vivek singh

Photographer
Women Revolutionaries "“ KNA
Location: delhi
Nationality: indian
Biography: Independent Photojournalist based out of Delhi, India.
Public Story
Women Revolutionaries "“ KNA
Copyright vivek singh 2022
Updated Sep 2012
Topics Black and White, Civil Wars, Combat, Conflict Zone, Confrontation, Documentary, India, Manipur, North East India, Photography, photojournalism, Politics, Portraits, Portraiture, Revolution, Senapati District, Soldiers, Unrest, Violence, War, Weapons, Women Rebels, Women Revolutionaries, Women's Rights, Youth

The Kuki National Front(KNF) is among the few armed groups in India's North East, violence ravaged state of Manipur that still manage to have women fighters in their ranks. The women, like their men counterparts have played a significant role in the struggle for Kukiland (an autonomous area within the state boundaries) and they are treated as equals by their male counterparts in the battlefield and in their camps. They responded to the call for the Autonomous District Council for an area for the Kuki hill tribe to serve and were rigorously trained to use any sophisticated weapons.

 

Mercy Kuki's serious commitment reflects in her words when she says, “ It is wrong to expect only our men to serve and fight. We can do as much as any man. The struggle has a room for everyone. There is no space for discrimination in this fight. Women must maximise our potential for the future by being part of the struggle.” Mercy reiterates that she has heard too much about the need for Kukiland since her childhood, as their people could not fully enjoy their rights and entitlement in the absence of it. So when she grew up, “It was inevitable for her to be a part of the struggle”, she says.

 

Remnou's colorfully neat polished nails was a different match to the Kalashnikovs that she has grown up with. An experienced fighter who has taken crucial decisions in the battlefield, she said, “The quest for an autonomously controlled area is the love of my life. I left every comfort to join the struggle. Without our democratic rights, the comfort that this world has are just momentary.” Her dedication and commitment evidently overflows as she said, “I have a commitment to my God and to my nation.”

 

Roslyn, a sergeant in the KNF rank is convinced that the fight is incomplete without women. “Women are an inevitable part of the great cause. We must realise this dream together”, the sergeant added.

 

Remedy, has taken a resolution not to settle for a family life before the the group's demands are met. “It will be a disgrace to my conviction and to the great cause that we are fighting for if I choose to hide myself under the guise of vain comforts when our history is marred with great injustices. This must end. Our fight is to put an end to the injustices that we are living with.”

 

The women rebels who are ready to fight and die for Kukiland has been a source of strength for the ongoing movement. “A woman should be able to share her power and trust herself to have the strength to do whatever she wants,” said Lydia, who has fought many fights before the KNF signed the Suspension of Operation with the state and central government.

 

While millions of women outside this revolutionary space are seeking empowerment through different channels, the KNF women revolutionaries believe that they are left with no other options, but to take to arms to secure their Constitutional and democratic rights. “This is a just cause and the Government of India should be proactive to our struggle as we aspire to realise Kukiland under the Constitution of India”, Jenifer added. Helena affirmed her friend's statement by saying, “The armed struggle for a secure space for her people is inevitable in these forgotten peripheries.”

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