Want solution to Indo-Naga issue before elections: Naga Hoho

New Delhi, Jan 22: The Naga Hoho, an apex Naga tribal body, on Sunday objected to the holding of elections in Nagaland next month before the Indo-Naga issue in the state was resolved and indicated that it may ask political parties to boycott the polls.
A delegation of the Naga Hoho, which has been camping in the national capital for the last few days, met several central leaders, including home minister Rajnath Singh and voiced their opposition to the polls before a peace pact between the Centre and the NSCN-IM.
“All tribals, civil society, political leaders have come together and said in once voice that they want a solution to the Naga issue before elections,” Naga Hoho president Chuba Ozukum told PTI in Delhi.
The 60-member Nagaland Assembly will go to polls on February 27.
The Naga Hoho president said the home minister told them the Centre would continue its peace initiative in Nagaland, and asked them to cooperate in the election process.
Earlier this month, the Naga Hoho had conveyed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi that for the Naga people a Naga peace accord was more important than elections and therefore, it had become imperative to defer polls for peace and tranquillity.
Expectations for a lasting peace have soared in Nagaland after the Centre and the National Socialist Council of Nagalim entered a framework agreement in 2015.
The NSCN-IM has been engaging in peace talks with the Centre’s interlocutor since 1997, when it announced a ceasefire agreement after a drawn out political movement that began shortly after the country’s independence.
The group’s key demand to integrate the Naga- inhabited areas of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Manipur has allegedly been rejected by the central government.
President Ram Nath Kovind had in November 2017 said Nagaland was at the threshold of making history as the final agreement on the issue would be arrived at shortly. (PTI)