Chief Minister appeals for peace

Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio on Saturday arrived in Manipur with an appeal for peace amidst objections by political parties and fears of sparking tension, as his party, the Nagaland People's Front, had a provision for uniting all Naga-settled areas in the North-East.

“I have come here for peace and not to indulge in any conflict,” Mr. Rio told a newly launched unit of his party at the Senapati district headquarters, about 45 km from here.

On the Manipur Government writing to the Union Home Ministry on his tour expressing fear that it might create communal tension, the Chief Minister said he had already talked to Union Home Minister P Chidambaram about his visit to Manipur.

Political parties were wary of the provision in the constitution of the NPF which spoke of uniting all Nagas under 'one administrative unit' which effectively meant the breakup of territories of Manipur, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh where there were Naga settlements.

The Additional Director General of Police V Zathang was present at the Senapati district headquarters with a strong police force as a precautionary measure, official sources said.

Major social organisation, United Committee Manipur, has opposed Mr. Rio's visit and has called for a general strike on Saturday.- PTI