Early Life of Neiphiu Rio
Neiphiu Rio was born on 11th November 1950 to Guolhoulie Rio of Tuophema village in Kohima District. He belongs to Angami Naga tribe. From Baptist English School, Kohima and Sainik School, Puruliain West Bengal, he received his early education. After that he received higher education from St. Joseph College, Darjeeling and graduated from Kohima Arts College.
Political Career of Neiphiu Rio
Neiphiu Rio has started his political career from his early days in School. Rio was the honorary vice- President of IRCS Nagaland branch and since 1999, he is the Life time Deputy Governor (Honorary) Board of Governors, American Biographical Institute Research Association. On invitation of US Senate, he has also attended the 44th National Breakfast Prayer Meeting programme in Washington DC, USA 2000. Rio entered into mainstream politics when he was appointed as the President of Kohima District UDF Youth Wing in the year 1974. During 1976-1977, he served as the Acting President of UDF Youth Wing Nagaland. In the year 1984, he was attributed with the Chairmanship of Northern Angami Area Council.He was also elected to the Nagaland Legislative Assembly as Congress (I) candidate from 11 Northern Angami-II Assembly Constituency in 1989 and appointed as Minister for Sports and School Education and subsequently as Minister for Higher and Technical Education and Art and Culture. He has also served as Chairman in Nagaland Industrial Development Corporation, Nagaland Khadi and Village Industries Board and Development Authority of Nagaland.
During 1993- 2002, he was the Member of AICC (I). In the year 2002, Rio joined NPF after resigning from Congress (I). Till date he is the member of Working Committee NPF.
Neiphiu Rio was first elected to Nagaland Legislative Assembly in the 7th General Elections of 1989 from Northern Angami-II constituency on congress (I) ticket. He was inducted as the Minister for Sports & School Education. Consequently, he was allotted the Cabinet Ministry for Higher & Technical Education, Art & Culture. He has also served as Chairman of NIDC, NKVIB and Development Authority of Nagaland. In the General elections of 1993, Rio re-contested and elected from the same Constituency as Congress (I) candidate. He was appointed as the Minister for Works and Housing. In 1998, from Northern Angami-II, he was re- elected through the General Election and was given the charge of the Minister for Home. On September 20, 2002, he resigned from the Congress (I) Ministry led by S.C. Jamir. On November 2002, he resigned from the membership of the 9th house and the party. He is also credited with holding the Honorary post of Vice President, Indian Red Cross Society, Nagaland Bran
As the member of Nagaland People's Front, he participated in the formation of Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN). Other Naga regionalist parties along with Nagaland People's Front and state branch of BJP came under the leadership of Rio and formed Democratic Alliance of Nagaland. It won the 2003 state elections and brought the 15 year-long rule of the Indian National Congress in the state to an end. On March 6, 2003, Rio took office as Chief Minister. He reconstituted the National Integration Council to preserve the interests of the minorities with the help of the Centre.
On 3rd January 2008, Rio was discharged as Chief Minister after the President's Rule was imposed on the state of Nagaland. Rio's party appeared as the largest party in the following elections and Neiphiu Rio was called by the state Governor to form the government on 12th March, 2008.
Other Activities of Neiphiu Rio
Neiphiu Rio played a key role in setting up the Music Task Force. It is the first music industry in the country which played a key role in moulding talented artists and musicians in Nagaland. He was awarded The Mother Teresa Millenium award, for his outstanding leadership in Kolkata in 2007.