TODAY -

Locate Manipur in India's Politics

Seram Neken *

Rishang Keishing : Chief Ministers of Manipur
Rishang Keishing : Chief Ministers of Manipur from
27 November to 1980 to 28 February 1981
19 June 1981 to 04 January 1985
04 January 1985 to 04 March 1988
14 December 1994 to 24 February 1995
25 February 1995 to 15 December 1997



"Although Manipur dominates the nation in games and sports, the state is yet to gain due importance in mainland politics. While the whole world identifies India with the rich art and cultural heritage of Manipur, national political parties of India seem to ignore the state's politicians in handling national issues. The Congress Party in Manipur has neither claimed a ministerial berth nor has it been desperate in not considering a position in the recently effected reshuffle of Manmohan Singh led Union ministry. The reach of Manipur politicians is apparently limited to this hilly state. It is now time for our politicians to widen their perspectives and endeavour to dominate national mainland politics"

Performance of the Congress Party in Manipur during the last six decades of India's republic is satisfactory enough to award a ministerial berth to its members of Parliament. The state has produced capable MPs who can become union ministers. However, none from the border state has been considered for a ministerial berth in the two editions of UPA government. Congress party has been in power in the state for the last three tenures. Out of the sixty MLAs in state legislature at present, 42 belong to the Congress party. All the three MPs of Manipur- two of Lok Sabha and one of Rajya Sabha are Congressmen who deserve to become ministers in Congress led Government of India.

The Congress Party, as per election outcome, has been maintaining its popularity in Manipur for most of the time since independence and the state's merger into the Indian Union. In the first, second, third, seventh, tenth and fourteenth Lok Sabha elections, Congress party got one seat each out of the two Lok Sabha seats of Manipur, while the party managed to get all two seats of lower house in the fifth, sixth, eighth, ninth and eleventh Lok Sabhas. Indian National Congress (INC) held the lone Rajya Sabha seat of Manipur for almost 46 years (from 1954 to 1978, from 1984 to 1990 and from 1996 to date). At present all three MPs (two in Lok Sabha and one of Rajya Sabha) belong to Indian National Congress.

Veteran Congressman Rishang Keishing is a rare personality who is politically well-acquainted and experienced. Indian National Congress might have acknowledged his contribution to Indian politics by honouring the 92-year-old Rajya Sabha member from Manipur with a ministerial berth. Keishing was a member of the first Lok Sabha and is the lone surviving leader, who continues to be a MP. The MP from Manipur initiated the discussion in the Rajya Sabha when it recently celebrated the Golden Jubilee of Indian parliament.

The veteran politician born in 1920 was elected to Parliament as a Member of First Lok Sabha in 1952-1957 and 1957-61. Rishang Keishing, who completed his graduation in 1949 from St Paul's Cathedral College in Kolkata, entered politics as a fire brand socialist with Jaiprakash Narayan's Socialist Party and won his first Lok Sabha seat of Outer Manipur in 1952. He came back to the third Lok Sabha in 1962, once again from the Socialist Party.

He was the Chief Minister of Manipur thrice, from November 1980 to February 1981, from June 1981 to 1988 and from 1994-97. Later, he was elected Rajya Sabha member in 2002 for the first time, and in 2008 at the age of 88 for the second time. Rishang is presently the Members of Committee on Food, Civil Supplies and Public Distribution; Committee on Commerce; Court of the North-Eastern Hill University; Committee on Home Affairs; Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Shipping, Road Transport and Highways and Committee on Public Undertakings.

Dr. Thokchom Meinya Singh, present MP from Inner Manipur Parliamentary constituency, is a well qualified congressman elected for two consecutive terms. A former minister in state government before election to Lok Sabha, Shri Meinya also deserves to get a ministerial berth in Union government. However, the national leaders of Congress Party seem to have neglected Manipur in considering for ministership.

The strategic position Manipur holds and unique contributions it makes in sports and arts are satisfactory enough to pay importance to this border state. Both the people's talents as well as stronghold of the Congress party have considerable contributions to India's political and cultural arena. But, it is questionable whether Manipur politicians are unfit to be union ministers? Very young and inexperienced MPs have been upgraded to ministerial positions in the last reshuffle, while veteran leaders devoted to party politics for lifetime have been neglected for unknown reasons.

Is Indian politics based on heredity? Are lifetime contributions made by experienced Manipur leaders like Rishang Keishing not counted for they are not born in Gandhi families? Is it because their fathers and fore-fathers have not been in Indian political hierarchy?

During the last 65 years of independence, Manipur's loyalty to the Congress Party has been great in contrast to states like West Bengal, which believes in communism. It is questionable why Manipur has been left out of the congress ministry? National party's neglecting Manipur will further widen the existing gap between the north easterners and the mainland Indians. Are the state leaders in Congress party complacent with the treatment meted out to them?




* Seram Neken wrote this article for Hueiyen Lanpao (English Edition) as part of "The voiceless speaks"
This article was webcasted on November 12 2012.


* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Great June Uprising @Kekrupat #2 : Gallery
  • Yoga Day: Celebrating Your Health
  • Chak-hao - black gold of Manipur
  • In response to the culture of shaming
  • 3rd Documentor Imphal
  • 4th International Day of Yoga by AR
  • Appeals for Resolution of MU Crisis
  • Recommendation to control Flood damages
  • International Yoga Day at Loktak PS
  • After Flood : Introspection about the future
  • MUSU & JAC : Hot issues before the Govt
  • Zeliangrong orphaned by Nationalism #2
  • General Thangal Eco Park : Gallery
  • Letter to President on Crisis at MU
  • Precision medicine & life sciences
  • Black topping-can ground leveling be behind
  • Condemns security force intrusion in MU
  • Developer wanted at LMP, Konjeng Leikai
  • AR gears up for International Yoga Day
  • NPF rejoinder to NDPP : 20 June
  • Rejoinder by Dr. Shurhozelie : 20 June
  • For a little bit more
  • Deadline of 5 days time set : MU crisis
  • Garlic Festival @Ukhrul #4 :: Gallery
  • Flood in Imphal [14 June] #3 : Gallery
  • Inungshi, Gaichanglungliu :: eMing
  • Taking 'Hau' Music to Rest of World
  • Kakching bags cleanest city in NE Award
  • JRF (Junior Research Fellow) at IBSD
  • Oxfam India launches emergency response
  • VC, MU - Resign immediately :: MUTA
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • Translation of ancient Manipur texts begin
  • Pre Yoga Capsule organized
  • NDPP Rejoinder on 19 June
  • NPF Youth Wing Rejoinder on 19 June
  • Favouring digital govt : still a Virtual dream
  • June 18 Anniv : Consult all stakeholders
  • Great June Uprising @Kekrupat #1 : Gallery
  • Binota Thokchom at BRICS Young Scientist
  • The Merger of Manipur
  • Improving school management in Manipur
  • Pros & cons of screening tests
  • NPF Rejoinder on 18th June
  • Nagaland CM statement on Aboi ambush
  • June 18 significance: Still living on prayer
  • Need to identify one's strength
  • 18 Immortal Souls Remembered : Flash
  • The Great June Uprising : Read all about it
  • The Pitfalls of Identity Politics
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • All his sons :: Poem
  • Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016
  • Eid bring cheer in flood hit areas
  • Willong Khullen, Maram #1 : Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Defending the environmental defenders
  • Delusion in self - cause of worry
  • Road to Russia: FIFA World Cup
  • It must be love :: Poem
  • 'Future of Naga people is bleak'
  • Give a miss call to Amnesty
  • 'Naga area' bandh on June 18
  • Dzuko valley #4 :: 360 Panorama View
  • Flood in Imphal [14 June] #2 : Gallery
  • Id-Ul-Fitr Festival
  • Letter to PM Modi on Naga Talks
  • Greetings on Eid-Ul-Fitr
  • Rejoinder to NPF statement
  • Rejoinder to Nagaland Chief Minister
  • Flood relief continue on 3rd day
  • India-Vietnam Youth Dialogue 2018
  • MU debacle: Why would it be left unnoticed
  • Spirit of World Cup : Brazil to Russia
  • NEC to come under Home Ministry
  • Manipur NGO hosts summit on LGBTQ
  • Flood in Imphal [14 June] #1 : Gallery
  • Women Struggle in Self-Determination
  • 14 June- World Blood Donor Day
  • Naga Integration not possible- NPF react
  • Naga Integration is not possible- CM Rio
  • Relief work in flood affected areas
  • A day which keeps our spirit alive
  • Ranked 320 in the country : MU
  • Flood in Imphal [13 June] #2 : Gallery
  • Sovereignty Struggles in Northeast #5
  • Be alert: It's admission time
  • Yin and Yang
  • Watermelon beauty benefits
  • Temp accommodation for Aligarh students
  • Wrath of Mother Nature: Why challenge..
  • 60 pc is no longer first class : 95 pc
  • Flood in Imphal [13 June] #1 : Gallery
  • Sanamahi Laihui & Sanamahi Laining
  • Kuhi- Essential plant for Nungbi pottery
  • Climate justice is integral to development
  • The bridge :: Poem
  • Lt S Vijaya Devi felicitated
  • Then : Indifferent :: Now : Hyper sensitive
  • Phumdigi Tantha : Dance Drama : Gallery
  • Grief at Xavier Rutsa's demise
  • Modi's India: A descend into Ochlocracy
  • The Philippine Experience
  • Cry of a Dying River #33 :: Poem
  • Community Iftar at Moijing, Cachar
  • Candle Light at DU over Assam lynching
  • Demand replacement of Manipur Univ VC
