TODAY -

UPA committed to Naga peace process: Sonia
Source: Hueiyen News Service NNN/Agencies

Dimapur, February 07 2013: UPA Chairperson and AICC President Sonia Gandhi on Thursday said that the Central Government is committed to finding a solution to the six-decade-old Naga problem and taking the peace process forward. "Now we have the opportunity for the permanent resolution to the long standing Naga political problem, which is honourable and acceptable.

We will finalise the agreement as soon as possible," she said during her election campaign rallies in Nagaland today.

However, Sonia Gandhi did not give any hint on the probable time frame to ink the settlement paper on Naga issue except saying "as soon as possible" .

Sonia Gandhi first flew in to Mokokchung in the morning, addressed a mammoth rally there and reached the Nagaland commercial hub Dimapur at around 2:30 pm where she addressed another mammoth gathering asking "my dear brothers and sisters of Nagaland" to teach a lesson to the ruling Naga People's Front (NPF) led Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) government.

She accused DAN Government of corruption and betrayal of the aspiration of the people.

"It was not the BJP-led NDA government but the Congress-led government who took a bold decision to invite the NSCN (I-M) leaders for talks to sort out their issues and to bring an era of peace and development in Nagaland.

And the talks are continuing till today," Sonia Gandhi said, adding that Congress party is the only party that understands the "special circumstances prevail in Nagaland".

Dressed in a colourful Naga 'mekhela' (skirt) and shawl, Sonia Gandhi asserted that Congress party has always been committed to preserving the Naga identity and developing the Naga way of life, which has been enshrined in Article 371 of the constitution that protects the Naga tradition, land and resources.

Congress party was the one that had introduced the Article 371 .

Accusing the NPF-led Nagaland government of corruption, Sonia Gandhi said that the people of Nagaland have been "less fortunate" to have the DAN government for the last ten years.

"The misuse Rs.72 crore for development of the Sovima Cricket Stadium and Rs.233 crore provided for rural electrification were just a few examples of the corruption of the NPF-led DAN government, and the cause of your misery," she alleged.

"I hope the people of Nagaland are now ready for a change," the UPA Chairperson expressed, adding, "Now is the time for the people of Nagaland to bring true development" .

She then terms the ten years NPF-led DAN government as "dark period" of Nagaland.

"The UPA government has been pouring in huge amount of money for health care, agriculture, electricity, tourism etc., etc., but where have the money gone?" the UPA chairperson questioned.

She asserted that DAN government did not use the money for the betterment of Nagaland.

"You must ask where the Rs 89 crores sanctioned for development of tourism has gone.

Where is that money now? What had happened to the Rs 200 something crores meant for rural electrification? They have all gone to the pockets of individuals.

These are just few examples," Sonia Gandhi said.

She also said the young people too are fed up with these corruptions.

Sonia Gandhi then said that special packages for development will be given to the area of Eastern Nagaland People's Organisation (ENPO) .

"ENPO area will receive special packages," said Sonia Gandhi.

She went on to assure that the Congress government will immediately take up roads, rural development and unemployment.

She then said, "We have always stood for stability.

My dear brothers and sisters of Nagaland, make a wise choice when you go to vote on February 23" .

Today's election campaign rally was attended by Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Nabam Tuki, AICC Secretary in-charge of North East Luizinho Faleiro, former Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Soni Ambika, former Nagaland Chief Minister KL Chisi, NPCC President S.I.Jamir and other local Congress leaders.


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