The Congress, under the leadership of party president Sonia Gandhi has opened another front from which to battle the government. On August 6, during the protest outside Parliament, Sonia Gandhi spoke to the press about PM Narendra Modi’s latest achievement — the Naga Peace Accord. She claimed the signing of this accord was but another example of the Prime Minister’s arrogance and criticised him for not taking into consideration the points of view of Chief Ministers of stakeholder North Eastern states.
” PM Modi did not even think of taking into confidence our Manipur CM, Assam CM, Arunachal Pradesh CM who are directly affected,” Gandhi told reporters (as quoted by Hindustan Times ).
” How can they sign an accord with NSCN [National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Isaac-Muivah)] without consulting Nagaland CM? This is another show of arrogance by the Modi government,” she added.
The Congress is currently protesting the suspension of 25 MPs from the Lok Sabha for bad behaviour. They feel it is a violation of democratic norms.
Even Rahul Gandhi piped in after a while saying, the way the accord was singed was an “Insult to the people of these three states and the chief ministers”.
The Naga Peace Accord, ending six decades of insurgency and a shadow government in the state, was signed by PM Modi and leaders of the NSCN (IM) on August 3.
Congress CMs, like Tarun Gogoi of Assam and Nabam Tuki of Arunchal Pradesh, had welcomed the accord. While welcoming the Naga peace deal, Gogoi had expressed astonishment on why “Clauses of the agreement had been kept in the dark.”
” We do not know the exact content of the Nagaland accord. So, we cannot express our views yet. The Prime Minister did call some leaders including myself and said we have very good news. The Nagaland issue which is going on for 20 years is now resolved. I said congratulations to you. When we then called our Chief Ministers, who are are directly affected by this and asked them, they were totally blank,” Sonia Gandhi told reporters.
The Naga pact is the culmination of over 80 rounds of negotiations. The talks spanned over 16 years with the first breakthrough in 1977 when the cease fire agreement was sealed.
While the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Isaac-Muivah) is the biggest Naga rebel group which has been maintaining the ceasefire, another faction led by SS Khaplang continues to indulge in violence and was believed to be behind the deadly attack on army in Manipur in June that left 18 soldiers dead and 18 injured.
The fact that the peace accord has only been signed with the IM faction of the NSCN and completely ignored the SS Khaplang faction may result in some backlash in the state.Feature image source: PTI