GUWAHATI: Amidst the stalemate in Centre’s peace talks with insurgent group National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN-IM), the Nagaland government has convened a “consultative meeting” with all mass-based organisations, insurgent groups and NGOs on October 15 to discuss the political situation.
Official sources said the participants would discuss the Naga political issue and ongoing peace talks between various extremist groups and the Government of India.
“All tribal hohos, mass-based organizations, civil societies, church organizations, political parties, NGOs, prominent persons etc. are being invited to discuss the most important issue that our society is presently faced with,” an official statement said.
Given that ceasefire and peace talks between the extremist groups and the Centre have been going on for more than two decades, the Neiphiu Rio government felt that it is imperative the issue is addressed by involving all sections of the Naga society.
The meeting will give a common platform to the various organisations and outfits to express their views on multiple issues and reach a consensus. The Centre is separately holding peace talks with the NSCN-IM and seven rebels groups which came together a few years ago under the banner of Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs). The NSCN-IM and the NNPGs have differences and it remains to be seen if they sit together at the meeting.
An agreement on all outstanding issues is believed to have been already reached in the talks with the NNPGs. The talks with the NSCN-IM, however, hit roadblocks as the outfit has stuck to its guns on the contentious demands of Naga flag and Naga constitution.
“What is there for the Nagas to gain out of a Naga deal if we are to lose our political identity that is identified by flag and constitution?” the NSCN-IM asked.
The “Naga political problem” is a complex issue since it also involves the aspirations of the Nagas from Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh. They have sizeable populations particularly in Manipur and Arunachal. These two states are wary of a possible Naga accord. They have made it clear that any agreement with the Nagas must not hurt their territorial interests. They are also opposed to any changes in their existing administrative arrangements.