KOHIMA, Jan 26 (NEPS): The Nagaland Government said it was concerned with the issue of the Citizenship Amendment Bill which was recently passed by the Lok Sabha. It, however, said, “We are of the unequivocal view that the Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016 is not applicable to Nagaland and we stand protected under the provisions of Article 371 (A) of Constitution of India and the Inner Line Permit mechanism as per Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873 which was reaffirmed as Clause 16 of the 16 Point Agreement.”
Governor PB Acharya said this while addressing the 70th Republic Day Celebrations held at the Secretariat Plaza, Kohima on 26th January 2019.
He, however, appealed the Government of India to have wider consultations with all North Eastern States to ensure that the “rights of the indigenous people are fully protected.”
Stating that the Government’s top priority had been the final settlement of the Naga political issue, Acharya said the Government had committed to play the role of an active facilitator in the ongoing political negotiations between the Government of India and the Naga political groups.
“With the concerted efforts of the Tribal Hohos and its Apex Bodies, the Church, Civil Society, NGOs and NNPGs, different groups have now come together and this seems to be the most opportune time for the Naga political groups to resolve the seven decades old Naga political issue once and for all,” he said.
The Governor mentioned that the Political Affairs Committee (PAC) was set up on 8th March 2018 to address the Naga political issue, and on 11th May 2018, the State Government reconstituted the Joint Legislators Forum (JLF) to further address the issue.
On the Law and Order front, Tourist Police was launched on 26th November 2018 and made a mark in ensuring an incident-free Hornbill Festival. Nagaland became the second state in the country and the first state in the North East to have the Emergency Response Support System (ERSS) in place when it was launched by Union Home Minister, Rajnath Singh on 1st December 2018. Police Department also launched the Police Ki Pathshala – Community Policing Program for involving the community in policing. Today, all districts in Nagaland have Women Police stations and this has ensured that Nagaland remains one of the safest states for women in the country. Nagaland was also awarded for being the Best State for Law and Order in the India Today Conclave of States in November 2018.
Acharya stated that in the Education sector, the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Government of India has released an amount of Rs 47.16 crores for payment of Post Matric Scholarship to ST students of the state. Also, under the Ex-Gratia scheme for students studying outside the state, an amount of Rs 5 lakhs will be given as financial assistance to the family of the deceased student. SCERT and Department of School Education have introduced Nagaland Heritage Studies (NHS) textbook for classes 1 to 5. SCERT has also introduced a 9-month Diploma Course on School Counselling.
The Governor highlighted that under MGNREGS, the Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India has approved one hundred and 27 lakhs person days for the state of Nagaland amounting to Rs 315 Crores. Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihoods Mission has been taken up in 639 villages under 43 Blocks in 9 Districts. 4545 Self Help Groups are actively engaged in income generating activities covering 42200 households. Administrative fund for Rs 35.00 lakhs have been released for preparation of Integrated Cluster Action Plan (ICAP). A total of 8481 Houses are proposed to be constructed during 2018-19 under Prime Minister Awas Yojana- Gramin (PMAY-G). Under Swachh Bharat, the State has done remarkably well with funds received from Government of India and Rural Nagaland has already been declared ODF.
In the field of Sports, Dimapur hosted the first ever Ranji Trophy Match for Nagaland and Nagaland cricket team made a record by winning their first ever match. Dr. T. Ao Centenary Year is also being observed and work on Dr. T Ao Football Academy at Dimapur is being initiated. The prestigious Dr. T. Ao North East Football Tournament will be hosted in 2019. Sports infrastructure facilities have been augmented by the construction of outdoor stadiums at Pughoboto and Mon. With the installation of Astro Turf at I.G. Stadium, Kohima, the capital is ready to host national and international matches and tournaments.