Days before the highly-anticipated Naga peace talks over a deadlock between centre and rebel group NSCN(IM) on the contentious issues of a separate flag and constitution for the Nagas, state Governor RN Ravi has called for a meeting today with the group's interlocutor.
The meeting assumes significance ahead of the October 31 deadline set by the centre for wrapping up the Naga peace talks as it may be the last chance for both the sides to negotiate.
According to official sources, Mr. Ravi and NSCN (I-M) delegation led by General Secretary and chief negotiator Th. Muivah will hold a meeting in Delhi.
On October 24, a crucial round of talks that took place between the two sides remained inconclusive. The NSCN (IM) had blamed Mr.Ravi for the deadlock, questioning his sincerity.
"RN Ravi had failed to utterly to consult the apex CSOs (civil society organisations) of the Nagas. Is he really sincere to find an honourable solution," said a statement by the NSCN (I-M).
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had set the October 31 deadline to conclude the negotiation for the peace talks which began 22 years ago. In 2015, a framework agreement was signed between centre and NCSN (IM) for further settlement.
Working Committee (WC) of Naga National Political Groups (NNPGs), the joint platform of seven other Naga rebel groups, who joined the peace process in 2017, are ready to sign the final peace deal, leaving a window for further discussion on separate flag and constitution.
"Any unresolved matters should be decided through political and democratic process after the agreement comes into force. This position was widely accepted and endorsed at the meeting of October 18 between the Interlocutor and Tribal bodies along with all stake holders," the NNPG leadership claimed in a press statement.
Last week, the NSCN(IM) has suffered a setback with 18 NSCN (I-M) functionaries joining the rival NNPG favouring an early resolution.
Mr. Ravi is also likely to meet the NNPG leadership in Delhi on Tuesday. According to sources, centre is constantly monitoring the development.
Ahead of the peace talks, Nagaland and Manipur governments have taken steps to meet any eventuality and have put their respective police forces on "high alert". In 2001 , when ceasefire with NSCN(IM) was extended to Manipur, the state saw violent protests.