Tributes, condolences pour in for Dr Huskha Yepthomi

Dr Huskha Yepthomi

Dr Huskha Yepthomi

Kohima, May 22 (MExN): Dr Huskha Yepthomi, Working President of Naga People's Front (NPF) passed away at Zion Hospital and Research Centre Dimapur, on May 21.

Following his demise, the Sumi Discussion Forum (SDF) in a press release said that Dr Huskha Yepthomi, Chief of Yemishe village was born on December 12, 1940. From a young age, he was actively involved in the students' union, serving as Vice President of the All Sumi Students Union (SKK) in 1964.

He joined the Naga National movement as Captain of the Naga Army from 1965 to 1969 and was a staff officer to General Sukhai, the then Commander-in-Chief of the Naga Army and Defence Minister, Federal Government of Nagaland.

Post 1969, he actively engaged in various civil society organizations, serving in various capacities. He was Chairman and Executive Member of the Sumi Baptist Association (SBAK) from 1974-75, and a member of the Bible Society of India.

He also served Sumi Hoho as Vice President, as well as Convenor of Peace and Reconciliation from 1994-96, and as President of Sumi Hoho from 1997-2001. He was active in state politics, serving as Working President of the Naga People's Front (NPF) and Advisor to the Chief Minister of Nagaland.

He received the Distinguished Leadership Award in 1998 for his “Outstanding Contribution to Contemporary Society” from the American Biographical Institute, North Carolina. He was awarded a Certificate by the Haggai Institute of Advanced Leadership in 1994 and was conferred an honorary Doctor of Divinity by the International Institute of Arts and Theology, Kolkata, on January 9, 2019.

“He contributed immensely to social, political, and various causes, devoting half of his life to social causes. He was one of the tallest Sumi leaders and an outspoken personality, well-versed in the wisdom of Sumi and Naga political struggle. His death has left a vacuum among the Sumi and Naga communities, which will be difficult to fill. His legacy of leadership and dedication to our society will be remembered,” the Forum added.

CM and others convey condolences 
CM:  The Chief Minister of Nagaland, Neiphiu Rio in a condolence message said that Dr Huskha was a sincere and a passionate leader who genuinely cared for the welfare of the people, especially those in the marginalised section. He served in various organisations since his early days, showing his heart to serve people. His contributions will be dearly remembered by all those who have encountered him. 

His demise is a great loss, especially for the NPF party, the Nagas and the Sumi community in particular. The emptiness created by his demise will be difficult to fill. Though it pains us that he is no longer with us, let us cherish the good memories he has left behind and celebrate his life.

Dy CM Patton: Deputy Chief Minister Y Patton said that Dr Huskha was a stalwart of regional politics and has served the people well. “In his demise, we have lost a leader which is s great loss not only for his party but the Nagas as a whole” Patton said while sending deepest condolences and wished for the soul to find peace eternally.  

Dy CM TR Zeliang: Deputy Chief Minister, TR Zeliang said that he was closely associated with Dr Huskha for long time in politics a party and other social activities. He said that Dr Huskha was a remarkable person-honest, charismatic, kind and always willing to lend helping hand and devoted his entire life for the uplift of the people as a politician. His warmth spirit and dedication made a lasting impact on everyone who had privilege of knowing him, TR Zeliang said.

Leader of NPF Legislature Party: On Demise of Dr Huskha, Kuzholuzo (Azo) Nienu), Leader of NPF Legislature Party said “words are inadequate to express the sorrow and grief we are going through with the loss of one of the most towering Naga leader.” He was considered as the pillar of the oldest regional political party (NPF) and the service he rendered to the Naga society particularly to the Naga regional political party will always be an exemplary of a true leadership and throughout his life he has lead the party with all his experiences and dedication for the welfare of the Naga people and the party. Azo added, his demise is indeed an irreplaceable loss to the party and the vacuum he created will be difficult to be filled up.

Minister CL John: Minister of Environment, Forest & Climate Change and Village Guards, CL John said he was closely associated with him, particularly while affiliated together in the NPF party. “As far as I know him personally, during his span of life, he was proved, undoubtedly one of the sincere, hardworking and a competent public leader in his own capacity with integrity and vast wisdom. It would therefore be very difficult to fill the vacuum caused by his death and his service to the Sumi Community in particular and to Nagas in general,” the Minister said.

NPF President: NPF President, Apong Pongener said that Dr Huskha Yepthomi had rendered his best of time to the NPF since 1974. “The Party looked upon him as a guide, seasoned and a matured leader who stood his ground when it comes to Naga political issue. During his life time, not only in the NPF, but he involved in several civil societies' organisations and helped resolved various issues beneficial to the people of his own community and the Nagas in general,” Pongener stated. In his demise, the Party has lost a grand old man who served the Party in fatherly figure which the Party shall find it difficult to fill the vacuum his demise has created, he added.

NPF Minority wing: The NPF Minority wing said that “The entire party ranks and files of NPF were shocked by the news of Dr Hushka's death; it is a great loss for the party in particular and for the State in general.”

SKK: All Sümi Students’ Union (SKK) remembered Dr Huskha as a tall leader who dedicated his life for the service of our community. SKK in a press note said that Dr Huskha has also served as the vice President of SKK in the year 1964 apart from his other profound social and political service rendered to our Society. “A man of great intellect and vision, whose service to the Sumi community and the Nagas shall always be cherished. His effortless contribution in shaping our society and the legacy he has left behind shall continue to inspire generations to come,” it added.

KYKY: Kulolau Yeputhomi Kuposhukulu (KYK) in its message said that Dr Huskha was a renowned leader and a knowledgeable elder who dedicated his life for Sumi community in particular and Nagas in general. His contribution towards our society is immense and that his leadership qualities shall remain an inspiration and his footprints will always be remembered for all times to come. “The vacuum created due to his demise will be difficult to fill. However, his legacy will continue to live on through the many lives he touched,” it stated.