Ukhrul campaigns rife with claims of UG support
Source: The Imphal Free Press

Ukhrul, February 11: As Ukhrul district is on the threshold of entering the poll on February 21 pandemonium prevails with the candidates in the fray and their agents on a blitzkrieg of propaganda, claiming to have the blessings of the NSCN(IM).

Even as the NSCN(IM) has refuted the claim, people are still confused.

Doing much damage at the moment is the lingering propaganda spree that some candidates are banned from contesting the election by the NSCN(IM).

However, candidates have also refuted such claim as a ploy to jeopardize their prospects and said that they have been placed under undue disadvantages by such propaganda mongers.

They also alleged that some armed persons pretending to be on the order of NSCN(IM) arc on the loose and campaigning on the sly favouring some particular candidates.

Recently a pamphlet appeared, implicitly supporting the PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee and his government as the only competent authority to tackle the Indo-Naga issue.

Sonia Gandhi and her family are branded as denying the Nagas of their "birth rights" to freedom.

It also attacked Rishang Keishing for his opposition to the move to extend the NSCN(IM) cease-fire in the soil of Manipur.

The public has objected to the publication of the pamphlet as malicious, misleading and done with ulterior motive.

The major issue on the agenda of the people is the extension of the cease-fire in Manipur Naga areas that would decide the fate of the forthcoming 8th Manipur Legislative Assembly election.

However, with every candidate giving their own glib rhetoric, political equation is taking its own course based on money power, manpower and loyalty to some extent.

Every camp is holding their feast and there's tea aplenty at very regular intervals.

On the other hand, a group calling itself Naga Youth Ceasefire Support Group, Ukhrul unit (NYCSG) with anonymous members has emerged overnight, self-proclaiming that for speedy solution to the Indo-Naga issue, the group was formed as a result of 'awakening' of the youth, supporting the BJP government, People are however, skeptical questioning as to why the NYCSG has sprung up just on the eve of the Assembly election.

The argument is the talk is not with any political party but with the government of India.

In the meantime, the chief administrative officer (CAO) Captain HA Ningshen of the NSCN(IM) , Wung Tangkhul Region (WTR) convened a meeting yesterday with leaders of all the Tangkhul social & religious organizations categorically stating that the NSCN (IM) docs neither support nor ban any candidate from contesting the election.

However he expressed strong reservation in the case of Rishang Keishang and those candidates in league with him as conspiring to derail the peace process by collaborating with anti-Naga elements just for the love of the CM's chair.

He also clarified that Rishang and his companies are not banned from contesting the election but that people should not vote for them.