Editorial

Call of ‘Nagas of Nagaland’ Isolating NSCN (IM) ?

A gross miscalculation for all his far sightedness or a case of misjudging a far sighted personality ? It could be either but what is unfolding could be a reflection of the reality knocking hard on the consciousness of everyone. Thuingaleng Muivah, the ar..

The resurgence of Covid virus Back in the limelight

It is simple but obvious that no one wants to follow it. Get vaccinated, stick to the safety norms-which include wearing a face mask, maintain social distancing, always wash one’s hand thoroughly with soap and water or in case washing one’s ha..

Reminder to regulate private hostels Making a beeline for Imphal

Perhaps this is the right time to remind all, the Government, the parents, teachers, students and school managements, that it was not so long back that a loud and audible noise was raised to regulate the functioning of the different boarding facilities th..

Trundling from one issue to the other Covid : A comeback ?

Trundling from one issue to the other and this is how Manipur has been for some time, correction, for years now. An indication that the people know how to kick up issues and keep them burning for days or months on end, or  a statement that noting sub..

Steady climb of new Covid cases Statistics don’t lie

Statistics don’t lie though they may not tell the whole story. This is how one must view the upsurge in the new cases updated daily by the Covid-19 Common Control Room. Probably not the whole picture but the recent surge in the detection of new case..

No love lost between Jamir and NSCN (IM) Meaningful words

There is obviously no love lost between them and this is where the choice of words becomes very interesting and could be significant too. Former Chief Minister of Nagaland and veteran political figure of the North East, SC Jamir minced no words in asserti..

Making a beeline for the better known schools Noting all performers

With the Board of Secondary Education, Manipur announcing the Class X examination results on July 8, expectedly a large number of parents, guardians and the students themselves have started making a beeline for some of the better known private schools loc..

Performers against the backdrop of the virus The race starts now

The Class X exam result is out and one can surely expect the freebies to come flying out from the stable of different and competing private schools to attract what they think are the best students. A matter of debate it would be to question how such measu..

Ban on single use plasticInvolve the local bodies

What are the steps that the Government has taken to make the ban on single use plastic effective ? Is it going to be a step by step process, meaning living up to the understanding of phasing out single use plastic or is it going to be an all out ban ? The..

Worrying upward tick of new infection Back with a vengeance

The upwards tick continues and while this  may not qualify to be another wave as understood as the 1st, 2nd and 3rd wave,  the virus is still out there and has started picking its target with gay abandon. Statistics don’t lie and it tells ..

The other tale of the Marangching disaster The hero in each man

It is probably the biggest natural disaster that Manipur has ever seen and the horror of it all must have sunk in on everyone’s consciousness. So far, that is till July 4, 47 lifeless bodies have been recovered while 15 are still missing. Imagine th..

Spike in daily new cases Disturbing statistics

It was a lull, just a lull, nothing more, nothing less. This is the line that The Sangai Express has been maintaining for long, even before the second wave hit the place and the people with such devastating impact. And for once, it would have been nice an..

Search, body count continue The tragedy of it all

The search continues, the body count too continues and in the process are added more widows and orphans. This is the reality, a reality tinged with tragedy and underlining the point that when nature strikes, there is nothing much that man can do, despite ..

It is a disaster not seen earlier here The anonymous heroes

It is a disaster. Note the stress on the present tense. It is and will continue to haunt the collective psyche of the people for times to come. Even as this observation is being written down, search operation is still on to trace those who have been burie..

After a lull of more than 60 days New normal call still stands

It was down. It never was out. A line which The Sangai Express has been maintaining since a long time back, even before the second wave hit the people with such devastating impact and so it is that Covid which has been lying low for over two months seems ..

Rounding up Myanmarese Reality Bites or Bite

A case of reality biting as in Reality Bites or a case of the truth staring Manipur right in the face as in Reality Bite ? The answer could be either, but it was not at all surprising to hear and read that at least 80 Myanmar Nationals have been rounded u..

More than putting the vehicle into motion Needed : Traffic sense

Kick the engine into life or switch the engine into life with the turn of the ignition key, kick or pull the clutch, slowly release the clutch and put the vehicle into motion and presto one is driving. Unfortunate it is but to many of those who are behind..

