His Excellency’s Trips to Development

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His Excellency the Governor of Manipur, Vinod Kumar Duggal’s proactive stance on development is welcome. Shri VK Duggal ever since his appointment as the Governor of Manipur in December last year has been active with his visible presence in public. Being the ceremonial head of the state under the Constitution of India, he is entitled with privileges. The media of the state do not miss to cover most of His Excellency’s appearance in public life. Whether it may be of his gracious presence in a function, or his tour to the far-flung hill Districts, travelling on road without a helicopter; we cannot commit the blunder of not covering His Excellency. Earlier he had visited Ukhrul district to take part in the Shirui Lily Week. And very recently the Governor visited Chandel District Headquarters and inspected various developmental works taken up in the District. His Excellency has already made it known that he has taken a vow that unless the government sanctions the money required for repairing the District Headquarter roads, he will not visit any of the Districts. As the money has got sanctioned, so was his visit to the District Headquarter. The Governor told the people of Chandel that he could have come by helicopter but he opted to travel by road to experience the hardships faced by the people. One his reminded of the accounts of Mughal emperor Akbar, who ruled Medieval India. The emperor’s love for his people was profound; such was his love that he went in disguise among his people to personally feel their miseries. One is also reminded of a seminar held in 2004, in which the then Governor of Mizoram was speaking of the development work that was supposedly taken up by his government. The Governor of Mizoram told that the roads in his state were in superb condition. All thanks to his active mobility within the state that the government of Mizoram had to repair the roads everywhere he sat his foot. Well, His Excellency VK Duggal the Governor of Manipur is neither the emperor Akbar nor the then Governor of Mizoram. But one can find some similar traits, as far as their love for the people is concern. While addressing the 7th Session of the 10th Manipur Legislative Assembly, which was His Excellency’s first ever address after his appointment as the Governor of Manipur; he conveyed that his government has been striving for ‘all round development’ and ‘delivery of good governance’ for the people. Some commentators might describe His Excellency’s proactive stance as something ‘out of the box’ or an ingenious step towards bringing development in the state. But not to question the good intents of His Excellency or to hurt his privilege, we find it a bit overtly ceremonial on his part. If his idea of bringing about all round development in the state is by traveling on roads to far-flung areas, where development has been bludgeon to death by an unholy nexus of so many ‘players’ in the state, it is certainly not an excellent idea – however ingenious it may sound. Needless to say that the state Chief Secretary had also aired his discontent that roads are repaired only when VIP or VVIPs are on the move, it is just the plain truth that the top bureaucrat had said. If the roads in the state are meant to be repaired for the VIPs alone, then nothing can be as pathetic as the present state of governance. His Excellency should not over emphasise the mendacity of the present government and its governance by throwing himself into ‘development trips’. He can travel all far, and as much as he can in the state. He is welcome to do that. But at the same time, we would like to see him question on how development was bludgeon to death in this part of the world.

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