Everything is fair in politics!

        TAKING into account of senior politicians like Y Erabot and N Biren, to relatively newcomers in the political scenario such as Kh Joykisan, Nemcha Kipgen and Vungzagin Valte shifting loyalties from their parent parties for one reason or another, politicians seem to be trying to drive home the point as well as justify that there is no reason to feel embarrassed for abandoning the organisation, which he/she had been projecting as the best, if change in tactics would be beneficial, personally or to people of the constituencies that they represent. There had been rapid changes in the political equation ever since the 11th Manipur Legislative Assembly election came knocking at the doors with veteran Congressman Erabot setting the tone with his sudden announcement to quit the Indian National Congress as well as surrender his seat in the state assembly. Even though Nemcha and Vungzagin are the latest to depart from the ruling Congress they are unlikely to be the last if one takes note of the fact that allotment of tickets for the ensuing elections will not be able to satisfy every intending candidates. Significantly, with the exception of Erabot, the four former/incumbent legislators have had stints in different political parties before joining BJP or Congress. The trend of changing political colours when elections are round the corner is not confined to Manipur alone for there had been similar reports from poll-bound states like Uttar Pradesh and Punjab. For many politicians, the five-yearly democratic exercise has apparently been viewed as an opportunity to introspect on their future political prospect.

       Unlike the case of UP and Punjab, where politicians’ decision to tread on the new path seem to be driven by religious or community factor, choice for the established politicians in Manipur is apparently limited to either embrace the principle and ideology of the Congress, and hope that they are also associated in the formation of the next government, or flock to the BJP with the expectation that shrewdness of leaders of the party, which is holding the reins of power at the centre, will be successful in denying the Congress from wresting power for the fourth successive term. There may be different perceptions and definitions for loyalty, but it remains an undeniable fact that loyalty is technically defined as respect, honesty, love and patience. Ironically, these qualities are seldom the hallmark of politicians, both at the national and state level, if one recalls that many former legislators, incumbent office bearers of different political parties and active political workers too are joining the race for exploring new opportunities. It would lack justification to blame the politicians alone for not remaining loyal forever to the organisation, that they had joined with certain pledges to serve and promote, when there are no restrictions on individual embracing new faith, which entails loyalty of the highest degree. In short, politicians seem to be hell bent on explaining that everything is fair in politics as well as specify that there no definition called loyalty.

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