Thursday, March 30, 2006

Op Orchid

Operation Orchid (Nagaland)

Counter-insurgency operations under Operation Orchid have been conducted from 1956 through to the formation of the Nagaland state in 1963 and the signing of the Shillong Accord in 1975. A small group of insurgents in the Naga National Council (NNC), who had been trained in China, rejected the accord and formed a new grouping in Myanmar termed the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN). But even this radical grouping split in 1988 along tribal lines forming the NSCN (IM) and the NSCN (K). After negotiations (begun in 1998) with the Government of India insurgent groups in Nagaland entered into a ceasefire agreement and eventually began a peace process that has held through the year in review. However fratricidal clashes between the Naga groups, the links with other insurgents of the northeast, and the unabated smuggling of arms and drugs have meant the continuation of Operation Orchid in the state.

Orbat:

As described above the 3 Corps headquarters is at Dimapur but since Nagaland state lays claim to land belonging to Arunachal and Assam, and movements of insurgent groups between these states are frequent, the formations under 4 Corps sometimes combine with those under the Dimapur Corps in joint operations. Anti-insurgency operations in Nagaland are also the responsibility of the state police, the Assam Rifles, CRPF, and BSF.

Major Events (Year 2004):
(See detailed map http://www.satp.org/satporgtp/images/maps/bigmap/Nagaland.jpg)

1. Jan 06 2004: http://www.outlookindia.com/pti_news.asp?id=192937 According to NSCN (K) sources, Myanmarese army personnel were moving towards their camps located in Sagaing region in the Myanmar-Nagaland-Arunachal Pradesh triangle.
2. Jan 08 The Daily Star: Foreign guerrilla camps operating in Myanmar are intact and ready to repel attacks by the ruling junta's military or Indian forces, said a NSCN leader. KanglaOnline: NSCN had formally entered into a Cease Fire Agreement with the Government of India on April 28, 2001. The outfit’s Kilonser (Minister) Kughalu Mulatonu described as positive the Government of India’s attention towards his organization in finding a lasting and permanent settlement to the protracted Indo-Naga political issue. The North East Tribune: 25 NSCN (K) militants, attired in battle fatigue, came to village Dighli (Cachar District) and took away the Gaon Panchayat President's octogenarian father, Sudhir Sarkar and two others last night.
3. Jan 13 http://www.outlookindia.com/pti_news.asp?id=194340 The NSCN-IM today claimed that it had captured the alleged mastermind behind the kidnapping and killing of a Manipur Minister's eight-year-old daughter Lungnila Elizabeth and dealt with him appropriately. The North East Tribune: New Delhi is likely to begin its formal peace process with the Khaplang faction of NSCN from next month.
4. Jan 17 The Assam tribune: An unidentified ultra was killed in an encounter between the Army and suspected Hmar and Naga militants at Moulin under Mahur police station in NC Hills bordering Cachar district this morning. E-pao.net: Chairman of the Ceasefire Monitoring Group, Lt Gen (Retd), RV Kulkarni said that if James Kuki is found guilty by the NSCN (IM) then he should be forthrightly handed over to the Government of Manipur.
5. Jan 21 The North East Tribune: Naga Hoho today said that it was contemplating to hold a symbolic “Naga Integration day” in all the Naga inhabited areas. At present the Nagas are scattered in four different Indian states- Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland and also northern Myanmar.

6. Feb 03 The North East Tribune: the NSCN (IM) in a release said that the three accused in the murder of Hoabam Ibomcha would be awarded capital punishment.
7. Feb 04 Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga today met NSCN (IM) General Secretary T Muviah and said dialogue would help in strengthening peace talks between the Government of India and the Naga outfit. http://www.outlookindia.com/pti_news.asp?id=199179
8. Feb 06 The Assam Tribune: Terming the allegation as “wild” and “without an iota of truth,” the NSCN-IM today refuted the accusation levelled against it of receiving Rs 2.5 crore from K Ramkathar, CEO, Ukhrul District Autonomous Council. “The allegation made purportedly by a fictitious person, TS Ngalung, in some local newspapers in Imphal was purely aimed at tarnishing the good image of the NSCN,” claimed the publicity wing of the outfit.
9. Feb 12 The North East Tribune: National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Isaac-Muivah) have agreed to come to India from Thailand for political level talks, according to chief minister Zoramthanga. In its effort to consolidate the ongoing peace process in Nagaland, Assam Rifles has undertaken a unique initiative of designing a calendar with important features of ceasefire ground rules in Nagamese. The theme has also been contained in small pocket cards along with some important telephone numbers, relevant to public utility pertaining to Dimapur, Kohima and Mokokchung.

