Politicising the economic blockade Failing to address the core issue

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BJP, UNC, NSCN (IM) are one and same-This was Chief Minister O Ibobi while addressing the reception function of a large number of people who joined the Congress party from other political parties at Congress Bhawan on January 28. Cong campaigning in the name of NSCN (IM) : BJP-This was former MLA, N Biren while speaking at the district level meeting of the BJP at Keishamthong Ahanthem Leikai ground on January 29. Clearly the two principal political parties are hell bent on capitalising on the ongoing economic blockade imposed by the United Naga Council since midnight of October 31 last year in the run up to the coming Assembly election and while it is still early days yet to read the poll tea leaves, this should more than make it clear that the longer the UNC continues with the economic blockade, the more this issue will be politicised by all the political parties and this is a point which should have registered in the minds of the UNC a long time back. In other words, the coming Assembly election will see a highly polarised vote with the Naga dominated hill districts sure to come out strongly against the Congress while it may stand fairly well in the Kuki dominated hill districts. The creation of Jiribam and Kakching districts too appears to have gone down well with the people settled in the valley and how the BJP intends to fight this will be interesting to note. Other issues, such as high level of corruption, poor administration, slow pace of development etc have all been driven to the back burner and it is now the economic blockade which has occupied centre stage.

It is also significant to note that while the BJP and the Congress have been going hammer and tongs against each other on the economic blockade, not much have been said on the core issue of the blockade. Obviously the BJP cannot afford to signal the message that it is against the creation of the new districts, while the Congress obviously does not need to say anything on this. So it is the economic blockade around which the two political parties are aiming to take pot shots against each other, while conveniently overlooking the core issue which is the creation of the new districts. This is not about being politically correct but being correct with an eye on the coming election. So if the Congress created the new districts with an eye on the coming Assembly election, the BJP is mum on this point with an eye on the election. The natural question that follows is what is the stand of the BJP on the creation of the new districts ? More than likely that the economic blockade will continue and the two parties will continue to hurl allegations against each other, but without really addressing the core issue which has led to the blockade. Paying the price at the altar of the election.

Source: The Sangai Express

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