Wednesday, March 29, 2023

‘Frontier Naga Territory’ for Eastern Nagaland

Emilo K Konyak


Demand for a separate Frontier Nagaland state has been resolved after hectic parleys between Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation (ENPO) and the government of India that led to agreement for a ‘Frontier Naga Territory’ for Eastern Nagaland areas.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) constituted committee headed by advisor North East AK Mishra had ruled out creation of a separate ‘Frontier Nagaland’ state or Union Territory which ENPO refused to accept but eventually, both sides mutually agreed to form the ‘Frontier Naga Territory’, which will implemented after completion of the State Assembly election.
As reported earlier by Nagaland Post, Union Home minister Amit Shah is expected to visit Tuensang on February 17, during which he is likely to shed further light on details about the proposed ‘Frontier Naga Territory’.
As reported in this newspaper, the new arrangement which is to have financial autonomy, separate funding etc, for an initial period of 10 years.
In another significant development, ENPO issued a statement that it has decided to relax its August 26,2022 resolution with immediate effect, against participation in the assembly election at its February 4 executive meeting at Tourist Lodge Dimapur.
Shah welcomes decision: After ENPO decided to relax its August 26 resolution, union home minister Amit Shah tweeted: “It is heartening that in an expression of trust in the Modi government, the Eastern Nagaland Peoples Organisation (ENPO) in Nagaland has withdrawn its call to boycott the assembly elections. The decision will help in keeping the ongoing process of peace & development unhindered.”
ENPO said that the decision to relax the August 26 resolution was done after due consultation with the constituent tribal bodies and frontal organizations and based on the assurance made by union home minister to ENPO officials on February 2, 2023.
According to ENPO, the assurance was that “a solution as mutually agreed will be reached after following the due process and will be implemented after completion of the election process.”
ENPO said it had also taken serious note of MHA’s letter dated January 16, 2023 to ENPO president urging the latter to review the August 26 resolution regarding non-participation in the elections in order to ensure free, fair and peaceful polls in the larger interest of democracy in the country.
“In faith with the union home minister and the MHA, GoI, ENPO relaxes the August 26, 2022 resolution in the interest of fair and peaceful conduct of election in the state,” ENPO stated. Further, ENPO also appealed to all its citizens to cooperate with the government to conduct the election and not create any law and order problem within ENPO jurisdiction.
The entire exercise took effect after the Home ministry constituted a committee headed by AK Mishra with joint director of Intelligence Bureau Dr Mandeep Singh and director of Northeast division (MHA) AK Dhayani as members along with ENPO, backed by leaders of the seven tribal federating units, ENWO, ENSF and talk team members held series of meetings in Delhi and Guwahati since December 2022.
As tasked by union home minister, the three-member committee also visited Eastern Nagaland on a three-day visit in December to take stock of the ground situation.


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