EKSWCO defuses tension following proscription order

SEPPA, Feb 13: Timely intervention by the East Kameng Social Welfare & Cultural Organisation (EKSWCO) helped defuse the simmering communal tension which followed a controversial proscription order issued recently by the East Kameng District Christian Revival Church Council (EKDCRCC), with the latter issuing a corrigendum and expressing regret.
In a statement, the EKDCRCC on Thursday said it was “only following precedence and there was neither any intention on our part to demean the Nyokum Yullo Festival nor to hurt the sentiment of any particular group.”
It said that, after having discussed the matter with the EKSWCO, church elders and elders of the society, “we realize that it was wrong to mention ‘Nyokum Yullo Festival’ in the said order of ours.” It expressed regret, “given the fact that it has hurt the sentiments of some of our brothers.”
“Therefore, the said order may be treated as a general ban order against participation of CRC members in any form of idol worship,” it said.
“Further, as committed by us in the EKSWCO-led meeting on 11 February, 2020, with regard to future reference of Nyokum Yullo Festival in our communication, the EKDCRCC will come out with a constructive resolution very soon in the interest of communal harmony,” the statement read.
Earlier, as soon as the order banning the participation of CRC members in the Nyokum Yullo celebration had surfaced and gone viral on social media, triggering reactions from across the state, the EKSWCO convened a meeting with the EKDCRCC, the East Kameng Christian Forum (EKCF), the district unit of the Nyishi Indigenous Faith & Cultural Society (NIFCS), the IFCSAP, and the Central Nyokum Celebration Committee (CNCC) on 11 February.
Addressing the meeting, EKSWCO chairman Dahey Sangno reflected on the gravity of the issue, stating that it could potentially snowball into a full-fledged communal conflict, “which in turn is detrimental to the communal harmony and good and progressive image of the district.”
Kamku Jomoh and Amit Yangfo, president and general secretary, respectively, of the EKDCRCC, clarified that they respect Nyokum Yullo, and said the church council’s order was “not issued with an intention to harm the reputation of the festival.”
Representatives of the CNCC, the NIFCS and the IFCSAP, Karling Dolo, Papu Lamgu and Khya Sonam, respectively, strongly objected to the reference to Nyokum Yullo in the proscription order.
EKCF general secretary Akung Gyadi, East Kameng NES unit chairman Kata Rangmo, and NES executive member Robin Hissang urged all parties to calm down and resolve the issue amicably in the interest of communal harmony.
Seppa Nyokum Yullo celebration committee general secretary Sankoli Cheda, who is himself a member of the CRC, urged the Christian community to wholeheartedly participate in the Nyokum Yullo celebration, and offered a mithun from his end.
The meeting ended with the resolution to issue a corrigendum with regard to the reference to Nyokum Yullo in the proscription order.
Commending the parties concerned for showing maturity and understanding in the face of the raging controversy, the EKSWCO requested users of social media to delete the post from their accounts, saying its continued circulation could potentially harm the peaceful resolution.