What North East needed was peace and the year 2015 took the first baby steps in providing a solution. The much needed peace accord was signed by the Government of India and several groups operating in the North Eastern states and this signalled a much needed thaw in the tensions.
While there is still a very long way to go before the fruits of this peace accord becomes visible, it is still an important milestone and one must feel glad that this initiative was taken.
With several groups which have been acting counter productive to peace in the North Eastern states, this peace accord aims at laying a road map to sit across the table and iron out the differences.
The much needed peace accord:
The year 2015 is historic for the North Eastern states. The signing of the peace accord in itself is a historic one as it came after 60 rounds of negotiations that have lasted nearly 18 years. While a lot of contentious issues remain, this accord provides a platform for both the government of India and the North Eastern groups to sit across the table and iron out differences.
In the month of August Prime Minister Narendra Modi signed the peace accord with the NSCN (IM). It was also aimed at combating the NSCN-Khaplang faction which had broken the cease fire agreement with India to join hands with the China backed ULFA-I to form the United Liberation of Southwest Asia.
There are a couple of core issues which this accord aims at resolving. One of the primary problems was that the Naga groups felt that the Naga people's inclusion into the Indian union was not right. They had also refused to accept the supremacy of the Indian constitution and ran a parallel government. The peace accord would aim at integrating a new generation into the Indian union and this would pave the way for long lasting peace.
The NSCN (IM) could credit itself for trying to resolve a 6 decade old problem and also open up development channels in the North Eastern states. The other core issue was with regard to creating a Greater Nagaland which would include areas in Manipur, Nagaland, Assam and also Myanmar.
The peace accord would aim at resolving this issue as well. The NSCN (IM) had already indicated that it was willing to drop the demand to include parts of Myanmar as the Indian government was not interested in re-aligning an international border.
However, there were issues with the re-alignment of the internal borders too. The accord would bring both the NSCN (IM) and the Government of India to the talking table where this issue too would be resolved.
This is a first step which would aim at providing a long lasting solution. When the groups are willing to speak, it is always easier to resolve a problem, the government also added indicating that this accord is beneficial to all.
The very important Indo-Myanmar-Thailand highway has seen violence in the past several years. The peace accord could signal an end to such violence thus opening it up and ensuring that there is overall development in the North Eastern states.
In all to sum it up, this pact was much needed. There was a lot of eyeball to eyeball confrontation between the government and the North Eastern groups.
Moreover, development had suffered a great deal due to violence in North East. This pact provides the much needed solution to all in the North East so that peace could be given a chance.