NEDA convenor Himanta Biswa Sarma holds closed-door meeting with Nagaland CM

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Kohima, Nov 8 (PTI) Senior Assam minister and convener of North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA) Himanta Biswa Sarma had a closed-door meeting with Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio here on Sunday, sources in the chief ministers office (CMO) said.

Sarmas visit assumes significance as he along with Rio and Leader of Opposition in Nagaland T R Zeliang had held discussions on the vexed Naga political issue with Union Home Minister Amit Shah in Delhi on October 20.

After landing here in the afternoon, Sarma met the chief minister at his official residence, said Abu Metha, Advisor to Nagaland chief minister.

However, Sarma did not meet Zeliang on Sunday, sources said.

The CMO sources refrained from making comments on the meeting.

Sarma also held a brief meeting with Nagaland BJP leaders before returning to Guwahati, sources said.

Sarma, a powerful minister of the Assam government, has been engaged by the NDA government to play an active role in solving the Naga political issue.

Sarma told 'North East Live' news channel, 'It was only a courtesy call to Chief Minister Rio and no serious discussions were held.

'There is a set of government officials, who is engaged actively with the NSCN(IM)s collective leadership, and I am convinced there will be some good news at some point of time. But these are very complex issues you cannot get a solution just out of one, two or three meetings... This is a complex issue and you need to resolve it bit by bit.

'The officials in the Ministry of Home Affairs, and the NSCN(IM) are making progress, but what is happening or what has happened or what will happen will be difficult for us to comment at this stage.

'Solution has to be one, but let the discussions be concluded with NSCN(IM) first and then we will take the common draft to everybody we should go step by step,' the NEDA convenor said.

The NSCN(IM) and Working Committee of Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs) are engaged in separate parleys for solution to the decades old Naga problem.

While talks were said to have concluded on October 31, 2019, no final agreement has been inked till date. PTI NBS MM MM