Centre's interlocutor for Naga peace talks, RN Ravi resigns

23rd Sep,2021

Centre's interlocutor for Naga peace talks, RN Ravi resigns

On Wednesday, R N Ravi resigned as the Centre’s interlocutor for Naga peace talks after working in the post for several years, during which he negotiated with key insurgent groups for certification of the Naga Peace Accord.

Ravi’s resignation comes days after he was moved out of Nagaland where officiated as governor. On September 9, government appointed him as Tamil Nadu Governor after two years of gubernatorial service in Nagaland.

The development had come amid vigorous demands from NSCN(I-M) to remove Ravi both as Governor and peace talks interlocutor. The demands came after reported rebuking spats between Ravi and NSCN(I-M) in 2020.

The Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement that Shri R.N. Ravi’s resignation as interlocutor for the Naga peace process, submitted by him today has been approved with immediate effect by Government of India.

Sources said former Intelligence Bureau special director Akshay Mishra is likely to substitute Ravi as the new peace talks interlocutor. As in charge of Northeast Affairs, Mishra has already been dealing with many Naga groups while he was still working in the IB. He retired in July this year.

In fact, following constrained relations between Ravi and NSCN(I-M), it was Mishra who had been negotiating with Naga groups to finalise the Naga Peace Accord since January, 2020.

Sources said Naga groups, too, have showed satisfaction with the way Mishra has been spearheading interactions from the Centre’s side and have expressed confidence in him to lead further talks.

The Naga peace process has had a rough ride in the past couple of years due to worsen relationship between NSCN(I-M), the lead Naga group negotiating with the Centre, and Ravi.

Although a Framework Agreement for Naga Peace Accord having been signed in 2015, the government has not been able to finalise the Accord.

Last year, the relationship between the two became so worse that NSCN(I-M) demanded the removal of Ravi for the talks to be successful. In fact, for the past one year, it is the Intelligence Bureau which has been negotiating with Naga groups, particularly the NSCN(I-M).