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Stalemate in Naga talks prevails

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: October 29, 2019  | 21:11 IST

New Delhi, Oct 29 (PTI) Hectic parleys continued for the second consecutive day on Tuesday to find a lasting solution to the seven-decade-old insurgency problem in Nagaland with the Centre's interlocutor and Governor R N Ravi holding separate talks with the NSCN-IM and a conglomerate of seven organisations, officials said. While the dialogue with the Naga National Political Groups (NNPG) here is heading for conclusion, the NSCN-IM, a major insurgent group in the Northeast, is still resisting the government pressure to give up their demands for a separate flag and Constitution for the Nagas. "The interlocutor held discussions with the NNPG in the morning and with the NSCN-IM in the afternoon. The talks are expected to be held again soon," an official privy to the development. The dialogues were convened in Delhi in a bid to iron out differences, particularly on the NSCN-IM's demands for a separate flag and Constitution for the Nagas, that have already rejected by the Centre. Ravi, in a statement last week, said that a mutually agreed draft comprehensive settlement, including all the substantive issues, is ready for signing the final agreement. "Unfortunately at this auspicious juncture, the NSCN-IM has adopted a procrastinating attitude to delay the settlement raising the contentious symbolic issues of separate Naga national flag and Constitution on which they are fully aware of the government of India's position," he had said. Ravi's statement assumes significance in view of the Centre's August 5 announcement abrogating the special status given to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370. With the annulment of the special status, the separate flag and the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir cease to exist. The framework agreement was signed on August 3, 2015 by NSCN-IM leader Thuingaleng Muivah and Ravi in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The framework agreement came after over 80 rounds of negotiations spanning 18 years, with the first breakthrough in 1997 when the ceasefire agreement was sealed after decades of insurgency in Nagaland which started soon after India's Independence in 1947. The central government has already rejected the NSCN-IM's demand for unification of Naga inhabited areas -- located in Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam. The three Northeastern states also vehemently opposed it. PTI ACB SMN

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