Three urban organizations stated in a memorandum to the Chief Minister on March 10, that unless the government reviews or amends the Nagaland Municipal Act, 2001, they will not allow or participate in the Nagaland ULB elections scheduled for May 16.
The organizations demanded that sections of the Act pertaining to taxation on land and buildings and reservation of seats for women in ULBs be deleted.
One part of this demand seems to have garnered the support of most political parties in Mokokchung – the demand for amendment of the Nagaland Municipal Act, 2001 by deleting the ‘taxation on land and buildings’ sections of the Act.
According to BJP Mokokchung President Imolemba, he believes that unless the provision for taxation on land and buildings is deleted from the Nagaland Municipal Act, 2001, the municipal election will not be held. As a result, the party has had no discussions or preparations for the ULB election.
When asked if the NDPP-BJP partnership would remain if municipal elections were held, he stated that the matter had not yet been discussed.
Similar response was made by Arenla Pongen, President, NDPP Women Organization, Mokokchung Region. She added that no conversations on the NDPP-BJP alliance had taken place within the party for the ULB elections.
Moasangba Jamir, president of the NPF Mokokchung Division, stated that the party has not yet discussed the matter and stated that a central party level meeting would be conducted on March 18 where he expects such matters could be addressed.
Watimongba, president of the Mokokchung District Congress Committee, stated that they support the All Ward Union Mokokchung Town’s position that the ‘Land and Building Tax’ be removed from the Nagaland Municipal Act 2001.
He stated that until it is removed, there probably can be no discussion or planning for the ULB election within the Congress party in the district.
Tsuknung Jamir, Mokokchung District National People’s Party (NPP) president, expressed his uncertainty that the election will be held because he feels that not everyone wants the election to be held.
He cautiously said, “At this hour, it is best not to speak about it. If only the issues are settled, then the party can have a discussion.”
Although it is too early to see how it transpires, it is important to note that except calling for the amendment of the Nagaland Municipal Act, 2001 regarding taxation on land and buildings, no political party leader, as of now, has pointed out ‘reservation of seats for women in ULBs’ as a problem that could possibly hinder the ULB election from being held.