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The 13th Nagaland Legislative Assembly witnessed a heated debate on the Governor’s address on the second day of the 7th session on Monday.
The discussion started with the Opposition Naga People’s Front (NPF) questioning the usage of words -- “talks being concluded" by the Governor during his address on the Indo-Naga Political Issue.
Senior NPF MLA Imkong L. Imchen questioned whether the August house and the people of Nagaland are being ‘misled’ when the Governor in his address said, "As you are aware the negotiations going on between Government of India and the Naga groups over the past many years have been concluded. There is now a need for efforts to build on the substantial gains made so far, and to move swiftly for the final solution".
The statement "talks have concluded" was repeated on many occasions by the Governor, Chief Minister and subsection speeches, Imchen said, adding that the statement on Naga issue was “contradictory and total misleading”.
Imchen, during the discussion, also referred to the question raised by MP Tokheho Yepthomi on the status of the Peace talks in the Lok Sabha.
The Union Minister G. Kishan Reddy had replied that "talks are at an advanced stage and no timeframe is to be indicated to conclude the talks,” Imchen said.
The NPF leader has demanded the Leader of the House and Chief Minister, Neiphiu Rio to clarify the actual status of the Indo-Naga Political issue.
"Tell the people of Nagaland (that talks) have concluded or admit that the House has made a mistake,” Imchen said.
The question raised by Imchen was also backed by NPF MLA Yitachu.
Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio appreciated the Leader of Opposition, TR Zeliang for coming forward to give a joint statement on the Naga political issue supporting the consultative meeting held on Oct 15, 2020.
The Leader of the House stated that the Opposition and the Treasury bench do not have much differences on the Naga issue but only communication gap.
Replying to the query raised by MLA Imkong L. Imchen, Rio clarified that Governor RN Ravi, who is also the Interlocutor to the Naga peace talks, was the one who had announced that talks will formally conclude on 31st October 2020 and not the State Government.
He was of the view that sufficient time will be given to discuss the Naga issue, and hence further discussion with evidence on the matter can be continued on February 16.
The Chief Minister, in his concluding remarks, also stressed on the power revenue of the state which has now become a matter of great concern.
The House is expected to witness another lengthy discussion on the Naga issue and Power revenue on February 16.
(Edited by Ibankyntiew Mawrie)
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