Imphal: A lacklustre campaigning for Saturday`s Manipur assembly election ended at 3 pm on Thursday with candidates confining themselves to door-to-door campaign and not holding major public meetings.
Reports from districts said the candidates confined
themselves to door-to-door campaigning due to threats from
"Unlike the past, we could not use loud speakers because of
threat from some insurgents groups who said they would
eliminate us," Thambou Singh, a Congress worker in
Yaiskul assembly constituency in Imphal East district said.
Official sources said major insurgent organisations had
been targetting and attacking Congress workers and candidates
in the past two weeks by lobbing grenades or exploding bombs.
Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh had questioned as to why
insurgents were targetting only Congress and asked whether the
insurgents had a `hidden agenda.`
Withdrawal of the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers
Act (AFSPA) 1958 from the state and protection of the
territorial integrity of Manipura were the manin issues that
that were highlighted during the lacklustre campaign, the
Except Congress, all major political parties had promised
to withdraw the AFSPA, if voted to power.
The Congress said it would lift it only after an
improvement in the law and order situation, the reports said.
Shortage of electricity and water supply, bad road
conditions of the national highways and problems faced by the
state due to frequent blockades on the national highways were
the other issues raised during the campaigning.
The few public meetings which were addressed by national
leaders in the past one week included a meeting by Trinamool
Congress leader Mamata Banerjee at Langjing in Imphal West
district where she promised that AFSPA would be lifted if her
party came to power.
BJP leaders Nitin Gadkari, Hema Malini and a few central
leaders of other parties had also addressed some meetings in
interior districts in the past week.
A spokesman of the Maniur people`s party (MPP) told
mediapersons that the Congress had failed to deliver the
results during its last ten-year rule.
BJP spokesperson Prakash Javedkar had earlier said that
Manipur had witnessed a spurt in corruption and criminal
activities during the last ten-year Congress rule.
Alleging that the government remained silent about
incidents like the one in which state advocate general
Koteshore Singh was shot at by a minister during a tour and
the killing of a boy by a minister`s son, he asked "Was there
at all any government in the state?"
Demanding action against the culprits, he said if the BJP
was voted to power it would put the guilty behind bars besides
correcting the system.