Tuesday, November 29, 2022

UDA spokespersons dismiss Cong allegations


Planning & Coordination, Land Revenue and Parliamentary Affairs minister Neiba Kronu of the NDPP and IT&C, Science & Technology and NRE adviser Mmhonlumo Kikon of the BJP have dismissed the series of allegation levelled by Nagaland Pradesh Congress Committee (NPCC) against the ruling coalition.
Addressing the media at The Heritage here on Friday, Kronu said the Independence Day speech of chief minister Neiphiu Rio had made it very clear that Nagas had been waiting patiently for an early solution.
On the pre-poll alliance between BJP and NDPP, Kronu said this should not be confused with the ruling coalition being a facilitator to Naga peace process. He mentioned that BJP as a national party had its own principle and so did NDPP as a regional party, clarifying that merger was never discussed between the two parties.
Kronu asserted that the July 16 Parliamentary Committee resolution was very categorical and had been communicated to Centre whose response was awaited. Kikon, who is also BJP national spokesperson, recalled that BJP and NDPP had entered into an alliance before the 2018 Assembly election and formed the government thereafter, clarifying that the two parties had again entered into an alliance for the 2023 Assembly election.
Post 2018, he claimed BJP and NDPP maintained separate identities and hence the question of merger did not arise, adding that allegation of merger was baseless and meant to confuse the people. He also recalled that NPCC president K Therie had in the past vehemently condemned the booklet “Bedrock of Naga Society” and even made a statement that “as long as Sonia Gandhi was leading the Congress, the party will not go anywhere”. But now, he changed his tune and was taking the name of Prime Minister Narendra Modi constantly, which was unbecoming of a man of his stature, he added.
Kikon mentioned that the former Prime Minister had during his Nagaland visit in 2003 granted Rs 365 crore to clear liabilities when Therie was the finance minister and therefore everyone knew about his conduct.
“As people gave us the mandate, we are fulfilling our obligations as elected representatives,” he claimed, pointing out that not having a single representative in the Assembly was a clear indication that people had rejected Congress. So, with that in mind, he suggested Therie to be realistic and practical in approach.
On Naga political issues, he said the statements and resolutions of Nagaland Legislative Assembly (NLA)were being pursued with all seriousness and the message of the Prime Minister and chief minister should be taken in a positive manner.
Referring to development activities mentioned in the Independence Day speech, Kikon said the activities taken up by the State government was visible, but acknowledged that development would not come at one go. Yet, he claimed that development was taking place at a fast pace. He cited the example of four-lane road from Chümoukedima to Purana Bazar as a proof of development and urged Congress as stakeholders to contribute positively and in a constructive manner to the development initiatives.
On All India Congress Committee in-charge of Nagaland Ajoy Kumar accusing Rio and BJP for delaying solution, Kronu asserted that members of Parliamentary Core Committee were not pretending but were giving their best efforts and wanted early solution.
He mentioned that the members had put in a lot of efforts to bring the negotiating parties together, clarifying that the members had never tried to delay the solution.
Kikon said Kumar’s allegation was vindictive and that he was not even conversant with the Naga political issue.
He further commented that the NPCC president appeal to MLAs to step down for a solution was a sign of immaturity and how a former minister could make such an appeal. He said if Therie was serious, then he should come up with practical and progressive suggestions instead of allegations.
On early election as claimed by NPCC, Kikon said it was a democratic process that would be decided by Election Commission of India and not by Congress and for which the State government has not discussed the matter.
On election for solution, he said the slogan had been blown out of proportion and quoted out of context.
He claimed that solution for election slogan was made in the specific context of progress of the peace process as the Framework Agreement was signed and Agreed Position was in place then which raised possibility and probability that solution would come. However, he said things have changed since then even though Nagas wanted an early solution.
Asked to clarify whether people wanted a solution and not an election, Kronu replied that the same was reminded to the negotiating parties as it confused the people and for which a solution must come before the election.
However, if the matter continued to drag on, Kronu said political parties could do little but start the groundwork for the election, which was a democratic process.
Kikon supplemented Kronu by stating that Nagas had tried the formula of ‘solution and not election’ in 1997, but Congress had betrayed them by not heeding to the cry of the people and went ahead with the election.
He said, being a constitutionally-mandated exercise, people participated in the election and the “strategy for solution and not election did not work”.
Kikon however assured that, as mentioned in the chief minister’s Independence Day speech, the State government would pave the way once a solution was reached.
He declared that the sincerity of the Prime Minister could not be doubted and also admitted that the role of the State government’s as facilitator was limited though its energy and commitment towards Naga political issue was unlimited.

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