Lt Gen Manoj Mukund Naravane.
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By Bappaditya Paul

Kolkata: Nagaland, one of the most insurgency-prone states in northeast India, may soon see a lasting solution as the peace talks being pursued by the Central government is in an advance stage of settlement.

The information has been shared by none less than Lt Gen MM Naravane, GOC-in-C of the eastern command of the Army, whose jurisdiction extends to all over the eastern and northeast India.

“In Nagaland, the government of India is in talks with NSCN (IM) and Naga national political groups which are at advanced stages and the outcome will have a bearing on the situation in both Nagaland and Manipur”, the Lt Gen told newspersons in Kolkata today.

The comment comes close on the heels of a visit to Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh by Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat earlier this month. Lt Gen Naravane had accompanied him in the tour.

The Naga peace talks was initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government in October 2015 and, if at last this reaches a settlement after over three years of parleys, it will be a watershed moment for the northeast.

This is because the Naga insurgency movement is on for over three decades now and almost all other insurgent groups in the northeast thrive on the training and tactical support extended by the NSCN (IM).

During the interaction today, Lt Gen Naravane maintained that “counter-insurgency situation is in control” in the northeast, notwithstanding “sporadic protests” in Assam “over non-issues, whipped up by anti-national elements for their own narrow gains.”

He admitted that Manipur continues to be a cause for concern due to the volatile situation. But the Army is confident that things will only improve soon, he said.

“Measures are being taken to curtail the capability of the (Manipur) Valley based insurgent groups by keeping them under continuous pressure.”

“Strong vigil is being maintained along Indo-Myanmar border and the movement of insurgent groups is under constant surveillance,” the eastern Army commander underscored.

Lt Gen Naravane today, at the annual investiture ceremony hosted by the eastern command, conferred medals and certificate of appreciations to some Army personnel and formations for outstanding performances.