General Studies Paper 3 (Internal Security)
Question:- 32. Explain the Naga crisis in brief. What initiatives have been taken by the government to resolve the dispute? Answer in 250 words.
Aug 05, 2022
Answer:-

INTRODUCTION:

The Nagas are a hill people belonging to the Indo-Mongoloid family. The Nagas are not a single tribe but an ethnic community who live in the state of Nagaland and its neighbourhood.The insurgency in Nagaland, in northeastern India, is an ongoing conflict fought between the ethnic Nagas and the governments of India. Nagaland inhabited by the Nagas is located at the tri-junction border of India on the West and South, North and Myanmar on the East. The Nagas desire sovereignty and their own “Naga” territory-the  ‘Greater Nagalim’ — a consolidated State of Naga-dominated areas in Nagaland, Manipur, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh in India and bordering areas of Myanmar. In question are autonomy, their own flag and Constitution.

 

Naga Movement Timeline

1881- The Naga Hills became part of British India

1918- The Naga Club was formed to bring unity among the Naga tribes.

1946- The Naga club metamorphosed into the Naga National Council (NNC).

1947- Under the leadership of Angami Zapu Phizo, the NNC declared Nagaland as an independent State on August 14, 1947, and conducted a referendum in May 1951 to claim support for a “sovereign Nagaland”. In June 1947, Assam Governor Sir Akbar Hydari signed the Nine-Point Agreement with the moderates in the NNC but Phizo rejected it outright.

March 1952, Phizo formed the underground Naga Federal Government (NFG) and the Naga Federal Army.The government of India sent in the Army to crush the insurgency and, in 1958, enacted the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act.

 

INITIATIVES TAKEN BY GOVERNMENT TO RESOLVE THE DISPUTE:

  1. 1.A 16-point Agreement with the Naga People’s Convention (moderate faction) followed in July 1960 leading to the creation of Nagaland in December 1963.In April 1964, a Peace Mission was formed for an agreement on suspension of operations with the NNC, but it was abandoned in 1967 after six rounds of talks.
  2. 2.The Shillong Accord of 1975 followed, under which a section of NNC and NFG agreed to give up arms. However, several leaders refused to accept the agreement, which led to the split of NNC.
  3. 3.Ceasefire Agreement (1997): The NSCN-IM signed a ceasefire agreement with the government to stop attacks on Indian armed forces. In return, the government would stop all counter-insurgency offensive operations.
  4. 4.Framework Agreement (2015): In this agreement, the Government of India recognised the unique history, culture and position of the Nagas and their sentiments and aspirations.The NSCN also appreciated the Indian political system and governance.
  5. 5.An agreement on the political parameters of the settlement was worked out with the Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs), in 2017.
  6. 6.The much contentious Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 has been revoked from many places-  completely withdrawn in Meghalaya in 2018, Tripura in 2015 and Mizoram in the 1980s.
  7. 7.Regular ceasefire agreements and peace talks have been held from time to time.

 

CONCLUSION:

India is a democratic country and all diversity in all forms has a place in this country. The road to peace lies in diplomatic solutions. Continuous conversations, ceasefire agreements, securing cultural and political rights of the ethnic groups etc. are a way to understand the nitty- gritties of the problem better and hence, resolve it in future years.