Views & Reviews
In a Time, Such as This
Abraham Lincoln rightly said it is of the people, by the people, and for the people. However, many at times the nation struggles when there is a disparity between the call of the people and for the people. The Covid-19 pandemic has once again come to remind us that good governance is the need of the hour in Nagaland. For which basic human amenities, infrastructures, and services are the bare minimum in the state. For a glance, Nagaland seems to be complacent with all little available realties. For instance, the health care system, school education, water-electricity stream, roads, and subsidies seem to have taken a beating leaving the powerless at the mercy of the unknown. Thus, in a time such as this, we are provoked to ponder over the efficiency and the policy-making of our state.
In such dire straits, Covid-19 has paralysed normal life in India, and Nagaland is no exception. In a way, Nagaland’s health care system and service are put to task and one realises the plight of the health and welfare sector in the state. Hospitals in the districts, sub-division, and block-level centres were given a robust punch as a measure of preparedness to rout the Covid-19 pandemic. The major makeover was given to meet any eventuality of the pandemic. The one incident of a person from Dimapur who tested positive at GHMC came as a shock to the people of Nagaland. Even to the extent of the question as to whether Nagaland was up to the task to fight the Covid-19 pandemic. With all this scenario behind and with the home, frontier seems secured for a time being, one cannot effort to negate the plight of thousands of fellow citizens stranded outside Nagaland and the efforts of felicitation to bring them back home. In this scenario, the effort of the state government and its machinery working twenty-four into seven cannot be ignored nor downplayed, for sacrifices are being done by the front-line workers concerning the pandemic.
By the people aspect of the government needs re-envisioning and visitation in Nagaland. The Youth Net Post Election Watch Report 2018 (uniindia.com) mentions instances of how hundreds of crores of rupees were spent in the 2018 Assembly Election. It is said on the lighter note that at times some of us became extremely poor during that time of the election, that we cast votes for money, cash, and kinds. In a way its synonyms to selling one’s soul and the body to the highest bidder likewise. In this setting, the basic science is that when we plant an orange tree, we are neither expected to harvest apple nor mango fruits. However, there is the fact which no one can deny, that is, there are lakhs of citizens in Nagaland who faithfully exercise their adult franchise honestly never indulging in immoral aspects of nepotism and corruption of any sort. Today, our beloved state requires them to journey together towards that realisation of the government of the people and by the people in flesh, in blood, in truth, and spirit.
Today in Nagaland, electoral corruption is one among the roots that sprout corruption and one can observe the practices of misusing funds and projects, and the ills of backdoor appointments to that part of the electioneering process. For money does not grow on trees nor money vanishes in the thin air for what it’s worth is that the money spent during an election will not just recover itself for an individual that contests an election. If decades of statehood cannot bring better chances and facilities for the citizens, is it not a high time to take a new spring and vote for development, infrastructure, and progress? In this regard, the Union Territory government of Delhi gives priority to school education, health care system, and scheme (Mohalla clinics), electricity and water supply free of cost rate, and free travel for women folks are worth voting for in any elections. If the territory of Delhi with a population of approximately 2 crores could follow such good governance and policy, Nagaland with approximately 20 lakhs could make it there easily. Besides, the good governance of sister states like Mizoram, Sikkim, and Meghalaya merit an adoption and at times it begins with the way electoral policy is buoyed by the citizens of the state.
Pandemic like Covid-19, other health epidemics, plagues, economic recessions, and disasters of various sorts will come and go. Yet the question that will remain is whether we are always prone to human-induced weaknesses? Such a wonderstruck punch from pandemic like Covid-19 could enable us to see the clearer picture of the state of affairs and the plight of our state. For the people of Nagaland, precisely for families from the middle class, grade 4th employees, farmers, workers, netizens spend roughly 70 percent of one’s earnings towards children’s education, health care, and welfare. If at all good governance, policies, and legislation could take care of it through the provision of schooling at par with any institutes and robust health care system, citizens could invest that money to increase the productivity of the economic aspects. And it all starts with the button to elect representatives for policymakers who could bring such social justice to the citizens.
For the people aspect of the government is where the legislature exhibits urgency of public welfare and necessities. Likewise, until-unless people in power go well with the maxim government for the people, things might look gloomy with the passing of years and ages. Just like a coin that is not valid without symbols on both sides, a state will lack good governance unless those in authorities take responsibility for being showered in the electoral process. It is said that with great power comes great responsibility (Spider-Man) and for the government of Nagaland today it is the need of the hour. It is the call of the hour and for the years ahead to arrive. The trust that is showered on to the elected legislatures is not to make us wait for years for the arrival of developments and progress. It is the moment of the moment now that citizens await. For instance, the public would not want to wait for years for the completion of the High Court, the Stadium at Dimapur, or be it the medical college, for that matter, one does not require the celebration of jubilee by the time of construction even before the inauguration of the said projects.
The Covid-19 pandemic is a race against time all over India. Yet our beloved state is caught behind the race of time on the account that the district hospitals, community health centres, primary health centres lacking in essential infrastructure and facilities. However, a good thing that has worked out well is the robust investment of funds, resources, and human power towards the health care system on the account of the Covid-19 pandemic and it should lead to better government health care service in Nagaland. In time, such as this, the citizens of the state are forever grateful to the police workforces, doctors, nurses, health care workers, and the people in the frontline against the pandemic since day one. The administration, the civil societies, and the NGO’s, the institutions and individuals who have led from the front show hope of progress for Nagaland in the days ahead.
In time, such as this, we are made to comprehend why we need good governance and policy-making and why it is always important that we strive to achieve it. And that in the event of the withering of the pandemic, we the people will go back to the kitchen and ponder how to realise the maxim of the people, by the people, and for the people. So that we continue to strive for a society where the welfare of the people, basic human rights and necessities, and social justice is always the mandate of the