TODAY -

Editorial of the week

Ghost of Sadar Hills
Courtesy: The Sangai Express 02nd February, 2008



When India gained independence from the British in 1947, the need to create States as well as Union Territories arose primarily to streamline administration and while Nehru may have opted the line of creating States on the basis of a group of people sharing a common language or creating linguistic States, the core point was all about streamlining administration to the lowest denomination.

It is along this line that States have also created districts, blocks etc for better governance and the creation of a new district should be ideally be seen as a move to better governance and hence streamline administration.

However as things stand today, especially in a place like Manipur, which is home to numerous ethnic groups, it is not always like this and the question of creating a new district or not has come to be read along the manner in which the Government views the interest of a particular ethnic group or not.

This is not only unhealthy but can also prove extremely dangerous.

The demand to upgrade Sadar Hills to the status of a full fledged district has been there for the past many decades and the then W Nipamacha Singh Government had even promised that the creation of Sadar Hills as a revenue district would be announced simultaneously along with the bifurcation of Imphal into two districts, Imphal East and Imphal West way back in 1997.

However the plan was dropped at the 11th hour and while the unstated reason was obvious to all, the Government struck a stand that the circumstance was not right ! This is the tragedy of Manipur, where opposing interest groups and disparate groups have been tugging at the social fabric threatening to tear it asunder.

Strictly looking at the infrastructure, the geographical expanse as well as the population, there is every reason to upgrade Sadar Hills to a full fledged revenue district.

As things have demonstrated time and again, it has proved to be well nigh impossible for the district administration stationed at Senapati to look into the needs of a place like Saikul, which is situated far away from the district headquarters.

Same too with the case of law and order. With the SP sitting at the district headquarters, it would not be really possible for the police officer to have a first hand account of the far flung places.

It would serve the interest of the people, if the seat of administration for Sadar Hills is located at, say, Kangpokpi, which is well connected. Some of the points that we have just mentioned merits the attention of the people concerned, especially those who have a stake in Sadar Hills.

Remember Manipur cannot be formed along the basis of ethnic groups or community.

The greatest leveller in the existing geo-political and demography of the State is to realise that everything should depend on the efficacy of governance and all efforts to streamline administration should be encouraged.

The co-operation of the people in understanding the issue without any biases is the call of the hour.



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