10. Mar 09 The Assam Tribune: Two youths, Tilak Kumar Pillai and Alok Roy have been nabbed by the security forces at Miao in the Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh recently; the two were masquerading as agents of the NSCN (K) while serving demand notes of Rs. 30,000 each on businessmen.
11. Mar 11 E-pao.net: Nagaland Government, giving detailed list of incidents of crime taken place on NH-61 State Highway between Mokokchung and Zunheboto and border road between Mokokchung and Mariani during last six months, has urged the NSCN-K leadership to hand over its cadres involved in these crimes. IGP (Intelligence) CP Giri in his communiqué clarified that police are not after the cadres of that particular organization in general but are duty bound to take legal action against those cadres involved in crimes under the laws of the land.
12. Mar 20 e-pao.net: activists of the NSCN (K) slashed and abandoned a member of the rival NSCN (IM) at the Assam Rifles firing range located at Chingmeirong West. A piece of paper with the note “NSCN (IM) member Akiupou Pamei, Tamenglong headquarters killed by NSCN (K) town commander 2nd lieutenant James” was also found from the body.
13. Mar 23 e-pao.net: The Govt of People's Republic of Nagalim (GPRN) celebrated its 24th anniversary with gusto at Tamei in Tamenglong dist yesterday attended by some top NSCN (IM) leaders including Angelus and Chawang, who stated that the ongoing Indo-NSCN (IM) peace process has entered a very meaningful stage. It may be recalled that as many as 13 leaders of the outfit were arrested by the State Police last year near Tulibari in Senapati Dist.

14. Apr 06 Kanglaonline: The Zeliangrong Union in a release said that the charges leveled by the NSCN (K) are baseless and unfounded. The union is purely a social organisation and the question of siding with a particular underground group does not arise, it said.
15. Apr 10 Kanglaonline: former CM of the state and former Governor of Himachal Pradesh, Hokeshe Sema, said in the Nagaland Assembly that Naga integration should not disintegrate other states, and that the meaning of concepts like sovereignty has changed.
16. Apr 24 The North East Tribune: Centre today started preliminary discussions on the issue with the Khaplang faction of the major Naga outfit, NSCN. The ceasefire between security forces and the NSCN (Khaplang), which first became operative three years ago, expires on April 28.
17. Apr 28 PTI: The discussions between the government and NSCN (K) were held in a cordial atmosphere. Both sides expressed satisfaction on the progress made so far in implementing the ceasefire and agreed to extend the bilateral ceasefire by a period of one year with effect from April 28, 2004.

18. May 06 The North East Tribune: Nagaland recorded path breaking 80 per cent polling, while voters defied poll boycott call in Arunachal. Congress leader I Imkong alleged that NSCN (IM) was campaigning for Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) candidate Wangyuh Konyak and asking vote from the people. The NSCN (IM) denied the allegation of Congress terming it ''imaginary''.
19. May 13 e-pao.net: In a major breakthrough, 9 Assam Rifles have apprehended 31 UPDS activists from a civilian bus on Paren-Ghaspani Road yesterday. According to a PIB Defence Wing release the cadres of the banned UPDS outfit were being accompanied and escorted by five NSCN (I-M) cadres in a hired civil bus to Dimapur.
20. May 17 Kanglaonline: Despite strong warnings from the NNC (Panger) and the NSCN (IM) against holding AZ Phizo Birth Centenary Celebration here at Kohima Local Ground today, the celebration went off peacefully amidst tight security in and around State capital here.
21. May 18 Kanglaonline: The NSCN (K) has today expressed its deep resentment on the activities of Lt Gen (Retd) RV Kulkarni, Chairman of the Cease Fire Supervisory Board (CFSB). It said about 6 cadres of the NSCN (IM) on May 10 last attacked a house in Zunheboto town where NSCN (K) Kilonser Kughalu Mulatonu and other high-ranking functionaries of the outfit rested. Surprisingly, Gen Kulkarni chose to remain silent on the unfortunate incident.
22. May 31 Kanglaonline: Senior NSCN (IM) leader and newly inducted Kilo Kilonser Rh Raising has said that political settlement requires a formula and has indicated the possibility of a “Phase-wise formula” for a settlement of the Naga political issue.

