SS Khaplang will be replaced by Khango Konyak as new chairman of NSCN (K), sources said.
Guwahati: Shangwang Shangyung Khaplang, the chairman of the underground Naga rebel group Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagalim (Khaplang) or NSCN(K), died on Friday evening due to prolonged illness. 77-year-old Khaplang was a diabetic and suffered from other health issues as well.
Here are 10 things to know about Shangwang Shangyung Khaplang:
- Khaplang was also the founder of the United National Liberation Front of Western South Asia, a Myanmar-based joint platform of all Northeast rebel groups formed in 2015.
- Born in April 1940 at Waktham village just east of Myanmar's Pangsau Pass, close to the Indian border, Khaplang attended primary school at Margherita in Assam and went to a Baptish school in Myitkina, the headquarters of the Kachin province of Myanmar.
- After he started the Naga Defence Force or NDF in 1964, he went on to become its vice-chairman and later chairman of the Eastern Naga Revolutionary Council or ENRC, which he and some others formed in 1965.
- He later joined the Naga National Council or NNC under the leadership of Naga nationalist Angami Zapu Phizo, and became its vice-chairman in 1974.
- But in 1975, when Phizo signed the Shillong Accord, three young leaders revolted - Issac Chisi Swu, T Muivah and SS Khaplang. They formed the Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagalim or NSCN with the idea of Naga integration and formation of a separate Naga country. Phizo's NNC had accepted the supremacy of the Indian Constitution under the Shillong Accord.
- But in 1998, Khaplang left the NSCN to form his own faction, the NSCN(K). Muivah and Swu stayed together with their faction, the NSCN(IM).
- In 2001, Khaplang's faction and the central government signed a ceasefire agreement, but talks never started. Khaplang was seen keener to establish his hold over Naga-inhabited areas in Myanmar. This helped other groups to establish base in that country.
- In 2015 - after not getting an invitation from the government even once in over 13 years for talks - Khaplang unilaterally abrogated the ceasefire agreement, but not before his group suffered as many as three splits.
- His health had been deteriorating since 2015, and he had been treated in Yangoon a couple of times, people with knowledge of the matter said. He was a diabetic and used hearing aids.
- Though he carried a reward of Rs 7 lakh, Indian security forces never came close to catching him because he always stayed in Myanmar.
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