In March last year, the Government of India sanctioned a water supply scheme for our village near Sohiong under Jal Jeevan Mission. We were all ecstatic that drinking water facilities would finally be available within our households. Months have passed and it is almost a year now, implementation of the scheme has not started for reasons known only to the PHE Department. Last November, I went to the office of the SDO. PHE, Sohiong to enquire about the delay in the scheme implementation. I was told by the staff that the SDO is not available on that day. They asked me to come the next day. The next day the same thing happened and the following week too. I later came to know that the SDO of PHE Sohiong comes to office only twice a week. Then I got my answer! It was obvious why there was a delay. The worry is that our village is not the only one; there are many villages nearby that suffer the same ordeal. If this is how the PHE Department functions then I don’t know how the State bagged an award in JJM implementation last year.
Through your esteemed newspaper, I humbly request the Government and concerned authorities to look into this matter and resolve it soon for the well-being of the people in rural areas.
Transactional versus transformational leadership
Over the years we have seen Meghalaya’s state politics and its transformations. One such transformation is the rise of ‘transactional leaders. These leaders turn the entire state into a machine for their own benefit. Since the State will be going to the polls on February 27, to elect representatives to the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly for a five-year term, let us elect ‘transformational leaders, not ‘transactional leaders’. The biggest mistake that we as an electorate make when we elect a representative is to choose the person who lacks the basic understanding of democracy and skills needed to be a politician. Our foremost duty in this state assembly election is to lift the state from poverty through honest and effective governance. Let us remember that elections serve two main functions in representative democracies: they allow voters to select the politicians that best represent their preferences and to punish incumbents that misbehave and are corrupt, because ‘corruption is the abuse of office for illicit ends.’
James Freeman Clarke said, “A politician thinks of the next election. A statesman, of the next generation.” We need to vote for statesmen.
Dr. Omarlin Kyndiah,
Congress call for alliance a wise move
The behaviour of the UDP and HSPDP – the latter deceiving the legacy of the firebrand leader, Hopingstone Lyngdoh, who never lost election till his last breath and the former a leader like BB Lyngdoh a shrewd politician who would not help his own son to get a job in his government; also his shrewdness in denying the agreed term of 2.5 years to the would be successor to the CM’s post, all prove that both will club with Conrad Sangma’s NPP after the results. It will be back to the 2018 -2023 model!
BJP though side-lined from 2018, divorced the MDA a little too late is sure to rejoin NPP especially with Prime Minister Modi carefully adjusting between Sanbor Shullai BJP and Conrad Sangma. During Modi’s visit to Shillong he seemed to endorse everything that the MDA government had done.
The majority of voters in Jaintia Hills bombarded with freebies for the last one year had forgotten the FCI rice episode and the death of the Lukha due to excessive love that ministers have for cement plants. The Iawmusiang with mounds of garbage is also forgotten. The poor truckers transporting coal for high level owners are themselves starving. The Mukroh tragedy is also already forgotten. After freebies were given to three churches as shown on social media. Unless an alliance of the three like-minded parties is made in Jaintia we would repeat the 2019 Lok Sabha election results in which 69 % lost to 31 % and we call it the world’s largest party.
The Khasi Hills too require alliances. One example: Laitumkhrah has three strong candidates. The VPP and Congress should have an understanding on how to play in this election. Pre Poll alliance is a must.
Meghalaya has one electoral disease in which the constituency of one person in Jaintia Hills does not feel the pain for poor implementation of the SSA scheme and Ad-hoc and contractual teachers. The rest of Jaintia Hills does not feel for the Lumshnong and Brishyrnot people about to shift to safer environmental ground and nor do they feel for Sutnga and its polluting coke plants run by benami owners from Rajasthan. Voters don’t remember the Marten stench or the lethargic mindset of MUDA. Shillongites don’t feel for the people living in borders from Wahkdait to Borkhat who have now lost their paddy fields and orchards by unlawful International border fencing right across. Of course, in December 2022, one candidate of the TMC had written to Home Minister Amit Shah who in turn wrote to the Home Secretary, Meghalaya to intervene. There is no sign of any action on this front till date. Shillongites don’t feel for people of Ri Bhoi who now fear that casinos will come up in their areas as soon as poll results are declared.
The church leaders’ forum would not get any respect from either the Chief Minister or the Deputy. Just wait and watch. The casino promises huge profits unlike the 4th furlong teer of a few lakhs rupees. Casinos will rake in crores of rupees by attracting millionaires from across the globe.
Unless the electorate knows the facts that old companions stood united with their boss, the NPP chief. The dome collapse; the MoU on Philangkata and Maikhuli, CAA, the push for Hindi, not questioning the 20 crores wasted on the ISBT roof and 4 walls that leaked; the red buses of only 9 years old junked to the lowest bidder. There is as yet no sign of the medical college, health card, roads, education etc. The regional parties, though wedged apart temporarily, will reunite after the election.
Meghalaya is doomed. Let the collapse of the Meghalaya Assembly dome be the writing on the wall. King Belshazaar in the banquet saw the writings on the walls. They are in Aramaic “Mene Mene Tekel Upharsin,” which means, “Thou art weighed, numbered and found wanting.”
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