Call for solution before elections Taking all along

Solution before elections. This is definitely a move from the days when the call was ‘solution not election’ from the NSCN (IM) and the Nagas in Manipur stayed away from elections particularly in the 1998 Parliamentary election in Outer Manipur Constituency. Fast forward nearly 20 years and the call now is ‘solution before elections’ and not ‘solution not election.’ Significant to note too that the peace talk between the NSCN (IM) and the Centre has today moved from a talk with an outfit to encompass all the other major political groups of Nagaland which have come together under the Naga National Political Groups (NNPG). The NSCN (IM) certainly paved the way for a political dialogue and it is heartening to see that other groups in Nagaland have followed suit, save for the Khaplang faction of the NSCN which abrogated the truce pact sometime in 2015. With Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh reportedly assuring Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang that a meeting would be convened to deliberate on the demand of the Naga people, it is a sure indication that the Centre has taken serious note of the call for a solution before Nagaland goes to polls in the early part of this year. The ball may roll any direction, but it is significant to note that the Centre has acknowledged the wishes of the people of Nagaland. It is also equally significant to note the Government of Nagaland taking a central role in pursuing the matter with the Centre. A sure indication that everyone wants a solution and bring to a logical conclusion the peace process which started in 1997 when the NSCN (IM) and the Government of India inked the ceasefire agreement.
In as much as the people of Nagaland are anxiously awaiting the final outcome of the peace talk, the people of Manipur too are wide awake to the situation. No pressure from Manipur to expedite the peace talk, but what concerns the people here more is the outcome of the peace talk. Will it hurt the interests of Manipur is any way, is the question upper most in the minds of the people here. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Interlocutor to the peace talk RN Ravi and others have assured that the territorial sanctity of the neighbouring States will not be compromised at all, but what if the seeds of disintegration are sown ? This is a question which the State unit of the Congress has raised and it is on this plank that it has launched a series of public meetings, with former Chief Minister O Ibobi leading the way and former Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam extending effective assistance. So far nothing is in black and white and the veil of secrecy over the Framework Agreement signed back in 2015 has only added to the sense of uncertainty. This is where people need to keep their sanity and not be taken in by any fantastic conspiracy theories that may do the round. Let Rajnath Singh convene the meeting as assured to TR Zeliang and let the final outcome be worked out at the earliest possible without infringing on the interests of any of the neighbouring States. Will make no sense if a solution gives birth to many more unwanted incidents.

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