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Why did Irom Sharmila Get Only 90 Votes?

In early 2015, after the Indian security forces had done operations to arrest PREPAK militants in February and killing militants in the villahe of Hingojang (Senapati district), the militants in Manipur got restive.  On June 4, 2015 they ambushed a military convoy in Chandel district and killed 20 soldiers and wounded 15 more.  The United LIberation Front of Western South East Asia (UNLFW)  claimed the responsibility for the attack.  UNLFW is a conglomerate terrorist organization comprising of United Liberation Front of Assam (Independent), Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagaland (Khaplang), Kamatapur Liberation Organization (KLO) and National Democratic Front of Boroland (Songbijit).

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These terrorist organizations are being orchestrated by China mainly and backed by Pakistan in Bangladesh.  They have safe havens in Myanmar and launch their attacks from there.

According to Indian security and intelligence agencies, the seeds for the formation of a new platform were sown at a 2011 meeting in Ruili in China’s Yunan province. Ulfa leader Paresh Baruah, NSCN-K leader Khaplang and leaders of Meitei outfits, United National Liberation Front (UNLF) and People’s Liberation Army (PLA), of Manipur attended the meeting, said sources.

Immediately after the meting, the Meitei outfits formed an umbrella organization called CorCom, which includes Kangleipak Communist Party (KCP), Kanglei Yawol Kanna Lup (KYKL), People’s Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak (PREPAK), PREPAK (Progressive), Revolutionary People’s Front, and United National Liberation Front (UNLF).

As many as 11 militant outfits from Assam, Nagaland and Manipur are based in the western part of Myanmar that borders Arunachal, Nagaland and Manipur.

On the night of June 9, 2015 the 21st para SF battalion of Indian army did a precise surgical strike inside Myanmar and killed 50 terrorists including those who had attacked the army convoy 5 days earlier.  The terrorists from NSCN-K  and KYKL were hiding there in those camps which were destroyed.

Insurgency in Manipur (and other North Eastern states) have been going on since Manipur was added to the Indian Union.  In 1949, Maharaja Bodhchandra, the then executive head and the ruler of Manipur Princely State had signed the instrument of accession and merged his kingdom into India and thus Manipur became part of Indian on October 1949.

Since the beginning, China has been instrumental in the terrorism happening in the Indian states of Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh.  China, through the retired and active People’s Liberation Army generals and officers have organized and armed the terrorist groups in NorthEast India.

There have been reports about Indian intelligence carrying out successful telephone intercepts between Chinese PLA officers and Khaplang. Indeed, a former PLA colonel, Muk Yan Pau Huang, had actively helped arm the NSCN (K) and is also credited with helping Khaplang clinch the cease-fire with the Myanmar government in April 2012. A former member of the Communist Party of Burma (CPB), Huang enjoys considerable influence in Northeast Burma close to the Chinese border and with the Myanmar government.

This further reinforces the most significant long term connection that northeast insurgents have enjoyed, that with the United Wa State Army (UWSA) which is closely aligned with China. UWSA is the largest source of weapons for Northeast insurgents including the NSCN (K). UWSA is the military wing of the United Wa State Party (UWSP) founded in 1989 with members of Wa National Council (WNC), which represent the Wa ethnic group as well as former members of the CPB.

This is the background – of terrorism backed, armed and supported by China and terrorists who regularly and repeatedly target the Indian Armed forces – where the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 had been imposed for handling the terrible terrorism.

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Irom Sharmia and the so-called “Malom Massacre”

Irom Chanu Sharmila is an activist who has been agitating against the AFSPA for last 14 years.  She has fasting for all these years to repeal the act.  She is backed and has been awarded by leftist organizations and suspect NGOs like Amnesty International which has a history of justifying and explaining the terrorists and the killers.

