The Eastern Nagaland People’s Organization (ENPO) reportedly refused to accept the Union Government’s draft proposal that lacked financial autonomy. According to Nagaland Page, a senior leader of ENPO stated that they want “financial power to effectively run the autonomous council for all-round development.” However, the senior leader added that the “State government was not willing to let the Centre grant financial autonomy to FNT.”

The ENPO leader was reported to be of the opinion that granting financial power to the FNT would facilitate the pace of developments in the six districts – Tuensang, Mon, Shamator, Noklak, Kiphire and Longleng.

The report also observed that “ENPO is apprehensive that the funds could be misappropriated if it is channelized through the State Government.”

CM Rio on Wednesday outlined five pivotal policy objectives to address developmental deficits, including enhancing literacy rates and healthcare infrastructure, elevating per capita income, and promoting job reservation and higher education opportunities. Notably, the state government did not address financial autonomy.

The ENPO, however, only demands a Centre’s intervention and has rejected the draft by resolving to boycott the forthcoming Lok Sabha election in Nagaland that is scheduled for 19 April if their demand is not accepted.

Currently, the Eastern Nagaland Legislators’ Union (ENLU) is in New Delhi seeking a meeting with Amit Shah. Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio pledged swift action upon the return of all 20 legislators from Eastern Nagaland to address grievances through constructive dialogue.

As ENPO’s demands await central intervention, they will reportedly hoist black flags across the six districts on government offices, businesses, private vehicles, and households.

Meanwhile, as per local media report, the Center has clarified that the draft proposal is not final and subject to revision.

Mokokchung Times

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