Need for a strong Congress Giving teeth to the Opposition

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The barely three months old BJP led coalition Government seems to be right on track and it has to be admitted that the recently held Shirui Lily Festival, Barak Festival, Hill People’s Day held on the 10th of every month and the Meeyamgi Numit held on the 15th of every month have gone down well with the people. One just hopes that throwing its door open to the common people does not end as an exercise in populism but ensures something good and concrete for the people, otherwise opening its door to the people will mean nothing. Chief Minister N Biren seems to be going in the right direction and this may be surmised from the fact that today the Government of Manipur is no longer dubbed as ‘communal Government’ by the Naga civil society organisations.

Yes the BJP led Government seems to be going on the right track and this should be all that more reason for the Congress to pull up its socks and see how they can be counted as a political party. Congress Mukht is the slogan of the BJP and judging by the manner in which it has managed to steam roll its way across the country, one just hopes that the oldest political party pulls up its socks and see how it can be counted as a political party worth its salt. If at all there is a lesson to be learnt from the past, then it should be clear that what Manipur needs is a strong Opposition. Remember the third term of the Congress Government when it brushed aside the challenges of all the other political parties and returned with 42 MLAs in the Assembly election of 2012. Not only this, the Congress then managed to strengthen its stand when the MSCP merged with the party with 6 MLAs and ruled virtually without any Opposition.

If at all there is a point to be learnt from the past then it is that the State do need a strong Opposition. This will run counter to the aims and objectives of the BJP, but this is what the people and the place need. And it is this point which should not be lost on the Congress. In power during the last three terms, which means in power for 15 years on the trot and surely the time is now right for the Congress to come to the point that it can still be relevant to the people by being a responsible Opposition. The desertion of its six MLAs should not count for much for what is more important is to keep the Government on its toes and surely after being in power for such a long time, the Congress will know how to pick holes in the ruling dispensation.

The Congress too does not lack good and effective speakers. In Gaikhangam, the party has an excellent orator who can take on anyone on his day and the Congress should rest on its strength and see how to keep the BJP on its toes. Not for nothing is it generally said that a Government is as good or as bad as the Opposition. A strong and sensitive Opposition can go a long way in ensuring that critical issues are handled befittingly. The Congress has shown how it can rule, but this time it has to show how it can keep the Government on its toes. Yes Manipur needs a strong Congress.

Source: The Sangai Express

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