Imphal Nov. 15: By any standard the two by-elections in Imphal are politically insignificant and the tail will never wag the dog. What happens in a tiny state like Manipur is of no political importance to the country. However the battle royale will be fought on November 21. The political significance gathers national importance since it will be the den fining moment on the entry of the BJP in the state politics and sounding the death knell for the Congress which has been dominating Manipur with almost politicians being hamstrung by the powerful chief minister for the last 14 years or so. The leaders of the two national parties which will have a straight neck and neck fight are leaving no stone unturned to woo the voters. The lone candidate who is on a fishing expedition in both the constituencies is regarded as a mere stalking horse and he cannot be the tipping point. The only main issue in these by-elections is the territorial integrity of Manipur and both the parties are trying to convince the voters that while the opponent is out to disintegrate Manipur their party has been championing the cause of the territorial integrity. But then happenings which had threatened to affect Manipur’s ancient territory are too recent to be forgotten by the people. The national happenings have little impact in the NE region and it remains to be seen whether the Bihar debacle will adversely affect the by-elections. As Gaikhangam said that as the mountains are very high the Modi froth cannot make a landfall. He must accept the fact that at the same time the Bihar happenings cannot have an immediate impact now in Manipur. Though millions of rupees, liquor and other items were seized in Bihar there was no report of distributing Rs 5000 each to the voters shortly before the castings of votes. The news reports in the local media on this shame at Hiyanglam have not been contradicted. Since the stakes high this time there may be windfalls for most of the voters. But then politics has been a big business in Manipur. A candidate buys vote and when he becomes the minister he will demand something for the services to be rendered. The national political leaders will eye the two constituencies since the outcome will be the political barometer.