Kohima/Imphal: NSCN-IM leader T Muivah,
camping at a border village since Wednesday, is understood to
have put on hold his visit to his native village in Manipur
after the Centre asked him to defer it and plan his tour in a
more congenial atmosphere.
"Since the PMO (Prime Minister`s Office) has requested
us to wait for things to settle down, we cannot disregard the
request," senior NSCN-IM functionary Phungthing Shimrang said,
adding Muivah was, however, determined to head for Somdal in
Ukhrul district at any cost.
"It is up to the government of India how fast it can
handle the present situation and create a congenial situation
for our general secretary to visit his native village without
any hindrance," he told reporters.
"Now the ball is in the government`s court and we are
waiting for its response," Phungthing said.
He, however, asserted that Muivah was determined to
head for Ukhrul at any cost.
Muivah`s visit has been opposed by Manipur government
on the ground it would disturb communal amity in the state.
The Manipur government had clamped prohibitory orders
and deployed police in strength at the Mao inter-state check
gate fearing breach of communal harmony if the NSCN-IM leader
was allowed entry. Shops and business establishments remained
closed in response to a strike called by the All-Manipur
United Clubs` Organisation opposing Muivah`s visit, which it
claimed was to divide the state.
Transport services between Manipur and neighbouring
states were cancelled in view of the strike which began at 6
Meanwhile, six Naga MLAs in Manipur resigned in
protest against the state government disallowing Muivah to
enter the state. The MLAS, all Independents were camping in
Delhi and sent their resignation letters to Manipur Speaker
Budhi Singh by fax, assembly sources in Imphal said.
NSCN-IM has been demanding a `greater Nagaland` by
merging Naga-populated areas of adjoining states but the idea
has been rejected by Manipur, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.
Manipur Chief Minister Ibobi Singh flew to Delhi
yesterday and briefed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union
Home Minister P Chidamabaram on the situation in his state.
Muivah who set out for his native village on Wednesday
to meet his family and friends has been camping at Viswema
village near the Nagaland-Manipur border.
Yesterday three among a crowd on the Manipur side of
the border at the Mao check gate waiting to welcome Muivah
were killed in a stampede when police fired teargas shells to
disperse them after they became restive and torched a vehicle
of the India Reserve Battalion.
Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio in a statement
said "It is unfortunate that the brute forces of the state
government are being blatantly used to suppress the genuine
voice and democratic rights of the people enshrined in the