Kohima: The Nagaland government on Wednesday declared the Shamator sub-division as a full-fledged district.

Till now, Shamator was a sub-division of Tuensang district.

The state government also took the decision to recognise Tikhir community as a major tribe of the state.

With the declaration of Shamator as a district, Nagaland now has a total of 16 districts while Tikhir will be the 15th major Naga tribe.

The decisions were taken at a state Cabinet meeting held here.

Besides Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, Deputy Chief Minister Y Patton, other ministers, and leaders of the two tribal bodies of the area Yimkhiung Tribal Council (YTC) and Tikhir Tribal Council – attended the meeting.

While creating three new districts Tseminyu, Niuland, and Chumukedima on December 18, the state government had agreed in principle to grant the status of a district to Shamator.

However, the state government was of the opinion that the up-gradation of Shamator into a full-fledged district would be done only after the two communities in the area – Yimkhiung and Tikhir – come to a proper understanding and remain united.

The YTC, the apex body of the Yimkhiung tribe, had launched a peaceful protest on January 3 for upgrading Shamator sub-division of Tuensang to a district.

It decided to put on hold all its agitations since January 6 following an assurance of the state government that a third party would be engaged to negotiate with the tribal bodies of the area, resolve their differences, before making any declaration.

On January 13, the Yimkhiung Tribal Council (YTC) and the Tikhir Tribal Council (TTC), during a crucial consultative meeting with a government team, led by Commissioner Nagaland Rovilatuo Mor and others, had come to an understanding towards upgrading the Shamator sub-division into a district.

During Wednesday’s cabinet meeting, the two tribes inked a memorandum of understanding that no coercive measure will be adopted by any of the tribal councils.

It also maintained that every member of the Tikhir or Yimkhiung community shall have the freedom to choose the tribe to which he or she belongs.

The subject of any issue or dispute between the members of the two brother tribes should be localised and resolved through customary laws, practice, and status quo will be maintained, the MoU stated.

No new COVID restrictions yet: Himanta

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