IMPHAL | Sept 12
“The activist in me is still alive. I am joining a national political party doesn’t mean that I will abandon all my activism”, said Ratika Yumnam, newly appointed youth president of National People’s Party (NPP). She was appointed president last week in Shillong.
Speaking to the Imphal Free Press over the phone, Ratika said she take it as an opportunity to be given the responsibility of a president of the youth front of NPP. “I know there will be lots of speculations on my new move particularly among the activists community with whom I have associated with”, she said.
Further Ratika said she is aware of the possible challenges ahead to be working in a political party. “I know things will not be all smooth. There will be differences of viewpoints on issues that matter the Northeast and Manipur in particular. But I am ready to walk the path”, she added.
Ratika maintained what is important is that by joining a mainstream political party, she would be able to work at the decision making level. “The party has given me the responsibility having recognised my engagements in activism. Whatever I have learnt from the field as an activist, I will try to implement it”, she said.
Earlier speaking to the media in Shillong, after being felicitated on her appointment by the party members of the state, Ratika said, “We will try to design skill development courses according to the needs of the region”. She further said that the main priority is education, which is needed and set for the situation.
“Not education per say but it should be quality education as per our own needs, talents and potentials,” she added.
The National Youth President of the NPP also stated that she joined the party because she felt that it was “a secular, progressive, forward thinking party which is rooted in the northeast.”
Ratika graduated with triple majors in media studies, psychology and literature from Christ University, Bangalore and completed her Masters in South Asian Studies from the School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies, University of Oxford, UK in the year 2014.
She has also been working as an indigenous rights activist with the Indigenous Perspectives, which is based in Imphal for the past 4 years.