Views & Reviews
The Shepherd And The Pied Piper of Nagaland Politics
“A politician thinks of the next election; a statesman of the next generation. A politician looks for the success of his party; a statesman for that of his country. The statesman wishes to steer, while the politician is satisfied to drift.”– James Freeman Clarke
The recent political development in Nagaland was somehow on expected lines for some but to many the political transition came as a surprise. As a keen observer of activities of the General Assembly Election, NLA and Politicians; it appears that many MLAs are insecure about getting re-elected in the upcoming 2023 General Assembly Election based on their little to no performance, some are insecure financially while some, busy tailing around the one’s who sponsored them. As such, many MLAs maybe under the impression that their decision was the right one taken under the given circumstances of the present trend of electioneering. However, only time will tell, as the ball is now in the court of the electorates and 2023 General Assembly Election will be a litmus test of this political arrangement. Whereas, the present political equation carried out under the facade of vexed Naga political issue, is redundant as there already exists an opposition-less government arrangement in this regard. Wherefore, the present arrangement can either be a blessing in disguise for the NDPP or a blessing in disguise for the people of Nagaland, an opportunity–at last– accorded by themselves to get rid of all the ‘old wine in a new bottle’ politicians.
Nagaland, today, is entangled in a cobweb of a system, that is suffering from everything that can go wrong with a democratic system. The present system works like a black hole; it sucks in anything that stands out and it allows none to spread its light. Many a leader who once rallied against corruption, backdoor appointments, etc. have mastered the art and became a paragon of corruptions and backdoor appointments. The system needs a holistic revamping with a ‘new wine in a new bottle’ set of statesman. It is time for young minds to take over the responsibility. Maybe the incumbent politicians inherited the current system from their predecessors but it does not in anyway exonerate them of their share of contribution nor does it mean, that the young Nagas should inherit the present system. It is unfortunate to see a bunch of septuagenarian and octogenarian politicians clinch on to public office without anything novel to contribute. Some leaders clinch on to public office in order to implement one’s unfinish vision, however, that is not the case in our State. Some of them clinch on to public office, in order to hide the skeletons in the closet.
During the time of election, candidates contest with the promises of the Stars, Moon and Earth, however, once they get elected and head for the NLA, they forget about their duties and responsibilities towards their constituency and the people of Nagaland and, instead of legislating laws, policies and governing the State–keeping in mind the welfare of the Citizenry– they keep themselves occupied with the politics of power, party politics and numbers game. Whatever the case maybe, party politics and politics of personal interest should never overshadow nor take precedence over the rights of the people of Nagaland. Nagaland is in urgent need of efficient legislators and the last thing we need is a politician in our midst.
It is also a very disheartening state of affairs to see some Churches and Society give special treatment to such corrupt politicians and bureaucrats. Such practises intentionally or unintentionally validates their unscrupulous acts and that’s how the younger generation, having witnessed them held in such high regards, aspires to become like one of them. Our Society ridicules the honest political leaders and bureaucrats by tagging them as stupid, inexperience and incapable, and considers those notoriously venal politicians and bureaucrats as smart and clever, and shower them with praises and blessings wherever they go like a bunch of sycophants. How can our society progress and achieve an egalitarian state, when we live in such state of misconception and distorted reality. We have become a money oriented Society; money worshippers, to be precise.
In every nook and corner of Nagaland, people of all ages, irrespective of tribe and gender, echoes concern about our sorry state of affairs and everyone seems to yearn for a change; though no one is willing to sacrifice for actualising this dream, is altogether a different matter. Writing about changing the system in Nagaland has remained a hashtag trend and reduced to a cliche.There is no point talking/writing about change in the system and Society, if you are going to become defensive, when it comes to you and your tribesmen or your elected leader(s). It is time we replace politicians by electing leaders with statesmanship quality. Thanks to the Shepherd and the Pied Piper duo of Nagaland politics for understanding the pulse of the people of Nagaland and doing the needful by rounding up the politicians under one banner. The road to slaughter house (2023 General Assembly Election) is not that far away.
“Politics isn’t about big money or power games; it’s about the improvement of people’s lives.”–Paul Wellstone
Member, Core Committee, Young Nagas.