Mokokchung, 10 April (MTNews): In a scathing statement released today, the Rising Peoples’ Party (RPP) has accused Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio of Nagaland of betraying the interests of the state and its people. The RPP dismissed Rio’s proclamation on 8 April that the “NDPP-led Government will never compromise the faith and identity of Nagas” as “utterly false”, adding that the truth is far more sinister.

According to the RPP, Nagaland is threatened from within and outside by hostile forces, while the “NDPP lives in Gaga-land” suggesting an overly enthusiastic but disconnected stance. The RPP highlighted several instances where they claim Chief Minister Rio failed to protect the interests of Nagaland.

Firstly, the RPP pointed out that Rio had approved the setting up of Rani Gaidinliu Library-cum-Memorial Museum in Kohima in 2010, a project later shelved. They alleged that even the site selection was done by him. “Had the Library-cum-Memorial Museum materialized it would have become a centre of Heraka and RSS activities in the state,” the RPP alleged.

The RPP also accused Rio of not uttering even a single word against the persecution of Christians. It pointed out that unlike his counterparts in neighboring states, Rio failed to condemn the burning of 249 churches and the persecution of Kuki-Zo community in Manipur. They also criticized his inaction against legislations like the Assam Healing Practices Act, which they argue imperils Christian missions.

“He was on mute button when the ECI held counting on Sunday after the Tapi A/C bye-election whereas Mizoram government protested and the counting date was shifted to Monday, December 4,” the RPP added.

The RPP also highlighted how under his watch the Nagaland University declared Easter Sunday 2024 as a working day and his alliance partner declared 25 December as Good Governance Day to which he never offered his dissenting opinion.

“It was also under his watch that Yoga teachers were attached to all the government schools on paid honorarium,” the RPP added.

Further, the RPP reminded how the PDA banned the buy and sell of dog meat in the state. “Mr Rio, unlike his Meghalaya counterpart, never opposed beef ban by Amit Shah. His silence was deafening on Hindi imposition in schools,” added the RPP.

The RPP also criticized Rio’s handling of the Free Movement Regime (FMR), stating that when FMR was being totally opposed by his Mizoram counterpart, Rio’s weak reply was “ If need be we have to work out a formula….”. This, according to RPP, was essentially Rio proposing a “compromise”.

The RPP further alleged the NDPP government for having a lackadaisical approach to enforce Inner Line Permit (ILP) regulations in Dimapur. They argued that this laxity has allowed Dimapur to become a “breeding ground for all sorts of immigrants and fundamentalist organizations” and yet not even a single deportation has taken place.

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