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Early solution to Naga issue desired: Pandey
Correspondent New Delhi,Mar 7:
Published on 8 Mar. 2010 12:33 AM IST
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Government of India’s Interlocutor to the Naga political talk, R.S.Pandey has said that the Dr Manmohan Singh led – UPA government at the Centre, was keen to bring about an early settlement to the Naga issue , keeping in mind the Naga people’s desires. In an exclusive to the Nagaland Post, Pandey admitted that though it was difficult to fix any time frame for solution, yet both sides were keen to hasten the process towards an early and honorable solution. He opined that the process can be hastened when the frequency of meetings between the two sides, both at the official and unofficial levels, was increased. He reiterated his earlier statement made to a national newspaper, that the government of India was not disinclined to discuss more autonomy for the Nagas on certain matters, when both sides negotiate related issues. He also reasserted that the demand for integration cannot ignore the constitutional validity of the neighboring states. Asked if the Centre had talked with the other groups, notably the NSCN(K), Pandey said the Centre will decide on it at an appropriate time. He also said the Centre will also take into account the ground reality where the desires of the Naga public would have to be reflected in any negotiation. He admitted that there were bound to be areas of disagreement but was confident that the mutual respect by all sides and the desire of the negotiators for finding and early settlement would help shape the inking of an agreement. Pandey also said points of discussions had been submitted earlier and that there was no new proposal as reported in the media. Pandey, who served as chief secretary Nagaland before retiring as union secretary of petroleum said, the Naga people have suffered enough and deserve peace and progress.

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