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Imchen says govt cannot tell UGs to stop collection
Published on 30 Nov. 2010 1:34 AM IST
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Home minister Imkong L. Imchen has expressed the government’s inability to ask the Naga underground factions to stop collecting money from the public as they (NSCN factions) have entered into Ceasefire Agreement with the Government of India and accorded official recognition by the latter.
“Since they were accorded official recognition, we cannot also ask them to stop collecting money as they have to sustain, but their prevailing means is not a correct way,” Imchen said addressing a press conference at his office chamber in Kohima Monday.
Disapproving the way money was collected from the public, Imchen suggested that there could be some transparent and accountable way of collection such as openly publishing the required amount for collection which he said would invite many people to come forward.
The home minister said that the police and administration called the current system of collection as “extortion” while the undergrounds called it “taxation” and making the public suffer.
Since statehood, all political parties in the state have been strong supporters of the Naga issue and they have not said that the undergrounds should not collect money, Imchen said. On the frequent accusation by neighbouring states that Nagaland was exporting insurgency, the home minister denied it and asserted it was the opposite.
He said the tow NSCN factions cannot deny their association with the many insurgent groups from neighbouring Assam and Manipur which were operating in Dimapur. Imchen said that the Naga groups would better serve and work for the Naga cause if they avoided such association.
The home minister claimed Nagaland was the most peaceful state in the country today and far better than even the capital Delhi.
He described it as ‘prejudice and discriminating’ that anything that takes place in Nagaland was called a law and order problem whereas it was called political in Jammu and Kashmir.

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