New Delhi, Feb. 17: Top leaders of the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah) called on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh this evening and urged him to expedite the 14-year-old peace process.
The outfits chairman, Isak Chishi Swu, and general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah along with interlocutor for Naga talks R.S. Pandey spoke to the Prime Minister for over 40 minutes.
Apparently, it was octogenarian Swu who first raised the point of a stretched peace process and the need to speed up.
The Prime Minister said he, too, wished an expeditious process in order to reach an honourable and mutually acceptable solution.
NSCN sources said the Prime Minister has assured them that the Centre was trying to come to a speedy settlement.
Today, both sides are understood to have pointed out that enough years have been spent talking and it was time to finally decide on what is acceptable.
Officials refused to comment whether that meant a make-or-break stage had been reached.
The meeting was very, very positive, Pandey told The Telegraph.
Swu arrived in India on January 21 from Bangkok along with a family member on Indian passports.
Till now, the leaders have been mostly abroad, sometimes hiding in Bangladesh, at other times in countries like the Philippines or in Europe.
This is the second meeting with militant groups from the Northeast that the Prime Minister has held within a span of a week.
A four-member Ulfa delegation also called on Singh this week.
However, the government remains worried about the increasing interest of China in the region in view of unresolved insurgencies.
While the Naga insurgency has spanned six decades, Ulfa has been active for over three decades and its commander-in-chief Paresh Barua is known to have got cosy with elements in China.
The peace process with the NSCN (I-M), which started on August 1, 1997, has till now not yielded anything concrete.
Militancy, has, over the years assumed different shades and continues to haunt both the people and the militants themselves as factions refuse to reconcile.