Spoke as a Minister or a BJP man ? Yaithibi Loukon debate

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The relevant question is, ‘Did Union Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports, Vijay Goel visit Manipur as a Union Minister or as a leader of the BJP ?’ This question is important in the backdrop of his barb that Yaithibi Loukon, the site chosen for the proposed Sports University to come up, is low lying and hence not suitable for the proposed varsity. View his remark against the rebuff of Chief Minister O Ibobi that it was the Centre which chose Yaithibi Loukon and the fact that the ‘low lying’ barb came after more than a year of 336 acres of land at Yaithibi Loukon having been acquired for the proposed university and it becomes interesting. Timing is obviously important, more so given the fact that the State is poised to go in for Assembly election in the early part of next year and Vijay Goel seems intent on discrediting the Congress Government on any count. Which way the people see the verbal duel is a different thing, but the question still remains whether Vijay Goel was here as a Minister or a BJP leader. As a Union Minister in charge of Sports, it may be within his right to come out with the ‘low lying’ observation, but the important question is why this could not have been made far from the public eye. In fact why was this point made in front of the media ? This is where Vijay Goel seems to have failed to see the fine dividing line between the portfolio he holds and his party membership. If he had made the observation as a member of the BJP, then by all means he has the right to express his views, but did he come here representing the BJP or was he here as a Minister in charge of YAS ?
As spelt out by the Chief Minister, Yaithibi Loukon was one of the three sites shortlisted for the proposed sports university to come up. Out of the three, Yaithibi Loukon was chosen. This is the line of the Chief Minister and if his words are to be believed, a team from the Union YAS Ministry inspected the said site on August 1 and 2 in 2014. Why didn’t the ‘low lying’ part register in the consciousness of the team when the site was inspected, not once but twice ? Moreover the site was handed over to the Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports on August 27 last year and if the Centre had any reservations on the site, such as its location being too far from Imphal, low lying etc, which weren’t these points raised earlier, is the natural question that follows. Manipur was chosen for the Sports University given her performance in the field of sports and the question is, why play politics with the site chosen for the sports university to come up with ? If the Union MoS for YAS was under the impression that he could score a point or two and discredit the Congress Government ahead of the polls, nothing could be more unfortunate than this. Playing politics with a varsity which is eagerly awaited by the people can never be accepted.

Source: The Sangai Express

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