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Euphoria over Naga talks dissipating: Rio
Published on 18 Sep. 2008 1:03 AM IST
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Chief minister Neiphiu Rio has informed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that the initial euphoria and enthusiasm created by upgradation of Naga talks to a political level through constitution of cabinet sub committee under Oscar Fernandes by the UPA Government was gradually dissipating and being replaced by skepticism and disappointment. The reason was generally seen as lack of political commitment to resolve the issue by the UPA Government, as reflected in the slow progress of the Naga peace talks, stated a press release issued by Lalthara, additional chief secretary to the chief minister. The chief minister accompanied by Planning minister TR Zeliang had separate meetings with both the Prime Minister and Home minister Shivraj Patil Minister on September 15. “He (Rio) said that this is the right moment for the Government of India to push forward the peace talk, with a stronger political will, and in a spirit of give and take,” the release said. Rio also reiterated the readiness of DAN Government to act as facilitator in the peace process, and, “if need be, to make way for a new political dispensation that may be brought about by the successful political settlement of the Naga issue,” the release added. The chief minister also stressed on the need for a speedier development of infrastructures in the State, particularly the proposed Railway line to Kohima, four-laning of NH-39, Chiethu Airport, foot-hill road from Dimapur to Tizit and National Institute of ICT etc. Further, Rio handed over to the Prime Minister a joint memorandum signed by chief ministers of all Northeastern states, asking the central government to bear the entire additional burden on account of pay revision of state government employees, which would be necessitated consequent upon the release of 6th Pay Commission’s pay scale to central government employees, the release said. Meanwhile, the chief minister who also attended the state finance ministers’ meeting on September 16, requested the Finance Commission to take note of the special status enjoyed by Nagaland under 16-Point Agreement and Article 371 (A) of the Constitution, while recommending the revenue-gap grants to the State, the release said.

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