HEBRON (NAGALAND):Amid confusion among Nagas following the non-disclosure of the contents of the recently-signed “historic framework agreement” with the Centre, insurgent leader Thuingaleng Muivah on Friday categorically stated that they would not compromise on the contentious issues of integration of contiguous Naga-inhabited areas and sovereignty of Nagas.
“We told Indian leaders that there cannot be any solution without integration. Integration is our right and as such, can’t be questioned. They (Indian negotiators) said it is on the agenda, though, there will be some practical difficulties,” Muivah, who is general secretary of National Socialist Council of Nagaland or NSCN-IM, told the gathering at the 69th ‘Naga Independence Day’ celebration at their designated camp here, located some 50km from Dimapur, in Peren district.
He refuted reports that the NSCN-IM had dropped the original demand of Naga sovereignty. “We haven’t given up that demand. Indians never conquered us nor were we ever under Indian Union. Naga sovereignty will be with Nagas and Indian sovereignty will be with Indians. Indian leaders have to respect the rights of Nagas. Our history is ours. Since Naga history is unique, solution has to be unique,” Muivah insisted.
He said the NSCN-IM understood the difficulties of the Centre in solving some issues but did not disclose them. “They said they will do their best to overcome them. So, when they are changing like this, should us, Nagas, continue to blame Indian leaders? If we do that, it will be a mistake (on our part). It’s high time we appreciated the wisdom of Indian leaders,” the insurgent leader said.
He said “Indians” and Nagas would exercise their rights and co-exist as two entities. Muivah appreciated the Naga National Council (NNC), which had launched Naga insurgency movement several decades ago, for its position that Nagas would decide their own future but criticised it for signing the Shillong Accord of 1975 by which, he said, “Nagas lost almost everything.”
Muivah said the process of political negotiations began after Indian leaders realised that Naga political problem could not be resolved through military means.
“The Indians realised that they cannot suppress Nagas through any means. Soon, it dawned on them that the issue can be resolved only through political means. Then the talks followed,” Muivah said.