Modus operandi of Nagaland’s politics

The state of affairs in Nagaland is languishing at its lowest point. However, being the land of endless possibilities, Nagaland has now hit an abyss of hopelessness with the latest crisis in the political arena. The political leaders remain unapologetic and are busy planning their next move. Changing sides in politics is as old as human society, but if driven by pure self-interest, devoid of any ideological moorings, it crosses all limits of decency.


There is no more pretension. With glaring insolence, towards voters and the general public, the politicians are perpetually engaged in power politics. The political discourse is neither about public interest nor governance, but about who is besotting whom.


Consequently, primacy of survival trumps concerns over public scrutiny and policy matters. Shifting loyalties, instead of assuming responsibilities, has become the modus operandi. Who has the time to make policy decisions in the current set-up when one’s position is not guaranteed the next day?


In the latest episode, while the two protagonists of the political drama were leveling charges at each other, most of the ‘clueless’ flocks were busy issuing either clarifications or justification for their presence or absence from one side or another.


Were these actions dictated by public interest? No. As a lame duck entity, it is dependent on political exigencies. At another level, the policy is also dictated by ultimatums and memorandums, buying temporary respite with periodical assurances. False promises and rhetoric is also another standard operating procedure in politics. For the fidgety Naga legislators, this has become a way of life, their action insulated by uncertain political circumstances.


Nonchalantly, they pass resolutions or rules and the public suffers as a consequence of their actions. For instance, more than half dozen bills, amendments and resolutions were tabled on first day of the 19th session of the 12th Nagaland Legislative Assembly on December 14, in a record session that lasted 31 minutes. Who has time to discuss public interest issues when their minds are pre-occupied with the latest political intrigue?


In the midst of the entire political din, on December 15, the NLA adopted a four-point resolution on the Naga Political Issue. They urged the Government of India not to hold election slated in March 2018 before an ‘honourable and acceptable solution’ is found. What is ‘honourable and acceptable solution’? None of the legislators have articulated this so far, even as concerns of bringing all stakeholders on board bring to question the possibility of a ‘final solution.’


Where does the electorate fit in this structure? Most, due to varying circumstances, are now busy serving the sycophants. Electoral politics is a curious creature in a dysfunctional society.


‘Charmed tourists depart from fantastical Kisama, leave Nagaland to its unenviable reality’ runs the headline of a national daily after the ‘record breaking’ 18th edition of Hornbill Festival 2018, causing affront to many locals. Indeed, an abyss of despair is neither charming nor enviable.