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Nagaland Governor takes aim at NSCN faction in Republic Day speech

Nagaland Governor R.N. Ravi . File  

Nagaland Governor R.N. Ravi on Tuesday said “unrealistic intransigence of some people, who are unwilling to forsake the politics by gun”, has undermined the Centre’s political initiatives to resolve the Naga issue in the last 24 years.

Mr. Ravi, also the Centre's interlocutor for the Naga peace talks, said in his Republic Day speech that the people of Nagaland have not been able to reap optimum benefit of various progressive government schemes as “some extra constitutional entities in the guise of espousing the Naga national cause” have kept peace and progress at bay.

The Governor did not name the entities but made it apparent he was referring to the Isak-Muivah faction of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland with which he has been engaged in a war of words since June 2020.

Factional killings

“It is a matter of record that in the last some 50 years, far many times more Nagas have died in fratricidal and factional killings by the armed groups who believed in the power of the barrel of guns than those in conflict with the security forces,” Mr. Ravi said after unfurling the national flag at the Civil Secretariat Plaza in Kohima.

“The politics by gun has fragmented the Naga society. It has pitted neighbours against each other, Khels (locality) against Khels and tribes against tribes. It did not even spare the church for their honest initiatives to usher peace in this land,” he said.

Emphasising on resolution of differences through peaceful dialogue, Mr. Ravi said there was no space for gun politics. “Those who believe in such politics shall always remain outliers in a democracy. The unrealistic, self-destructive and divisive politics has exhausted the people of Nagaland,” he added.

Call for unity

The Governor advised the divergent Naga extremist groups to come together for “one solution” just as the Nagaland government headed by Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio and the opposition leader T.R. Zeliang issued a joint statement in December 2020 in view of the “popular sentiment”.

The NSCN (IM) has been rigid about a separate Naga flag and Naga constitution in the final peace deal unlike the rival Naga National Political Groups.

Mr Ravi again referred to the menace of rampant extortions under the guise of illegal taxation by anti-social elements, saying it has not yet been fully checked.

“Rampant extortions create a sense of fear among businesses, small and large, and inhibit entrepreneurship which severely undermines the economy and growth of the State. It hampers development. As a result the State is not doing as well as other States on several development indicators. The State government has continued its efforts to curb the menace of extortion and illegal taxation,” he said.

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Printable version | Mar 5, 2021 1:51:03 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/nagaland-governor-takes-aim-at-nscn-faction-in-republic-day-speech/article33667734.ece

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