Dimapur, April 25: The Nagaland Pradesh Congress Committee (NPCC) has hit out at the State BJP for giving a clean chit to Deputy Chief Minister Y Patton for his alleged misdeeds, terming it as an insult to all right thinking citizens of Nagaland and total disregard to the rule of law.
“The arrogance of power has certainly gone into the heads of BJP leaders where they feel that public are idiots and can be taken for a ride,” alleged the NPCC communication department in a rejoinder.
The State Congress party was reacting to BJP president Temjen Imna Along defense of Patton on multiple voting charge; while at the same time apologizing for the Deputy CM wearing a BJP scarf inside a polling station.
“Blatant doublespeak of BJP President is evident when he apologizes for Y Patton wearing BJP scarf in the same video where he was also seen casting multiple votes, which they stoutly denies. Their apology therefore puts the genuineness of video beyond doubt. Since FIR has already been lodged at Wokha Police Station, state BJP leaders are reminded not to jump the gun or interfere in the process of investigation as Congress will not remain silent spectator to their arrogance and misdeeds,” it stated.
CAB vis-à-vis Art 371A
On the opinion of the State BJP president that Article 371A can protect Nagas from CAB, the Congress said the matter is contradictory to his “naive beliefs”. According to the NPCC, the CAB once passed in Parliament and enacted as law will overshadow Article 371A while giving free access to immigrants to enter Nagaland after they become Indian citizens.
“No one can stop anyone from settling in any part of the Indian Union so long a person is an Indian citizen. It is a constitutional right guaranteed by the Indian Constitution to all the citizens of this country. When several thousands of immigrants start migrating to Nagaland from all corners, neither Article 371A nor BEFR 1873 will be able to stop such entries which will be deemed legal actions under the law.”
Asking Imna Along to remember that PDA Lok Sabha MP Tokheho Yepthomi failed to attend Parliament when the contentious bill was introduced and passed in Lok Sabha on January 8, 2019, the NPCC said, “If he believes in his Chief Minister’s version that Nagaland will be exempted from CAB, sooner or later, he must wake up and get in touch with reality. This is because any Act of Parliament passed by both the houses shall not exempt any State in the country unless it is clearly mentioned in the Act that such States or UT will be exempted from application of the Act under provisions laid down in the Constitution.”
The rejoinder said the opinion that Article 371A will protect the Nagas is a naive belief that undermines the intellect of the Nagas. Several politicians, retired judges, legal luminaries have already opined that Article 371A and CAB are two completely different issues and that it has no connections to each other, it reminded.
“The point of contention raised by Imna Along clearly reflects the intention of PDA Government to fulfill the dreams of BJP-RSS leaving Naga people at their own risk. When the first decision of PDA Cabinet not to oppose the CAB was conveyed to Union Home Minister by Chief Minister of Nagaland, HM Rajnath Singh congratulated Rio for taking bold decision against the wishes of his own people and the people of NE India.
“However, at a later stage under public pressure, PDA decided to oppose CAB under the paradigm that Nagas are protected under Article 371A. For PDA Government, these two issues have to move together because they cannot back out from their earlier commitment made to Central BJP leaders in Delhi.”
“Still, if Imna Along and PDA Government believe that Article 371A protects Naga people from CAB, we call for an open debate in the presence of civil societies, legal luminaries and retired judges etc to clear the cloud once and for all,” it added.
(Page News Service)