The wedge amongst the Nagas Politics of peace

The politics of peace, to repeat a line which The Sangai Express has been referring to quite often of late and it is should be obvious that this politics of peace has today  driven a wedge amongst different groups of people who otherwise identify the..

July 1 : Taking the fight to plastic The menace all around

The more correct term could be ‘phase out’ but phase it out by 2022. This was probably the objective of Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he announced that India would be working towards a plastic free environment. This was what the Plastic Wa..

Classical language status and ST demand Can the twain meet ?

A case of the right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing or a case of knowing that both hands will be amply awarded ? After all two hands are better than one to get the goodies. This is what may be read into the announcement of Rajya Sabha MP Leis..

Setting a base year of 1961 for ILP 10 years too late : JCILPS

A mixture of the sweet and sour. So while the BJP led Government has gone ahead and fulfilled the demand/suggestion of setting a base year for the Inner Line Permit System to come effective, it has fallen short of the target set by the Joint Committee on ..

Issues on the indigenous question Call for bicameral system

As always the issues are many and it is interesting to see civil society organisations raising their voice and stating what they are convinced is the right thing to do. It is best left to the judgment of the people to decide whether CSOs raising their voi..

Taking the fight to the drug menace Success stories noted, but ...

It should be obvious to all. It is going to be a long, drawn out war and the crucial question is whether Manipur has come anywhere near to winning it. No easy answer here but there are questions that need some answers. Are the three women arrested with 15..

Scripting success story with Rs 500Saluting the success story

Amid the rain, the rising water level of the major rivers in Manipur, the story of deaths and human tragedy at Assam, the Nationwide protests against Agnipath, the news of a young Ukhrul woman, who symbolises grit, tenacity and a sharp business mind came ..

Action of Govt needs to be backed Demolition drive

The BJP led Government seems to be intent on this and this is something which needs to be backed by all concerned. Demolition drive can never be easy and it needs conviction and this is something which should be lauded by all concerned. Illegal constructi..

Of food safety and street vendors

No doubt food poisoning is not endemic to Manipur and it can happen to anyone anywhere but the death of 35 year old youth from Thongju at RIMS on Wednesday (June 15) and subsequent hospitalisation of three of his family members due to suspected food poiso..

Education for whom ? We don’t need no education

The drug menace is very serious. Here’s hoping, praying that the powers that be have taken due note of it. The state government has given the impression that drug dealers are being pulled up and this must have been good news to everyone concerned. T..

‘Progression’ from smuggling to manufacturing

The irony was simply too stark for anyone to miss it. Whereas Chief Minister N Biren was appreciating Kangpokpi District Police for hauling up sizeable quantities of drug consignments during the past couple of months with a cash incentive of Rs 10 lakh, T..

NE needs more than ‘unprecedented’

“The last 8 years have seen unprecedented development in the Northeast. The focus is on infrastructure creation, ensuring better healthcare, education and popularising the rich cultures from the different Sates of the region.” These were the e..

Drugs, poppy & ‘alternatives’

It is indeed heartening to note that the State seems to be sincere enough this time in its approach to provide alternatives to poppy planters of the State. The task at hand is undoubtedly momentous but the road ahead is fraught with challenges. It will ne..

Conservation of pony & grazing fields

This much is clear. There is either a communication gap or a misunderstanding between pony rearers/owners and the Government. Even after the State Government’s announcement that horses/ponies may be let loose either at Lamphelpat or Marjing Polo com..

Environment needs more than tree plantation

The renewed efforts of the State Government toward reforestation are indeed laudable. The Government has already set a target of planting 75 lakh tree saplings by August end. No doubt, the target is ambitious but it is not impossible. It seems both the St..

Politics of isolating the NSCN (IM) Acid test for Th Muivah

Isolate the NSCN (IM). This seems to be the mantra of quite a handful of power players whose presence can be felt but who still  are invisible. It is this hand which can be felt/seen in the growing polarisation amongst some groups of the Naga people ..

Tough talk against drug menace Waiting for tough action

Chief Minister N Biren talked tough, a video clip of which has gone viral on the social media. And people seemed to love it with many sharing the same clip and passing their own comments. It only remains to be seen if that tough posture/talk will translat..

Outrage at Little Flower School Selective silence

A mew of a protest, despite the statements of condemnations that have poured into the office of The Sangai Express. This is what may be said in the response of the people against the placing of a bomb at the gate of Little Flower School a few days back. I..

