File photo of ENPO president Kekongchim addressing a rally. Image credit - Bhadra Gogoi

The Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation (ENPO) at a public rally in its Tuensang headquarters on Friday reaffirmed its demand for a separate state of “Frontier Nagaland”.

Sources said thousands of people from six federating tribal bodies of ENPO, village councils, gaon burhas (village headmen) associations, frontal organisations, senior citizens and members of public under ENPO area attended the rally.

The rally adopted three resolutions, which the public unanimously agreed, they said.

It unanimously reaffirmed the August 24, 2012 resolution for a separate state demand of “Frontier Nagaland” and its continued stand on the same. The ENPO submitted a memorandum on its demand to the government of India through the then union home minister on December 6, 2010.

The rally also resolved that the entire public under the aegis of ENPO will continue to “firmly reject” any form of economic package(s) both from the Centre and the Nagaland government other than a separate Assembly, separate administration, separate high court and capital of their own.

It further resolved to reject the union ministry of home affairs letter vide F.N0.9/8/2012.7, dated 07.08.2018, signed by the joint secretary (NE), ministry of home affairs, to the Nagaland chief secretary suggesting preparation of suitable district-wise project proposals for development of Eastern Nagaland area. The letter referred to a meeting chaired by special secretary (internal security), ministry of home affairs, with the Nagaland government and ENPO on June 8, 2018.

The resolutions were signed by ENPO, Chang Khulei Setchang, Khiamniungan Tribal Council, Konyak Union, Phom People’s Council, United Sangtam Likhum Pumji, Yimchunger Tribal Council, Eastern Nagaland Women Organisation, Eastern Naga Students Federation, Eastern Nagaland GB Union and Eastern Nagaland DB Union.

The ENPO area comprises four districts of Mon, Tuensang, Kiphire and Longleng and accounts for 20 seats in the 60-member Nagaland Assembly.

Six tribes including Konyaks, Phoms, Changs, Khiamniungans, Yimchungrus and Sangtams are inhabitants of these areas.

The ENPO has been demanding a separate state alleging a ‘step-motherly’ treatment by the Nagaland government for a long time. It says the successive Nagaland governments have failed to bring any economic development in the four districts.

The demand to bifurcate Nagaland state has come in the face of NSCN (Isak-Muivah) preparing for integration of all Naga-inhabited areas of the North Eastern states under one administrative unit.

Bhadra Gogoi

Bhadra Gogoi is Northeast Now Correspondent in Nagaland. He can be reached at: bhadragogoi@yahoo.com

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