“Today, we mark not merely the end of a problem, but the beginning of a new future.” Thus spake the Prime Minister on August 3, after the Naga Peace Accord was signed in New Delhi. The terms of agreement were not released – only the framework was outlined. According to Kiren Rijiju, Minister of State for Home, it may take about three months to finalize the exact terms of the agreement. Nevertheless, according to sources, the accord seeks a “lasting solution” to the Naga problem.
Late on Monday evening, the question uppermost in the mind of every observer who watches the north-east closely was: Will the Naga accord usher in permanent peace in the region, wracked by conflict for decades? More than 12 hours after the pact was signed between the Government of India and the Issac-Muivah faction of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-IM)—arguably the most influential underground outfit in the region in the past quarter century—the details are as yet to emerge.
The Special Forces operation in Myanmar against insurgent camps is being widely perceived as a possible new template to deny safe havens to terrorists. The message appears to be that if terrorists launch attacks inside India from bases outside India, then these are legitimate targets for Indian security forces. Although this was not the first military operation carried out along the India-Myanmar border against insurgents, all previous operations were conducted in conjunction, cooperation and coordination with the Myanmar Army.
The decision of the BJP-led NDA government to take military action against the northeast militants, particularly those involved in the recent attack ( June 04, 2015) on the Indian army in Chandel district of Manipur has brought to the fore several important discussion points.
Paresh Baruah’s United Liberation Front of Assam-Independent and S S Khaplang’s National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-K) have joined hands with seven other militant organisations active in India’s north-east to form the United National Liberation Front of West South-east Asia. According to news reports, the meeting took place in the Sagaing region of Myanmar where Chinese intelligence personnel are known to be active.
Going by the recent claims of Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, NCTC would see the light of the day after next month’s Chief Ministers’ conference.
For past many years while China has been in the news for its efforts in exploiting the vast hydro power potential of Yarlung Tsangpo River of Tibet Autonomous Region India has also been attempting to tap the potential of this river known as Brahmaputra in India. Recent reports indicate that China has approved the construction of three new hydropower dams on the middle reaches of Yarlung Tsangpo. Work on an older 510 MW hydro project in Zangmu in Tibet had commenced way back in 2010.
A National Convention held recently in New Delhi on ‘Politics of Terror’ has brought to focus the need to re-look into provisions of special laws that are currently in use to counter terrorism. When confronted with armed militancy, democracies face what is known as “democratic dilemma”. On the one hand, they have to protect the territorial integrity, sovereignty and security of their people from the arbitrary violence by militants; if they fail, their authority and credibility are undermined.
Violence in Bodo areas is not a simple story of communal conflict between Bodos and non-Bodos, but is a complex issue with socio-cultural, economic, political and security dimensions. Clashes have erupted from time-to-time1 in the area, but the situation this time has reached a state where the number of killings has crossed 90. There is a displacement of about 400,000 people and its echo has been felt in other parts of India in terms of reverse flow of Northeasterners, triggered by rumours of reprisals. What factors were responsible for the present situation?
Among other things, one of the major aspects that have come out of the recent communal violence in Bodo areas of Assam is illegal migration. According to the Group of Ministers Report on National Security, illegal migration
has generated a host of destabilizing political, social, economic, ethnic and communal tensions. Politically, the Bangladeshi migrants are in a position to influence the results of the elections in a large number of constituencies in the North East (about 32% of the constituencies in Assam).
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