Coming together of COCOMI, UNCIllegal immigrants

Taking up steps to check illegal immigration to Manipur. This itself is news worthy but top this with the information that the Co-ordination Committee on Manipur Integrity (COCOMI) and the United Naga Council (UNC) have decided to come together to jointly..

Mounting pressure for solution

No doubt, pressure has been mounting enormously upon the NSCN-IM leadership to seal a final solution to the long drawn Naga peace talks. Incidentally, the NNPGs which joined the dialogue process much later had made it clear that they are ready to ink a fi..

Posers parents may raise within Cacophony of protests

One wonders whether anyone has raised this question within themselves-How do parents cope with the task of bringing up their children amid the loud cacophony of protests, the voices of dissent, the bellowing of one’s trumpet-meaning the trumpet of t..

Brain storming session of the Congress Soul search needed

Does the Congress need a brain storming session, spread across two days to come back to the reckoning ? Or does it need a sincere soul searching exercise to acknowledge where it went wrong in the 15 years it was in power here at Imphal. One irrefutable fa..

Tenants in Nagaland tag on the NSCN (IM) Outburst from the NNPGs

Perhaps this is not the time for social niceties. The truth of the matter is, many in Nagaland do not exactly see the Nagas of Manipur as having anything to do with Nagaland. There have been times too when the Nagas of Manipur are derogatorily referred to..

Wanted : A far sighted leader Reaping the fruits of the past

Wanted : A far sighted leader, a personality who is able to see or visualise how Manipur and her people would or should be like 10/20/30 or even 50 years down the line and all should understand why the present has prompted this observation. The present da..

At last UNC states position Willing to wait stand

Not surprising and yet at the same a trifle disappointing that the United Naga Council, which is otherwise the apex Naga body in Manipur has not gone beyond repeating the same line that the NSCN (IM) took in rejecting anything that comes remotely close to..

Curtains down on Shirui Lily Fest The coming of age of Shirui

Good job, one should say. From a village level, to a district level to a State level festival and surely the Shirui Lily Festival has come a long way. What was once just the name of a flower, with only a few actually equipped with the knowledge that this ..

Piling pressure on the NSCN (IM) Pending final pact

Only the Collective Leadership of the NSCN (IM) will really know, but one can easily imagine the immense pressure that has been mounted on the outfit to fall in line and sign the final accord. A look at the reality will testify this. The Government of Ind..

Emergence of key board villains Spewing venoms

Key board warriors but tinged heavily with shades of villainy. A look at the words punched in on the key board should leave no one in doubt over this. Other than these key board ‘champions’, there are motor mouths who spew venoms and who expec..

From district level to State level Back after 2 years

Give credit where it is due. From village level then to district level and today a State level festival is being held in the name of Shirui Lily and this is where credit ought to be given to the BJP led Government at Imphal. A State level festival from a ..

From 2013 to charge hearing in 2022 Long road to justice

‘How can a 15 year old child be a terrorist ?’ poser or something to this effect raised by the Justice Santosh Hegde panel in 2013 to now the Session Judge of Imphal East issuing notices to 9 cops for charge hearing on May 26, 2022 over the al..

Disturbing street brawl Reflecting society

This is not reel life imitating real life. In fact this is very much real life and not some fantasy tale scripted to entertain the audience on 70 mm. This is a reflection of what the adult world, that is the elders and the supposedly group of people who h..

Morphine to heroin to WY The drug menace

Morphine to heroin to brown sugar and in between there was podrom, hyptogen, calmpose tablets and later came the alluringly named World is Yours. Throw in the cough syrups with codeine as one of the major components and truly the world of drugs has got Ma..

Covid free after 26 months A brief look back

After 26 months, since March 24, 2020, Manipur is Covid free, with the last three infected persons reportedly having recovered. This however should not mean that this is the time to relax for the virus is still  active across the country with neighbo..

One step down from Greater Lim ? Pan Naga Hoho

One step down from Greater Lim or Greater Nagalim and one step up from ‘confined within Nagaland’. This is what may be read into the much tom tommed, Pan Naga Hoho, a model espoused by the NSCN (IM) and underlined yet again by its chief of arm..

