TODAY -

Adding more teeth to the silence : Chicken neck syndrome ?
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: February 06, 2024 -



The silence continues-add the line for over 9 months-and what has made the continuation of this ‘conspiracy of silence’ more eloquent this time is the fact that it came just one day after Chief Minister N Biren tweeted on X that the Government of India is ‘set to take some important decisions in the interests of the people of Manipur.’

Qualifying the line ‘set to take some important decisions in the interests of the people of Manipur’ with the continued silence, will probably be the most impactful blow for Manipur even as the world has stepped into the second month of 2024.

After what the Chief Minister tweeted on February 3, the focus of Manipur was on the scheduled visit of the Prime Minister to Guwahati on February 4, but the silence since the evening of May 3, 2023 continued and continues to this day making one wonder if the ‘important decisions’ meant continuing with the self imposed silence.

True the Chief Minister tweeted the ‘some important decisions’ line after meeting Union Home Minister Amit Shah and not the Prime Minister, but surely the two most important men in the BJP led NDA Government at Delhi would not have struck different stands on the same subject.

This is why the focus of Imphal on Guwahati during the Prime Minister’s visit, just next door.

So what are the important decisions that may be taken in the interests of Manipur, is the question that is doing the round, and in line with the continued silence of the Prime Minister, Chief Minister N Biren too has preferred not to say anything more than what he tweeted on X on February 3.

The silence after the grand announcement on X and the ‘he came but did not look beyond Assam or the coming Lok Sabha election’ line comes uncomfortably close to the understanding of the chicken neck syndrome.

Not that anyone expects a magic formula to come from the Prime Minister but as veteran CPI leader of Manipur, Dr Nara so eloquently put it, ‘This is beyond our belief that the Prime Minister did not say anything on the Manipur issue’.

An address to the crowd lasting nearly 32 minutes sans any reference to the ongoing mayhem here says so many things and questions are sure to be raised against the BJP led Government at Imphal.

Or is the Prime Minister and his men satisfied with the fact that the BJP led Government here will be in power till at least 2027 ?

Only time will tell but the silence irks and it could say so many things, leaving it wide open to different interpretations.

It will not make up for the continued silence, a silence that comes close to the understanding of a conspiracy, but why hasn’t the Chief Minister elaborated on the important decisions the Centre is set to take on behalf of Manipur ?

Or would spelling it out or hinting at it come close to the understanding of counting the chicks before they hatch ?

Either way, it stands that Manipur is still a long way to come anywhere near the understanding of normalcy.

And it has been like this for over 9 months.

It should be more than obvious that the writ of the State Government no longer runs in many hill districts, particularly at Churachandpur and Kangpokpi.

At Moreh, in Tengnoupal district, every efforts are being made to show that there is a Government in place, with the men in khakis leading the way, but does this not say something profound ?

Does not portend well for Manipur at all.

The emergence of power players such as CoTU at Kangpokpi, the ITLF at Churachandpur and numerous other powerful groups should say something profound about Manipur as a whole.

Show there is a Government in place, and perhaps the starting point would be to see what sort of action can be taken up against the MLAs who have raised the call for a Separate Administration.

Such a step can a long way in demonstrating that there is a Government in place and this is what Manipur needs right now.



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