Just ahead of its floor test in the assembly on Monday, the BJP-led coalition government managed to convince the United Naga Council (UNC) to lift its almost four-month-long economic blockade on the Imphal-Dimapur and Imphal-Silchar highways.
The UNC lifted the blockade that had left Manipur teetering on the edge, from Sunday midnight. The 139 days a long protest was launched against the formation of new districts by the former Congress government.
The body claimed that the step was hurtful to the goods of Nagas as it resulted in parting their ancestral zones. They asked a rollback and also threatened to carry on the commotion if it was not done.
The resolution to end the blockade was taken at a three-party meeting between the UNC, the newly-formed state administration and the Centre.
The meeting was held at the request of the Nongthombam Biren Singh government that had said that its primary goal after coming to office would be to end the continued economic blockade.
After a threadbare dialogue on Sunday, a statement released stated “the grievances of the UNC which led to the imposition of economic blockade by them was recognised as there was non-adherence to the four MoUs and the Centre’s assurance on the matter”.
“As the MoUs said that creation of new districts would not be done without consulting the stakeholders, the state government agreed to start consultation with all stakeholders to redress the same.” Following the tripartite meeting, the Naga civil apex body said, “To create conducive environment for the democratic process of consultation and dialogue, the UNC will lift the economic blockade with effect from tonight (Sunday midnight),” It added.