Scoring high on liquor consumption Hic ! Hic ! Cheers Manipur

Officially a dry State since 1991 and 30 years down the line, Manipur officially occupies the fifth spot in alcohol consumption, in a survey conducted by the National Family Health Survey. A damning statement on the slip between what is on paper and what ..

Reaching out to SC Jamir Politics of peace

The politics of peace must have surely proven to be much more dicey than the bush war that the NSCN (IM) waged against the Government of India for decades and the latest move of New Delhi to seek the ‘opinions and suggestions’ of former Chief ..

Rain : Bringing out the dirt of Imphalites Clogged drains and nullahs

Incessant rain for the last many days and Imphal has been thoroughly ‘washed’ and ‘bathed’ and in the process one can see all the dirt and filth which had accumulated over the months being washed out. Tough to say whether the long ..

After more than 2 decades of talks Vision : Call of the hour

Framework Agreement of 2015. Agreed Position of 2017. Two frameworks according to which the final pact with the NSCN (IM) and the NNPGs is believed to be inked. The stumbling block towards a final pact however seems to be the separate Flag and Constitutio..

Issues staring at the face of Manipur Of rain and slush and mud

The ghost of the Lim demand. The lurking shadow of Kuki Homeland. The demand that the Meiteis or Meeteis be included in the Scheduled Tribe list of the Constitution of India. The War on Drugs, which is a clear indication that Manipur is today more than a ..

Identifying a dist with one group ? Kangpokpi declaration

Administrative convenience or linguistic basis. Twist this a little bit and one may well come to the line, administrative convenience or on tribal basis ? Linguistic basis and it was on this line that States were created after the British left India and s..

Aerial route over heart of Imphal ? DPR ready for submission

Detailed Project Report ready and this is fantastic. Definitely one of the better news in a long, long time, what amid the reports of so and so much of drugs being confiscated and stolen vehicles recovered. While the latter two category of stories highlig..

Backing the War on Drugs call Senapati, Ukhrul in the lead

Taking the community along or rather the community stretching out its hand to be part of the campaign against drugs, giving more teeth to the War on Drugs slogan coined by the BJP led Government. Surely a shot in the arm of the Chief Minister and one hope..

Mt Koubru to Thangjing Hill Mischievous restrictions

From Mt Koubru to Thangjing Hill and the circle seems to be complete, with the addendum that the circle may be widened or broadened with the addition of more such places if corrective measures are not taken  up firmly and immediately. No one would ha..

Congress : Uncharacteristically quiet Down from 42, 28 to 5

The State Congress has been uncharacteristically quiet save for opening up when there are some incidents, such as the recent alleged custodial death of a goldsmith or against the poll expenditure statement of the Chief Minister. Is this good for the land ..

Drug menace : A strong fight needed War on Drugs : Give it more teeth

Taking the appeal against the acquittal of Lhoukhosei Zou in the infamous drug haul case of 2018 to the High Court of Manipur, albeit with a strong nudge from the Supreme Court of India, the news that two women drug dealers have been sentenced to 14 years..

The bone of contention: Separate flag & constitution

It is indeed confusing and disappointing that the political dialogue which went on between the Government of India and Naga militant groups, particularly NSCN-IM has neither been brought to a conclusion nor terminated. It is also not clear whether the dia..

Powerless power

The Govt or more specifically the Power Department  is playing a poor joke on the people.  People who pay taxes, people who buy power supply. The people are consumers. The power tax is paid beforehand thanks to the prepaid system and this is whe..

Taking the case to a higher Court Meaningful nudge from SC

That it took a nudge from the Supreme Court to make the State Government appeal the acquittal of Lhoukhosei Zou in the infamous drug seizure case of 2018 in a higher Court should say something profound.  All credit for this must go to 3.5 Collective ..

Promise of AFSPA free NE Not forgetting Sharmila

Not that it ever went out of the consciousness of the public, but there is something unique in the way the Armed Forces Special Powers Act has come back to occupy the consciousness of the people. After the infamous Army Act was made redundant in many area..

Manipur : A smuggling paradise Who all are behind this ?

Drug smuggling, vehicle thefts, gold smuggling. Correction-Drug smuggling should be qualified by the line, ‘drug/heroin  manufacturing units’ and clearly Manipur stands right up there on the list of infamy.  And so it is that now sto..

