Negotiations between Centre and Naga groups have concluded : Guv

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Kohima, Feb 12 (PTI) Negotiations between the Centre and Naga groups on the Naga political imbroglio have been concluded and now there is need to move swiftly for the final solution, state Governor R N Ravi told the state Assembly on Friday.

He was addressing the House on the inaugural day of the nine-day budget session.

Ravi said a seven-point unanimous resolution was adopted at the October 15, 2020 consultative meeting which felt that there will be a single solution for the Naga political issue.

On December 18 Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio and Leader of the opposition T R Zeliang in a joint statement welcomed the Centre's positive approach for expediting the ongoing peace talks and had urged all Naga groups to come together in the spirit of reconciliation, mutual trust and understanding, he said.

The two leaders had also affirmed that they would continuously work towards a political settlement based on the unique history and identity of the Naga people, the governor said.

Ravi, who had in a letter to the chief minister on June 16, 2020, termed the law and order situation in the state as precarious, expressed a better opinion of the present law and order situation.

'The general law and order situation in the state has remained largely peaceful. There have been some localised incidents which were contained with swiftness by the district administration and police, he said.

He also lauded the state government for taking all the measures for combating COVID-19 and to the immediate response to douse forest fires in Dzukou valley.

Referring to the pandemic, Ravi said the lockdown and the economic disruption that followed brought out the state's vulnerability in food sufficiency.

The lockdown led to massive layoffs and tousands of Naga people who were employed outside were forced to return.

Creating job oppurtunites fot them was a huge challenge for the state, he said.

A Strategic Committee for Economic Affairs headed by the chief minister was constituted and a road map was drawn up to revitalise the state's economy with special focus on upgradation of facilities in health care, education, youth resources and sports, he said.

Re-skilling and gainful employment for the youth was also focussed on and Nagaland Job Links Portal was created to help connect job seekers and employers in the private sector, the governor said.

Referring to the economic health of the state, the governor in his address said that the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown directly affected revenue generation and receipt.

The Nagaland government, he said, has taken measures to reduce expenditure by effecting a 15 per cent pro-rata cut of various expenditure items both under non-development and development outlays.

Like the Centre, Nagaland has also taken steps like freezing dearness alowance, he added. PTI NBS KK KK KK