Days before the crucial consultative meeting called by the Nagaland government with civil society groups and other stakeholders on October 15 on the vexed Naga peace process, the NSCN (IM) – an armed Naga group – on Tuesday claimed that the Naga peace deal is at the “threshold” of a final solution but that the deadlock over the demand for a separate flag and constitution has left the biggest Naga armed group with no option but to take a tough stand.

This is for the first time after the Neiphiu  Rio government came to power in 2018 that such major consultative meeting is being convened.

NSCN (IM) chairman Q Tuccu said that these two issues are “non-negotiable”. “We have to prove our worth as Nagas by upholding our Flag and Yehzabo,” he said in a press release.

“For the Naga people, these two issues stand tall because they symbolise our political and National rights. The Government of India knows the political significance of these issues for the Naga people but come short of giving official recognition to be made a part of the final agreement. This is the crux of the ongoing Indo-Naga political talks and the reason why the going gets tough, leaving the NSCN negotiators with no option but to act tough,” he said, in the statement.

The statement further added that they detest  from any piecemeal solution.

“We cannot allow such agreements to repeat and flatter us again. We cannot be blinded to go by the ghost of another Naga People’s Convention (NPC) that sold out our political rights and history. It will be an abhorrent act if we knowingly go against our history and political rights for which nearly 3 lakh Nagas have given their lives,” the NSCN (IM) said.