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Double decade

By   /  August 2, 2017  /  Comments Off on Double decade

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August 1, 2017 marked the twentieth anniversary of the ceasefire agreement between the Government of India and the NSCN(IM). Much water has flowed under the bridge in the last two decades since the ceasefire and the negotiations started. The first noticeable change was the suspension of operations by both the groups though instances of violations were in abundance. There were also marked reactions from the neighbouring states of their apprehensions of the peace process which even led to loss of live in one state in protest against the extension of the ceasefire to that sate. There were also distinct support of the peace process from far and wide by both individuals and organisations. The most notable personalities would be President Jimmy Carter and Nelson Mandela who personally gave their support for the Naga peace process. The talks were initially agreed to be at the level of the Prime Minister and outside the country along with the other terms but gradually it shifted to Delhi and not necessarily with the Prime Minister. There were also times when the talks were completely stalled that seemed somehow dependent on the government at the Centre. At ground zero, the NSCN(IM) was also undoubtedly engaged in factional fights especially with the NSCN(K) in almost all the Naga inhabited areas. There was also a time of continuous splits into different factions that first started with the NSCN(IM) when large group of its members broke away in Nagaland to become what is commonly known the Unification group that once was with the NSCN(K). Even in Manipur the group suffered similar setbacks. However the NSCN(K) had the most number of splinters when it became two, into the NSCN(K) and the GPRN/NSCN. Next it was the NSCN(R) that broke away from the NSCN(K) when the latter abrogated the ceasefire agreement with the government of India. Similar splits also happened with the older NNC/FGN groups. The 20 year ceasefire therefore saw the highest number of splits and factional fights than the years prior to the ceasefire agreements with the various groups. It cannot be completely denied that there were clear instances when various agencies as well as the factions followed the very old adage, ‘the enemy of my enemy is my friend’ during the factional crises over the years. The factionalism also actually mirrored the differences that the Nagas have among themselves which took time for all the players and stakeholders to realise. On the other hand it was Dr. Manmohan Singh the then Prime Minister of India while talking about the Naga peace process said that a solution outside the box is required. It is accepted that his statement echoed the feelings of most of the other leaders of the country. At present it also forms an analogy that is quite apt for the present scenario. The time taken for the negotiations and the intricacies involved with the mushrooming of so many factions all stating to be the true saviours of the people have instead confused the masses who continue to be inside the box. They are unable to see anything beyond the four walls of the proverbial box. Although an out of the box solution is what is being discussed, the masses who are the real stakeholders are still kept within the box. It has also led to the increase of many so called intellectuals and leaders who leverage on the existing confusion by further shrouding the view. Although, the benefit of doubt is given to the negotiating parties and that they would want to maintain some sort secrecy, twenty years is a very long time. Unless some kind of announcement is made soon, the masses who are still inside the box may lose the very aptitude to reason and decide for themselves the options placed before them.

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