Imphal Review of Arts and Politics

Classic Group of Hotels
Declining moral of public figures in Manipur should worry all

Alarming Decline in Moral Standards in Manipur’s Public Life

Recent disclosure of one Kumarjit, a fashion designer-turned pimp, while in the custody of a banned outfit on the 18th May, 2024, somewhere in Bishenpur district, which went viral on social media, of the involvement of two high profile Ministers of Manipur Government, one MLA and an officer of the State Government, speaks volumes of the underlying immorality among some of the powerful people at high places. The names of these four people would have not been quoted by Kumarjit with the intent of neither to absolve himself of his own fault nor to incriminate the powerful persons named. It is quite possible that the disclosure made is a tip of the ice-berg while the bigger picture remains hidden beyond public view.

If the allegation of involvement of the Ministers is true, it may not be wrong to conclude that some people in power are devoid of morality, which is manifested in seeking pleasure outside their own marriage and in exchange for cash or kind. Consequently, will it be prudent to expect a just and impartial administration from such persons? It will not be wrong to conclude that their sense of right and wrong is clouded by temptation. Their sense of judgment would have been blunted by power and greed. Powerful people are also expected to be responsible not only in public life, but also in their private life. In Manipur, such acts of seeking gratification through immoral activities by even powerful people are sometimes brushed aside in the name of private life. But one should differentiate the acts of immorality by those in positions of power and common men. One must not forget that the acts of such powerful people impacts the lives of common people. Any wrong decision taken under the influence of greed, power and nepotism may have disastrous effect on the life of many unsuspecting people.

It is said the king is the epitome of justice, which means doing the right thing. So are the Ministers of the State Government, who are invested with powers of a king to dispense justice under democracy. Should the people of the state remain silent when injustice is reported to have been committed by their own Ministers and officers? Silence is not always golden. Democracy and Constitution confer power on the people to ask questions to Ministers and officers to come clean on the allegations. While officers are accountable to the Minister, the latter are accountable to the people, who elect them. It is expected that the Ministers and others named by Kumarjit clarify their positions on the alleged involvement in the sex scandal through press briefing in order to put the issue at rest. On the part of the people, by remaining silent, they are not only seen to be accepting immorality, but also allowing normalization of despicable behavior by people in power. Silence to injustice breeds more injustice in future. At the least, both media and civil society organizations should confront the decline immorality in the society in the interest of future generations. Unless attempts are made to stop the downfall by discerning and concerned citizens, who else will are to be called upon?

Had such an incident of immorality by Ministers been exposed in developed countries, there would have been a hue and cry, and demand for resignation or removal of the Ministers would have been on the front pages of newspapers. When the President Bill Clinton was alleged to have sexual relationship with his personal secretary, Monica Lewinsky, in the USA, there was impeachment launched against him. Former US President Donald Trump is facing trial now in a New York court for paying “hush money” to porn-star Stormy Daniels for alleged sexual relationship.

Will it be fair for the leadership of BJP, Chief Minister and Prime Minister to turn a blind eye, when their Ministers are alleged to be involved in illegal and immoral activities. The least which may be expected from a political party, which claim to be occupying a high ground of incorruptible government of “Na khaoonga, na khane doongnga” should not ignore immorality by their leaders.

While decrying acts of immorality committed by both clients and women named, it will be relevant to remember the dire situation in the state in the wake of ethnic conflict. Economic activities have either halted or declined to such extent that some people have resorted to unethical practices out of sheer compulsion. Preventing flesh trade alone without restoration of normalcy and economic life, it will be possible to hear about more such incidents in future too. The administration is required to pull up their socks and plunge headlong to resolve the conflict at the earliest.

Also Read