TODAY -

NSCN-IM under scanner of Nagaland politicians
- The People's Chronicle Editorial :: July 18, 2022 -



HAVING enjoyed relatively strife-free life ever since the NSCN-IM signed the ceasefire pact with the government of India back in 1997 and the situation further improved when all but one Naga rebel group joined the peace process in 2017, it is obvious that the Naga public would be eager that the parleys with the different outfits bring permanent solution to the Naga issue at the soonest possible.

It also seems that compared to the Naga commoners the political class in Nagaland are most desperate to see signing of the final pacts among the stakeholders concerned, especially in view of the Nagaland assembly elections scheduled for conduct next year.

In case the peace process wraps up and the parties involved reach consensus to return to the mainstream life, then it would automatically give the political parties and politicians the bragging rights and claim credit during the election campaign.

That the Nagaland political class wants swift solution to the Naga issue could be comprehended from leaders of different parties starting to barring fangs at the NSCN-IM and blaming the latter for creating obstacles in the realisation of permanent peace.

Indeed, its rivals as well as handful of Naga civil societies too are holding the NSCN-IM responsible for the final solution continuing to remain elusive after over two decades of negotiating with interlocutors of the Union government but of late some prominent Nagaland political figures leaders have raised the pitch and insisted that the Th Muivah-led group has been adopting the delaying tactics even as the outfit has been countering such charges as unfounded and politically motivated.

Nevertheless, it is getting crystal clear from the evolving narrative that the outfitís demands for separate flag and constitution are under intense scrutiny and it would be held accountable in case of breakdown of the hard-earned peace process.

The latest leader to question rationale of the NSCN-IMís insistence to include separate Naga flag and constitution in the final pact is deputy chief minister Y Patton, who re-asserted that the main impediment in arriving, at a so union to the Naga political issue has been the twin demands of the outfit.

Patton shared his observation that unless the NSCN-IM resolved the issue with the government of India, the UDA coalition government in the state wouldnít be able to do anything, clearly hinting that the outfit remains the main stumbling block in bringing lasting peace in Nagaland.

Pattonís statement also assumes significance as prior to him his BJP colleague Temjen Imna Along, who is also the Nagaland education minister, reportedly asked the state government to openly tell the people that union home minister Amit Shah, on several occasions, had told state leaders that the demand for flag and constitution will never be accepted.

While such remarks were unheard of in the past, apparently due to fear of reprisal from the rebel outfit, which is dreaded by many, there is an unmissable daringness on the part of the Naga political figures, especially in Nagaland with the intention either to please the central leaders and to impress the Nagaland voters or out-rightly aimedat blaming and projecting the NSCN-IM as the main culprits delaying the cherished dream of the Nagas.

With certain political figures and leaders of rival groups frequently referring to Manipur origin of the top NSCN-IM leaders, one canít help but suspect that the narrative is aimed at asking the Nagaland public to weigh relevance, in the context of Nagaland, between the Framework Agreement signed by the NSCN-IM on August 3, 2015 and the Agreed Position appended by Working Committee of the 7-member mainly Nagaland-based NNPGs on November 17,2017 with the Union government.



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