An issue ignored


Except as a passing reference during the campaigns in the recently-concluded Nagaland Assembly elections, the issue of “solution” was very noticeably missing. And, this observation pertains to all political parties here ~ in fact some of them didn’t mention it at all ~ neither did most individual candidates, irrespective of party affiliations. This somehow lends credence to the opinion that the entirety of the issue of “solution” is very academic that keeps NGOs and civil societies, as well as a few who love to see their names in print, including some individual academicians or associations of like-minded of academicians, occupied. In the Assembly elections, held on February 27 last, there was pin-drop silence from our NGOs and civil societies, as also the people, on the issue. Now, isn’t it strange that this issue that had occupied the broad spectrum of the political firmament of Nagas for decades didn’t not find a central space in the campaigns of our political parties? During the run up to the elections on February 27, our newspapers were full of bad-mouthing and mud-slinging hurled by political parties and personalities at each other. Isn’t it also stranger that even the people didn’t demand that this be the major issue? In fact, very noticeably, the issue wasn’t even the people’s priority ~ not even development. As in all previous elections, the primary focus was on money, family, clan, tribe, village, the village council’s dicta and the threat of punitive action for disobedience and the other usual factors that drive our people to vote the way they do. This makes an interesting study on what actually our people perceive as their aspirations, their needs, their wants and generally their philosophies of life. While it is true that we are victims or products of our history, we are also the architects of our history therefore it should make an interesting study as to why we design what we do, as also to investigate whether we know what we are doing. Meanwhile, it is also very noticeable that after the results of the recently-held elections were declared, in the race to form the Government, in the struggle for power, this very same issue of “solution” does not even feature and the word has not even been uttered. Strange, isn’t it, considering that “solution” was bandied about as the reason for party adjustments, alignments and allegiances? But as we can see, the word “solution: is now being used and justified as a protective shield ~ much like a condom ~ for blatant horse-trading, which also means sale of support. While, all Governments at the Centre was aware of political parties, NGOs and civil societies, claiming to represent the will, the voice and whatever of the people, on the issue of “solution”, because the BJP has done its homework, it has called the bluff of our political parties, NGOs and civil societies and turned the whole issue upside-down by its stand on “election before solution” ~ thereby throwing the ball in the court of our political parties, NGOs and civil societies ~ especially because very noticeably, our political parties did not demur at all at the BJP’s “election before solution”. Definitely, a thorough analytical research is called for on our political parties, NGOs and civil societies. Then again, perhaps, elections are the solution towards “solution”? That too is wide open for discourse. But seeing that the “solution” plank that was used and over-used for decades in all our elections but nothing has come out of it, it is doubtful whether elections are the solution towards “solution” or a scheme to circumvent the issue or even erase “solution” from memory. Also, seeing that the “solution” plank that was used and over-used for decades in all our elections and nothing has come out of it, perhaps our people have become wiser hence have not prioritized “solution”? Clearly, for a people that cry for “solution”, as claimed by our political parties, NGOs and civil societies, why is this issue the most ignored when our electorate exercises its constitutional rights and duties? This also calls for a discourse on who actually represent the will and voice of the people ~ and whether our people have sold their will and voice.