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NSCN (K) willing to hold talks with centre
Published on 4 Jun. 2009 1:00 AM IST
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Shedding a decade long inhibition and reservation not to hold talks with the Government of India, National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Khaplang) or NSCN (K) has expressed willingness to hold talks with the government. “NSCN (K) is ready for dialogue provided a formal invitation is sent to us”, said Kughalu Mulatonu, emissary to the Collective leadership of the Khaplang faction. For long K group has been opposed to the talks with the government of India on the ground that the centre is engaging the rival faction NSCN (I-M) for talks. Isak-Muivah faction is still in talks with the government but this change of heart in the Khaplang faction is due to a “deadlock” in discussion between the NSCN (I-M) and the centre. “Since IM can’t solve the problem and talks have come to a deadlock”, that’s why we are willing to come forward to carry on talks, said Mulatonu who is in the national capital to explore the option for talks. Mulatonu accused NSCN (I-M) leadership of being “not serious” in solving the problem of Nagas. “Muivah is in Europe and Isak Chishi Swu is in China. If they are serious then they should be amidst the Naga people”, argues Mulatonu. He also blames IM leadership of being a stooge in the hands of the Indian government and claims that recently Muivah was in Somalia at the behest of the government, a claim denied by the NSCN (I-M) when contacted. When asked how hopeful K group was to get invitation for talks from the government Mulatonu did not sound so confident. He however said that “if the Indian government is eager to solve the Naga problem then there should not be any problem in getting invitation.” Regarding the agenda of the talks, the NSCN (K) emissary said that nothing was fixed so far “but we will talk with an open mind” and added that the contour of talks would be decided by the Khaplang, the President of NSCN (K) and Kitovi, the Prime Minister of Nagaland government in exile. Since 1997 both the factions have been under ceasefire agreement with the Government of India. NSCN (I-M) have been holding talks with the Indian government and so far more than fifty rounds of talks have been held in the last one decade but no result has been found out yet. The main contentious demand is the issue of Greater Nagaland. Over the years IM, which claims to be the sole representative of Naga people, has come down from its original demand from a sovereign state to a some sort of a constitutional arrangement within Indian union. However, it insists that all the Naga areas in the North East should be clubbed as Greater Nagaland which the centre and many state governments in the region vehemently oppose. NSCN (K) emerged as a separate faction in 1988 an assassination attempt on the General Secretary of what emerged as the rival outfit - NSCN (I-M) - Thuingaleng Muivah. Clannish divisions among the Nagas (Konyaks and Tangkhuls) were the primary reason behind the split of the NSCN in 1988. The Konyaks formed the NSCN-K (Khaplang) under the leadership of Khole Konyak and S S Khaplang. The Tangkhul faction, the NSCN (I-M) (Isak-Muivah), was led by Isak Chishi Swu and Thuingaleng Muivah.

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