Meitie and Naga Issue -- Greater Nagaland.

I don’t know, why Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil, as to why the Government of India remained in deep freeze even as Manipur remained under siege for over 45 days. But surely there is nothing particularly new about the simmering tensions in the region over the demand for a Greater Nagaland?

Surely it is the job of the home ministry to remain alert to the possibility of these tensions spilling over and creating a situation of breakdown? And surely regional sensitivities cannot be cause for inaction?

Take the current situation caused by the economic blockade of Manipur imposed by the All Naga Students Association of Manipur (ANSAM). I could advised Manipur Chief Minister, Okram Ibobi Singh, not to go ahead with his spectacularly misguided project of announcing the June 18 as ‘State Integration Day’ and a holiday to commemorate the popular uprising by the Meities that day four years ago – it was to commemorate the sacrifices made by 18 youth in an agitation to press for withdrawal of extension of the ceasefire with NSCN (IM) to the state in 2001.

How can the official government of a state be allowed to actually celebrate a moment in its history, when the legislative assembly was torched in the name of regional pride? This is a foolhardy attempt to play with the emotions of the people, on both sides of the divide. There must, after all, be a more benign way for the Meities to convey their disquiet over the Naga peace process.