Naga Core Committee meets Muivah for possible breakthrough in talks

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Dimapur, Jul 21 (PTI) As a possible prelude to resumption of peace talks between the central government and NSCN-IM, Nagaland's Core Committee, led by Chief Minister N Rio met a 12-member official team of the rebel group at Chumukedima on Wednesday.

The NSCN-IM group was led by its general secretary T.

Muivah.

Leader of Opposition and Co-Convenor of the Core Committee, T. R. Zeliang told mediapersons that the committee expects the two Naga negotiating groups - NSCN-IM and Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs) comprising of seven Naga national groups - to sit across the table along with 60 MLAs so that they could arrive at some of kind of an understanding.

The committee has requested the NSCN-IM to resume talks with the Government of India stating that the committee will also pursue the issue with the Centre, he said No comments were however available from Chief Minister Rio or T.Muivah, who led the NSCN(IM) group.

'We met the NSCN-IM leaders today after a long gap due Covid-19 pandemic. We had a smooth interaction and understood each others points,' said Zeliang.

On recent political development where NPF has decided to join the PDA government, the NPF leader said 'we have agreed on the concept of opposition-less government.' PDA which till now had NDPP and BJP as constituents, will have the NPF as a member party once a deal on power sharing is formalised, according to analysts.

'As ruling and opposition parties we have come together in the Assembly, but outside the House we (will continue to) have differences. We are not for any kind of post but if we are together in government, it is possible to come up with some agreement,' he said.

The Framework Agreement was signed between the Centre and NSCN-IM during Zeliangs chief ministership when there was no opposition in the State Assembly.

'The Government of India will listen when we are together and have a common approach. With that perception we have agreed to the concept of opposition-less government,' said Zeliang.

On Tuesday, the core committee had met the Working Committee of NNPGs in Dimapur.

NNPGs Working Committee convener N Kitovi Zhimomi has expressed satisfaction with the outcome of Tuesdays meeting and said 'when we have resolved our differences with the government of India, there is no reason why there should be differences among Nagas.' A separate dialogue for a solution between the Central government and NSCN(IM) who signed a ceasefire in 1997 has been going on for two decades and the two sides have signed a Framework Agreement in August 2015.

The talks were said to have concluded in October 2019.

However, in recent times uncertainty over some issues such as allowing the NSCN (IM) the right to 'tax' businesses and inability to make a headway over certain other lingering points has placed the solution process in jeopardy. PTI CORR NBS JRC JRC

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