Chapter 1

Inner Line Permit: Manipur in grip of protests, bandhs against ‘outsiders’
Biren said an all-party meeting held Monday to discuss the ILP agitation has decided to seek the Centre’s assistance.
10 May, Indian Express

With the Assembly elections barely nine months away, agitations to implement some form of the Inner Line Permit (ILP), which restricts entry of outsiders in Manipur, has started anew, even as protests against the ILP are also growing.

While a 42-hour bandh called by the Joint Committee for Inner Line Permit (JCILP), a group of civic organisations in the state that is spearheading the movement since 2012, concluded Sunday and, like bandhs in the last few years, brought life to a complete standstill in capital Imphal, the ruling Congress has called the committee’s demand “tweaked”.

Former IPS officers join BJP
13 May, Imphal Free Press

Prahlad Singh Patel, BJP Manipur-in-charge, has today welcomed five eminent persons, including two retired IPS officers and deputy mayor of IMC into the party’s fold in the presence of new state unit chief Ksh Bhabananda at the state BJP headquarter.

The five new entrants to BJP were retired IPS officers P Dhanakumar Singh and S Manglemjao, deputy mayor of IMC and prominent Congress leader Thambaljao Phaomei, Trinamool Congress candidate from Hiyanglam AC Dr Y Radheshyam and JD (U) leader from Kshetrigaon Md Azizur Rahman.

Dr Radheshyam was accompanied in switching allegiance to the BJP by Zilla Parishad member Ch (o) Shanti Devi, pradhan of Langmeidong Gram Panchayat Y Iboton Singh, another five members from Langmeidong GP - Th Bilat Singh, Y Rajendro Singh, Th Gangadhor Singh, L Ibomcha Singh and A Bishorjit Singh, members of Arong Nongmeikhong GP S Angangjao Singh and W (o) Ibmecha Devi and member of Waikhong GP L (O) Thoibi Devi.

Prahlad Singh Patel said the arrival of the eminent personalities to BJP has strong potential to strengthen the party. Meanwhile, Thangmeiband MLA Kh Joykisan also accorded warm welcome to all five leaders.

Workers builds party, not leaders: K Bhabananda17 May, Imphal Free Press

If a political party have strong workers leading to opening of more branches than that political party can become a strong party. It means political workers are more powerful than a political leader in politics, said K Bhabananda Singh, President State BJP.

While announcing his approval to 38 workers from various political parties who had applied for membership of BJP, President K Bhabananda Singh said now the BJP in the state is getting strengthened and acceptance by the common people is growing. “To make the party strong, we need strong workers. A political party can view its structure as that of an inverted pyramid,” said Bhabananda.

NPF suspends Rio
17 May, Imphal Free Press

The Naga People’s Front has suspended former chief minister of Nagaland and Lok Sabha MP Neiphiu Rio from the primary membership of the party today.

According to the suspension order signed by president of NPF, Dr Shurhozelie Leizeitsu, two showcause notices were sent to Rio in the month of April asking him to explain the charges of indulging in anti-party activities. The disciplinary action committee after considering the replies from Rio recommended the suspension of Rio from the party, the order stated.

NSCN (IM) bats for Naga unity17 May, The Sangai Express / Newmai News Network

The NSCN-IM said today that the Government of India and the outfit "have now reached the most crucial and concluding stage" and as such advocated Naga unity and reconciliation.

Now the biggest question to the Nagas is, "how long the NSCN should wait for all to join as one? The Govt of India and the NSCN in their political negotiations have now reached the most crucial and concluding stage.

It will therefore be unwise, rather absurd on the part of the Nagas to prolong or wait indefinitely.

The world is racing and how can the Nagas think of nineteen (19) years of negotiation as not long enough ?," the NSCN-IM asked today.

Manipur political parties to lobby in Delhi for three bills
17 May, NE Live

Representatives of political parties in Manipur are busy drafting a memorandum calling upon their central leaders to support presidential assent for three bills that introduce a system to check influx of migrants into the north-eastern state.

A committee, chaired by Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam, has finished drafting the memorandum, said an official here.

"It will be handed over to Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh who will table it in the next round of meeting of the political parties. A time frame cannot be announced now," he said.

The three bills – the Protection of Manipur People Bill 2015, the Manipur Land Revenue and Land Reforms (Seventh Amendment) Bill 2015, and the Manipur Shops and Establishment (Second Amendment) Bill 2015 – were passed last year by the state assembly.

Civil Secretariat likely ahead of Assembly polls
19 May, The Sangai Express

The ongoing construction work of the Civil Secretariat is likely to be completed before the State Assembly election which is due either in the beginning of next year or the last part of the current year. However, the date of completion as agreed between the State Government and Simplex Project which has been constructing the Civil Secretariat has already lapsed, said a source in the State PWD.

Demystifying electoral democracy 19 May, Imphal Times

. . .The best option, therefore, lies in making efforts to sensitise the pubic on the importance of a continuous and collective engagement with politics and the political system instead of leaving the matter in the hands of a few people which raises the risk of manipulating the law for the benefit of the few.

We should understand that more than anything, election is a political game in which various factors beyond the comprehension of the common public are put into play, and that the most popular or efficient campaigns does not necessarily reflect the ability or intents of the candidates. The ultimate fate of the system lies with the public which it professes to serve.

Honesty in times of deceit20 May, Imphal Free Press

Corruption has become such a crippling issue in Manipur today, and everybody knows it too, yet precious little has ever been done to seriously challenge the scourge. As we see it, there are two approaches to a resistance. One is at the individual level, and nobody has scripted the spirit of this approach better than George Orwell when he remarked: ‘in time of universal deceit, being honest is a revolutionary act’. Unfortunately such a revolution has few or no follower these days in this land where the ultimate aspiration and ambition have been reduced to government contract works, either as broker from the position of the officialdom, or else as contractor, ready to compromise work for unwarranted profits. The other approach is to tackle corruption at the institutional level.

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