NTIMES 23Nov: Muivah’s solution only within Manipur: Kitovi
GPRN/NSCN ato kilonser N. Kitovi Zhimomi Thursday said that since the government of India has rejected- sovereignty and integration- any solution that may come about between government of India and Muivah could not be applied beyond Manipur.
Kitovi said this in an exclusive interview to Nagaland Post during the observance of the 6th Unification Day at GPRN/NSCN’s Designated Camp at Khehoi Thursday.
He claimed that the current talks between the NSCN (I-M) and the government of India was confined only to Naga inhabited areas in Manipur and thus, the alternative arrangement for the Nagas of Manipur had nothing to do with the Nagas of Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam.
When asked if what he would do for the “up-gradation” of Nagas of Nagaland, Kitovi disclosed that he was seeking the opinion of “my people, Nagas of Nagaland” as to what kind of political up-gradation should be prepared.
Kitovi also said Nagas have to be united first and for that the sixteen tribes of present Nagaland state should unite and create a space which could influence people of neighbouring states as well.
You said that you are preparing to begin negotiation with government of India but what has been your assessment of the current negotiation between government of India and NSCN (I-M)?
Kitovi: The talk is only confined to state of Manipur in Naga inhabited areas. It has nothing to do with the rest of other Naga areas.
Muviah has clearly stated August 25, 2011 that integration is not possible at this stage and hence alternative arrangement for the Nagas of Manipur state and it has nothing to do with the Nagas of Nagaland, Nagas of Arunachal and Nagas of Assam.
What if Naga society in general accepts the solution worked out between NSCN (I-M) and government of India as solution to Naga issue. What would be your concrete plan or strategy in such an event?
Kitovi: Government of India, being a big country and a nation, their constitution is also very flexible. Although it is very bulky, it is flexible, but in the case of Nagas, the government of India has set two rigid conditions — no sovereignty, no integration. So any solution that may came about between government of India and Muviah cannot be applied beyond Manipur since there is no question of integration.
In your speech you said Nagas of Nagaland should talk about political up-gradation, if given a chance what would you want to do first?
Kitovi: I am seeking the opinion of my people, Nagas of Nagaland, to contribute their opinions, what kind of political up-gradation should be prepared and also ask the government of India what it could do.
In short, all politics is for the people but any solution, any up-gradation should be for the good of the people.
How are you planning to take the confidence of neigbouring states or other communities?
Kitovi: First of all, Nagas have to unite and as our president has clearly said in his speech that at least sixteen tribes of Nagaland state, present Nagaland state, should unite and create a space which can influence neighbouring people also.
What kind of inter-ethnic relationship you foresee between Nagas and other communities from neighbouring states as well as Nagas of Burma?
Kitovi: Any arrangement with the Nagas of Burma is not possible today but with Nagas of Burma we have been living together and we have been integrated together emotionally.
Such kind of spirit has to be accelerated so that one day, the unity of Naga people living in different places can come into reality.
As of now, we have to continue extending our moral support and emotional integration with our Naga people living in Burma. With the neighbouring states we have been living together as good neighbours since time immemorial — same culture, same attitude should be continued.
Is it right to say that your government is completely focusing on Nagas of India and not of Nagas in Burma.
Kitovi: Presently it is not possible to bring Nagas of Burma into our fold. They are also continuing their struggle as Khaplang has also entered into formal cease-fire with the government of Myanmar.
So, directly or indirectly even the Myanmarese government has recognized the existence of Nagas in Burma. We need to convince the people to recognize our existence and one day when our existence becomes international, undeniable then only, we can take another step but as of now to bring all the Nagas under one political umbrella is not possible.
Under all this circumstances when do you expect to begin negotiation with government of India and how prepared is your government?
Kitovi: We are expecting our negotiation with Government of India at anytime. The moment we start our negotiation with government of India, we will chart out some kind of format for our people — what kind of solution do they want from government of India in case it keeps on insisting that sovereignty and integration were not possible. So what step will be taken next, we will let young Nagas decide.
You have been stating that your government will let the young Nagas decide what kind of solution they want. Are you implying that young Nagas are more capable of deciding the future of the Nagas.
Kitovi: Exactly, they are more capable of deciding the future then the old people.
Are you indirectly implying that our older generation has made some kind of mistake in the past?
Kitovi: They have not committed any mistakes. Because of their sacrifices, we could come up to this extent but now they can only tell us the past stories and not the future.
The future lies in the hands of the young generation because whether we like it or not the world is changing –technologically, every second every minute. We are proud to say that even our Naga children are inclined to that so they know what will be best for their future.
So instead of going back to old people and asking them the old story who killed who and why and when, instead of knocking the coffin, it is rather better to talk something about future and what will be good for our young generation.
Kitovi says JLF should serve ultimatum on Government of India
GPRN/NSCN ato kilonser N. Kitovi Zhimomi Thursday opined that if members of the Joint Legislators Forum (JLF) were as serious for a solution to the Naga issue, they “should not file nominations” but serve ultimatum on the government of India stating that they would not contest elections till a solution was arrived at.
He said this while delivering a speech on ‘the present Indo-Naga political situation’ at the GPRN/NSCN’s 6th Unification Day.
Kitovi also disclosed he had told JLF members that there was no logic for Naga legislators to resign when an alternative arrangement was to be worked out only for Nagas in Manipur state. He asked what the benefits would accrue to Nagaland, if the state Assembly was dissolved for an alternative arrangement in Manipur.
Kitovi also opined that no Naga legislator would resign after spending crores of rupees during elections and that if the government of India was to talk with other political groups, they(elected members) would “ break it because they want to be ministers”.
He said if the 60 legislators were serious, they should not contest election but first ask for the solution. He said it was time for the Nagas to think “practically” and told the gathering that expecting a solution only from the underground was a “foolish thought”.
Kitovi also recalled that in the past, Naga People’s Convention(NPC) had signed the 16-Point Agreement, without consulting the “underground” and that led to bloodshed. He said the same happened when the Shillong Accord was signed. He reiterated that “today we will not repeat the same” and committed to a consensus among all sections of Nagas.
Later at a press conference, Kitovi said it was crystal clear that the government of India has ruled out sovereignty and integration as the talks with NSCN (I-M) indicated.
“It is not me who is saying that the government has ruled out, but it has been crystal clear that Muivah has compromised, otherwise he should have abrogated the cease-fire”, said Kitovi.
He also felt that he has been hearing about arriving at a solution before Christmas since 2004 and pointed out that some people were trying to confuse the Nagas by stating that solution was at the door step. Courtesy: Nagaland Post