India has okayed separate passport, flag for Nagas: NSCN-IM

Phungreitang: RH Raising, the kilo kilonser or ‘home minister’ of the Naga organisation NSCN-IM, told the Naga people on Sunday that the Government of India had agreed to give Nagas separate passport and their own flag.
“In order to resolve the Indo-Naga issue at the earliest, the Government of India has warmly accepted the political concept, recognised the unique history and political identity of Naga (nation). These recognitions will certainly pave the way for building a separate entity for the Nagas. The demand for self-determination is non-negotiable; sovereignty lies with the people and is a universally accepted principle,” Raising said at Town Hall, Phungreitang, in Nagaland. He was speaking on the occasion of a public consultative meeting on the Indo-Naga peace accord that was signed with GoI on August 3, 2015.
He said that Nagas have never been an integral part of India nor had they signed any agreement with the Government of India to merge into the Indian Union. He said that following the principle agreed in the peace accord, the Indian government would allow Nagas to have a separate passport and flag.
He urged the Naga people to change their concept from “individualism” to a “nation”. He extolled the sacrifices and unceasing support of people to the NSCN-IM (Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagaland-Isak Muivah).
The meeting concluded with a resolution that reiterated the commitment of the public to work unitedly for the cause of the Nagas as a whole.
The gathering also appealed to the Government of India and NSCN-IM to expedite the negotiations.
In New Delhi, Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju told reporters that the Indian government had not yet agreed to the proposal of NSCN-IM to have separate passport and flag for Nagas. He said that talks with the group were still continuing.
“Government recognises the unique Naga history and is committed to it. Talks with NSCN-IM are going on. News of granting separate passport and flag are not true,” Rijiju said.
The peace accord with NSCN-IM signed in August last year was described by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a “historic” move. The pact was signed in the presence of India’s prime minister, home minister, and national security adviser Ajit Doval, by T Muivah and the government’s interlocutor RN Ravi at the PM’s residence in Delhi.
The pact was signed after more than 80 rounds of negotiations that spanned 16 years, the first breakthrough coming in 1997 when a ceasefire was agreed on.
While the NSCN-IM is the biggest Naga group, another faction led by SS Khaplang continues to indulge in violence and was believed to be behind the deadly attack on the army in Manipur in June 2015 that left 18 soldiers dead and 18 injured.