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The conflict in the Indian Northeast

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date2014
JournalDefence Studies
Journal number2
Volume14
Number of pages23
Pages111-133
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This paper looks at the conflict in the Indian northeast and revolves primarily around the different levels of conflict. The Indian northeast is most certainly one of the most under- researched conflict zones in academia. This paper uses Mary Kaldor’s ‘New War’ thesis as a theoretical framework to understand the situation, and pays special attention to its very complex and multifaceted nature. The paper argues that the levels of violence differ from one state to another in a region which has always had complicated relations with the rest of India since 1947. Poverty, corruption, administrative failure, police brutality, identity politics, human rights abuses and the role played by external actors such as China and Burma in the region are some of the key features associated with this conflict. There is a special focus on Nagaland since the Naga conflict is the oldest of all the conflicts in the region. The rest of the paper looks at some of the other states of the Indian northeast which include Assam, Manipur and Tripura and take them up collectively for discussion. Finally, after making an assessment of the entire region, the paper tries to suggest methods of peaceful building and conflict management as the way forward.