23. June 01 The Telegraph: The NSCN (Isak-Muivah) today said the planned visit to India next month by its top leaders hinged on the Manmohan Singh government’s explanation of its stand on the contentious subject of integrating Naga-inhabited areas.
24. June 07 The Telegraph: Suthozu village is changing both in appearance and attitude: the Assam Rifles adopted it recently as part of its “model village” project. In 1954, the village was one of the headquarters of the army, then involved in an offensive against Naga insurgents. The Assam Tribune: A five-member team of Naga Hoho, led by its president M Vero, would leave for New Delhi today to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi to explain the vexed Naga political problem.
25. June 12 The Assam Tribune: Union Home Minister, Shivraj Patil today disclosed that the Centre was in the process of finalising the next course of action in the Naga peace process, even as he ruled out redrawing of the territorial boundaries of the North Eastern States.

26. Jul 07 The North East Tribune: Nagaland has assured Assam that it would extend all cooperation to de-escalate tension along the inter-state border areas arising out of the recent firing incident in Karbi Anglong district of Assam.
27. Jul 08 The North East Tribune: An NSCN (IM) activist has been killed during an encounter with Assam police personnel at Assam-Nagaland border near Sibsagar district. Assam police personnel are presently carrying out patrolling in the Assam-Nagaland border to check encroachment by Naga people.
28. Jul 09 The Telegraph: Army units under the command of 3 and 4 Corps ringed the NSCN (IM)’s “Camp Hebron” at Nagaland’s Intangki reserve forest, adjoining Karbi Anglong in Assam, after Delhi took cognisance of the Tarun Gogoi’s complaint about the militant group’s activities along the inter-state border.
29. Jul 15 The Telegraph: NSCN (I-M) rebels concentrated in the council headquarters, known as Camp Hebron, have dispersed fearing military activities such as frisking and patrolling by the army and paramilitary Assam Rifles in and around the camps.
30. Jul 16 The Telegraph: Security forces in Nagaland have been put on alert after Assam Rifles arrested an ULFA militant in Mon yesterday. The forces apprehend that more militants belonging to the Khaplang faction of the NSCN and the ULFA may be hiding in the jungles after being driven out by Myanmarese army.
31. Jul 24 The Telegraph: the NSCN (IM) today cleared the decks for the extension of its ceasefire with Delhi. The rival Khaplang group, however, threatened to call off its ceasefire with the Centre because Assam Rifles units were raiding its camps in search of ULFA members. The NSCN (K) admitted it was helping the ULFA, which has been trying to regroup since being chased out of Bhutan last year.
32. Jul 31 e-pao.net: In a boost to the Naga peace process, the Government today extended the ceasefire with NSCN (IM) for another year following talks with the outfit in Chiangmel.

33. Aug 06 The Telegraph: Assam Assembly members adopted a resolution not to part with even an inch of land to the NSCN (I-M)-proposed Nagalim. The NSCN (I-M) has long been demanding that all contiguous Naga-inhabited areas of the region be brought under a single administrative umbrella. The Nagaland Assembly too has adopted a resolution for the unification of all Naga contiguous areas. The 16-point Agreement, on the basis of which Nagaland became the 16th state of the Indian Union, contains a clause on integration of contiguous Naga areas. But the three states that border Nagaland Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Manipur have always opposed any mention of this clause.
34. Aug 08 The North East Tribune: the Naga Hoho, disturbed by Assam’s resolution said that it would go ahead with its integration rally soon. “The Naga are demanding traditional Naga’s land and not other’s land,” argued Hoho’s general secretary Dr. John Murry. Meanwhile, the Nagaland legislative assembly in 1970, 1972, 1994 and last December has passed resolution “supporting the Naga integration”.
35. Aug 12 The Assam Tribune: In the midst of furore in Manipur over continuation of Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), its neighbour Nagaland today said it did not require the stringent law as the state was peaceful. “Because of the ceasefire and talks with the insurgent group, special powers are not necessary in the State,” Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio told reporters after meeting Home Minister Shivraj Patil.
36. Aug 15 The Telegraph: Addressing media persons on the occasion of “Naga independence day” here today, the outfit’s kilo kilonser (home minister) Rh. Raising said the Centre, despite the ceasefire, was still fighting the outfit “in the person of” the NSCN (Khaplang) and the Naga National Council. Raising thus practically accused Delhi of waging a proxy battle. “Khaplang is the brainchild of the Assam Rifles and Padmanabhaiah confessed during talks that they (the Centre) supported them,” claimed senior leader VS Atem.
37. Aug 23 The Assam Tribune: The twin militant outfits, NSCN(IM) and NSCN(K) have demanded annexation of land from the Buddhist and other indigenous faith followers of Rima Putak, Thikhak Putak, Motongsa and Longchong villages in Tirap–Changlang district in Arunachal Pradesh and issued a decree for their conversion to Christianity, allege Arunachal Buddhists.
38. Aug 28 The Telegraph: During the talks, the government reportedly asked the NSCN(I-M) to stop sheltering the Manipur outfits, but the Naga organisation demanded that the security forces should first severe their ties with the NSCN (Khaplang). Ever since the NSCN split more than a decade ago, both factions have been waging a bloody turf war.
39. Aug 30 The Telegraph: The existence of a new group, which calls itself the Reformation Army of Nagaland, came to light when some dailies published a "recruitment notice" signed by its "commander", Robert Vin.

