Dimapur: Amid wide publicity regarding the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Nagaland on February 24 for election campaign, the Nagaland Public Action Committee (NPAC) has issued an “open letter” to the Prime Minister asking the latter to spell out the truth about the Naga political issue.
The letter said, “The NPAC calls upon the benign authority to prevail and be honest to the people of Nagaland as to how exactly the Government of India is treating the Naga political negotiations”. It also urged the Prime Minister to “tell us the truth” and not the reiteration of rhetoric. “Indeed, the time is overdue for the Government of India to make it either successful or end the matter in a failure but not the inconclusive business as the time has come for the Nagas to know what lies in our future,” the open letter to the Prime Minister added.
According to the NPAC, under “dynamic leadership” of Narendra Modi, the political negotiations on the Naga political issue was intensified since the BJP took the reign of governance of the “great country”, India from 2014 onward. It also said that, as of today, the Naga political negotiations between the Government of India and the Naga political negotiators are a story of 26 years running.
During these years, whatever the civil society organizations, the non-governmental organizations (NGOs), the tribal bodies and the Church had to do in its facilitation for expeditious resolution on the issue was accomplished. “And in the same pursuance, these bodies had sufficiently submitted memorandums after memorandums to you, urging you, to resolve it decisively since the people of Nagaland are ready to welcome it and own it,” it added.
Nevertheless, in the wisdom of the Government of India, it is considered that non-resolution of the Naga political issue is the better option for the ruling party in particular and for the country in general, the NPAC said. It also said that when the Framework Agreement was signed between the Government of India and the NSCN(IM) on August 3, 2015, the Government of India delightedly publicised its achievement internationally in haste as though everything was settled, and subsequently, the Government of India signed an Agreed Position with the Working Committee of NNPGs on November 17, 2017. The NPAC alleged that the Nagas were given false promise that the political issue would be resolved within 18 months time “which became a damp squib”. During 2018 Nagaland assembly election, the BJP pacified the Nagaland citizens with the famously infamous maxim ‘election for solution’ which remains to be a mere jocularity, the NPAC added.
According to the NPAC, based on the principles of Agreed Position and Framework Agreement, the Government of India and the Naga negotiators could overcome all the impediments and contours by exhaustively and mutually completed the process of negotiations on October 31, 2019 giving a high hope to the people that true peace is finally ready for inking and implementation.
It then said that since the sole power to give the final call to the Naga negotiators to sign the agreement with the Government of India lies with the latter, the political solution was considered secondary despite all those 26 years of political investment, and thus parked the Naga political issue at a forlorn location. “Undermining the plight and the sufferings of the citizens of Nagaland under the weight of elongated political negotiations by the Government of India is discriminating the very existence of the people of Nagaland,” the NPAC fumed.
The NPAC letter also alleged that once again the Government of India is trying to woo the voters in Nagaland with the same old promise that the Naga political issue would be resolved soon post elections in the ongoing State Assembly elections. “Quote: ‘Our aim is to make peace talks successful and solve Naga political problem quickly’, as appeared in local papers on February 21 and 22, 2023 respectively.
Such promise is from no other than Union Home Minister Amit Shah, during his campaign for NDPP-BJP alliance in Mon and Tuensang on February 20 and 21, 2023 respectively. It is indeed disheartening to observe that the political negotiations are being soft-peddled and keep it alive by Government of India so as to use it as a political plank and fishing bait after every 5 years. The very attitude, the double talk and such political rhetoric are nothing but rubbing salt to the injury,” the NPAC added.
It then said that the ground was ripe and ready for reception of the political solution at the very fake end of the 13th House of Nagaland Legislative Assembly (NLA). “Whereas, that chance was allowed to lapse, and now how and with what mechanism at its disposal, the Government of India is again trying to brainwash the voters with the promise that the issue would be resolved soon post elections,” the open letter of the NPAC to the Prime Minister further alleged.