Naga peace talks likely to end with ‘territorial council’: UCM

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IMPHAL, Oct 12 (Newmai): Saying that there is a strong possibility of conclude the peace talks between the Government of India and the NSCN(I-M) with ‘territorial council’ or 6th Scheduled as the outcome of it, the United Committee Manipur (UCM) said on Saturday that it will flatly oppose such development.

Addressing a press conference at UCM office in Imphal’s Lamphel here, UCM president, Sunil Karam said that his organisation has been closely examining the progress of the peace talks between the Government of India and the NSCN (I-M). “From the assessment on the latest round of talks between the Government of India representative and the NSCN (I-M) leadership, the UCM said it feels that there is a strong possibility of concluding the decades long Government of India-NSCN (I-M) peace talks at any time soon.

“To conclude the peace talks, the Government of India and the NSCN(I-M) are likely to reach to an agreement to the formation of ‘territorial council’ or extension of the 6th Scheduled of the Indian Constitution”, he said. “The UCM has repeatedly declared its firm stand against any community based administrative division in the state,” Sunil added.

“So, the UCM will flatly reject if the formation of any territorial council or extension of the 6th Scheduled in the state is the outcome of the Government of India-NSCN (I-M) peace talks”, he also.

Sunil then said that the Government of India must consult the people of Manipur before entering into any agreement with the NSCN (I-M). The UCM president then asserted that it will thwart any move from any quarter that attempts to disintegrate the territory of Manipur.

Also taking part in the press conference, UCM general secretary, Kh Athouba said that the UCM and the people of Manipur will always welcome solution between Government of India and the NSCN (I-M) as far as it does not infringe the interest of Manipur.

Claiming that during a meeting among the civil society leaders of Manipur, the Prime Minister and the Union Home minister in December 2017 had given an assurance that all stakeholders will be consulted before entering a final agreement with the NSCN (I-M), the general secretary of the UCM appealed them (the Prime Minister and the Home minister) to translate the assurance into action before reaching the final agreement.

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