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Rio for introduction of ILP in Dimapur

Neiphiu Rio

Consultative meet held with CSOs on RIIN. Rio said one cannot harass the citizens of any other Indian while working on the system of RIIN or in implementing the Act

By Imna Longchar, TFM Nagaland Special Correspondent

Nagaland chief minister Neiphiu Rio on Friday said that “Inner Line Permit” should be introduced in Nagaland’s commercial hub, Dimapur, after considering the difficulties and problems being faced by its denizens.

Mooting the idea in formulating a law which protects not only the Nagas but also the citizens of other states, Rio said one cannot harass the citizens of any other Indian while working on the system of RIIN or in implementing the Act.

He also went on to add that identification of indigenous people amongst Nagas of Nagaland is not a problem due to involvement of village council but identification of indigenous Nagas in other states is a problem, citing the examples of Sikkim, Tripura and Assam where the indigenous people have now become a minority in their own states.

Rio was addressing the attendees of the consultative meet with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and Tribal Hohos on Register for Indigenous Inhabitants of Nagaland (RIIN) at his Residential Complex, Kohima.

While appreciating the efforts of the NPF party led by TR Zeliang in the opposition for vigorously pursuing the matter with the ruling government, leaving aside its differences, the chief minister reminded that the State of Nagaland came into being in pursuance of the “16th Point Agreement” and as such the state has the legitimate rights to formulate its own laws and regulations for the interest and protection of its citizens.

Disclosing that each tribe shall have its own village, regional and tribal councils in order to deal with issues pertaining to violating of customary laws and usages, Rio also added that such councils are “legal and mandated” by the Constitution by an Act and further suggested in formation of a smaller group to work on the issue having state and district level committee comprising of apex bodies like ENPO, TPO and CNTC at the state level, and tribal hohos and MLAs at the district level.

On highlighting the progress and current position of the protracted “Naga Political Issue”, leader of the opposition (NLA), TR Zeliang, said that the “progress report” was done after meeting the Union Home Minister, Amit Shah.

Zeliang also disclosed that the Union Home Minister in his meeting with the Chief Minister of Nagaland, Leader of Opposition, Ministers and Advisors had said that there cannot be any compromise on the issue of “Constitution and the Flag” while also on the other hand, he told to the Union Home Minister that “unless the Naga political issue is solved, the Naga society to move ahead for progress and development is not possible”.

Stating that “it is the ardent prayer and desire of the NPF party to work together with the government of the day when it comes to Naga political issue”, Zeliang stressed on the importance of working together leaving aside party colours on the “Naga political issue”, and further called upon all the right thinking citizens including the CSOs to give a concerted effort on the issue.

Deputy chief minister Y. Patton, who was also present in the meet, said that the issue of RIIN is to strengthen the entire process in issuing of indigenous inhabitant certificate to protect the rights and privileges of indigenous inhabitant of Nagaland.

On urban local bodies, he said Nagaland government is under the constitutional obligation to adopt the new system of municipalities in accordance with provision of the Act, because of which, the Nagaland Municipal Act 2001 came into force.

“Due to rapid urbanisation in Nagaland ULBs were created with aims and objectives to facilitate sustainable growth and to establish conducive urban governance,” said Patton while also adding that the administrative headquarters including Kohima, Dimapur and Mokochung have experienced more urbanization the growth being aided by steady and improvement in transport network in the state.

Planning & Coordination, Land Revenue minister Neiba Kronu in his speech stressed on the importance of working together as a team, irrespective of party affiliation (s). Highlighting on the issue of SARFAESI Act, Kronu reiterated on the importance of banks for growth and development of educated unemployed youth in the state.

In the consultative meeting, the tribal Hohos present took a collective decision to go for RIIN but insisted that “Banuo Z. Jamir’s report” should be made known to the general public before its implementation.

Meanwhile, a decision to form a “Joint Consultative Committee on RIIN” was also initiated in the consultative meeting.

As per a source, the committee on RIIN will be headed by the Nagaland Home Commissioner, Commissioner Nagaland as the member secretary and representatives from CNTC, ENPO and TOP as members while a sub-committee has also already been formed at the district level with deputy commissioners as the conveners and representatives of the tribal hohos of the respective districts as members.

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