Newmai News Network
SENAPATI | Aug 11
The third round of the ongoing tripartite talks between Government of India, Government of Manipur and United Naga Council (UNC) was held today at the DRDA Conference Hall, Senapati Distict Headquarters with Satyendra Garg, Joint Secretary (NE), Minister of Home Affairs, Govt. of India in the chair, witnessed “fiery expressions” from the United Naga Council (UNC) team before they signed a 4-point agreed term. The talks which started at 11 am were chaired by Satyendra Garg, the Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Government of India, and went on for about 4 hours.
One of the points said, “In terms of the agreement of the March 19, 2017 talks to redress the grievances of the United Naga Council (UNC) in respect of the creation of the new districts, the Government of Manipur will initiate appropriate steps in right earnest in this regard”. The agreed point of the March 19, 2017 states that “the grievances of the United Naga Council which led to the imposition of the economic blockade by them was recognized as there was non-adherence to the four Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and the Government of India’s assurance on the matter. The Government of Manipur agrees to start consultation with all stakeholders to redress the same”.
UNC sources informed Newmai News Network this afternoon that, in the course of the talks today the UNC team almost walked out of the hall as they demanded from the Manipur Government representatives to “nullify” all the measures including official procedures on the new districts and the various comments of Chief Minister N Biren Singh on the issue in recent times.
The UNC sources also said that the spirit of the tripartite talks was undermined by the measures taken up by the Manipur Government on the new districts. “We have pointedly told the Manipur Government representatives about all these things,” further stated the UNC sources. The UNC leaders also told the Manipur Government representatives that they have been made a hostage of the tripartite talks and victimised by the measures taken up by the latter such as constitution of ‘Boundary Commission/Committee’, ‘assertion of the Chief Minister not to roll back the new district creation’ followed by certain official proceedings on the new districts. “We told the Manipur Government’s ministerial team that the Nagas are all prepared to resume the agitation and we have already taken the position to do so,” said the UNC sources.
Responding to the charges of the UNC, the three ministers of Manipur State Government told the UNC team that “they are participating the tripartite talks for the first time, and that, they will go back and convey things to the Chief Minister”, according to the UNC sources. The UNC team then cautioned the Manipur Government team that there will not be “any next tripartite talks” if the Manipur Government continues to have the “same attitude” as it has been doing things in the past months.
Meanwhile, the other three points of the agreement signed today are that, the “UNC appreciates the Government of Manipur for complying with the May 19, 2017 agreement of conducting the talks at the political level, while expressing resentment on some recent developments”. The next round of talks will be held in the month of September, 2017, and then, “both the State Government and the UNC agreed upon to mutually respect the agreements signed in the previous talks to avoid any provocative action till the dialogue process is taken to its logical end”.
Unlike the earlier round of talks, today’s talks were brought up to the political level with the participation of three cabinet ministers of Manipur, which includes Agriculture & Veterinary Minister V. Hangkhanlian, Tribal Affairs & Hills Minister N. Kayisii and Education & Labour and Employment Minister Th. Radheshyam. Apart from the three cabinet ministers, Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Dr .J. Suresh Babu and Commissioner (Works & IPR) K. Radhakumar Singh also participated the talk from the side of the Government of Manipur. The UNC team was represented by Gaidon Kamei, President of UNC, S. Milan, General Secretary of UNC, UNC Advisor L Adani, former UNC president Paul Leo, another former UNC president Samson Remmei, UNC executive Kaikho, UNC Information Secretary Stephen, Seth Shatsang, President of All Naga Students’ Association Manipur (ANSAM) and Asha Wungnam, President Naga Women Union (NWU) and few others.