Crucial meet to discuss Naga issue likely next week
New Delhi: A crucial meeting between
militant outfit NSCN-IM and the government`s interlocutor is
likely to be held next week to give fresh impetus to the
ongoing Naga peace process.
A delegation of NSCN-IM led by its general secretary
Thuingaleng Muivah would hold parleys with new interlocutor R
S Pandey to iron out differences on several vexed issues
including integration of Naga-inhabited areas, official
The meeting will review the proposal given by the rebels
to bring a lasting solution to the six-decade old Naga
insurgency and the counter proposal given by the central
NSCN-IM has proposed a federal relationship with the
Indian Union with additional financial and legislative powers
to handle while the central government offered financial
package for socio-cultural development of Naga people.
In the last round of talks in March, both sides resolved
to their commitment to work out an honourable and negotiated
solution to the problem.
"There is seriousness on both sides to continue dialogue
on sustained basis," a Home Ministry official said.
Among other issues in the charter demand, the NSCN-IM
pointed out certain taxation matters and preservation of
cultural heritage, the sources said.
Muivah, who along with four other Naga leaders, arrived
here on February 27 from Amsterdam. After the talks in March,
he had gone to Nagaland and met NSCN-IM cadres, civil society
members, NGOs and church leaders to discuss the issue.
Pandey also undertook a visit to the northeastern
states last week and met political leaders and other stake
holders to get feedback from them.
A ceasefire was agreed on with NSCN-IM in August 1997.
In May 1998, the union government had appointed Swaraj
Kaushal as the first negotiator. He continued in his post till
July 1999. After him, former home secretary K Padmanabhaiah
took charge and continued till last year.
Pandey, a former petroleum secretary and a 1972 batch
Nagaland cadre IAS officer, was appointed as a new interlocutor
on February 11.
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