Packing off street vendors No takers at Lamphel

Just sit there and put your stuff for sale. Sooner or later buyers will throng the place and there will be buyers galore. The key word or words here are ‘sooner or later’ and obviously for those who live hand to mouth, or who live from the pro..

Back in the examination hall Good old school days !

The virus did keep them away from the classrooms and the examination hall for more than a year and so it is that after one whole academic year, young students of Manipur, like their counterparts in the rest of the country, sat for their Class X and Class ..

Delivering LPG at Rs 100 per cylinder How about the distance ?

This takes back The Sangai Express to the days when it launched an intensive campaign against the acute shortage of cooking gas under the caption WANTED : Cooking Gas, Not Laughing Gas. Comical it is in a way for cooking gas has always made it to the news..

Stand to boycott Government news Is the Govt that broke ?

Is the BJP led Government that broke that it cannot pay the outstanding advertisement bills owed to different media houses in the State ? Is the BJP, supposed to be the richest political party in the country, so pauperised that it cannot pay what is due t..

Need to look beyond ‘No parking’ sign Growing traffic menace

The traffic menace is getting worse day by day and the Government needs to wake up to the reality and look beyond the ‘No parking zone.’ One may tell the motorists not to park their vehicle at a particular spot and the Government has the means..

Palpable inner contradictions Stand of the NNPGs

For the past 25 years or since 1997, the NSCN (IM) has been engaged in a peace process with the Government of India and in the process it must have learnt that the politics of peace is as dicey as the politics of the bush war it waged against the security..

Why no follow up on drug seizures ? Go for the big guns

The War on Drugs should be much more than a slogan, a war cry, and this is where the Government would seriously need to think how to take this slogan a notch or two or even three higher. And the first step is to be as transparent as possible in any matter..

Move to decongest commercial areas Relocating street vendors

No vehicles allowed to park at Paona Keithel. Street vendors told to pack up after 8 am everyday. The objective behind this move should be obvious to everyone. Decongest the already over crowded Paona Keithel, Thangal Keithel, BT Road and MG Avenue. One d..

Covid is down, but it is not out Disturbing Delhi report

Covid is down but don’t mistake this with the virus being out. Since the end of February, the daily count has been well below the three digit mark and it has been on a decline ever since with Manipur returning a figure of only six new cases on April..

Fine mix of the tested and untested Council of Ministers

Chief Minister N Biren is an old hand in the craft of politics, having made his Assembly debut way back in 2002 and now in his second term as the Chief Minister of Manipur, he must have surely come to grips with the politics of being the first among equal..

ATSUM back with call for ADC Bill The divide still runs

It is obvious that the ADC Bill drafted by the Hill Areas Committee in the last Assembly is still alive and kicking and it is just this that the All Tribal Students’ Union, Manipur (ATSUM) is seeking to wake up in the new Assembly. Perhaps this is w..

Looking to Ministry expansion Politics of coalition

Principles of coalition politics and the realpolitik of coalition politics. There is a fine dividing line here and one wonders whether going along with just one partner in the present regime can be seen as going in for a coalition Government in the true s..

Sounding the War on Drugs slogan Go for the big fishes

The disturbing question is, is Manipur just a transit route or has it also become one of the manufacturing zones for Heroin, Brown Sugar, WY Tablets etc ? Is it a case of Manipur not just being close to the infamous Golden Triangle but is today fast emerg..

Language is a personal choice Hindi conundrum

Learning a language is a personal choice. It cannot and should not be thrust down anyone’s throat. Perhaps this universally irrefutable line blew over the head of Union  Home Minister Amit Shah while announcing that Hindi will be made a compuls..

The question of who will be included Ministry expansion

Obvious that the BJP is well placed here at Imphal having bagged 32 seats in the just held Assembly elections. The leadership issue has been settled with N Biren Singh back as the Chief Minister for the second consecutive term with four of the old faithfu..

Taking the ST demand to the floor of Parliament From the streets to RS

It did not feature as a major poll issue in the just held Assembly election in Manipur. But it is nonetheless significant to note that Rajya Sabha MP Leishemba Sanajaoba took it upon himself to raise the demand that the Meiteis/Meeteis be included in the ..

Banning parking at Paona Keithel Think out of the box

The Government will need to think out of the box. Just a cursory order banning parking of vehicles at Paona Keithel to address the growing traffic congestion in the commercial centres of Imhal cannot be the answer. In the first place, the Government will ..

