Hundreds of people from Nagaland, most of them students and professionals based in the national capital, staged a rally at Jantar Mantar here on Saturday, demanding “immediate political solution” to the issue of Naga peace talks, and a decision on the framework agreement.
The agreement was signed nearly 18 years after the government’s 1997 ceasefire deal with Naga armed groups. In 2015, the Centre had appointed R N Ravi as the interlocutor but the framework agreement is yet to be finalised more than three years later, the protesters pointed out.
State legislator and Naga People’s Front state unit president Awangbow Newmai said, “The Government of India has stumped the Northeast by giving special powers to Assam Rifles. (But) how sincere is the government if it is really looking for a solution when it gives this kind of treatment to the Northeast? Our wish is to be treated as equals. We will continue to fight for justice.”
Naga groups have in recent past given up the demand for sovereignty but redrawing of boundaries, issues such as separate passport, a flag and its own army are still unresolved, and also surfaced in the demands of leaders gathered at Jantar Mantar.
Neingulo Krome, secretary-general of Naga People’s Movement for Human Rights, said, “We want a separate state. If government does not agree to give sovereignty, there has to be some sovereignty model given to Nagas…. Framework agreement should be made public.”