Time to work on ‘middle formula’: former Naga CM Zeliang

Time to work on ‘middle formula’: former Naga CM Zeliang

Agency News

New Delhi, Oct 27 : Amid fast paced developments in Naga peace talks, former Chief Minister and NPF leader T R Zeliang on Sunday said all out efforts should be made to keep all important stakeholders including National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN -Isak Muivah) into the negotiating table.

"For permanent peace and lasting solution, we need all factions of Naga groups to come at the negotiating table. Good progress has been made in peace talks since 1997. Therefore, it will not be proper to keep any Naga group outside the final settlement," Mr Zeliang said.

He said there has been 'significant' progress in peace talks in the last 22 years as militant groups gave up several key and contentious demands earlier as well like the 'unification' of Naga contiguous areas. "The groups especially NSCN (IM) used to say, no unification, no solution....but having taken pragmatic stance, they moved forward for solution".
Mr Zeliang said even one or two groups were left out of the talks and final settlement', there were chances that the militancy could revive once again "as it happened in the past".

The talks between the Government of India and the NSCN (IM) have hit major hurdles after the militant group insisted on a separate Naga flag and constitution - the twin demands which for obvious reasons were not being accepted by the government negotiators.

Nagaland Governor and chief negotiator R N Ravi, held a consultative meeting with civil society and church leaders in Kohima last week, had charged the NSCN-IM with adopting "a procrastinating attitude to delay the settlement raising the contentious symbolic issues of separate Naga national flag and constitution".

"Therefore, now it is time to work and re-work. It is necessary that a middle way formula is worked out on all contentious issues," Mr Zeliang said in reference to hurdles created lately in peace parleys over the demands for a 'separate' flag and constitution for Nagas.(UNI)