DIMAPUR, Sept 14 - Government of India and Eastern Nagaland Peoples� Organisation (ENPO) held the first round of bilateral talks on the demand for the separate State of �Frontier Nagaland� in New Delhi on September 10. Six federating tribes under the banner of ENPO have been demanding a State curved out of the present State of Nagaland.
The resolution for separate Statehood was adopted on the May 25, 2000, in Tuensang headquarters which was endorsed by the village councils of the six tribes.
The ENPO, in a release, said both the parties agreed in principle that the process of discussions and the demand of Statehood by it is a separate issue in nature from the present Naga peace talks with the Centre. It was also agreed that both the issues �cannot be mixed up and misunderstood�, the release said.
The ENPO stated that the discussion between Union Ministry of Home Affairs officials and ENPO delegation was very cordial with constructive atmosphere, fairness and openness. Issues and grievances of Eastern Nagaland were highlighted for better understanding and feedback of both the parties, it added.
The release further informed that the discussion was related to the historical and political background of the ENPO. �The glaring socio-economic and political imbalances were highlighted before the Central officials which is an outcome of outright discrimination and negligence by the successive governments, both at the Centre and the State from day one,� it alleged.
As the tripartite talks, proposed by the Centre was opposed, both the parties mutually agreed to initially hold several rounds of bilateral talks. The next round of bilateral talks is expected to be held before the year-end, it was informed.