By Our Reporter
SHILLONG: Former chief of staff, HQ Eastern Command, Lt. Gen. (retd) J.R. Mukherjee in his presentation asserted that Government of India should stop humouring the NSCN (IM). Stating that Manipur is today in a mess thanks to Government of India’s soft stance on the Naga insurgent outfit, Lt Gen Mukherjee said the situation in Manipur today is far worse than in Jammu and Kashmir.
Mukherjee was speaking at the two- day workshop on “Development Paradigms in the Northeast” at the NEC auditorium here on Tuesday.
Reiterating what other speakers said, Lt Gen Mukherjee emphasized that the north eastern states have to adopt a holistic approach to economic development even while their political goals can be state-centric.
According to Mukherjee, India should befriend its neighbours in order to promote the economic growth of its land-locked North Eastern region and also to flush out the insurgent groups from these countries.
“Mukherjee also added that Chinese intelligence agencies continue to support the Northeast militants,” adding that a keen observation of the situation would reveal that whenever India adversely affects China’s policy, insurgency in the region is also on the upswing.
The retired army official said that China has built up infrastructure throughout the border areas whereas India is yet to build strategic road links making it difficult for Indian security forces to respond to security challenges. There is a lack of cohesion in thinking between Government agencies and security forces serving in the Northeast thereby leading to incoherent planning and implementation of schemes in the region.
The former chief of staff, HQ Eastern Command also expressed his concern over the fact that NSCN(IM) and other militant groups in the Northeast are openly extorting and that even high profile ministers and bureaucrats are forced to pay the ransom to the insurgent groups.
The two day seminar was attended by various stakeholders including officers from different armed forces, State Government officials and college students.