The Konyak community in Nagaland decided to abstain from any further participation at the Hornbill Festival 2021.

The decision was taken on December 5 as 13 daily-wage labourers were reportedly killed by security forces in Mon district of Nagaland on December 4.

As many as 13 civilians were reportedly killed by security forces in a case of “mistaken identity”, reports said on December 5.

The security personnel reportedly mistook the victims as militants and ambushed them, non-government sources said.

“With regard to the subject cited above (abstaining from further participation at Hornbill Festival 2021), the Konyak Community hereby abstain from any further participation at the ongoing Hornbill Festival 2021 citing atrocities perpetrated by the security forces at Oting village Mon District on December 4,” said a letter written by the community leader to the state government.

The Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation (ENPO) decided to withdraw from the annual Hornbill Festival which is ongoing at Kisama near state capital Kohima.

The ENPO, which represents six tribes, had adopted a resolution earlier against bloodshed in its area.

Meanwhile, Nagaland chief minister Neiphiu Rio, appealing for calm, tweeted about the “unfortunate incident” that led to “killing of civilians” in the state. The chief minister said that a high-level Special Investigative Team will probe it.

“The unfortunate incident leading to killing of civilians at Oting, Mon is highly condemnable. Condolences to the bereaved families and speedy recovery of those injured. High level SIT will investigate and justice delivered as per the law of the land. Appeal for peace from all sections,” he tweeted.

Union home minister Amit Shah also expressed condolences on the incident.

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