Hornbill festival ceased for a day after Nagaland civilians’ killings

Hornbill festival ceased for a day after Nagaland civilians’ killings



The Naga Heritage Village at Kisama, which is the main venue for Nagaland’s Hornbill festival, looked deserted today, as the government cancelled the day’s events with the killing of civilians in Mon district. The Hornbill festival is an annual 10-day event in which different tribes of the state showcase their traditions.

Thousands of tourists from across the country and abroad were participating in the festivities. Diplomats from many nations, including US, Germany and Australia, were also a part of the festival.

6 tribes under Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation (ENPO), decided to refrain from participating in cultural programmes. Konyak Union, (the apex body of Konyak tribe), to which the killed civilians belonged, withdrew from the festival too. Almost all tribal bodies decided not to participate in the festival till further notice.

Later, the state government notified that the programmes would remain suspended on Monday. The entire vicinity of Kisama was deserted, with only police personnel present.

The festival is being held across 4 districts. The major events include the Hornbill Music Festival, Nagaland Literature Festival and Nagaland Film Festival, mountain biking, and the Hornbill Bamboo Festival.

At least 14 civilians and 1 soldier were killed in firing by security forces in a botched anti-insurgency operation, and retaliatory violence within 24 hours in Mon district, said the police.