TODAY -

Inner, torn between two lovers

Free Thinker *



These days everyone is asking a very pertinent question – who is going to win? Honestly, I don’t know the undercurrent but the conventional truth is that the ruling party or the ruling alliance always has the edge in this State. However there is no guarantee that the ruling wins every time.

These days 4 things (powers) are vital for election – Social-Media power, Money power, Muscle power and Machine power. If a candidate is blessed with these powers he becomes invincible. Despite all restrictions, rules, regulations, and dictates – these four elements still decide the fate of a candidate. You will agree with me.

Earlier also I expressed my unhappiness about the names of our parliamentary constituencies –Inner Manipur and Outer Manipur. We all are inside Manipur. Because of this nomenclature some people have started thinking that they are outside Manipur. That is why we are having problems every now and then. In the next delimitation the name of the hill constituency must be changed.

We are likely to have 3 parliamentary constituencies after the next nation delimitation, so let us now start thinking about more appropriate names of the constituencies. The Inner constituency should be renamed as Manipur Valley Constituency, for Outer – it may be renamed as Manipur Hill constituency and the third constituency (likely) – may be named as Manipur New Constituency.

Without using Money power, Muscle power and Machine power if we can hold the election this time – that will be an example for all - the cleanest election of all times in the History of Manipur .I inquire from my fellow rumor-mongers in the hills as well as in the valley that whether such a scenario is possible in our elections. Their replies are negative.

Obnoxious and derogatory expressions should not be used during the campaigns. In a very polite and parliamentary style you may tell a person to go to hell or heaven. This is the way we must talk. Refinement is necessary. Everyone thinks he/she will go to heaven after death. A candidate can candidly tell a VIP to expedite his journey to heaven is a nice way of saying, I will kill you.

My conjecture is, this election will be more expensive – now the money handlers may ask for safety money in addition to their commission from the Candidate. For instance, if he is asked to distribute 10 lacs to the poor voters, he may ask for insurance – saying that anything can happen - who will compensate?

One ticklish issue is that the people living in the relief camps are under the direct supervision of the government and local administration. Thousands of voters are residing in the relief camps .

I am not very sure about their numbers but it is almost certain that they must be having a sob corner for those who are looking after them – maybe the local cook or the club president or Pradhan or the local officer . If they simply murmur whom to support – vote may swing. So my request to the Candidates is that if they want to help them please help those outside the camps are full of cameras.

In the ‘Outer’ normally people can’t move from one place to another for voting – polling booths are located far off. What is the point of all villagers coming to the polling station from a far distance; they don’t get travel allowance or travel money.

So, I am told - it has been the convention that the village decides whom to support and accordingly one representative will go and do the needful or the message is passed to the polling authorities to do the needful. Convention has the force of law and particularly in the tribal areas practices are respected and followed.

Perhaps the villagers think it is a waste of time, money and energy to go for voting – most importantly hill people are very hard working and they want to do something constructive for themselves or their family instead of going too far for casting a vote. I believe the story still holds good.

An amusing news is that the Delhi returns are divided because of the age old DU - JNU estrangement. Boys and girls, men and women may not be aware of the fact that the Prof was also once upon a time in DU.

But the Mantri is an original DU wala from Stephen’s, the best college. Now, Miranda is number one – I am still reluctant to accept the new ranking though my ‘bitter’ half is its alumnus. After all it is likely to be a DU affair in the ‘Inner’.

An Editor teased me - ‘whom you are going to vote , your intellectual associate or your political pal’? I told him – normally I abstain due to financial constraints for flying. But I have requested my near and dear ones to cast their invaluable votes according to the rules and regulations contemplated by EC, SC and AT.

In fact I am torn between two candidates, utterly helpless. ‘Et populous decernere’. Of course, ultimately I have to welcome the victor.


* Free Thinker wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on 08 April 2024

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