Updated 27 Feb 2022, 8:49 am
Senior Congress party leaders, including Jairam Ramesh, Salman Khurshid, Bhakta Charan Das and former chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh, on Saturday flayed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Manipur for the declaration of support to it by Kuki militants groups under SoO (Suspension of Operation).
The Kuki insurgent groups under SoO (KNO and UKLA) in a statement on Friday announced its resolve to support all BJP candidates in the ensuing Manipur Legislative Assembly elections which is scheduled on Februaey 28 and March 5.
Addressing mediapersons in Imphal on Saturday, AICC senior observer Jairam Ramesh alleged that the statement of support by the SoO groups was jointly prepared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home minister Amit Shah and Chief Minister N Biren as the statement was made a few days after the two leaders’ visit to Manipur.
Former Union minister and Senior Advocate, Supreme Court, Salman Khurshid, who is also on a visit to Imphal ahead of the polls, said the use of militant groups by the BJP to threaten the public by taking advantage of the talk process is completely unacceptable in the election. It is in total violation of the model code of conduct, and the matter will be listed before the Chief Election Commissioner and the CEO, Manipur for their urgent intervention, he said.
“The statement made by the SoO groups is a deliberate, dangerous, and diabolical statement that violates in unmistakable language the model code of conduct”. He expressed the hope that the Chief Election Commission takes appropriate measures to ensure that “fear spread by the statement of SoO groups is completely removed”.
Also Read: Union Minister Amit Shah assures to end Kuki insurgency problem if BJP is voted to power in Manipur again
AICC Manipur in-charge Bhakta Charan Das contended that use of the SoO groups by BJP is a part of BJP’s conspiracy to ensure that voters do not cast their votes freely.
The Kuki militants groups under SoO declaring to support the BJP in Manipur is a direct threat to the democratic rights of the people and a total violation of the model code of conduct, former Manipur chief minister and state CLP leader O Ibobi said.
"The BJP is unable to lure and befool the public with its cheap propaganda and fake promises, and they have now started using SoO groups to blatantly intimidate people to vote for the BJP, holding out dire consequences to those who will not follow its instructions… Using such anti-social elements as a weapon to grab power is a trend of the BJP which has been taken up since the past years,” he added.
Pointing out that the BJP is still unable to give a proper ground rule for the Inner Line Permit System implemented in the state and keeps the contents of the Indo-Naga Framework Agreement in the dark, Ibobi said, “Every BJP leader claimed that the law and order in Manipur is stable, but none of its leaders are unable to give any comment on the controversial AFSPA which concerned all people of Manipur”.
Maintaining that the BJP-led government is good only in taking credits of the progressive works taken up during the Congress regime, he questioned, "What have they done for Manipur during the five years?"
Also Read: Manipur Elections 2022: Kuki insurgent groups under SoO resolve to support all BJP candidates
Ibobi highlighted that the Capital Project was taken up by the then government and the law and order situation in the state was also made stable before the end of the Congress regime.
"The fate of the state will go in peril if we let the BJP continue further, and the public are fed-up of it," he said, appealing to the public to support the Congress for new positive changes.
Meanwhile, Ramesh also said the BJP should stop taking credits of the free vaccination programme and free distribution of rice under NFSA. Since 1952, every vaccination programme in India has been conducted free of cost by using the fund from the exchequer of the government and the NFSA was introduced by the Congress-led UPA government, he pointed out.
"It was Modi who stood against NFSA and GST while he was the chief minister of Gujarat," the AICC observer said.
First published:26 Feb 2022, 12:00 pm
ibobimanipur congressJairam Rameshmanipur pollsSalman Khurshid