If she fought for the “good of HER people” for so long including fasting for 14 years, against the Indian Armed forces, then WHY didn’t they even vote for her?!  WHY?!!!  In a state and area where China is backing – Arming, supporting with ex-PLA generals and bases in Myanmar and China – terrorists, dismantling the Indian Army presence is not exactly something that will help people.  So who is making Irom the “social activist” that she really isn’t?!
Irom’s entire work has stemmed from what is called the “Malom Massacre”.  Now, one should look at things happening in the terrorist inflicted areas in the context of situation there.  From Hezbollah in Palestine to the Jehadis in Kashmir to those in North East, USING the civilians – specially women and children – as shields is the “bread and butter” of these terrorists.  That is how they save themselves and engage the bleeding heart NGOs to fight on their behalf and take out any defense from the state that they are targeting.   The strategy of using the civilians as shields and canon-fodder helps the terrorists to start movement of peaceniks in order to put chains around the very Armed Forces which are fighting them.  This is a sick and terrible strategy to break down the opponent and tie up those who fight these terrorists so they can kill and maim with impunity!!

On November 1, 2000 one of the terrorist groups had attacked the Assam Rifles in Malom Tulihal Makha.  The next day when the Assam Rifles battalion retaliated, 10 civilians were gunned down as well.  Now, in a society with terrorists (trained and armed by China) intermingled in the society at large, it is tough for anyone to identify who is a terrorist and who isn’t.  But even if we take the word of some at face value that these were “innocent civilians”, it has to be remembered that they were a casualty of the sick strategy of the terrorists who used them as a shield and canon fodder.

It is based on this incident that Irom Sharmila had gone on a fast against the “Indian Armed forces” for last 14 years.

And, strangely, it is the Constitution of the Republic which is secured by these Armed Forces that she decided to fight an election under.  It is easy to be led by outside NGOs which are suspect to begin with as far as their credibility and honesty is concerned and look at every incident in isolation and say whatever you want in order to break up the main institutions that secure the nation.  But for people who are serious about their conscience and honest to their own moral compass, it is critical that one looks at the picture holistically.

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When one clearly understands the grave threat posed by the North East terrorists with complete backing of the Chinese Armed Forces – with strategy, support, arms and launching pads provided – one finds that the so-called “Malom Massacre” is anything but.  It was cowardly use of civilians by the terrorists that compromised “activists” like Irom are helping by attacking their only opposition – the Indian Armed Forces – that can stop them from implementing their writ of terror and mayhem!

It is the same script that Pakistan uses in Kashmir.

If Irom is Really a ‘social activist’, why did that society not vote for her?

Given so many years of fasting and agitation by Irom Sharmila and how the members of the European parliament havebeen backing her up as well along with the many so-called human-rights groups; one would assume that she would have the wider public backing.  Specially of the society which per her agitation and the narrative of those who support her is in such a deep pain that the Armed Forces should shut out of the entire state and area in general!

She just fought the 2017 Manipur Assembly elections from Thoubal constituency where amongst others she was against the three-time Congress chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh.   Out of 5 people in the fray, Singh won with 18, 649 votes while Irom Sharmila could get only 90 votes ONLY!  Even the “None of the Above” NOTA option secured MORE VOTES than her with 143 votes!

One really wonders if her fight is THAT genuine and THAT important for the good of the people, then why would she have no support in terms of votes amongst the people who she is fighting for.  Hasn’t her refrain for such a long fight to finish the presence of Indian Armed Forces been – “They are targeting and killing the local Manipuri civilians”??  Then why did those very people completely and so spectacularly abandon her?!!  Securing even less votes than the NOTA option is the worst ignominy that anyone can face in an election.

So, the obvious question is – Is Irom Sharmila and her “fight” for real?!!  Because her pet peeve “Malom Massacre” is NOT.  It is what the terror inflicted societies unfortunately face due to the ruthless inhumanity of the terrorists who spring from the same society paid for and supported by external aggressive powers (China in this case).

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Desh Kapoor

The panache of a writer is proven by the creative pen he uses to transform the most mundane topic into a thrilling story. Desh – the author, critic and analyst uses the power of his pen to create thought-provoking pieces from ordinary topics of discussion. He writes on myriad interesting themes. Read the articles to know more about his views and “drishtikone”.

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