IMPHAL, December 10: The United Naga Council (UNC) has called for a 48 hour National Highway 37 (Imphal-Silchar road) bandh from the midnight of December 12.
The bandh is being called in protest against the lethargic attitude of the government of India on the UNC’s demand of an alternative arrangement for the Manipur Nagas. “In continuation of our press statement of December 6 to ban the construction works on all National projects in Naga areas should no positive response be received from the Government of India(GoI) within one week’s time of that date, it has since felt necessary to register our strong resentment to the statement of Shambhu Singh, Joint Secretary(North East), Ministry of Home Affairs, GoI that the demand for an Alternative Arrangement is “quite hazy” and that the matter of upgrading the Alternative Arrangement talk to the political level has been left to the State Government to resolve with the UNC,” the Naga body said today. “While the dialogue process is kept “quite hazy” by such officials, the policies of the communal Government of Manipur (GoM) to usurp the land of the Nagas and tribal continues unabated. The assertion of the Zeliangrong Youth Front to protect the land of Nagas and opposition to slicing of huge chunk of our land to create Jiribam district has the support and endorsement of the Naga people,” it added.
According to UNC, after the submission of the postulates of the demand for an alternative arrangement on August 31, 2012 tripartite talk at New Delhi and also after having attended all the 6 rounds of talks, Singh still disrespectfully maintains that it is “quite hazy”. Instead of facilitating a sense of direction in the democratic process of dialogue, Singh, who represents GoI, is creating confusion for reasons best known to himself, the UNC further stated.
It asserted that the Nagas in Manipur did not request for a tripartite talk but wanted the Government of India to intervene with an Alternative Arrangement outside the Government of Manipur. Government of India initiated the tripartite talk process on the alternative arrangement demand. The Government of India representative, the facilitator in the dialogue has now asked the Government of Manipur, the respondent, to resolve the matter of political upgradation of the talk process with the Nagas, the petitioner. “This is absurd and a great disrespect for the democratic process and an insult to the Nagas, who in this talk process have at stake whatever is important for the human person and as a people – our identity, our history, our land & resources, our traditional institution & practices and our political aspiration as a people,” UNC added.