Tuesday, July 5, 2022

If indecision is decision

Strikes, ultimatums, locking offices and blockades during the past months in Nagaland serve to indicate that things are not quite right as these have also set in bad precedence about the state of affairs. The consequences of such negative developments only fuel despair and the result of which invites serious introspection. There could be any number of reasons as to why various communities or organisations have taken to the streets for a variety of demands. Often, decisions made by the cabinet have been challenged through spate of agitations, locking offices or blockades. There has been more than enough reportage and comment about the mess which comprises of a whole range of problems and perhaps the reason for the response, whether rightly or wrongly, is mainly because there is a current and popular feeling that ultimately the government is inclined to stick to its decisions. Worse than not sticking to decisions is another popular ploy of forming high power committees or sub-committees to “study” the issue(s) through consultations with various organisations. Often, the reports of the committees or panels have not seen the light of day. Some of the committee reports formed by the government to look into various issues have yet to be made public. Among these is the report of the Banuo Commission, formed on July 10,2019 to look into the issue of Registration of Indigenous Inhabitants of Nagaland(RIIN) . The commission submitted its report to the government by end of 2019 but till date the cabinet has yet to take any decision. After outcry and agitation by Joint Committee for Prevention of Illegal Immigrants (JCPI) to table the report in the Assembly, the government did so in the February 2021 session but only at the last day and because of which,the assembly could not discuss the report. The delay tactic has led to the report being again referred to consultative meetings and later to state level and district level committees. The other much publicised issue was on unabated taxations by NPGs, government agencies and scores of organisations at check gates, godowns, market etc. Since 2013 public raised their voices through rallies and peaceful marches under the aegis of ACAUT Nagaland. The government responded by constituting a three-member high power committee on August 5,2014 to look into taxation and corruption. The HPC submitted its report to the cabinet on June 10,2015 but since then, nothing has come out from the government. All agitations, blockades etc may be justified in their own way and any government worth the name has to address these issues in a transparent and responsible manner instead of conveniently relegating them to various committees and panels whose reports eventually end up in twilight zone and never made public. A government is mandated by people who elected their leaders to form the government. People have elected their leaders to address and resolve various issues and problems. Unfortunately, too much of everything is bad and so, the greatest tragedy confronting Naga society today, is a perplexing veneration of profane politics that is bereft of rationality. It is unfortunate that veneration of the political issue has provided a fig leaf for the elected to cover their failures on many crucial issues at the huge cost to providing good governance to their people. On this scale, this failing can only result in negative contribution and ensure that the cure turns out to be worse than the disease.

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