Rio calls upon ENPO to reconsider demand for a separate state

Kohima, Jan 21 (PTI) Terming the grievances of the peopleof four border districts of the state as "genuine", ChiefMinister Neiphiu Rio has called upon Eastern Nagaland People�sOrganization (ENPO) to reconsider its demand for creation of aseparate "Frontier Nagaland" state.

The chief minister made the first ever public statementon the demand for creation of a separate state comprising fourborder districts of Mon, Tuensang, Kiphire and Longleng whilespeaking at a students conference near Mokokchung yesterday.

Rio said while "unity and integrity is the slogan of theGovernment of Nagaland," the recent cabinet meeting expressedregret over the ENPO�s demand at a time when the Nagas werenegotiating with the Government of India to hammer out alasting solution to the protracted Naga political conflict.

Regretting over the development, the cabinet resolved torequest the ENPO to reconsider its demand but acknowledgedgenuine grievances of the eastern Nagas about lack ofdevelopment in many fronts.

Speaking as the chief guest on the second day of the 65thgeneral conference of Ao Students� Conference (AKM) at Ungmavillage, the chief minister maintained that the advancedtribes such as Aos, Angamis and others must ponder over whythe people of the backward border districts had expressedtheir grievances.

"Being advanced and privileged tribes they have equalresponsibility towards the underprivileged," Rio asserted.

Besides submitting memorandum to the prime minister andthe Union Home minister in support of the demand, the ENPO andother organizations representing six tribes organized publicrallies on January 7 in all the four district headquarterstowns demanding creation of "Frontier Nagaland." PTI AP RG

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