KOHIMA, Jan 20 (NEPS): Many leaders including sitting MLAs both from ruling and opposition from Eastern Nagaland have disagreed that their MLAs were responsible for underdevelopment in their areas (Eastern Nagaland). They did not comment anything on the separate “Frontier Nagaland” demand by ENPO either.
Talking to NEPS, one of the senior ruling MLAs from Mon who wanted to remain in anonymity, said the present state of Nagaland was made by amalgamation of parts from then Tuensang Frontier Division and Naga Hills. And right from the beginning, there had been huge imbalances in economy, literacy, employment, development between the people living in the so-called Eastern Nagaland sector and other areas.
‘And this issue has not so far been addressed till date,’ said the ruling MLA from Mon. He asserted that the current issue which was the culmination of long drawn out negligence could only be addressed by collective approach and with members from opposition parties.
Stating that the demand of a ‘Frontier Nagaland State’ by ENPO was the culmination of their chronic grievances unaddressed by the successive state Governments, the MLA dismissed the allegations that elected MLAs from the region were responsible for the underdevelopments in their areas. Developments were of course there but not as expected in this 21st century and if one carefully scrutinizes about the ratio of employments in all government departments between the people of Eastern Nagaland and the rest, it is really sad and dismal, he said. ‘One cannot simply say justice has been done to them even after 48 years of Nagaland statehood,’ he pointed out.
Another senior politician from Tuensang, who preferred anonymity, said the issue of their people was yet to be addressed. ‘There is a danger of larger proportion if the matter is not immediately addressed,’ he believed.
‘We are very carefully observing the reactions of our elected MLAs—be it from ruling or opposition—to our Frontier Nagaland State demand,’ said a senior student leader from Mon, wanting to be in anonymity, to NEPS over phone. ‘At the same time, we are also observing reactions of other MLAs from other parts of the state to our demand.’ ‘There is no point of return,’ he stated.