Gogoi rubbishes reports of mulling Naga councils in Assam

GUWAHATI, NOV 20 (AGENCIES)

Chief minister Tarun Gogoi brushed aside reports of Centre contemplating to give additional powers to Nagaland to have control over the state’s territory as “baseless” and said the reports might be a propaganda by NSCN (I-M).

“I have talked to the government of India and there is no basis to these reports of Nagaland getting a special status. My office too contacted the ministry of home affairs and said there is no information. I met the Prime Minister on Thursday but there was not even a hint,” Gogoi said on Saturday.

“I firmly believe that the NSCN (I-M) might by circulating its proposal as a decision of the government and floating its idea,” Gogoi said.
A top MHA official handling Northeast affairs had also told TOI Friday that whatever is being reported in the media is a proposal by the NSCN (I-M) and not the view or agreement of the government.

MHA on Thursday also denied making any moves to give Nagas any right by a settlement with the NSCN (I-M) to infringe upon Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh territories in any manner.

Gogoi said even if the Centre takes any such step, he would not let it happen. “In the NDA time, the Centre wanted to extend ceasefire with NSCN (I-M) to Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh. I objected to this before the then prime minister AB Vajpayee. If the same thing is repeated this time during the UPA time too, I will again oppose it,” Gogoi said.

Gogoi said the concept of Naga councils within Assam, which is being circulated, will not solve the Naga problem and rather create more problems for everybody.
“There may be Naga population in New Delhi but that does not mean there can be any Naga council there. There are other communities too in the state at several areas but I cannot open councils at all these places,” Gogoi said.

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