We simply do not understand why some chief ministers in the neighbouring states are so interested in meddling with the internal affairs of Manipur.
It is well understood that, they have their own intractable problems which they should be dealing with. Like for example, Assam has a current border dispute with Arunachal Pradesh which had gone out of hand.
Assam has border disputes with almost every state except Manipur and Tripura. Perhaps, it is because the two were princely states with properly demarcated boundaries before the Indian Independence while the other states were carved out of Assam.
The state of Assam has long standing border disputes with the states of Nagaland, Mizoram, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh. The last one was known as North Eastern Frontier Agency (NEFA).
Arunachal Pradesh became a full-fledged State on 20th February, 1987.Manipur’s boundary disputes have not been that violent as in the case of Assam’s disputes with other NE states.
In the recent past, we have seen violence and blockades on the Assam-Mizoram border while Arunachal Pradesh has also its share of disputes with the state of Assam.
Nagaland has also boundary disputes with Assam and every now and then violence erupts. Yet, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma finds time to come down to Imphal with a mission, some say, to douse the flames of the present conflict. And, our own MLAs was kow-towing to him like he is some superior being or big brother. What a shame!
We know, Himanta Biswa Sarma is the convenor of the Northeast Democratic Alliance (NEDA) led by the BJP.
Himanta Biswa considers himself as the BJP strongman of Northeast India as mandated by the Union Home Minister Amit Shah. He was delegated to broker peace between a sulking NSCN (IM) and the Government of India over the protracted Naga peace talks and he had openly advised Thuingaleng Muivah to sign the so-called honourable solution ‘that goes along with the unique history and traditions of the Naga society’ as worked out by the Government of India.
But, Himanta is blind to the fact that any alternative would be vociferously opposed by the Kukis or the Meiteis.
The central leadership must understand that Himanta Biswa Sarma is not representative of the voice of the North Eastern states.
After nudging out Sarbananda Sonowal from Assam politics and becoming the Chief Minister, Himanta Biswa has begun to show his true colours and of Assamese hegemony over the whole of Northeast.
Everyone remembers how he ditched his mentor TarunGogoi and joined BJP and crafted the grand strategy of Congress Mukta NE while converting himself into a true follower of Hindutva ideals. But, nobody expected him to assert Assamese chauvinism over the other states of Northeast.
Conrad Sangma, the Chief Minister of Meghalaya, is another challenger.Celebrating the status of a national party and its footprint in four states of the Northeast, Conrad Sangma talked of providing leadership at the national level for the Northeast people.
He also loves to meddle in the affairs of Manipur through his party cohorts. Lately, Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga has become active and indulgent in Manipur after the violence.
His party Mizo National National Front (MNF) has been stoking the dream of Greater Mizoram once again and Manipur MLAs belonging to Kuki-Chin-Mizo has been trying to garner their support. Why don’t they simply mind their own business.
Read More: IFP Editorial