It is obvious that former Chief Minister O Ibobi will not be out of the news. And why not.
Not only is Ibobi the longest serving Chief Minister of the State, being in the chair of the CM for 15 years on the trot, he will also go down as a man or a political leader who elicits extreme response.
So while he will continue to be the undisputed leader of the Congress party in the Assembly as well as the undisputed political heavyweight from Thoubal Assembly Constituency and earlier Khangabok Assembly Constituency and of course for all the die hard Congress loyalists, to many others he will continue to be the rallying point to raise a stand against the Congress.
It is in line with this that the United Naga Council recently issued a statement reiterating its stand against O Ibobi and by extension the Congress party.
The name of former Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam was also included in the UNC’s statement, but the statement primarily had to with the stand of the UNC against O Ibobi.
Not exactly in line with the stand of the UNC, but the BJP led coalition Government too seems intent on nailing the former Chief Minister if the FIR filed against him in the MDS scam is any indication.
That the former Chief Minister has extract to extract an interim anticipatory bail from the High Court of Manipur is another matter, but all these instances go to show that the name of the former Chief Minister will not be forgotten in a hurry and ironically helping him in this cause are his arch foes, namely the UNC and now the BJP led coalition Government.
The natural question that follows is whether the UNC is doing him a favour in again coming out openly in stating that their stand against him continues.
In a way this underlines the point that O Ibobi is far from being a persona non grata.
So as long as the UNC continues to stand against him and make its stand known to the public, the more support he is likely to enjoy from the people who matter to his political future, namely the voters of Thoubal Assembly Constituency and the State unit of the Congress.
Likewise, the more the BJP led Government drags him into any case, the more he will be in the consciousness of the public and surely the BJP would not want that for political expediency demands that no efforts should be spared to make the biggest political rival fade from public memory.
It is the same with the UNC too. The UNC will have reasons for the stand against the former Chief Minister and one just has to recollect the decision to ban the entry of Th Muivah to his home village some time in 2010, the decision to create seven new districts despite the strong opposition raised by the UNC and other Naga civil society organisations, the decision to deploy police commandos in the hill districts, particularly at Ukhrul sometime in 2014 etc.
All these are factors for the ‘communal Government of Manipur’ tag given to the then Congress Government by the UNC and various other Naga civil society organisations, but in continuing with its stand against the former Chief Minister, the UNC may have penned down just the right script for O Ibobi to remain in the public domain and this is something which all political leaders would want.
Source: The Sangai Express