40. Sep 08 The North East Tribune: The first ever ceasefire between the Naga freedom fighter 'The Federal Government of Nagaland' and the Government of India were struck through the initiative of the Nagaland Baptist Church Council (NBCC) through its Nagaland Peace Committee on this day in 1964.
41. Sep 16 The Telegraph: The NSCN (I-M), one of the two groups from Nagaland involved in peace parleys with the Centre, had given advertisements seeking candidates for the posts of joint secretaries in the self-styled government of the outfit. Talks were initiated with the outfit in 2001 and the ban on it was lifted two years ago.
42. Sep 18 The Telegraph: The controversy surrounding the gunning down of a Naga youth by a CRPF jawan at Merapani on Monday seems to be heating up with Nagaland levelling allegations against Assam.
43. Sep 22 The Assam Tribune: Tension is running high along the Nagaland-Assam border in Mokokchung district following a raid allegedly conducted by Assam Police in Saring Yim village.

44. Oct 02 Twenty-six persons, including women and children, were killed and over 100 injured in two powerful blasts that rocked the railway station and a nearby market in quick succession in Nagaland's commercial town of Dimapur http://www.outlookindia.com/pti_news.asp?id=253152
45. Oct 03 The Telegraph: "We will trace them ... whoever has done this. I have no words to condemn this inhuman act." This was stated by the convener of the ceasefire monitoring cell of the NSCN (I-M) Pungthing Shimrang after the twin blasts at Dimapur. "This is the handiwork of forces who are inimical to the ongoing peace process. The talks progressed smoother than was expected by many and these elements are desperate to sabotage the process," said Shimrang. Security forces see the hand of Pakistan's ISI behind bomb blasts in Dimapur. Several Assam Rifles officers and even Nagaland governor Shyamal Datta vouched for the Naga rebel groups, saying there is no history of Naga militants attacking civilians even at the height of insurgency in the state.
46. Oct 05 The Telegraph: Stung by the accusation that a "non-Naga outfit" triggered the Dimapur blasts with the assistance of its "Naga ally", the NSCN (Khaplang) today stood up for the ULFA and asked other militant groups from Assam to come clean on whether they were involved in the bombings. The statement came after the NSCN (Isak-Muivah), insinuated that the Khaplang group helped the ULFA mastermind the explosions. Officials of the intelligence wing of the army said today that the finger of suspicion in the Dimapur blasts points at fundamentalist groups operating out of ISI camps in Bangladesh.
47. Oct 09 The Assam Tribune: Yet another fierce gunfight between the NSCN-IM and Federal Government of Nagaland (FGN) has left two cadres of the FGN killed in Phek district of Nagaland.
48. Oct 13 The Sentinel (Assam): Tension has prevailed along the 'E' sector of the Assam-Nagaland border here as one Dhenu Gar of Tokoubari was allegedly assaulted with khukris by two Naga men of Akahuto Basti at Khermia.
49. Oct 20 The Assam Tribune: The needle of suspicion in the Dimapur bomb blasts pointed towards the involvement of ULFA and ISI of Pakistan, Nagaland Chief Minister, N. Rio today told Home Minister Shivraj Patil.
50. Oct 21 The Assam Tribune: The Centre's chief interlocutor K Padmanabhiah is leaving for Bangkok tomorrow to take part in the two day talks with NSCN (IM).
51. Oct 24 e-pao.net: Giving a boost to the Naga peace process, the Centre and the NSCN (IM) today agreed to hold further rounds of talks in India next month when the outfit's leaders meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
52. Oct 25 The Assam Tribune: SS Khaplang, chairman of the NSCN-K has written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh not to sign any pact with visiting Myanmarese junta delegation for launching a joint army operation, inside the Myanmarese territory where the NSCN-K has its base headquarters.
53. Oct 26 The Telegraph: Nagaland CM has reiterated a proposal for an out-of-court settlement to solve the state's boundary dispute with neighbouring Assam. He said Nagaland would let "original" Assamese people stay on the disputed land, "but when foreign nationals settle, it is dangerous for both Assam and Nagaland". He was referring to the alleged Bangladeshi settlements along the Disturbed Area Belt.
54. Oct 29 The North East Tribune: The ISI's role in the recent serial blasts in Assam and Dimapur is linked to Indian troops reduction in the Eastern sector following China's recognition of Sikkim as an Indian state, and redeploying some units in Jammu and Kashmir. The Dimapur-based 3 corps moved its headquarters to the West during Operation Parakram against Pakistan, and while the 57 division returned with the corps after the end of the face-off, 33 Corps’ 27 division has remained stationed in J and K. 27 division originally based in Kalimpong has a operational role in Sikkim but because of the Chinese recognition, it has been decided to retain it in J and K, while the 17 division holding Sikkim has been brought down and given an additional role. With an extra division spared for J and K and the possibility of more troops for the Western sector, Indian intelligence has analysed that Pakistan has resorted to terrorism in the Northeast so that further troop reduction there is constrained.
55. Oct 29 Major S L Sharma of the Army's 94 Field Regiment and the police jointly raided the house of one Anil Rajkhowa and arrested the six suspected ISI activists led by one Mohammed Sabir Khan in connection with the Dimapur railway station blast in Nagaland. http://www.outlookindia.com/pti_news.asp?id=258428

