Chief negotiator of the NSCN-IM Th Muivah at Camp Hebron

Kohima: While reiterating that the final solution shall be a “Naga solution” which is inclusive of all Nagas, the NSCN-IM, through a statement on Monday, said that the “peaceful co-existence of the two entities shall only be through the sharing of sovereign power”. Pointing the “hypocrisy and double standards” of the Centre, it questioned as to what “the cost” could be, since “history is being repeated”.

The NSCN-IM, through a press statement said that it does not consider the Framework Agreement (FA) to be “contentious”, as claimed by interlocutor for Naga peace talks RN Ravi and that “there is no ambiguity about it”. Terming it as a “broad framework”, it said that the foundation was laid towards resolving the “decade’s old Indo-Naga conflict through mutual respect of each other’s history and sharing of sovereignty or sovereign powers between the two entities”.

Affirming its commitment to resolve the decade’s old Indo-Naga issue based on the FA, it said that both parties have “mutually agreed that within this Framework Agreement the details and execution plan will be worked out and implemented”.

Recognising the Naga issue as “political”, the NSCN-IM said the agreement is not “internal law and order issue of India”. It said that the FA reaffirmed and recognised the “unique history and situation”, entailing that “Nagas were never a part of India either by conquest or by consent”.

It said that violent confrontation concluded and ushered towards a comprehensive progress as both parties acknowledged the contemporary realities and future vision, further recognizing the universal principle that in a democracy, sovereignty lies with the people. “Since sovereignty reflects a people’s identity, the flag and constitution is inherent and inalienable. The FA acknowledged that there will be a sharing of sovereign power/shared sovereignty for the realization of an enduring inclusive peaceful co-existence of the two entities”, the statement read.

Elaborating further, the statement said that in 2010 the first ever comprehensive official response proposal from the Centre, under RS. Pandey as Representative of the Government of India (GoI) was submitted to the NSCN which “significantly included a political solution based on Shared Sovereignty” and also included the establishment of “a statutory Pan Naga Supra state body” which will represent the interest of the Nagas and their identity.

It said that this Pan Naga Supra state body proposed inclusiveness of all Nagas and with separate fund. The NSCN-IM recounted that the proposal included the necessity of respect for the integration of Naga areas. The statement said that under Ravi, it was finalized that a statutory Pan Naga Hoho (PNH) shall be part of the political Agreement, which will recognize the integration of all Naga areas as the “legitimate rights” of the Naga people.

It said that the PNH will “safeguard and promote Naga identity, integrity and interests including social, cultural and customary practices, language and dialects of various Naga tribes” and will play an advisory role in the field of promoting education and development. While proper representation will be made for eminent Naga personalities, women and minorities, it said that the Chairman and its Executive members shall be in the rank of Cabinet and an eminent Naga person shall be nominated to the Rajya Sabha.

Saying that the integration of Naga areas and the establishment of a statutory PNH was “mutually agreed upon”, it expressed shock that these issues were projected as “contentious” in the negotiation by Ravi.

It also mentioned that the political power of a government—Legislative, Executive and Judiciary—were agreed upon between the two. It said that the Naga government shall exercise its powers on the mutually agreed competencies and also have a separate budget responsible for its internal security.

“The contentious issue is the Naga National Flag”, it said. It said that the anthem, emblem and insignia are already agreed by the GoI. With the failure of a military approach towards the movement, it said that a political dialogue was proposed in the 80’s with mutual agreement that the talks will be conducted at the highest level (Prime Minister level), without any pre-condition, and outside the country (a third party).

“The NSCN is ready for an acceptable and honourable political solution based on the FA. The issue of Flag and constitution is not a deviation from the FA and the PNH is the official proposal of the GoI”, it said. It also revealed that on several occasion during the political talks the representative of GoI, proposals were made “that the Naga Flag be used in the PNH, but the NSCN had turned it down stating the Naga National Flag should be with the Naga Government and not a social or cultural body”.

It also said that the constitution shall be “mutually agreed competencies” of the two entities. “We have left no stone unturned to explore and conclude an acceptable and honourable political solution for a peaceful co-existence of the two entities”, it added.

“Contemporary realities does not mean a solution under the Union of India as that is a deviation from the historic national decision of the Naga people”, it said making reference to the 1951 plebiscite, and that the final acceptable and honourable political solution must uphold the sovereign national identity of the Nagas which includes the Naga National Flag and Constitution.

It also accused Ravi that after his appointment as the Governor, the Centre is “visibly dealing the Indo-Naga political talks within India’s Law and Order subject”. It said that Ravi’s misinterpretation of the already “agreed competencies”, including the PNH and integration come as a shock to the NSCN-IM.

Referring to the decades long wait, it said that the NSCN is patient and has not deviated from the FA. “The Naga people and the NSCN are ready if the final political solution is acceptable and honourable to the Naga people”, the statement read.

The statement added “However, observing the activities of the Representative of the GoI and the MHA the political dialogue can be derailed if he is allowed to act recklessly and if the latter is made to function with impunity”. Pointing the “hypocrisy and double standards” of the GoI, including the imprisonment of the Chief Negotiator in Thailand, it questioned “History is being repeated, but at what cost will it be?”.

“Patience has its limit”, it warned the GoI to “wise political decision to conclude an acceptable and honourable political settlement based on the FA and respecting the national identity of the Naga people instead of delaying the peace talks and misinterpreting the FA”.

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