SENAPATI, FERUARY 16: Chairman of United Democratic Alliance and Naga People’s Front (NPF) Legislature Party leader TR Zeliang on Wednesday accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of backstabbing Naga people in 2017.
Addressing a rally at Senapati Town to kick off the Party’s Manipur election campaign, the NPF leader recalled that in 2017, the NPF had “managed to convince BJP MLAs” and passed a resolution in the Assembly on December 17, 2017 agreeing that election should be held only after solution to the Naga political issue.
“However, we missed the golden opportunity then. Prior to the adoption of this historic Assembly resolution, all the apex civil societies along with 11 political parties in the State had signed the resolution at Hotel Japfu not to file nomination in the last 2018 election till the final inking of a Peace Accord. It was the first of its kind in the context of Nagaland. However, on the same evening, the then National General Secretary of the BJP, Ram Madhav, in-charge of Northeast & Nagaland, suspended the BJP signatories from the Party and announced ‘election for solution’.
“This back-stabbed the Naga people and took us into an unknown destination and today, we are going to face, perhaps, another election for solution. If such historic resolution/agreement was not abrogated by the BJP then, Naga political solution might have been concluded in 2018”, he said.
Zeliang claimed that he was narrating those events to let the people understand that NPF is the only Party that is serious about Naga political issue.
“Today, we are glad to witness the proactive steps being taken by the various Naga political groups and the Government of India on the Indo-Naga political issue. Personally, I am confident that the Naga political problem will be resolved sooner than later ~ one that is inclusive, honourable, and acceptable as aspired by the Naga people”, he said.
Zeliang also said that NPF is not just a political party but a people’s movement toward solution for permanent peace.
According to him, Nagas currently are at a crucial juncture with the Indo-Naga peace talks at the verge of a final breakthrough.
“I understand that patience is running out and that new social and political occurrences are taking shape in our society rapidly. However, let us not be distracted but invest our time and energy on to the logical conclusion of the Indo-Naga political issue. During times like this, it is important for all of us to stand together as a single entity and we cannot afford to speak in different voices after 24 years of political dialogue”, he said.
Zeliang recalled that on July 17, 2015, a delegation of Nagaland Legislators’ Forum along with 19 members represented by all political parties and tribes had met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and various Central leaders.
He claimed that during the course of deliberation, the Prime Minister had said: “I am prepared to sign the Peace Agreement even today if Naga people can accept 80-90% of their demand and keep 10/20% open for future discussion. But if you want 100% at a time, the issue may take even 100 years”.
According to the NPF leader, this was the first statement of the Prime Minister of India “which revealed his positivity and political willpower to resolve the protracted Indo-Naga political issue”.
As the Party gears up to face the Manipur election, he maintained that it is prepared and ready to face any obstacle.
“As you are aware, there is a lot of difficulties to work for the welfare of people when you are representing a national party which is centrally based in New Delhi. Those MLAs belonging to national parties are bound by the so-called ‘high command’ from New Delhi who has no knowledge of the ground realities here. Whereas if you vote for NPF, our MLAs can proudly and without any fear represent the Naga people in the right spirit and for the welfare of the Naga people in the Manipur Assembly and in other platforms”, he said.
(Page News Service)