KOHIMA, Jan 2 � Consistent efforts towards consolidating peace and reconciliation process among Nagas by the State and civil societies marked the year as Nagaland witnessed a stalemate with Manipur over NSCN-IM leader T Muivah�s visit to his native village in the neighbouring State.
The year also witnessed some concrete measures taken by the Government to push forward development activities, generate employment and curb corruption.
Continuing its efforts towards peace and reconciliation, Forum for Naga Reconciliation (FNR) along with other civil society groups and churches tried to bring various Naga underground factions closer to have an unified voice, and got the support of the State Government and political parties.
The Forum successfully arranged the first ever face-to-face meeting of top leaders of two NSCN groups at Dimapur on September 18 giving a new hope to the ongoing process of Naga reconciliation.
However, by end of the year, what reflected in local media, were differences among the groups still prevailing and war of words blaming each other for lack of seriousness to peace and unity continued.
In the meantime, three groups � NSCN(K) and two groups of NNC/FGN came closer through a declaration in November, but NSCN(I-M) was critical of what it termed �a backdoor unity move�.
The people saw hope and optimism at the beginning of the year when the Centre appointed a new Interlocutor and resumed peace dialogues with NSCN(I-M) after almost a year.
Building on this renewed trust, the Centre okayed Muivah�s visit to his native village in Manipur in April but the Manipur Government denied permission arguing that the rebel leader�s proposed visit might lead to �communal tension� in the State.
An uneasy stalemate continued for over a month with both Manipur Government and NSCN-IM sticking to their positions. However, Muivah visited various parts of Nagaland in May-June to reach out to the people ahead of leaving for New Delhi to resume the peace dialogue. But there were no reports of any progress in the peace talks in the past three months.
On economic and development fronts, the Neiphiu Rio Government took certain important decisions during 2010 but Opposition Congress flayed the ruling alliance for its inaction on corruption in many departments and failure in checking crime in the State, particularly in Dimapur town.
Despite the resource crunch, the State Government fulfilled its promise to implement the 6th Pay Commission recommendations for its employees reconciling the State Plan size for fiscal 2010.
At the State Government�s request, the Centre allotted Rs 700 crore special grant to meet the additional salary burden but the State had to keep the annual plan size at last year�s level of Rs 1,500 crore.
The Government in April declared the year 2010-11 as �Year of Entrepreneurs� and made special budget provisions to implement this ambitious programme through training, capacity-building and financial incentives to potential entrepreneurs.
This was followed by unveiling of a vision statement for agriculture and allied sectors by which the Government envisaged to turn Nagaland into a surplus State in food production.
Started in 2009 as an attempt to build an interface between the government departments and the rural people, the government held road shows throughout the year across the State.
The government appointed a special investigation team (SIT) and unearthed major irregularities in appointments of schoolteachers, and accordingly quashed many unauthorised appointments. The SIT unearthed that such irregular appointments drained out Rs 2 crore a month from the exchequer.
On the political front, divisions in Opposition Congress surfaced when the party failed to select a consensus candidate for party leadership in the State. In a bitterly-fought party election, SI Jamir was elected the new State Congress president defeating incumbent I Imkong.
The year ended with a happy note when the government successfully organised the annual Hornbill festival at Kisama with a large number of foreign tourists visiting Nagaland. But the core concern of peaceful settlement of the vexed Naga political conflict still eludes the Nagas. � PTI