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Showing posts from July, 2011

Manipuri Identity

July 28 2011
Imphal Free Press


The question of identity and ethnicity tends to seep into every discussion on practically any social issue in Manipur today. True enough, nobody can deny there is very much a crisis of identity in the state and this will be confronted every time somebody is asked what his understanding of the term Manipuri is. Does the term denote a culture, a domicile status, ethnicity or a language? On the last proposition, there ought not to be any dispute. The term does signify a language. But it is in any attempt to interpret it beyond the confines of the language it represents, that we begin skating on thin ice. The postmodernist approach to the problem of identity as elucidated by French Philosopher, Michel Foucault, as an IFP editorial briefly touched on sometime ago, should throw valuable light. Foucault, author of such classics as “The Birth of the Clinic” was basically reinterpreting the extremist feminist movement in Europe of his time and the Marxist class b…

Compounding tragedy: Warped priorities

The Sangai Express
July 22 2011


The degree of tragedy becomes acute when a corrupt and an inefficient Government is teamed up with a people who have got all their priorities mixed up and their focus goes haywire, just like the rooster which has got it all wrong and starts crowing in the dead of the night. A case of the biological clock turned upside down and creating a system in which the two sides feed off each other ! “You scratch my back and I will scratch yours” situation. A near perfect case of the Government and the public demonstrating “co-operation”. According to the text book definition of the system of governance under democracy, this may be just what the doctor ordered for the health of all. However definitions found in text books may not always fit into the larger canvass on which reality rests and the appearance of co-operation may just be a well crafted model to deceive the people into some sense of a lull or a false sense of satisfaction. Complacency can be dangerous …

Autonomy Relook

Imphal Free Press
July 22 2011


In the wake of the development in Darjeeling, where administration in the Gorkha Hill Council has been purportedly given more autonomy without severing the territory from West Bengal, Manipur and all the other states where demands for new administrative arrangements exists, ought to give new attention to the problem. The talks are, the demand for a Telengana state carved out of Andhra Pradesh is also headed for a similar settlement to that of the Gorkhas. A little caveat needs to be thrown in here. Manipur should also prepare for an overhaul of its own administration to accommodate the aspirations of the hill people, who incidentally, rightly or wrongly, suffer from an acute sense of deprivation. Developmental disparity there are between the hill and the valley, but here it must have to be added, as we had pointed out before in these columns, the disparity is not so much between the hill districts and the valley districts, but between Imphal and the rest…

People’s Aspiration and Territorial Integrity

N. Rongkame Morung Express July 18 2011
The citizen’s aspiration for basic human freedom and dignity is often overlooked and meticulously manipulated by the people in power, the Government in the name of sovereignty or territorial safeguard of nation or state. The citizen’s aspiration to define its destiny to realize and restore their dignity is often miscalculated and underestimated by the people in power and loosely considered as secession and forces are used to suppress the people. This often undermines an individual’s freedom to live with dignity as a free world citizen. The nation state is composed of a group of individuals in form of tribe, race or ethnicity. Nation or state cannot exist in vacuum without the composition of group of individuals put together. Therefore, individuals are prior to a nation or state.

FROM RESURRECTION TO REVOLUTION; CHAIRMAN MEGHEN’S DEMAND FOR A PLEBISCITE IS NOT EMOTIONAL IN THIS AGE OF REASON

By L. Memo Singh July 19 2011 Imphal Free Press

The hue and cry like thunder roaring in the politics of independent Manipur was reduced to the unexpectedly shrewd tacitness of politicians of the state after its merger into the dominion of India. This was an event of great significance of the Merger Agreement drawn between the Maharaja of Manipur and the Indian agents on behalf of the government of India on 21 September, 1949 and enforced on 15 October 1949. The situation, however, was complicated by the fact that the very circumstances ultimately responsible for overthrowing the monarchy  which had been running the constitutive nation state of Manipur for more than 2000 years made it possible to compel Maharaja Bodhchandra to accept the pain of self agony due to converting the monarchical head to the customary head as well as to overthrow the hard won Manipur State Assembly when the Merger Agreement became the instrument which led to the fall of Manipur to the domain of  Indian union. Th…

Initiative Called For

July 19 2011 Imphal Free Press
In a recent study of peace possibilities in Manipur by a Switzerland based peace builder organisation, Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, CHD, in collaboration with New Delhi based Delhi Policy Group, DPG, one unsaid observation became loud on the peace initiative, or the lack of it, of present government in the state. The organisation, which will shortly be publishing its study of the Manipur situation, along with similar studies of the Kashmir problem and the Maoists phenomenon sweeping the central plains of the country, also lists a number of initiatives already taken up by various governments in Imphal to resolve the raging insurrection in the state. Among them were the effort by the R.K. Jaichandra government to initiate a peace dialogue with PLA through some of its former leaders, the unilateral ceasefire declared by the short-lived Radhabinod Koijam government, the offer for peace dialogue by former Governor S.S. Siddhu during a Republic Day speech w…

Emotional Disintegration Between Hills And Valley

By Jubilate Kazingmei Imphal Free Press July 18 2011
In appreciation of your editorial 5, 6 and 8 July I wish to write this rejoinder to build mutual understanding. Socio political blame game is the worst game in society because it offers no remedy to any ailment that stunts the societal growth and harmony. In an ethnocentric politics of a state like ours it is easy to blame, envy and ridicule one another as we are not above narrow ethnic emotions and because we owe loyalty to our respective ethnic group irrespective of what profession we are in. unfortunately beyond cosmetics of language often expressed in media it is not difficult to see such emotions that makes readers view it with close mind. Media is other wise one that plays a vital role in making all of us feel as part of the whole. But in Manipur even our esteemed Human Rights activists are bound by such narrow ethnic emotions and that is how our honourable CM father figure of all communities in the state also glorified the viol…