Border Block

On 16 May 2013, about 6,000 people of Vijoynagar circle – Lisu and Nepali – voted for a ZPM seat for the first time. It was a dream come true for the people of fourteen villages (see list below, Census 2011).

But its declaration of a separate block bifurcation came in short notice. It was announced just three months before the Panchayati Raj election. Everything was in a hurry. No additional ASM seats were allotted because “there was no time”.

The proposal for a separate block for Vijoynagar Circle began in the late 1990s when S. Ngemu was the MLA.

With this declaration, the Vijoynagar Circle and Vijoynagar Anchal Block became synonymous.

ZPM Election

Zilla Parishad Member (ZPM) election process took interesting turns. In the first phase, six candidates ran after Congress party ticket – five from Lisu (Yoaphu, Liakhu, Chizoni, Khiyosa and Yomali) and one from Nepali (Bhim). Lots of campaign and negotiation took place among the Congress leadership. After much deliberation, the party ticket was allotted to Yoaphu.

For this ZPM seat, the Nepali leaders decided not to contest at all. It all left to the Lisu to contest among them. Four candidates contested: Yoaphu (Congress) and three independent – Chizoni, Ngwalosay and Simiye. We all know Yaophu won by majority as he has support of both from Nepali and Lisu. It is noteworthy that I heard, Chizoni got majority votes from the Lisu voters.

My observations

  • Nepali leaders are more strategic when it comes to elections. They fielded just one candidate for party candidates, whereas, we had five, some even having even a support. As obvious, if Nepali leaders decided to contest this election, there is no way Yoaphu will hold this position.
  • Our Lisu people really consider politics as real games. You saw some of our candidates contested for this position without having any political experience nor had leadership position.

Not much to be proud

While this is good news for us. There is not much to hope.

There is still not much power granted to the Panchayati Raj as is given in other states. The Legislative Assembly members wield all the powers.

Vijoynagar Block does not have a bank to transact money, no communication technology, nor news. There is not much that will happen. No administrative support is still in place. Neither the road communication to be able to take advantage of the facilities available through Panchayati provisions.

Appendix: Villages in Vijoynagar Block

NO VILLAGE LISU/NEPALI
1 Dawodi Lisu
2 Gandhigram Bl.I & II Lisu
3 Hazolo Lisu
4 Sidikuh Lisu
5 Vijoynagar H.Q. Lisu, Nepali
6 Buddhamandir Nepali
7 Chidudi Nepali
8 Daragaon Nepali
9 Gaherigaon Nepali
10 Mazgaon Nepali
11 Phaparbari Nepali
12 Ramnagar Nepali
13 Topihill Nepali
14 Twohut Nepali
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