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 transit point from the Golden Triangle to the ‘markets’ across the country and the world.  The mud and slush now, thanks to the incessant rainfall for the last many days  which will soon give way to dust once the Sun comes out in all its glory and clearly Manipur has her hands full of everything that can go wrong and this is where serious and sincere introspection is highly needed. At the moment, the focus of the Government should obviously be on the incessant rain that has left a trail of destruction, especially on the National Highways that connect Manipur to the rest of the country. Irang Bridge has again snapped, after the first time sometime in November, 2020. The one significant difference this time is, the snapped bridge did not take anyone down along with it to the turbulent water but this should not be any reason for comfort. Alternative arrangement, via the Old Cachar Road (Tongjei Maril) has been sounded, but no one knows how long this stretch can withstand the heavy flow of vehicles from and to Jiribam. This is about the much talked about second lifeline of the State, which recently shot into the limelight during the blockade imposed by the Southern Angami People’s Organisation at Nagaland over conflicting claims on Dzuko Valley. It is also anybody’s guess how the Imphal-Dimapur line is coping with the heavy downpour in the last couple of days and surely the State Government must have got its eyes and ear keyed on to road connectivity of Manipur with the outside world. Another issue which is current is obviously the War on Drugs and the frequent seizure of drugs from different parts of the State in the last many days. One that comes to mind is the huge drug consignment detected and seized by Kangpokpi police along the Imphal-Dimapur highway some days back. Drugs worth over Rs 31 crore and one wonders whether the Government has been able to make any headway in the seizure of the drugs.
What is the follow up ? One police personnel is reported to have been named as the person who handed over the drugs to the people from whom whose possession the drugs were seized. Difficult to think that the police personnel would have been acting alone and the natural question is, what is the follow up story ? Is this the end of the case ? The State police surely need to keep the people informed. Drugs worth over Rs 31 crore is a huge amount of money and difficult to even imagine that a petty police official would have been able to hand over the consignment, acting on his own. The silence, even after some days of the drug seizure case is deafening, and this is where questions ought to be raised on the efficacy of the War on Drugs campaign. The people arrested with the drug consignment from the highway can at best be couriers and the police personnel can also at best be just the contact, with the big fish, the Don sitting somewhere ! The challenges before the Government are many and other than the immediate issues, such as the incessant rain and the rising water level and the break down of Irang bridge and the War on Drugs, the Government will one day have to face the situation arising out of the demand for a Greater Lim or something along this line. Same is the case with the demand for Kuki Homeland for which negotiations are underway under the SoO pact. Same is the case with the demand raised that the Meiteis/Meeteis be included in the ST list of the Constitution and clearly a number of issues are staring straight at the face of Manipur and the Government at Imphal.