Need to be democratic in a democracy Being democratic in a democracy


Only two MPs but the fact that each MP will count can be seen in the importance placed by the Central leadership of the two principal political parties, the BJP and the Congress. It was in line with the importance placed on each MP that earlier AICC president Rahul Gandhi arrived here and made a strong pitch for the Congress candidates in both the Outer and Inner Parliamentary Constituencies. The BJP too demonstrated how seriously it takes the coming election with BJP National president Amit Shah first campaigning for the BJP candidates on April 5, followed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on April 7. In as much as the Central leaders of the two principal political parties have demonstrated how seriously they take the elections here in Manipur, the fact stands that the coming election will prove to be much more crucial for Chief Minister N Biren than for CLP leader and former Chief Minister O Ibobi. This fact must have registered in the consciousness of N Biren and his close associates and obviously the BJP Ministers and MLAs. Why this is so should be plain to everyone. As the party in power, much will be expected from the BJP and while it remains to be seen which way the poll wind blows, the fact stands that the pressure must be mounting on the Chief Minister and his men. The fact that its allies the NPP and the NPF have fielded their own candidates in the two seats has made the situation all that more interesting. And making it more interesting is the fact that the NPP and the CPI have struck an agreement that the former would extend support to the CPI candidate, Dr M Nara in the Inner seat while the CPI will do the same to the NPP candidate in the Outer seat, Thangminlen Kipgen.
This can queer the pitch for the BJP. The NPP with four MLAs, two from the valley and two from the hills can be expected to extend some meaningful support to the CPI candidate, while the CPI candidate himself can take the people of his home Constituency along with him and influence them to vote for the NPP candidate in the Outer. Remember there are 8 Assembly Constituencies which fall in the Outer Parliamentary Constituency and Dr Nara must surely have his supporters from his Assembly Constituency, Wangjing Tentha which falls in the Outer Parliamentary Constituency. Surely such an arrangement can have some impact on the BJP and it will be interesting to see how this pre-poll pact with the CPI may impact on the coalition led by the BJP in Imphal. So apart from the BJP and the Congress, it is the NPP and the NPF, both allies of the BJP led Government at Imphal which can pose a tough challenge to the BJP in the Outer Constituency while in the Inner it is the CPI which can do the same to the BJP and the Congress. Early days yet but election fever is already on and while political parties and their candidates must be busy giving the final touches to their election strategy, the people must have started sizing up the candidates and their prospects. Ultimately it is the people who will decide who represents them in Parliament and this is perhaps the most beautiful aspect of a democracy. And for democracy to have any meaning, one must study which party is the most democratic. The link between democracy and being democratic should not be lost on the people.

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