56. Nov 01 The Telegraph: The Nagaland unit of the Congress today called for a blueprint on "what can be done to find a solution above the present status of statehood".
57. Nov 16 The Assam Tribune: K Chawang, deputy kilonser of the outfit alleged, "We have concrete evidence that the FGN group was supplied with at least 80 self-loading rifles, which are made in Indian Arms Ordnance Factory only. Chawang also alleged that the Government of India was arming the NSCN-K and FGN factions to cause internal differences and bloodshed and keep the NSCN-IM under pressure during negotiations with it.
58. Nov 26 e-pao.net: The triangular factional clashes among the NSCN-IM, NSCN-K and the NNC/FGN which began since last week after a long gap of peace have till date have claimed at least eight militants' lives and injured scores of others.

59. Dec 02 The Assam Tribune: camps belonging to Khaplang faction of NSCN came under attack of Myanmar army across the border. The camps in which ULFA cadres were sheltered were also attacked, sources in Ministry of Home Affairs confirmed. A spokesman of the Khaplang faction confirmed that Myanmar army launched attacks on their camps. http://www.assamtribune.com/dec0204/at01.html The ULFA has its 128 battalion inside Myanmar and about 300-400 cadres.
60. Dec 04 The Telegraph: With only two days left before the arrival of the NSCN (Isak-Muivah) leadership in Delhi, a fierce factional war has erupted in Nagaland which has left several rebels on either side dead and/or injured.
61. Dec 07 e-pao.net: Nagaland Finance, Tourism and Excise Minister K Therie dismissed the charges that some of Rio's Cabinet Ministers were allegedly arming NNC and the NSCN (K) faction to disturb the ongoing political dialogues between the Government of India and the NSCN (IM).
62. Dec 09 The Telegraph: After the warm vibes in Delhi, the NSCN (Isak-Muivah)'s top leadership could get a surprisingly cold reception where it matters the most: Nagaland. Isak Chishi Swu and Thuingaleng Muivah will be visiting Nagaland only for the second time in three decades to gauge public opinion on the peace process and indications are that the duo will need all the diplomatic skills they have to ward off the gathering storm against their organisation. Two influential tribal organisations, the Ao Senden and the Sumi Hoho, have decided not to participate in the reception organised for the NSCN (I-M) leadership.
63. Dec 11 The Telegraph: The NSCN (Isak-Muivah) has opened channels of communication with "everyone" living near Naga inhabited areas, including people from the Kuki and Meitei communities, to give the peace process a hard push.
64. Dec 13 The North East Tribune: Another problem may have cropped up in the present NSCM (IM)-India talks as the Kuki National Army, another separatist group from Manipur, has come out with a strong objection to any demand for a greater Nagalim from the Naga rebels. In press note given to several newspapers, the KNA said "under no circumstances will the Kukis tolerate any inch of their ancestral land being included in the creation of a Greater Nagalim". The note further highlighted the Naga-Kuki clashes of the early nineties, which it termed as "genocide" on the Kuki people by the Nagas.
65. Dec 15 The Assam Tribune: At a time when the top leadership of the NSCN-IM is visiting the State, the ruling DAN government's Peace Committee has initiated peace talks with the 'Federal Government of Nagaland'. The timing of the peace talks with the FGN has drawn mixed reactions in the State because the NSCN-IM had made it clear to New Delhi that it does not want any parallel talks with any armed group in Nagaland.
