Imphal, March 16: Former policemen have created history with ex-director-general of police Yumnam Joykumar becoming the deputy chief minister of Manipur and IPS Thokchom Radheshyam elected as an MLA.
Joykumar was elected from Uripok by defeating his Congress rival Laisharm Nandakumar by 345 votes. He contested on the National People Party’s ticket.
Contesting on a BJP ticket, Radheshyam was elected from Heirok Assembly constituency, defeating the Congress’s Moirangthem Okendro, who was the education minister.
Joykumar retired as DGP on August 31, 2013, and Radheshyam retired voluntarily as assistant director of Manipur Police Training Centre, Pangei, in November last year to join politics.
“My first priority will be bonding the valley and hill people, whose division has resulted in the economic blockade,” Joykumar said. “To find out what is in the framework agreement signed between the NSCN (I-M) and the Centre, I welcome the peace process but the solution must be acceptable to all,” he added.
Stating that he would work to make the state self-sufficient, Joykumar said he will encourage organic farming. Land reforms would be the focus so that cultivable lands are not used to build educational institutions or industrial establishments.
The retired DGP wants to give special focus to school education and said he would try to promote government schools, which are lagging behind private ones.
His junior, Radheshyam, said he will give importance to issues of frequent bandhs and blockades that frequently inconvenience people. He said he wants to reform the police department.
Stating that health and education is another area of focus, Radheshyam said: “A Large portion of the state revenue goes outside the state because of lack of infrastructure for education and health.”
“Socially backward children, women and differently-abled people will be given special focus,” Radheshyam said.
Khundongbam Binoykumar, a voter from Heirok, said, “We are very happy to get a person like Radheshyam, who has experience in maintaining law and order, as our representative. However, it would even better if he becomes a minister.”
An elector from Uripok constituency, Ichangba Sapam, said it was very fortunate for the people to have ex-DGP Joykumar elected from the constituency that had been totally neglected during the 15 years of Congress rule in the state.
“We are proud that our representative has been appointed as the deputy chief minister and we hope peace and prosperity would thrive in the state with Joykumar’s contributions in the BJP government,” Sapam said.
Joykumar was sworn in along with chief minister Nongthombam Biren Singh and seven others as ministers. The portfolios have not been allotted to the ministers yet.
Source: Telegraph India