Nagalim: Council of Manipur meets Prime Minister
Ahead of crucial peace talks between the Centre and NSCN(IM) in Bangkok, a delegation of United Naga Council of Manipur today met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and made it clear that no settlement would be acceptable to them without unification of all Naga-inhabitated areas.
"We told the Prime Minister that there cannot be any lasting solution to the problem without unification of the Naga-inhabited areas. We will not accept any such settlement," Mani Charenamei, MP from Outer Manipur constituency who was also part of the delegation, told PTI after the meeting.
The talks, which are scheduled to be held on December 16-18 in Bangkok, assume significance as NSCN (IM) General Secretary Thuingaleng Muivah had recently threatened to call off the peace process with the Centre if the government failed to make its stand clear on the issue of unification of Naga dominated areas within the current spell of the ceasefire.
Charenmei said Prime Minister conveyed to the Council delegation that the Centre was trying its best to find a mutually acceptable solution.
Minister of State for PMO Prithviraj Chouhan, who is also a member of the Group of Ministers (GoM) for the Naga peace talks, was also present in the meeting.
According to the MP, the UNC also told the Prime Minister that they would resort to agitation soon to show that they are not happy staying in Manipur. The delegation met Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Home Minister Shivraj Patil, Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Minister for Programme Implementation Oscar Fernandes who heads the Group of Ministers for the Naga peace talks and reiterated the demand for a "Greater Nagalim".
Asked about their meeting with Fernandes, Charenamei said
"he (Fernandes) requested us to maintain maximum restraint".
Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphu Rio, at a recent meeting with Patil, had sought an early resolution of the problem saying "it should not take too long".
Oscar Fernandes and Government Interlocutor K Padmanabhaiah have been actively engaged in the Naga talks and are likely to hold parleys in Bangkok.