Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh rejects United Naga Council's demand for rollback of new districts

Imphal: The Manipur government is not considering any reversal of the decision, Chief Minister N Biren Singh said on Sunday in reply to the United Naga Council's demand for rollback of the creation of the seven new districts in the state.

File image of Manipur chief minister, N Biren Singh. PTI

File image of Manipur chief minister, N Biren Singh. PTI

Meanwhile, the scheduled talks on Monday between representatives of the central and state governments, and the UNC on the inflammatory issue have been put off. Official sources told IANS on Sunday that the central government representatives cannot make it due to "unavoidable circumstances" and so the talks have been deferred.

The previous Congress government in December 2016 created seven new districts in the state, which already had nine. The Nagas claimed that the new districts had encroached upon the "lands of the Nagas", which were left to them by their forefathers.

The government denied the charge, saying that there is no land belonging to any community and that the new districts were created for better administration and more equitable development.

In protest against the creation of the new districts, the UNC had imposed an indefinite economic blockade lasting nearly four months. It was lifted only after the BJP-led government took office in Manipur.

Soon after being released from prison, UNC President Gaidon Kamei said: "The demand for the rollback of the new districts is very much on our agenda. If this is not honoured, we will go back to the people for consultation on the next campaign."

The proposed talks were deferred as the government and the UNC do not see eye to eye on the issue. Officials fear that the Nagas have on their mind the re-imposition of the economic blockade.

The blockade was lifted in March on the understanding that the creation of the districts will be rolled back through negotiations.

Updated Date: Jul 09, 2017 19:47 PM

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