Nagaland and Manipur, the two major stakeholders in the Naga peace process, have exercised caution in assessing the accord. While the former is caught between hope and the possibility of a “letdown”, Manipuris, especially non-Nagas, are suspicious of the development.
Some in Nagaland have gone to the extent of calling the framework agreement a “framed solution”. In his opinion in the Dimapur-based The Morung Express, ideologue Asangba Tzüdir compared the accord to an Ao tribal tale, in which an old man makes his grandson stop crying by promising him the moon all the time.
“Now, whatever the peace accord or framework that is signed, the fact that it is yet to be clearly worked (out) and mapped only gives rise to varied interpretations within the fold of suspect thesis,” he wrote.
The Nagaland Post said dealing only with NSCN-IM might not help New Delhi ensure lasting peace in the region.
“Factionalism (in NSCN) was a sign that the movement (for Naga sovereignty) has lost steam,” an editorial said.
Opinions in dailies of Manipur betrayed suspicion. “What is most likely to have been agreed upon is a watered down version of Naga sovereignty and integration.
It remains to be seen if these will be acceptable to the neighbouring states, on the one hand, and more importantly to the larger Naga public,” an editorial in Imphal Free Press said.