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Nagas have lost political objective: Rio

(From left) NLA Speaker Kiyaneilie Peseyie, home minister Imkong L Imchen, chief minister, Niephiu Rio, higher education, Dr. Shürhozelie Liezietsu and chairman of NKVIB, Dr. Nicky Kire address the law and order meet in Kohima, Wednesday. (NP)
Correspondent KOHIMA, JUL 29 (NPN):
Published on 30 Jul. 2009 12:43 AM IST
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State chief minister, Neiphiu Rio Wednesday lamented that Nagas have lost the main objective on the Naga political issue that has now only created a law and order problem with the side issues in the state. “We talk so much on the historic 1951 Naga plebiscite but whether the mandate of the plebiscite is been implemented properly,” Rio wondered while pointing to rampant extortions taking place in Kohima in the name of various Naga underground groups and factions. Rio’s remark was contained in his keynote address delivered at the joint meeting on law and order organized by the state home department and attended by district administration, KMC, NGOs, leaders from all the wards and colonies, GBs and DBs, held at the Zonal Council Hall. Rio said collection of ‘taxes’ were being carried out in the state capital in the name of six different Naga underground groups- the three “NNC/FGN factions, NSCN (I-M), NSCN-K and NSCN (Unification)” factions presently. He wondered whether the Naga plebiscite had given the mandate to form different groups and factions and impose tax the Nagas. “If they’re working for the Nagas, they have to listen to the voice of the Nagas,” he maintained. The chief minister also pointed out to the price hike of various essential commodities which he attributed to the rampant extortion prevalent in the state. “Businessman will not pay such extortion money from their pocket but they will tax on the common people for which the prices of essential commodities has not come down,” he said. Rio also stressed on the need for assigning officers from both the police and administration to specific wards for better coordination between the ward and the administration in handling law and order in the sate capital. Warning those who were harboring the anti-social elements and criminals, he reminded that the law clearly stated that they were also equally accountable. On the problems of congestion of roads and water supply in Kohima, Rio urged the owners of land and water to cooperate towards easing the problem. Admitting that engineering structures of most of the buildings in the state capital were very poor , the chief minister said almost all the existing buildings would have to be pulled down and new ones constructed in order to turn Kohima into a beautiful city. He also mooted the idea of inter-ward competition among the 19 wards of Kohima to maintain harmony, law and order, cleanliness with the best being awarded cash prize and certificate during occasions like Republic Day or Independence Day. Earlier, home minister, Imkong L Imchen, delivering the introductory remarks, said Kohima should set an example towards maintaining social harmony. Pointing out the misuse of law and order in Kohima where high ranking officials were being threatened and extorted, Imchen questioned, “how long can we tolerate our officers who run the government being threatened?” Acknowledging the underground factions for paying heed to the voice of the people by maintaining peaceful co-existence for “sometime,” Imkong also asserted that Nagas cannot remain complacent with the situation but be consistent in action. He called upon the citizens of Kohima to contribute responsibly towards making Kohima peaceful. Imchen said that the APO with its traditional jurisdiction over Kohima, has a vital role to play towards maintaining social harmony in the town. Also speaking at the meeting, minister for urban development and higher education, Dr. Shürhozelie Liezietsu, said the situation demanded the cooperation of the citizens without any reservation as the government cannot post security personnel for every household or for every street to maintain peace. He said that the present day Nagas had defiled the traditional democratic system by tending to cross the limit of democratic boundaries. He said that those joining the national movement consider themselves as outsiders of the law of the land which in turn created law and order problem. He pointed out that some overground people carry out immoral activities using the name of the national workers. Dr. Shürhozelie said that it was the responsibility of the popular government to check such illegal actions to provide security to the citizens. Speaking on the importance of neighbourhood unit and ward unit in Kohima, the minister said that the residents of the units must develop strong determination to keep their locality free from all unwanted elements. He said that the job of the locality leaders was to report matters of illegal activities in the units to the district administration and help the administration to take necessary action with full cooperation. He said the civil societies, youth, students’ organization, hohos and churches could play a big role in keeping their localities free of law and order problem. Chairman of NKVIB, Dr. Nicky Kire said “Kohima is a mini-India” and stressed on the responsibility of each dweller to contribute towards creating a peaceful atmosphere in Kohima. He said the law and order was not only the problem of the police but that it concerned every citizen. He said that the attitude of the public in blaming the government should change and that everyone should play their own role. Dr. Nicky appealed to the telecom and the police department to set a simple emergency phone number that the public could remember easily and report immediately in case of any untoward incident. Speaker of NLA, Kiyaneilie Peseyie said that the citizens of Kohima were also to be blamed for the failure of law and order in Kohima. He stated that the problems created by the people among themselves should be settled by the same people. Stating that the situation in Kohima had improved over the time, Peseyie called upon the citizens of Kohima to be responsible and strengthen the government in maintaining law and order. He further urged the district MLAs to interact with the leaders and public of the capital to strengthen law and order.

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