TODAY -

Nagaland parties desperate for solution to Naga issue
- The People's Chronicle Editorial :: September 14, 2022 -



WITH official schedule of the assembly election less than six months away, it's getting increasingly clear with each passing day that political parties active in Nagaland are desperate for finding solution to the vexed Naga issue so as to impress upon the Naga voters.

After the recent formation of the Core Committee on Naga Political Issue (CCoNPI) by like-minded parties, the Committee delegates headed by chief minister Neiphiu Rio had been meeting central government leaders, home ministry officials and the centre's interlocutor for the Naga peace talks AK Mishra to seal the final deal.

Having held talks and subsequently signed pacts with different rebel groups since cessation of hostilities between the outfits and the Indian military, it is but natural that every Naga citizen would be eager to see the peace process end at the soonest possible so as to pave the way for eternal socio-political stability and facilitate acceleration of the state's all-round development.

With the final solution to the Naga issue continuing to elude even after over 20 years of negotiations across the table it is understandable that the Naga people, especially those living in Nagaland, are getting increasingly restive notwithstanding the fact that start of the peace parleys with the NSCN-IM from the later part of year 2017 had led to drastic decline in the number of insurgency-related violence.

The ceasefire agreement signed in Bangkok between the government of India and the NSCN-IM also raised hope that fruitful dialogue process will eventually bring an end to all the insurgency movements in the northeast region.

However, with uncertainty still shadowing the Naga peace process amid contradictory statements over status of the talks, there are have been comments and speculations that the unsaid but universal truth about an insurgency Situation is that there is always much more than meets the eye behind its dynamics.

In the context of insurgency movement in the region, the contributory causes are many including inconsistencies in history, economic structures, development and identity alienation.

It is also closely related to administrative weaknesses and incompetence, but above all institutionalisation of corruption that continually tramples upon all sense of fair play and justice.

For the last many decades as successive governments in New Delhi tried to nationalise the political space in the northeast by pushing ahead with mainstreaming efforts the struggling ethnicities of the region continued to challenge the nation building process.

Along with changing themes in rebel narratives such as political autonomy, economic justice and cultural rights there had been multiplicity of voices and tensions between competing rebel agendas.

For instance, for some rebel groups whose agendas are centred on safeguard of ethnic identity and geopolitical interests, their primary objective is not necessarily challenging the might of the Indian state but to establish cordiality with government security agencies in fighting their main adversaries.

Thus, it is not surprising that after over 20 years of holding talks, the NSCN-IM is hesitant to sign the final pact till the Union government cedes to its demand for separate Naga flag and constitutions whereas centre's interlocutors, RN Ravi in particular, had out-rightly ruled out possibility of honouring both the demands.

As the NSCN-IM is being projected as the main stumbling block in resolving the Naga issue while the ruling parties in Nagaland, various Naga bodies and civil society organisations are making all out efforts to resolve the same before the next Assembly elections, it is likely that the upcoming polls scheduled in February next year will-also be conducted with or without solution as had been experienced in the past when elections were conducted despite threat to boycott the democratic exercise and intense 'solution before election' narratives.



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