Ukhrul: Ahead of the fast approaching Manipur polls, NPF candidate MLA Khashim Vashum of 45-Chingai (ST) assembly constituency while addressing the public on Tuesday at Halang community hall made a strong appealed to the voters to participate in the assembly election in a free and fair manner and exercise their franchise without indulging in violence.
With just few days to go for the polls, hectic electioneering has begun in Ukhrul and Kamjong districts as various political parties and its official candidates, party leaders and supporters and campaigners are putting up their best foot forward to ensure victory.
The programme began with an act of blessing by HL.Wungmaling, headman, Halang village.
MLA Khashim had initiated many things for the Halang village and I prayed that almighty god’s grace be with him in all his endeavours, Wungmaling exhorted.
NPF candidate Khashim Vashum who was accompanied by NPF leaders, supporters and well wishers said: “As there is candidate from Halang village and out of respect for the candidate I didn’t visit this village for political meetings. In the last election too with due respect to the candidate I didn’t visit Poi village. However after series of request from the Halang NPF unit I visit this village today.”
It may be mentioned that four candidates namely Sword Vashum of INC; Ningam Chamroy of NPP, Khashim Vashum of NPF and Preshow MK Shimray of BJP are in the fray for the ensuing polls from 45-Chingai (ST) assembly constituency seat.
The programme was attended by NPF Ukhrul division, vice president Sowung, ex-ADC members including Paothing Vashum and Thuingahan; RK. Thotmathing, NPF youth wing secretary of Chingai kendra, deputy chief agent Somingam Raingam, supporters, Halang NPF unit, party workers and well wishers.
Underscoring the significance of ADC Bill 2021, Khashim pointed out that many tribal MLAs initially supported the bill but with the passage of time NPF remains the only party that stands for the bill because the other political party MLAs are bound by the party whip, he said.
Putting to an end the rumours doing round in the downtown and villages that Naga issues pop up only during elections, he stated that Naga political issues will be there till the time final solution is culminated. It is an everyday affair.
Rev. Ephraim Shaiza pronounced the opening prayer while Yaomei Shangrei, catechist, ST Peter catholic church, Halang invoked the benediction.
Speaking at the occasion, Sira Kharay, urged the public to stand for the rights of the Nagas. Ideological wars has begun and we need to stand guard for war is not fought only with weapons. If we don’t understand this we would parish.
Elaborating on why people should vote for NPF, Kharay asserted that it is not the Congress, nor BJP and NPP that protects and stands for your rights. It is the NPF that has been protecting our rights and identity.
John Raleng, chief agent of MLA Khashim Vashum, an experienced politician, opened his speech admitting that scores of political parties meant that everyone would have their own choice to choose their candidates depending on situation, party and connections with the candidate (relative of the candidate). Today when I greeted the women folks who had lined up to received the visiting NPF candidate Khashim i enquired them out of curiosity whether they are truly for NPF as the village had a candidate of their own. They responded in unison that they are for NPF.
Sharing his political journey, Raleng informed that he was with Congress party since 1972. After associating with Congress for more than four decades change of wind came in 2016 and switched back my loyalty to NPF party as realisation dawn that indeed NPF is the right party to carry forward the Naga political issue to its logical conclusion. I support the historic Framework Agreement signed between Government of India and NSCN -IM on 3 August, 2015. The collective leadership needs you the most now.
“I am not forcing anyone but if you could give your valuable vote to NPF I appeal you all to make it today,” Raleng said.