ENPO: Matured master stroke; Amit Shah to visit Eastern Nagaland for 2 days
Spl panel in December, issue to be addressed by March 2023
NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 6: It was a game-changer event. It was clear the Home Ministry was well prepared and had a blueprint ready.
Elections in Nagaland by February-March 2023 now seem unlikely and the issues related to the demand for a separate state for Eastern Nagaland may be addressed by the Centre by March end.
He may be known for the Machiavellian style of politics but on the politico-administrative front,
Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday played a mature and a virtual master stroke.
Those with a basket full of grievances vis-à-vis Eastern Nagaland were perhaps more than satisfied at the end of the day and the Team ENPO issued a statement on Tuesday evening saying their meeting was “very successful”.
“Hon’ble Union Home Minister highlighted a clear Road-map for amicable, legislative and sustainable solution for Eastern Nagaland, which will include consultation with the people of Eastern Nagaland and Nagaland State Government. Hon’ble Union Home Minister has also assured to visit Eastern Nagaland personally by January 2023 for which, the ENPO eagerly awaits his visit”, the statement said.
Sources said the meeting was also attended by BJP MP (Rajya Sabha) Phangnon Konyak, also a native of Mon district and hailing from Konyak tribe who are also among the chief protagonists demanding a separate statehood.
Among others, Home Secretary, Director Intelligence Bureau, Additional Secretary Home (NE) and AK Mishra, peace emissary in Naga talks also attended the meeting.
Mishra’s presence also makes it amply clear that the MHA and Home Minister Shah himself understand very well the intricacies of the ongoing peace parleys with the NNPG and the NSCN-IM and how all these are inter-linked.
A delegation of NNPG, led by N Kitovi Zhimomi, is also expected for crucial rounds of discussions with Mishra later this week. Mishra reportedly has lately adopted a ‘more crystal clear’ stance vis-à-vis his interaction with the stakeholders.
The absence of any State Government representative on December 6 (Tuesday’s) meeting despite the hoopla created by a section of NDPP and Ministers when a delegation including Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio had air-dashed to Delhi on December 3 show a different story. Things are now open for interpretation.
One key ENPO source on December 2 itself steadfastly opposed the presence of any Minister or Chief Minister Rio (for the December 3 meeting) saying no third party presence was required unless ‘they do not want to sabotage’ things.
Sources say it was indicated that at today’s meeting that by December 15, 2022, the Home Ministry will set up a special committee. It will be assigned to visit Eastern Nagaland for an on-the-spot review of the demand and grievances probably in the presence of Nagaland State Government representatives.
The panel will visit the region and submit a detailed report to Shah, who is then likely to visit Eastern Nagaland region by the second week of January 2023.
Shah may make a 2-day halt in the region and verify things at his personal level.
“The issues related to the grievances of the people of the Tuensang-Mon region will possibly be addressed in 75-80 days once Home Minister Shah makes his visit to Eastern Nagaland”, a source told Nagaland Page on the condition of anonymity.
The ENPO statement issued at Delhi said the organisation is grateful to Hon’ble Union Home Minister for his concern and for granting ample time to the ENPO team.
“It is to be stated that the Hon’ble Union Home Minister had appreciated the Eastern people for being a part of nation building thus far, which Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri. Narendra Modiji is also aware, he stated. Hon’ble Union Home Minister stated that the grievances and request for separate entity is understood”, the statement said.
The 7n tribes from the region – Konyaks, Sangtams, Changs, Phoms, Khiamniungans, Yimchungrus and Tikhirs – have stayed away from this year’s annual tourism extravaganza of Hornbill Festival being hosted in the State capital.
Some community leaders say the gesture could be interpreted as Eastern Nagaland’s lack of trust in the Rio Government in which paradoxically BJP and regionalist NPF are still the key constituents.
Surveys in the 1990s had revealed that along the entire eastern belt of Nagaland (encompassing the 6 districts), runs a rich vein of coal, limestone, nickel, marble, cobalt and magnite.
But most of these have remained untapped due to a plethora of reasons.