc. “Depute a team of doctors with medicines and check the spread of epidemics, provide compensation to the killed and injured persons and for construction of the houses,” the memorandum further demands.
At the time of turmoil and tragedy, the Christian missionaries go around the relief camps and victim villages for hunting the helpless aiming at rich harvest and this is now happening in N.C. Hills also. This is a gross violation of human rights. It is prayed to protect the aggrieved villagers-the Dimasas and Jemes both in N.C. Hills from these Christian missioners. The Central Government stated that National Investigating Agency (NIA) has been entrusted to investigate the root-cause of turmoil and massacre of innocent villagers in N.C. Hills but the presence of any such agency is not felt so far in the area. If at all, NIA is at work, they should be asked to submit the report within October. The report should also be made public for their information, the memorandum said.