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Manipur Polls: NPF returns one to Cong

Dimapur, February 21 (MExN): The one-to-one between the Naga People’s Front (NPF) and the Nagaland Congress continues with the former today refuting that it spent Rs. 30 crore in the Manipur elections. In a response to the Nagaland Pradesh Congress Committee’s (NPCC) allegation, the NPF returned the ball by saying the Congress “siphoned off from their respective LADF and collected to help their Congress friends in Imphal during the Manipur elections.”

“The allegation that the NPF spent Rs. 30 crore in the Manipur election is another wild allegation of the Congress that has no iota of truth. In fact, the NPF stuck to the model code of conduct in letter and spirit under an environment where the Congress government in Imphal went all out to suppress the voice of the Nagas by using all its machineries and forces to harass the NPF candidates and workers,” the NPF’s publicity cell said in a rejoinder today.

“Since the Congress has brought up the issue, we demand to know how much money has been siphoned off from their respective LADF and collected to help their Congress friends in Imphal during the Manipur elections.”
The NPF is “sad” that “at a time when Nagas were being suppressed in the hill areas, it was indeed sad for all Nagas to see Congress leaders from Nagaland marching to Imphal and extending monetary assistance to Ibobi Singh, the anti-Naga chief minister of Manipur.”

The regional party then reiterated that “the culture of high command politics” is “alien” and people “cannot accept Nagaland Congress leaders marching to Delhi to resolve internal issues and also imposition of such culture upon our people.” The NPF is a regional party where its leadership and its policies “are determined by our real high command which is the people and the masses,” the NPF’s Media bureau stated.

According to the NPF, the “division within the Congress camp ensures that its internal discussions and actions are in public domain within minutes of their closed door meetings.” Therefore, the NPF says, “the maturity of a responsible party like the Congress is once again debatable as it has unnecessarily dragged in the name of Raj Bhavan in its attempts to confuse the public. What sort of mental balance the Congress leadership in Nagaland has is for the people to judge.”

Further, the NPF is ‘shocked’ to observe the “NPCC president reiterating their citizenship.” As elected members under the Constitution of India, they are duty bound to participate and attend national day programmes instead of announcing their citizenship to the people “through a press release,” the party remarked.

“It is ridiculous to see that most of them stayed away from Republic Day functions and now they are resorting to announcement of their citizenship through a press release. The NPCC needs to understand that all of us are Indian nationals but they perhaps do not know that Nagas have been given political recognition and protection by the British government during the colonial rule and after attainment of the country’s independence, even the Government of India has extended special provisions and protections for the Naga people.”

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