Nagas rally for integration
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, August 31: Leaders of ruling Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN), Opposition Congress and Naga legislators from Manipur today held a joint rally here along with leaders of various Naga tribal councils, ngos and Churches to reassert their demand for a single administrative unit for all Nagas.

Besides Nagas from the State, a large number of people from nearby Senapati and Ukhrul districts of Manipur also attended the 'Naga Integration Rally' to express their "solidarity to live as one people" to restore a permanent peace in the troubled region.

Addressing the rally, state Home Minister Thenucho of the Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) Government, alleged the Nagas were divided by the Britishers for their administrative convenience without the 'consent' of the people, but the Nagas now wanted to come together under one administrative umbrella.

"The DAN Government under the able leadership of Neiphiu Rio will, therefore, continue to pursue the aspiration of our people till it becomes a reality", the Home Minister said.

Opposition Congress leader I Imkonge, said the State Assembly had already passed resolutions four times in support of Naga integration and his party had become the part of these steps.

Stating that Naga integration was not a 'new' issue but was as "old as the Naga political awakening", Imkong maintained that they must formulate their political aspirations in concrete terms in view of the changed circumstances in the global scenario.

The CLP leader asserted that there must be a cease-fire among different underground groups and asked all sections of the community to support the underground leaders in their negotiations with the Centre for an amicable settlement to the 'Naga problem'.

Speaking on the occasion, Manipur Lok Sabha MP (Outer Constituency), Mani Charenamei and other Naga MLAs from that State expressed solidarity and asserted that there was "nothing wrong or unconstitutional in Nagas expressing their desire to remain as a single political entity while searching for a solution to the prolonged struggle".