[ Junroi Mamai ]
As the upcoming 2024 assembly elections are drawing near, most of the political parties and prospective candidates are engaging in hectic political activities across the state. Major political parties have started dressing their organisations and their structures in their respective districts and blocks. Party workers are recruiting their members and trying to enfold as many as supporters and well-wishers to strengthen their positions for the upcoming electoral battle. Navigating through this process would tend to be quite difficult this time for the small and minor political parties, including underdog candidates who are eying for the election. Arunachal has not seen to this day a strong and formidable opposition or any party other than major national political parties gaining a strong foothold in the state. During the years, we have not seen any other party besides, the major national parties sweeping up the elections to claim power in the state.
Nevertheless, it would be interesting to see whether small and regional parties would be able to establish their identities in the state this time. In the face-off with the national parties, nascent political parties might not be able to gain a level playing field, because in Arunachal money plays an important role leading to the ballot box.
The ruling party will always have an edge over their opponent in gaining the electorates and their consent as they are more privileged in matters of resources and logistics which is the backbone of electioneering in India. The people of the state must be watchful and informed this time in electing their rightful representatives. In our state, parties and its ideologies are seldom taken into consideration by an average voter while exercising his/her franchise, it is always influenced either by the charismatic leadership of the candidate or his capacity to negotiate with his constituents. Young and first-time voters should cast their votes even more cautiously as it has been observed frequently that they cast their vote in a swing manner. They should choose to vote for that right person or party which promises of progressive ideas, creation of jobs in the state through dynamic social and economic changes, and above all, which fits their conviction that he/she shall deliver those in the interest of the coming vibrant young working population of the state.
In the present day, Arunachal Pradesh is reeling under issues like unemployment and corruption as we have witnessed in the infamous paper leakage and cash for jobs scams. Many hardworking and talented youths are bearing the brunt of such unhindered malpractices since many years. The problem is persistent and opportunities of employment are shrinking rapidly in the state with each passing year. Therefore, whichever party or candidate wins the 2024 election, employment generation for the youths of today should be the main priority.
Another facet of the assembly elections is that people tend to garner support in the name of tribe, clan and community without verifying the true credentials of the candidate, for example his/her background, education and inclination which goes unchecked, later proves to be unfruitful to the society. It is necessary in an evolving democracy that new definition of public good and issues pertaining to nation and state must be defined fresh and the old one done away with.