If we are not serious to unite and resolve this protracted Naga Political Issue, our posterity will never forgive us: T. R Zeliang

BY | Friday, 12 April, 2024

The People’s Democratic Alliance (PDA) held its election campaign program today at Ngwalwa town, Peren for the general election to the 18th Lok Sabha.

During the campaign, T. R Zeliang, Deputy Chief Minister delivered the keynote address where he drew comparisons between Congress and BJP on the aspects of development in the State.

“How many National Highways were there in Nagaland during Congress Regime in the State? And now how many National Highways are being implemented during 7-8 years span of time? How many 4-lane or 2-lane roads were constructed during 13 years of Congress rule in the State?” were questions raised by the Deputy CM.

He cited the several changes taking place in the Road Sector in Nagaland during this decade, highlighting that from 1963-2003, there were together 5 National Highways BRO but today there are 12 National Highways – 7 portions under NH, PWD;  7 under NHIDCL & 1 under BRO.

“Now, how many 4 lane and 2 lane roads are being implemented during this one decade? The simple answer is — out of 3 four lane roads are being completed- Dimapur-Chumukedima is completed,  Dimapur bypass Dillai Gate – Patkai College Junction is 99% completed and Patkai College Junction – Kohima is being completed,” stated Zeliang.

He also cited the presence of the Kohima Medical College which is functioning and the Mon Medical College which will be coming up soon under the BJP Government.

“Is it not correct to say that transformation is taking place in the face of the State? Not only these projects, we are vigorously pursuing for some more new National Highways in the State including Nagaland Foothill Road (Tuli-Niuland portion) for which alignment as well as Consultant has been approved and DPR submitted to MoRTH for sanction,” claimed Zeliang.

As coalition partners, Zeliang said, all 60 MLAs stood by the aspiration of the Nagas in the matters of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), Uniform Civil Code (UCC) & Free Movement Regime (FMR), and the             Assam Healing (Prevention of Evil) Practises Bill, 2024.

On the PDA, Zeliang stated, “NDPP is not BJP & BJP is not NDPP. While BJP may have its own ideologies and manifestoes, NDPP is a Regional Party formed to safeguard the interest of the Naga people. Today, NDPP is in alliance with BJP primarily for two reasons – for development and protection of our rights, and to bring the Indo-Naga Political Issue to its logical conclusion.”

“There is nothing wrong for a Regional Party like NDPP in having alliance with a National Party like BJP because whether Government of the past or Government of the day, a small State like Nagaland is dependent on the Central Party which is in the power,” added Zeliang.

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The Deputy CM was of the opinion that a small State like Nagaland can neither bring Solution nor progress in development activities unless cordial  relationship with the Centre is developed. We have 24 Nationalist Factions which is adversely affecting our economy. “If we are not serious to unite and resolve this protracted Naga Political Issue, our posterity will never forgive us,” stated Zeliang.

On the Naga political issue, Zeliang questioned if any steps have been taken forward after the Ceasefire Agreement in 1997 under Congress rule. “The answer is that not a single step was taken forward toward solution rather the relationship between the State Government and negotiating group NSCN-IM turned ugly,” claimed Zeliang.

Acknowledging the efforts undertaken under Modi’s government, Zeliang

Viewed that Modi was fully convinced and determined to resolve Naga Political Issue and in his presence the Framework Agreement was signed between GoI and NSCN-IM on August 3, 2015 and Agreed Position on November 17, 2017.

According to the Deputy CM, had there been no political will power from the top, such Political Agreement could never have been signed. He, therefore opined that, the GoI should not be squarely blamed alone for the delay in solution. Instead, Zeliang

Emphasised the need for introspection and retrospection within, be it the fragmented NGOs or disunity among  Multi-Nationalist Groups.

“As far as elected representatives are concerned we are united and we have come together and established Opposition-less Government for the sake of Naga Political problem and its early solution. However, we must understand that 60 elected Members alone cannot bring Naga solution unless we shed our differences and come together with one voice for one solution which should be acceptable with the spirit of inclusiveness,” asserted Zeliang.

Short speeches were delivered by Neiba Ndang, Advisor CEB, and Convenor, Election Committee Peren, Namsilung, President, BJP Peren district, Akua Iheilung, President, NPF Peren division and Keibui, Secretary, NDPP 7 Peren AC.

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