The Conversion Agenda

"Freedom to convert" is counterproductive as a generalized doctrine. It fails to come to terms with the complex interrelationships between self and society that make the concept of individual choice meaningful. Hence, religious conversion undermines, and in extremes would dissolve, that individual autonomy and human freedom.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Wanted: Office staff for the militant group

Reuters
Posted online: Friday, September 10, 2004 at 1030 hours IST

Guwahati, September 10: A separatist rebel group in turbulent northeast has published job advertisments for office secretaries and assistants for a parallel government it has run for decades.

The National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Issak-Muivah), fighting for a separate state for Christian-majority Naga people, said it would conduct a written test at its headquarters next month after screening applications.

"We invite application for the rank of undersecretary, section officers and assistant section officer," the NSCN said in a front-page advertisement in the Nagaland Post. It said anyone could apply.

The NSCN was outlawed for decades until it agreed to a ceasefire with Indian forces in 1997. Since then, the rebels have held talks to find a solution to their revolt in remote Nagaland state, in mountains on the border with Myanmar.

A spokesman for the group defended the recruitment drive.

"We are hiring civilians for office work, and not combatants," said NSCN publicity secretary Kraibo Chawang.

The NSCN is known to collect taxes, administer justice and run its own administrative service in the far-flung state. Security agencies have in the past accused the group of extorting money from civilians and local government officials.

Dozens of insurgent groups in northeast are fighting for either autonomy or independence, accusing the federal government of plundering the region's natural resources and flooding it with outsiders.

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