The appointment of a non-indigenous, non-Naga individual as a Gaon Burah (GB) in Dimapur has raised eyebrows and ignited a contentious debate. This development has left many questioning the changing demographics of Dimapur. The presence of a non-indigenous, non-Naga as a Gaon Burah in Dimapur has become a reality. Dimapur’s demographic makeup appears to be shifting, potentially prompting the state government to shift its focus to Chümoukedima.

As things stand, Dimapur can hardly be called a Naga city anymore. An actual headcount of the total population of Dimapur could reveal uncomfortable statistics. For someone who has spent their entire life in the bucolic hills of Mokokchung, not only do the faces of the people but even the names of the various localities in Dimapur sound very different from anything Naga. Therefore, it is not surprising that a non-Naga wields the power endowed by the ‘red coat’ in Dimapur. Their ‘tribe’ could increase in the future.

What is surprising, however, is that the Naga people in Dimapur seem to be quite comfortable with having a non-Naga GB, while they are vocal against Nagas from outside Nagaland state in Dimapur. By the looks of it, it is acceptable to have a non-Naga as a GB in Dimapur, and it is fine to have countless non-Nagas overwhelming the city. However, it is not considered acceptable to have Nagas from outside Nagaland in Dimapur. This biased attitude towards Nagas from outside Nagaland, especially when compared to the accommodating attitude towards non-Nagas, is challenging to understand.

The situation in Dimapur appears to be so dire that nobody wants to voice their opposition to the appointment of non-indigenous, non-Nagas as GBs. The hesitancy to voice objections against the appointment of non-indigenous non-Nagas as GBs in Dimapur suggests a sensitive and intricate, or say a hopeless, situation. It would not be surprising if voices emerge tomorrow supporting and rationalizing the appointment of non-indigenous, non-Nagas as GBs in Dimapur.

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