Former Sikkim Chief Minister and leader of the Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) Pawan Chamling on November 26 expressed confidence in the party's revamped version, SDF 2.0, stating that it is well-prepared to secure victory in the upcoming 2024 elections. However, he highlighted the major challenge posed by the Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM), accusing them of resorting to violence instead of engaging in constructive political discourse.
Chamling outlined the evolution of the SDF into SDF 2.0, emphasizing its alignment with the changing aspirations of the newer generations. Recounting the achievements during the SDF's governance from 1993 to 2019, he highlighted the transformation of Sikkim into the 3rd richest state in India, marked by a significant reduction in poverty, increased literacy rates, and various other developmental milestones.
Addressing the party's preparations for 2024, Chamling underlined the infusion of energy and vision from a mix of seasoned and young members within the SDF. He expressed confidence that SDF 2.0, with its diverse team, is more than ready for the upcoming elections, aiming to surpass the governance benchmarks set by the party in the past.
Chamling, however, acknowledged the absence of worthy opponents and anticipated challenges from the SKM. He accused the SKM of engaging in low-grade politics, highlighting instances where the SKM, instead of discussing ideologies, responded with violence and inappropriate behavior. The former Chief Minister provided a list of examples illustrating this mismatch, including the SKM's alleged use of profanities, assaults on Sikkimese youth, and resorting to tactics such as burning effigies.
While the original SDF focused on the restoration of democracy, SDF 2.0, according to Chamling, has a new mission – the resuscitation of democracy. He declared the need to uproot oppression and injustice, framing the 2024 elections as a decisive moment between the "Organic vision" of SDF, aimed at saving Sikkim, and the "Tambola vision" of SKM, accused of selling the state. Chamling stated that the SDF aims to empower the people of Sikkim, while the SKM allegedly strengthens the influence of outsiders.
Pawan Chamling asserted that the 2024 elections would determine the future course for Sikkim, with the SDF party committed to restoring the rule of the Sikkimese people.
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