Union home minister Amit Shah Credit: File image

Kohima: Union Home Minister Amit Shah has tasked Nagaland political parties to work together on the Naga political issue even as the Intelligence Bureau works on a formula to resolve the contentious issue of a separate flag and constitution, a senior opposition leader said on Monday.

“Home minister told us that the ruling party (the NDPP) and the Opposition (NPF) should come together at least on the subject matter of Naga solution,” TR Zeliang, Naga People’s Front leader who is the Leader of Opposition in the Nagaland Assembly said in Jakhama while campaigning for by-elections. Two Assembly constituencies will go for by-polls on November 3.

Zeliang said Nagaland Chief Minister and NDPP leader Neiphiu Rio and senior BJP leader and Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma were also part of the high-level meeting with Shah. Arvind Kumar, Director Intelligence Bureau and Ajay Kumar Bhalla, Union Home Secretary were also part of the meeting.

According to Zeliang, Shah told them that a team of IB officials is working on the contentious issue of a separate flag and constitution.

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NSCN(IM), the largest of the Naga groups involved in the peace talks with the Government of India have not budged from the demand.

Zeliang said that If the Opposition and ruling party comes together, both “can convince the Naga negotiating groups” in areas where “it [negotiations] is not possible”, and that it is “high time” to work together towards one solution, one accord.

Zeliang said the NPF party will be conducting a meeting on October 30 to deliberate on how to take the issue forward.

The former chief minister said that the NPF and the NDPP are yet to meet on the issue but a joint press conference could be held after the consultations. He said the meeting could be held ahead of the by-polls.

NPF had stayed away from a recent joint consultative meeting called by the state government on October 15. Zeliang said the resolutions of the meeting were not different from the NPF’s stand on the issue.

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