Editorial

Enlarging economic divide

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 10/6/2018 12:23:09 PM IST

 Prices of every item in the market has been witnessing steady rise, making essential commodities beyond reach of the lower section of society, especially the middle class monthly income group whose earnings are around Rs.10,000 a month. Those earning much less than Rs.10,000 have to live with the constant worry of how to make ends meet and never knowing when things could turn worse. The problems of those living in Nagaland, especially Dimapur face more than the dreadful rising prices. Daily life is living on the edge of confronting the ever rising number of extortions. Whether prices are shooting up due to the GST or due to the perpetual forcible collection of taxes; no one is sure, least of all authorities whose response is to bury their heads in the files against the mounting problems. The common man is the worst suffer because all he gets from both the politicians and government is lip service. When prices of commodities in Dimapur rise, they have a cascading and multiply effect on the prices in other districts. It is undeniable that lack of economic avenues and also the rising cost of living is contributing to rise in anti-social syndrome. Be it an enlarging cycle gravitating around a host of problems, there is hardly any solution in confronting to tackle these activities. The authorities have failed not because of lack of attempt but lack of purpose. Today official authorities have willingly abdicated their responsibility by following the advice of the political leaders, to ‘consult’ the various organizations in all matters of governance. Such a dichotomy has also led to decisions being more populist. For instance authorities do not exercise their power mainly because of parallel self-styled authorities which have been pandered tolerated by the constitutionally instituted government. The economic burden of the common people living in Dimapur is a multi-dimensional hydra - the hike in transport fares brought about by rise in prices of diesel and petrol; the added burden of illegal taxes and thirdly, the taxes on business by syndicates. The government of the day needs to take a serious view on this issue and check those who manipulate prices and promote black marketing and profiteering. The common man (and woman) who has to pay high prices will continue to suffer because no one is interested in protecting his rights and ensuring he gets what is due. This is a grim scenario but it reveals the economic plight that continues to confront thousands of families in Nagaland while they grapple with day to day conditions. Despite the pronouncements of the government offering all kinds of ‘incentives’ (that ultimately go to near and dear ones) thousands of those involved in small trade and enterprises; be it the few Nagas and majority non-Nagas, all are gradually getting suffocated by the weakening economy and also taxes imposed by all and sundry. What these reveal is a sub-culture which has complicated the problem of promoting progressive economic growth to the state especially commercial capital of the state which has fallen on bad times since the beginning of the 90s. This sub-culture has been nurtured and then taken roots in an environment of almost utter lawlessness for decades and birthing Frankensteins. The growing divide between the haves and haves not or those with power and the powerless is weighing down the future and towards economic gloom.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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