  • The Tragedy of Higher education
  • Unacceptable points spelt out
  • Teinem Luira Phanit @Ukhrul #3: Gallery
  • RPL-PMKVY trainees @Hojai : Gallery
  • Manipur Sports University in UP ?
  • Coloniality of the Postcolonial
  • Yellow leaves in the autumn :: Poem
  • Prof N Irabanta-distinguished academician
  • Leadership matters
  • Artificial turf for budding talents
  • 2 municipal bodies in NE awarded
  • Who is Arambam Somorendra ?
  • Manglandasu Nang - OST :: e-pao Radio
  • Shirock 2018 - Shirui Lily Fest #3 : Gallery
  • Linthoi's "The Tales of Kanglei Throne" #2
  • Grass root challenge- Education in hills
  • Earth does not belong to us...
  • Sita Mata as test-tube baby
  • What happen to VIP Culture Mr. CM
  • Merchants of education
  • Laitonjam Rajnikanta : Profile
  • A blessing to see :: Poem
  • Sovereignty Struggles in Northeast #4
  • Difference between Hinduism & Hindutva
  • How to choose the perfect fragrance
  • Iftaar party at Lilong
  • Bitter truth of Manipuri society
  • MU, NSU, IGNTU : Students at the centre
  • Amuktang-Ga Haikho #1 : eRang
  • Sangai Veterans' Football #2 : Gallery
  • Pony : A Cavalry Horse Par Excellence #2
  • Issues that keep Manipur burning
  • Cry of a Dying River - 32 :: Poem
  • CM & AR interaction with villagers
  • Certification of PMKVY trainees of Hojai
  • Christian appeals for Peace in Shillong
  • How safe are our women?
  • Riders put up by JAC for talk
  • Khangkhui Cave in Ukhrul #3 : Gallery
  • Pluralism, Democracy & Ethnic Relation #2
  • Irom Sharmila meets with Mehbooba Mufti
  • JRF @ Mizoram University (Biotechnology)
  • Tobacco and heart disease
  • Understanding SOWA - RIGPA #2
  • Campaign "to End Child Sexual Abuse"
  • Implementation of 7th Pay
  • Indigenous street vendor sing gi wafam
  • The crumbling Manipur University
  • Kang Tournament @ Yaiskul : Gallery
  • Zeliangrong orphaned by Nationalism #1
  • A rainy night :: Poem
  • HSLC Exam is the start! What next?
  • 1528 cases of fake encounter
  • Linthoi's "The Tales of Kanglei Throne" #1
  • Handloom Weaver @Bishnupur : Gallery
  • Shirock 2018 - Shirui Lily Fest #2 : Gallery
  • Hinduism in Manipur : Political Perspective
  • All the World and his Wife :: Poem
  • Tribal Cultural Festival #1 : Gallery
  • Women in CCpur turn to self-help groups
  • Purul Paoki Wrestling : Gallery
  • Sangai Veterans' Football #1 : Gallery
  • Khangminashi IV (Lecture) : Report
  • Seminar at MU - Hinduism in Manipur'
  • Evolution of The Meetei State
  • Heartbreak at Ukhrul: Unfolding Shirock
  • State Level Khurpui-Lam Festival: Gallery
  • June Calendar for Year 2018 :: Tools
  • School Girls Basketball #2 : Gallery
  • Where is Manipur....???
  • 'Manipur' in Google maps : Gallery
  • The Killing Fields - 2013-18 : News Timeline
  • Mama Poktabi :: Funga Wari
  • Veterans Football Tournament #2 : Gallery
  • Shirock 2018 - Shirui Lily Fest #1 : Gallery
  • Sougrakpam Vijaya makes history sailing...
  • Arunachali unfurled Salai Taret at Mt Everest
  • Panthoiba: 2nd Rank- class XII, Uttarkhand
  • Ras Leela @JNMDA Day : Gallery
  • HSLC 208 Exam Toppers : Gallery
  • HSLC 2018 :: Toppers Listing
  • HSLC 2018 :: Check Result
  • HSLC :: Statistical/Subject Topper
  • HSLC 2018 :: External
  • Poumai Purul Hiimai Paoki #2 : Gallery
  • Kakching Garden :: 360 Panorama View
  • Folk Dance Festival #5 : Gallery
  • Aerial view from Chingmeirong : Gallery
  • Curtain Raising- Sangai Fest 2017: Gallery
  • Lainingthou Lai Lam thopka #2 : Gallery
  • Re-visiting Khangkhui caves in Ukhrul
  • Gardening @Ema Keithel #2: Gallery
  • Front Page Photo 2018 #2: Gallery
  • Pakhangba Cheng Hongba #2 : Gallery
  • Steelheart @ Shirock , Ukhrul #3 : Gallery
  • A. Halim Chowdhury: A Profile
  • Class XII Exam Toppers : Gallery
  • Class XII Result : Science Toppers
  • Class XII Result : Arts Toppers
  • Class XII Result : Commerce Toppers
  • HSE Result 2018 : District Wise
  • HSE Result 2018 : Highest Marks
  • HSE Result 2018 : Science Stream
  • HSE Result 2018 : Arts Stream
  • HSE Result 2018 : Commerce Stream
  • Temples of Manipur : Gallery
  • Recipients of Akademi Awards for 2014
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic
  • SPONSORED ADS