NPF is now 'opposition-less': Nagaland deputy CM Y Patton
File image of Nagaland deputy CM Y Patton

With just one year to go for elections, the Nagaland political scenario is hotting up. Even as CM Neiphiu Rio received a shot in the arm courtesy of the ‘defection’ of 21 MLAs of the Naga People’s Front, it seems not all is well within the government, especially between deputy CM Y Patton and CM Rio.

Patton, it seems, has not taken well to his ‘demotion’; nicely and on Saturday, speaking at the Central Naga Tribes Council (CNTC) convention in Wokha, he took to the stage to speak on a variety of issues.

“Our number one agenda should be how to solve the Naga political issue,” said Patton. “Those who do not want a solution, go to Hell,” he added.

“But we are not getting it (the solution) because of whom?” he questioned. “Since we are meeting our Prime Minister, Home Minister tomorrow, along with my Chief Minister…I going to say it as it is, and I will do so tomorrow also, if can’t find a solution, impose President’s Rule…enough is enough…I am speaking for the Nagas,” Patton said.

Patton also raised some questions about the people associated with the Naga political issue. Talking about building stronger, bigger organisations, Patton asked “Why are you not including Central Naga Officers Association? We must (discuss) this today.”

Murmurs of a rift between CM Rio and Y Patton have long been making rounds, and last month, Patton, who held the charge of the Home and Road & Bridges Department, was relieved of the charge, raising eyebrows. Days later, Patton snubbed Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio and rejected his offer of the additional portfolio of Land Resources. “With deep sense of regret, it is to inform you that I have to gracefully decline and hereby refuse to accept the new allotment of portfolio to me, that is, the Department of Land Resources, as I stand contend working together even without this additional assignment,” Patton wrote in a letter to the Chief Minister.

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