Mokokchung, March 20: Hundreds of youth from Merangkong village and Tuli town (Merangkong citizens) held a silent procession at Tuli town protesting the petition filed at Gauhati High Court by four individuals ‘challenging the powers and laws of Merangkong Medemsangsanger Putu Menden (Merangkong village council).’
Talking to Eastern Mirror, convener of the rally, Meren Lemtur said there was enough opportunity and prospect for the petitioners to discuss and conclude their query with the village council ‘but unfortunately’ they favoured to approach the high court ‘thereby demolishing and insulting our age old Naga customs and traditions.’
A leaflet written in Ao vernacular highlighting about today’s silent procession – which the MTLT said were distributed to each Merangkong households the previous day – contained an explanation of the run-up of the whole incident.
The leaflet declared that since 2013, the Merangkong citizens felt the need for an MLA from the village, elected him and was still in office as the people’s representative from the area.
However, the leaflet declared, before ‘the expiry of the term’, due to distribution of ‘political money’ by some unknown persons, the MMPM, in order not to create unwanted situations, made a declaration that ‘any unknown person creating confusion among the people in Merangkong jurisdiction would be appropriately dealt with by the putu’.
“However, four Merangkong youths filed a petition against the Merangkong Medemsanger Putu in Court, which is totally wrong,” the MTLT leaflet declared. “Besides, there is enough space in the ‘putu court’ to discuss such case in Naga traditional manner, but giving the case to High Court is totally an act to demolish our customs and traditions, and therefore this silent procession has been organized,” the MTLT declared.
In this regard, the MTLT categorically declared that the silent procession was organized by Merangkong and Tuli (Merangkong) Lanur (MTLT) and it was ‘not against any political party’.
It also declared that the procession was not aimed at demanding anything from the government, or against any group but solely as a mark of solidarity and protest against the indignity shown to the ‘putu menden.’
“Our customs and traditions have enough room for discussing cases, but four good citizens taking the Merangkong Medemsanger Putu to Court is wrong and (we) condemn it in the strongest terms. Why bec
ause, if the youths today are indifferent to issue (sic), then we fear that our customs and traditions will be lost to our future generation. Therefore, this silent procession is being organized,” the MTLT declared through its leaflet.
Meanwhile, pamphlets with the words ‘We the Merangkong Tuli youths will seek out the wrong doers till the end”, “Those who cannot live under traditional laws, go away from village”, etc were seen pasted along the National Highway 2.
The procession started from Longli Lenden Ward and culminated at Tuliyong Ward, covering some five kilometres by foot. The youths held placards, a banner with the pictures of the four Merangkong youth who took the putu menden to court.