Manipur: Naga blockade to end tonight after five months

The United Naga Council agreed to lift the Manipur blockade after tripartite talks among the centre, the state government and the Naga groups


The Manipur blockade was imposed by the United Naga Council on 1 November to protest the creation of seven new districts by the Okram Ibobi Singh-led Congress government. Photo: AFP
The Manipur blockade was imposed by the United Naga Council on 1 November to protest the creation of seven new districts by the Okram Ibobi Singh-led Congress government. Photo: AFP

Imphal: The Manipur economic blockade imposed by the United Naga Council (UNC) nearly five month ago would be lifted from midnight on Sunday, said an official statement after the talks among the centre, the state government and the Naga groups.

The joint statement issued after the tripartite talks, held at the Senapati district headquarters, said there would be “unconditional release of the arrested UNC leaders and all cases related to the economic blockade against the Naga tribe leaders and the student leaders will be closed.”

The statement was signed by joint secretary Satyendra Garg of the union home ministry, additional chief secretary (home) J.Suresh Babu and commissioner (works) Radhakumar Singh of the Manipur government and UNC general secretary S. Milan and All Naga Students Association president Seth Shatsang.

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The tripartite talks were held first on 7 February in Imphal for ending the blockade on two national highways NH 2 and NH 37, but they had failed to make any headway as the UNC refused to allow the seven new districts to be carved out.

The stakeholders had earlier met in Delhi on 4 February and the Centre had expressed hope that the blockade would end soon. The joint statement said the next round of tripartite talks would be held within a month at political level.

The blockade was imposed by the UNC on 1 November to protest against the creation of seven new districts by erstwhile Okram Ibobi Singh-led Congress government in the state.

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