My Vote Is Precious, What About Yurs ?

“You must be the change you want to see in the world.”
— Mahatma Gandhi

Defying a Mahatma’s citation would be the last thing anyone would ever do. So, I humbly accept the above saying without a nagging if or but. Nonetheless, it is a different cup of tea that the dates and seasons keep changing in Manipur while the situations remain the same. Sorry Bapuji, it’s indeed a successful-failure for us to refrain ourselves from being encouraged by such a moving principle. Heartfelt Apologies (with an accompanying sad smiley).

All is not well at all. It has been a continuous sequence of pestering and perturbing experience to read news and views on the current issues in Manipur that are without any solution. No matter one is confined in the home State or not, the concern remains the same. We all love to go through pleasing news and encouraging stories as far as the home-State is related which have become missing columns on most of the news-sites and dailies that are accessible through internet.

Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months and it won’t be long before the months turn into a year but no change has been ever observed so far and no change can yet be anticipated. The ‘Assurance-theory’ seems to have successfully failed again and most of the plans are almost getting foiled and flopped. Nevertheless, people need not worry because the Government will further work on more ‘assurance theories’ after all that’s the only thing they are good at.

It is at times a clear-doubt or a puzzle for me how the Government keeps it’s cool at such intense situations. No matter how many Bandhs or General Strikes that different groups call for, no matter how sky-rocketed the prices of daily commodities are, it is ‘paangkhokla eshing chaiba’ effort from the public’s side since none of the issues are ever resolved.

Nonetheless, we should still be hopeful right? We cannot be too pessimistic especially when some fleeting impractical solutions are probably on the way. YES! The elections are around. And when elections come, can fake-agendas be far behind? At a time when the whole State is burning and equally suffering amidst chaos and unexpected hoo-hahs, the upcoming election is perhaps going to be a pseudo-respite for people or at least I mistakenly think so? It would be a tricky situation for the ruling Government to act or react on any burning issue as they are prone to be severely criticised by the Opposition party. But yes, they will tackle things tactfully with the same old tactics. By the way, I believe campaigns have already been started. Many promises will be refreshed, many agendas will be framed and many social works can also be expected at each and every leikai. Local feasts will be plenty in number funded by the political candidates. Some families will also get monetary assistance personally funded by the same candidates. The love, care, affection and concern that have never been shown for all these years will suddenly outburst because it is campaign time and winning their love and affection is the primary agenda for them.

Ever wonder how open bribery is warmly accepted in our home State? Needless to mention that when it’s free anyone doesn’t mind having it (money). It is an open secret that Democracy is an honest joke as far as Manipur is concerned. It has always been Government off the people, bye (the) people, not for the people. The comical paradox however is that people are aware about it. They know the wrongs and the rights equally and yet they become easy prey to the pseudo-promises of undeserving political leaders that are refreshed during every election time. My earnest consideration therefore is that people need not complain at all when they are the ones who are solely responsible for bribery much before the political leaders come into power. It’s not just a vote that is sold away; it’s the self-respect that is being openly sold. It is all in all kind of dukandari system– give money and buy the vote—that’s it? If such is the norm that has been followed for all these years, why the heck should they complain about problems that rise later? Let the mushrooming number of problems burgeon, who cares? On a very personal note, I am honestly glad that I have never ever voted even once for any of the election campaigns held in our Kendra. I am not against plebiscite system in Manipur but I am totally against the misconstrued understanding and practice of election. If election is all about selling your self-respect just for the sake of some free money, I would never ever do that. If election is all about choosing a wrong candidate who cannot represent the collective voice or grievances of people, EXCUSE ME because my vote is really precious, what about yours?

This article was published on 4 Sep 2011
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