66. Dec 18 The Telegraph: The NSCN (I-M) today said the exercise of seeking a "new mandate" for chairman Isak Chishi Swu and general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah would actually be more of a "reaffirmation" of faith in their leadership than a conventional election.
67. Dec 19 The Telegraph: The National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah) came under fire today from hundreds of people gathered at the funeral service of Naga Youth Movement president Besülhü Tetseo. The organisation is the youth wing of the Naga National Council (Adinno Phizo). Tetseo and one Sedevi Chakhesang, also of the NNC, were abducted by suspected NSCN (I-M) activists on Thursday evening. Tetseo's body with a bullet wound in the head was found by police near the BSF camp on the outskirts of Kohima on Friday. Chakhesang miraculously escaped a bullet.
68. Dec 21 The Telegraph: Sieluonuo Angami, a housewife, was killed when a stray bullet hit her during a shootout between NSCN (I-M) and NSCN (Khaplang) militants. An NSCN (K) rebel was also killed in the encounter. The killing of the elderly woman evoked widespread condemnation, which spilled to the streets today with women and girls joining the procession to Raj Bhavan wearing black Angami Naga shawls. "You cannot make a nation by killing your mothers," stated a placard carried by a little girl. Another said: "Killing innocents is not patriotism".
69. Dec 25 The Telegraph: The Naga National Council (Panger), which is the breakaway faction of the Adinno Phizo-led NNC, said if the peace talks ended in "integration of India-occupied Naga areas, then the NSCN will have made a formidable error". The outfit's president, I. Panger Walling, insisted that the issue of Naga sovereignty was an international one, but the NSCN (I-M) had weakened itself and the issue with the seven-year ceasefire with Delhi.

End Note:

Operation All Clear by the Royal Bhutan Army had an impact on faraway Nagaland due to the close links between the ULFA and the NSCN (K). Under the ceasefire agreement the Naga insurgents are permitted to maintain a certain number of camps—army and paramilitary surrounded and raided some of these in a hunt for ULFA members. This effort was backed up by the Myanmar army operations against northeast insurgent camps [including those of the NSCN (K)] in their country. Subsequently the ULFA and NSCN (K) are believed to have helped the ISI in carrying out the October 2nd blast at Dimapur.

Despite the ceasefire, fratricidal conflicts between the different Naga groups peaked towards the end of the year with the NSCN (K) alleging that the Ceasefire Monitoring Group under Lt Gen (retd) Kulkarni was overlooking attacks by the NSCN (IM), while the latter on its part alleged that the local state government (and the Assam Rifles) had armed the NNC/FGN and the NSCN (K) to put pressure on the NSCN (IM) during peace talks!

The NSCN (IM)’s peace talks with the central government progressed smoothly and the ceasefire with both the NSCN (IM) and the NSCN (K) was extended. This despite the fact that the government of India has pledged to uphold the territorial integrity of the neighboring states while the NSCN (IM) insists on the integration of all Naga-inhabited areas. Violent incidents by Naga groups in Manipur, Arunachal, and the Karbi-Anglong district of Assam continued unabated even as the territorial dispute between these state governments remained unresolved. The year ended on a positive note when, after several years, the NSCN (IM) Chairman Isak Chishi Swu and General Secretary Thuingaleng Muivah came to Nagaland and peacefully celebrated Christmas.