Covid-19, not autonomy, should be the priority

After coming under heavy criticism over the demand for a Mon autonomous region, Chief Minister Pema Khandu, who spoke to the press on Wednesday, declared that there will be wide consultation on the issue, and that a group of ministers led by Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein and a panel of advocates led by Additional Advocate General Kardak Ete would witness the discussion. Even though the decision to hold a consultation is a good initiative, the question still remains: what is the need for hurrying the autonomous issue at this juncture when the priority should be fighting Covid-19?
Also, such a consultation event will lead to a large gathering of people and is not advisable during the pandemic time. At best, the chief minister, who himself hails from Tawang district, should convince the people of Mon region to put off the whole issue till the Covid-19 situation improves in the country. Today, besides the growing cases of Covid-19, the people of state are suffering from joblessness. The contractors and the business community are crying for help from the government. These are the pressing issues which need the attention of Chief Minister Pema Khandu and his government. The demand for a Mon autonomous council might be a priority for the people of Mon region but it is surely not the priority of the rest of the state. It’s time the government gets its act together and works to resolve the pressing issues concerning the people of the state.