NPF leader Azo urges GoI to bring logical conclusion to Naga issue

MLA Kuzholuzo (Azo) Nienu addressing 65th general session of PSU at Phek village on January 5. (Morung Photo)

MLA Kuzholuzo (Azo) Nienu addressing 65th general session of PSU at Phek village on January 5. (Morung Photo)

Our Correspondent
Phek | January 5

MLA and leader of the NPF Legislature Party, Kuzholuzo (Azo) Nienu today said that the non-implementation of the Naga Accord is one of the major issues concerning the Nagas.

After concluding the political dialogues with the Naga Political Groups, the GoI signed the Framework Agreement on 3rd August, 2015 with the NSCN (IM) and the Agreed Positions with the NNPGS on 17th November, 2017, Azo said while addressing the second day of the 65th general session of the Phek Students’ Union (PSU) at Phek village on January 5.

He said the Naga people were made to understand that all the major issues were hammered out and that only the small details were left to be worked out.

Massive consultations were held with the NGOs, CSOs and the Naga people. The Nagaland State Government even stated on the floor of the Nagaland Legislative Assembly that it was willing to step down as when required to pave the way for the smooth transition of power, he reminded.

Azo said that the Naga people desirous of enduring peace in their homeland expectantly waited for an early, honourable and amicable solution to the long Indo-Naga political conflict. The then GoI Interlocutor for the Indo Naga political talks fixed October 31 as the dateline for conclusion of the talks. 

However, for reasons best known to the Government of India, it chose to unnecessarily procrastinate in providing a roadmap and arriving at a final solution. As such, surprisingly even after more than 8 years of signing the Framework Agreement, more than 6 years of signing the Agreed position and more than 4 years of the dateline an Accord is yet to see the light of day with the possibility of an early solution not in sight, maybe not in the near future and maybe not ever, Azo said.

“The unnecessary delay on the part of the GoI has resulted in the mushrooming of more factions from 16 Naga Political groups in 2019 to 22 groups at present. I believe it is high time for the GoI to honour its commitment,” Azo said. He added that the GoI should stop “fooling the Nagas once and for all and bring about a logical conclusion to the long standing Naga Political issue.” “GoI should not forget that sovereignty is the birth right of Nagas,” he said. 

The NPF leader meanwhile said another major issue is the growing religious intolerance posing a threat to religious minorities in India.

Despite the secular and religiously tolerant Constitution of India, sporadic and sometimes serious acts of religious violence tend to occur as the root causes of religious violence often run deep in history, religious activities, and politics of India, Azo stated.

He informed that according to a report of the United Christian Forum (UCF), a civil society organisation based in Delhi, “there have been 525 attacks against Christians in India in the first eight months of 2023; all these incidents of violence are by mob violence led by so called vigilante groups of particular faith who are allegedly receiving support from people in power.”

Disruption of prayer meetings and the ban for holding of religious festivals are on the rise and there have been instances where threats of disruptions of religious gatherings and festivals have been openly announced, Azo stated.

The Kali Sena Chief threatening to disrupt Christmas Celebration in Haridwar which was published on December 23, 2022 and the videos of which have gone viral on the internet is an example of such an instance, Azo said. He further expressed concern that statements on minorities by ruling party leaders or those holding high office seem to have been a force-multiplier and led to more impunity. “If these trends were to continue, India known for its secular ideals and often regarded as the largest democracy in the world may become a thing of the past,” Azo stated.

Having said this, he however noted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s participation during this Christmas with the Christian community is highly appreciated.