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Centre to offer financial autonomy to Nagas

February 25, 2010 22:22 IST
The National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Issac-Muivah) general secretary Thuigaleng Muivah is scheduled to arrive in New Delhi from Amsterdam on Saturday night to start a fresh round of peace talks with the centre. The talks are expected to be held on March 2-3. Muivah is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and discuss some of the constraints to iron out a meaningful solution to the long-awaited Naga political problem. It is pertinent to mention here that the ceasefire between the government and the NSCN-IM was declared way back in 1997.

Sources within the NSCN, indicated that the incorporation of the four Naga-inhabited districts of Manipur, two districts of Arunachal Pradesh and some parts of Assam is the main issue which is causing delay in finding out an acceptable solution to the Naga problem. Once this issue is settled, other issues can be solved within a very short period.On the other hand, the government sources revealed that Centre will not accept any alteration or redrawing of the boundary line of the North Eastern region. But the Centre is reported to have created a new package with more financial and cultural autonomy for Nagas and this package will be offered during the impending talks with the NSCN-IM leadership.

The Union Home Secretary G K Pillai, during his Nagaland-Manipur visit in 2009, discussed this issue with various Naga groups including students, political parties and different regional organisations to get their views on peace initiatives.

While the Nagas are undoubtedly upbeat about the fresh round of peace talks, rival faction NSCN(K) and at the same time are asking for direct talks with the Centre before taking any decision on the long pending Naga political problem. The centre is believed to have assured various Naga groups,  that they would be taken into confidence before taking any decision in this regard.

The newly appointed interlocutor R S Pandey, a retired bureaucrat, is handling the Naga issue. 

Meanwhile, the NSCN-IM leadership and the Naga students in Delhi have decided not to organize any welcome function for Muivah at the airport, because of the prevailing security situation in the capital.  

Sujit Chakraborty in New Delhi