Nagaland CM writes to PM, Assam CM on killings

Kohima, Dec 28: Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio Saturday asked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Assam counterpart Tarun Gogoi to ensure security to the tribal Rengma Nagas following Friday’s killings by Karbi Peoples’ Liberation Tiger (KPLT) rebels.

“This is a very serious development … example of past incidents amounting to ethnic cleansing to evict indigenous inhabitants from their ancestral lands, owing to their being a minority tribe in Assam,” Rio said in his missives to Manmohan Singh and Gogoi.

A group of armed KPLT rebels attacked Khoaani village near Chokihola under the Karbi Anglong district of Assam at dawn Friday, setting some houses afire. The militants started firing indiscriminately, killing four people instantly. Among those killed were three women.

There is also a report that Rengma Naga Hills Protection Force (RNHPF), a Naga militant outfit, retaliated and launched a counter-attack on the KPLT militants, killing two of them. However, their bodies have not been recovered so far, police said.

Stating that such barbaric actions have no place in a civilised society, the Nagaland chief minister urged both Manmohan Singh and Gogoi to intervene and ensure the lives and properties of the Rengma Nagas living in Assam are protected.