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Home > India > News > PTI

There is a limit: Nagaland to armed outfits

May 12, 2008 12:42 IST

The Nagaland government has warned underground groups not to undermine its authority and asked them to stop on-going factional killings as they jeopardized public peace.

Expressing concern over spurt in factional violence, particularly in and around Dimapur, Home Minister Imkong Imchen said the groups should not provoke the government to directly execute its authority in the interest of public peace.

"The government's priority was to provide security and comfort to people, and one cannot afford to undermine the strength of the government. It has authority to prosecute violators (of laws) to protect people from insecurity," Imkong told newsmen on Sunday  at Dimapur after arriving from Delhi.

He said the underground groups have entered into ceasefire accords with the Centre and though the state government was not party to the arrangement, it was honouring it for the larger interest of peace.

"But in the event of incitement of violence by underground groups, the state government will be compelled to act," he said.

Stating that armed rivalries were crossing all limits, he said Naga people never mandated in favour of the gun culture that was prevailing in the state.

Underscoring the need for unity among all Naga tribes at this juncture, the minister said the present policy of domination by a single or two or three tribes over the rest was neither desirable nor achievable.

Deviating from the DAN governments earlier stand that the factional fightings were a political problem not that of law and order, the minister said, it is both and "I cannot shy away from my duty (as home minister)".

"Acts of violence are crimes and that are being committed by underground cadres in the name of political issue," the minister asserted.

He asked the people to co-operate with police, security forces and administration during patrol, frisking of vehicles and search operation instead of confronting with them.

Meanwhile, former Lok Sabha MP and Nagaland Peoples Front leader Imchalemba, in a statement, regretted that the infightings among underground groups overshadowed the Naga peace process for finding a honorable settlement to the vexed political problem.

He said leaders of various Naga groups have to admit that they had wasted precious times for infightings and at the same time also lost their credibility before the Centre with whom they were negotiating for permanent peace.

Both NSCN(I-M) and NSCN(K) had signed cease-fire with the central government in 1997 and 2001 respectively in their attempt to find an honorable settlement to the Naga conflict through political dialogue. 

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