Where the wind blows

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 4/9/2019 12:33:15 PM IST

 India votes to elect 543 representatives in a seven-phased poll to constitute the next 17th Lok Sabha , with the first phase on April 11 to elect 91 members from 20 states and Union Territories. The next six phases are in April 18, April 23, April 29, May 6, May 12 and May 19. Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Odisha, Sikkim, Telangana, Tripura, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep. These include all the 25 Lok Sabha seats of Andhra Pradesh, 17 seats of Telangana, five seats of Uttarakhand, two seats each of Arunachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Meghalaya and one seat each of Chhattisgarh, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, Tripura, Andaman and Nicobar as well as Lakshadweep. The first phase will also cover Uttar Pradesh’s eight out of 80 Lok Sabha seats, four out of 40 seats of Bihar and two out of 42 seats of West Bengal. Campaigning for the Lok Sabha election has been hard and bitter and with no holds barred. The incumbent BJP-led NDA coalition is putting up a spirited fight to retain power while the opposition is equally determined to oust Modi and his alliance. The lack of opposition unity for whatever reasons, has given a lease to the NDA which was battling to fight anti-incumbency. The main political parties- BJP and Congress- which have a pan-India presence, have also released their respective manifestos. While the Congress manifesto, titled “Congress Will Deliver” was launched on April 2, the BJP manifesto titled “Sankalpit Bharat, Sashakt Bharat (Determined India, Empowered India) was released by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on April 8. Both Congress and BJP have kept national security as a top priority in their respective manifestos. The BJP’s security doctrine focuses on acting against terrorism and extremism while Congress has focused more on defence preparedness through procurement. The Congress has promised to review the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act in force in J&K and several north eastern states. The BJP has opposed any such move. The BJP has also promised to abrogate Art 370( in Jammu & Kashmir). It said the same about Article 35A that empowers the state’s native citizens. According to the BJP, both laws-Article 370 and Article 35A have been an obstacle to development in the state. The BJP also promised to build the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, legislate the Uniform Civil Code(UCC) and replace personal laws based on the scriptures and customs of each major religious community in India. BJP also reaffirmed its promise to legislate the Citizenship Amendment Bill(CAB)2016 to facilitate grant of Indian citizenship to Hindu immigrants from Bangladesh and excluding Muslim immigrants. Despite the massive outcry in the north east against the CAB the BJP has reaffirmed its commitment to legislate the Bill after it comes back to power. The other promise for 33% Women’s quota remains a symbolic mention which the BJP failed to fulfil in NDA-I under Vajpayee and also NDA-II under Modi. The party has also reaffirmed its commitment to alter election schedules by holding simultaneous polls for Lok Sabha and assemblies. These are issues that are uppermost but the media, has turned the campaign narrative as a battle between Modi and Rahul. Despite media polls, the decision of the Indian voters will be known by May 23,2019.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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