Five years since the signing of a framework agreement between the Indian government and the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah), the deadlock in the talks that came about in October 2019 persists with the emergence of bottlenecks. The NSCN (I-M) has demanded that Nagaland Governor R.N. Ravi should be removed as the interlocutor for talks on the Naga accord. Talks were expanded in 2017 by including other Naga groups under the banner, the Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs). Clearly, the Governor’s letter in June addressed to Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, alleging the collapse of law and order and that armed gangs “who question the sovereignty and integrity of the nation” were engaging in “blatant extortion”, touched a sore spot for the NSCN (I-M). While the group defended the practice by terming it “tax collection”, the letter was not entirely off the mark. Yet, this has become an issue for the peace process with the NSCN (I-M) going on to release details of the 2015 framework agreement that has not been shared in the public domain so far. While the other Naga groups also took exception to the Governor’s remarks to the Chief Minister, they have differed with the NSCN (I-M) on the demand for Mr. Ravi’s removal as interlocutor.
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