CAB: NPF accuses NDPP of shifting blame

DIMAPUR, OCT 12 (NPN) | Publish Date: 10/12/2019 12:14:22 PM IST

Charging the NDPP of questioning what the then chief minister, TR Zeliang, was doing in 2016 instead of accepting its shortcomings on the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), the Naga People’s Front (NPF) Saturday asserted that diverting issues and shifting blame onto others has become the “professional trademark” of NDPP.

Seeking to set the record straight, NPF through its press bureau pointed out that the CAB was proposed in the Lok Sabha on July 15, 2016 and referred to a joint parliamentary committee (JPC) on August 12, 2016 when the present chief minister, Neiphiu Rio, was the Lok Sabha MP from May 2014 to February 2018. 

“This fact cannot be denied by anyone,” NPF added.

NPF has, therefore, questioned how could the blame be shifted to the NPF party today when Rio himself was the lone Lok Sabha MP representing the NPF Party at that point in time? “This is like spitting at one’s own face,” NPF stated. It also questioned what was the purpose of Rio representing the state in the Lok Sabha if not for facilitating such affairs between his people and the parliament?

As MP representing Nagaland, NPF said it was his “bounden duty” to have consulted the state government back home while taking into confidence the voice of the Naga people since CAB was referred to JPC which took over a year. 

However, NPF alleged that Rio failed to do it because he was “ignorant” of what was going on in the Parliament during his tenure. 

“Moreover, he was spending sleepless nights master-minding crisis, one after another, to topple the then NPF led DAN Government in the State,” NPF claimed.

Further, pointing out that special provision of Article-371(G), which came into effect following Mizo Accord and Assam Accord, which gave birth to NRC, safeguard the interest of the indigenous people of Mizoram and Assam, the NPF said that similarly the 16-Point Agreement that led to the birth of Article 371(A) was intended to safeguard the interest of the indigenous people of Nagaland. 

It also said that Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Nagaland have Inner Line Permit (ILP) while Meghalaya has Entry and Exit points. However, NPF said that despite all those proviso and measures, many leaders from the North East states including Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma, Mizoram chief minister Zoramthanga and Manipur chief minister Biren Singh, protested against CAB. It said three Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) leaders even resigned as state ministers over CAB. 

The opposition party, however, said that state chief minister, Neiphiu Rio, despite all the hue and cry, “stubbornly refused to budge from his naïve belief” that Nagaland was protected from CAB under Article-371(A) and ILP. “Does this imply that his counterparts in other NE States were raising alarms out of a non-issue or was it Neiphiu Rio who rather failed to understand the reality?” NPF queried.

If the state really meant to uphold Article 371(A), NPF said the state should raise its voice before any contentious Bill was passed so that exemption of the Bill could be incorporated in the said Bill.

Alleging that NDPP had “no dignity” as a political party, NPF advised NDPP to either stick to its motto or to avoid the same altogether in order to avoid further humiliation. 

Asserting that if the adage ‘Facta Non Verba’- motto of the NDPP Party- was any indication to the “utter failure” of the NDPP-led government during the last almost 2 years, NPF said the better suited Latin phrase would be just the opposite- ‘Verba Non Facta”. “This is because of the fact that the NDPP led Government till date has been ‘all words and no deeds’,” NPF alleged.

Opposition NPF said that effective governance was based on how government conduct public affairs and manage public resources. However, it said that the approach of NDPP-led government was “unfortunately” built on ‘words and not deeds’ and the end result, it claimed was “in full public display for all to see.” 

NPF also stated that when NDPP preach of ‘Development for all, together with all’ it must understand that governance and development also meant the right and the means to examine the process of decision making and the responsibility of being able to provide details of actions taken. NPF said it was also about being able to explain, clarify and account for the action of the government of the day.

However, the opposition party said the NDPP, on the contrary, has been avoiding its queries both inside and outside the Nagaland Legislative Assembly, except for “political rhetoric which the NDPP Party has no dearth of.”


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