Law enforcing agencies & drug business

The report that contraband drugs worth over Rs 7 crore had been seized from a police personnel throws up a number of questions and tends to substantiate the general suspicion of involvement of some law enforcing agencies in drug cartels operating in the S..

Welcoming decision to roll back AFSPA Now take it further

It is understandable why many across the spectrum have welcomed the decision of the Government to roll back the Armed Forces Special Powers Act from areas under police stations located within six districts across the State. A sort of a strong political st..

The many stories that AFSPA spawns Making go the redundant Act

Not surprising it was the top news in all the newspapers published in Manipur. It was also the news to carry in many newspapers published outside Manipur. It must also have been the same in Nagaland and Assam. Local television news channels also lost no t..

From 2011 to 2016 to 2022 runs the story Of dusts and road circus

Officially inaugurated in 2011, just ahead of the 2012 Assembly election and finally made functional only in 2016, nearly five years after its inauguration, the Inter State Bus Terminus located plumb in the heart of Imphal city at Kabow Leikai, Khuman Lam..

Scourge of drug abuse and alcoholism Stories of rehab centres

The scourge of drug abuse and alcoholism, Manipur knows this and more. Some have made a complete and honest recovery from the clutches of drugs and alcohol and many have not and in between are the tales of numerous rehabilitation centres that have sprung ..

Pathetic Imphal-Jiribam highway Time to set priorities

Now is the time to prioritise things. In its second term in office with Chief Minister N Biren back at the helm, it is more than appropriate that things are put in perspective and move from the tall claims during its first stint in office and see things f..

Making Manipur drug-free, a tough call

Theoretically, the new Government has gone a step farther in its War on Drugs. The first Cabinet meeting of the new Government held on March 22 resolved to make Manipur drug-free and assign an officer of the rank of IGP as the head of Anti-Narcotics Task ..

Huge mandate implies momentous responsibility

No doubt, securing as many as 32 seats in the 60-Member House is no mediocre achievement. It was also a rare distinction that a single party managed to get absolute majority. Of course, there was a case of Congress party bagging 42 seats in the past. The ..

Yaoshang under ‘who will be next CM’ Festival of colour

The two contenders are back, but everything is still as hazy as it was before they left for New Delhi at the summon of the Central leadership of the BJP. True or otherwise, Messrs N Biren Singh and Th Biswajit managed to put up a ‘good show’ t..

Unfolding drama and news from Delhi Adding to the confusion

It is getting more and more confusing and at the same time interestingly intriguing as well. Even as the BJP in Manipur has been maintaining that there are no official inputs on who has been named the next Chief Minister, this has not stopped a number of ..

The question : Who will be next CM Acceptability quotient

BJP comfortably home with 32 MLAs in its kitty. Results declared on March 10. Yet even five days after the results, the BJP yet to name who will head the next Government. Not a problem with number and certainly not a problem of dissidence. Yet it should b..

Gunning for those who didn’t ‘support’ Farcical pronouncements

This is the pits and maybe it is a classic case of the people getting the type of representatives they deserve. A point briefly touched here in an earlier commentary but there is the need to let all, particularly the elected gentlemen know, that what they..

Viral question : Who will be the next CM Stories of ‘camps and camps’

The BJP is home comfortably and from with whom it may go in Government formation, the overriding question which has piqued everyone’s interest is who will be the top man. Will the BJP continue with N Biren as the Chief Minister or will it adopt the ..

Will the BJP go it alone or... LS polls is just 2 Yrs away

At one level the equation is simple yet real politiks may say something else and this is what will make the next few days interesting. With 32 MLAs in its kitty, the BJP has the needed number to go it alone. But the question is whether it would be politic..

Raining BJP all the way ! Scripting Congress Mukt

It is raining BJP all the way. At the time this commentary is being written down at 7.15 pm of March 10, the saffron party had already bagged 25 seats and was leading in 7 more. Now if the lead translates into wins, then the BJP would be sitting pretty wi..

Outcome of Feb 28, Mar 5 today ! What were the issues ?

Manipur voted on February 28 and March 5. Now result is at hand and while the victors, their supporters and well wishers will go all the way to trumpet their show at the hustings, many may just not be able to answer straight if asked, on what basis they v..