Away from Imphal centric mindset : Govt-Hills Bhai Bhai !

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Moving away from the Imphal centric approach. Best exemplified by the Cabinet meeting held at Churachandpur some time back.

Announcing that the Shirui Lily Festival will be upgraded to the level of the Sangai Festival.

The attention focused on the Barak Festival held at Senapati not so long after the Shirui Lily Festival.

Setting aside the 10th of every month as Hill Leaders’ Day wherein the Chief Minister and his Council of Ministers reserve the day to meet people from the hill districts ranging from Church leaders, NGO representatives and the village folks.

Clearly the BJP led coalition Government seems set to break free from the shackles of the previous Congress Government, which ruled the State for 15 consecutive years and this indeed is a laudable step.

Apart from the fresh initiatives taken up, it was heartening to see an end to the Churachandpur imbroglio after the State Assembly passed the three Bills on August 31, 2015 and the bodies of eight of the nine people killed in the flare up at Churachandpur were laid to rest.

Not to forget how the UNC was persuaded to end its marathonesque economic blockade after the then Congress Government decided to create seven new districts.

The efforts of the BJP led Government may be seen in how the ‘communal Government of Manipur’ tag has been removed whenever the State Government was referred to by the various Naga civil society organisations, particularly the United Naga Council.

It was in line with the new found camaraderie that Churachandpur accorded a warm welcome to Chief Minister N Biren and his team at the district headquarters on September 12.

The initiatives of the new Government are taken note of and acknowledged.

However it should be remembered that the goodwill and the new found camaraderie will depend on how much work is actually done at the ground level.

It is here that the report filed by the Churachandpur correspondent of The Sangai Express need to be fine combed and digested accordingly.

As reported by the correspondent, Chief Minister N Biren actually fell short of making any new announcements and instead fell back on what had already been spelt out earlier, the Rs 300 crore worth of projects to be implemented in Churachandpur.

It was not mere reporting but taking a closer look at what the Chief Minister had to say to the people and this is where the report from the Churachandpur correspondent of this paper differed from the run of the mill reporting.

It was a report from ground zero in the truest sense of the term.

“The road on which the dancing troupes swayed to the beat of drums and musical instruments in the welcome accorded to the Chief Minister was however a muddied and worn out road clearly reflecting the urgency of his (CM) programmes to fall in place.”

In one paragraph, the correspondent not only described the rousing welcome accorded to the Chief Minister but also reminded all of the decaying state of the road and the road was none other than the road that leads to Hiangtam Lamka Public Ground, one of the better known roads in Churachandpur.

As Agriculture Minister V Hangkhanlian who is the local MLA of Churachandpur put it during the same event, the feel good factor between the Government and the hills should not end in mere words but in real action.

Remains to be seen how the Chief Minister intends to go about it.

Source: The Sangai Express

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