Unfair, why over 2 lakhs voters are deprived of their political rights
- Imphal Times Editorial :: April 11 2017 -
The so call the largest democracy in the world, Where people from across the globe had appreciated for its unbiased attitude towards its citizen when it comes electing of peoples’ representatives seems not to is not letting known the world community that, over 2 lakhs.
voters of 8 Assembly constituencies in the state of Manipur have not been allowed to contest in the Parliamentary Constituency Election even though they can cast their votes.
Reason- the Parliamentary Constituency that they were included is a reserved seat for Scheduled Tribe Community.
India is told to be the largest democracy in the world.
But it is shocking to learn that the state of Manipur, which was merged to the Indian Union in the year 1949, was never given the full democratic rights.
The reason for saying so may be well understood if we go back to the history since its merger to the Indian Union.
Everyone knows that it took around 23 years to recognize this erstwhile kingdom as a state of India.
Manipur after merger to the Indian Union was a part –C state rule by a Commissioner and later upgraded to Union territory in 1956.
It became a full-fledged state on January 21, 1972.
India being a subcontinent, has a total number 545 members of Parliament in the Lok Sabha and a total of 245 Rajya Sabha MP including 12 nominated members by the President of India.
Of this 545, Manipur have only two MPs- one from the Outer Parliamentary Constituency, while the other from the Inner Manipur Parliamentary constituency.
In addition to this 1 MP is sent to the Rajya Sabha.
Matter wanted to bring here is the issue of those genuine citizen who can vote but not contest election because the seat is reserved for ST. Is it fair.
As per data available from ECI website, total number of assembly constituencies for the Outer Manipur Parliamentary constituency is 28 while the remaining 28 is for the Inner Manipur Parliamentary constituency.
Total electorate for the Inner is 826,755 while the total electorate for the outer is 9,09,496. (as per 2014 record).
In the Inner Parliamentary constituency any of the voter, who are not convicted criminal, can contest election.
While in the Outer Parliamentary constituency 2,15,164 voters of 8 Assembly constituencies including 7 from Thoubal and (now) Kakching district.
The seven assembly constituencies in Thoubal and Kakching districts are Wangjing Tentha, Khangabok, Wabagai, Kakching, Hiyanglam and Sugunu, while the other is Jiribam Assembly constituency.
Now, it is time that the government of India demarcate the Manipur Parliamentary constituencies into 3 parts keeping one as reserved seat for Scheduled tribe (ST) community.
Or else it would be better that these 8 assembly constituencies are included under Inner Parliamentary constituency where any voter can contest the election if desire.
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