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‘Not my personal view’, says Rio on ‘integration is not possible’ comment

Neiphiu Rio

Dimapur, July 4: Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio today came clean on the ‘integration is not possible’ statement made by him in New Delhi on June 12 last by stating that it was not “his persona view.”
On June 12 last after meeting Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and GoI officials at New Delhi, Rio was reported to have said that integration of Naga inhabited areas would not be possible under the current situation. His statement was slammed by the opposition Naga People’s Front (NPF), who demanded a personal clarification from the CM, while the NSCN (IM) termed his statement as “treacherous”.
“Upon being asked about the issue of integration by the media in the course of the interview, I only replied as to what was told to us by the GoI. Negotiations have been going on for the last 21 years and therefore, it is the desire of the Naga people that an early solution should come.”
“I had also clearly mentioned that the demand for integration of contiguous Naga inhabited areas is genuine. The GoI has also recognized the genuineness of the demand. I had clearly stated, “That was the point in discussion” and so, it goes to prove that this issue was discussed in the meeting. They are not my personal views nor the views of the NDPP or the PDA Government. My office has clarified this on 14th June 2018 while the NDPP has also clarified the same on 15th June, 2018,” the chief minister said.
Stating that the PDA Government’s declared policy is to play the role of active facilitator to the ongoing Indo-Naga peace process, the chief minister said the PDA will continue to extend support and cooperation for an early resolution to the decades old imbroglio through a political agreement that is honorable and acceptable to the people.
“My track record vis-à-vis the Naga political movement, over the decades, speaks volumes for itself and as for me and my Government, we have never deviated from our stand on the Naga peace process and the issue of integration. We stand committed to the genuine aspirations of the Nagas,” he stated.
Nevertheless, Rio regretted that if any section had misunderstood the matter due to its misinterpretation in sections of the media. He hoped that with this statement, the truth will prevail and the matter be put to rest.
The chief minister further appealed to all sections to continue to make collective efforts to bring the Naga family together under a spirit of oneness and unity for the greater cause of achieving lasting peace for our people. (Page News Service)