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Political speak

23 Feb. 2017 10:12 PM IST

Politics is more of an art of telling truthful lies and less of making strange bedfellows. Politicians tell lies because it is the vehicle of communication that always feed a gullible public and unquestioning media. In recent weeks there have been several instances where politicians both in and out of government including those who see themselves as future politicians or wannabe. The issue that had plagued Nagaland since the Nagaland Municipal Act 2001 was enacted pertained to Article 243T on 33% women reservation. When the government in 2006 included 33% women reservation, it was purportedly on the plea that the court had ruled so, on a petition filed by some few women leaders. Interestingly those who brought the amendment in 2006 again passed a house resolution in 2012 against making Part IXA operative in Nagaland on the basis of the supremacy of Article 371A. Since then, the state government had done nothing to address the issue. The same politicians who accepted 33% women reservation made a U-turn in 2012 by rejecting it on the premise that Article 371A gave them the leverage. This contradictory stand raises serious doubts over the sanity of our politicians. The contradictory decisions also leave no one in doubt that the elected members had not done any homework to understand the entire issue and the implication(s) of their actions. The few women leaders, probably being more clever and determined may have come to a conclusion that they have a case. Thus when they took up the case through a Special Leave Petition against the judgement of the Division Bench court of Gauhati High Court, the Supreme Court accept the plea and kept the high court order in abeyance and also as requested, asked the state government to hold election with 33% women reservation. The state government was supposed to contest the case as a respondent but it capitulated without a fight. Leaving aside the real intention in fast forwarding the notification for holding elections to Urban Local Bodies (ULBs); the state government had done grave harm to the very stand it claimed to have taken- to avoid/prevent the Supreme Court from giving any adverse judgement that could impact Article 371A. When the state government capitulated (with or without going through the court instead of a mere letter from the women leaders), it also signalled that the stand that was taken through the September 22, 2012 assembly resolution was wrong. It buttressed that point by revoking the 2012 resolution in the assembly on November 24, 2016. The November 24, 2016 revocation of the 2012 resolution was also in effect, admitting that they erred and so decided to return back to the status of the 2006 amendment. Strange are the ways by which politicians operate and this is so because of lack of vision. The handling of the events beginning from January 30, 2017 onwards till February 16,2017 revealed insensitivity to the pangs and pain of the people and illogical perception that the government is always right because it has the numbers. Without prejudice to any, the blame is to be shared by all the elected members for allowing the situation to deteriorate. Whether it was herd mentality of simply wrong priorities but certainly loss of voice indicated loss of direction.

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