Churachandpur Meiteis at the crossroads, seek justice

Waari Singbul Network *

37-year-old Ronald Meisnam loses his cool on seeing two contrasting photos - one, his native home at Mandop Leikai, a Meitei locality at Churachandpur district headquarters where he was born and brought up mingling with the tribal environment so much so that he speaks Kuki-Zo languages smoothly, and the other that rankles him is a flattened plot of land after his house was completely demolished.

His depressed young friend Amarjit Maibam (28), also from the Kuki-Chin-Mizo dominated district, simply utters with a heavy heart “all Meitei houses at Khuga Tampak numbering nearly 1000, including ours, were set ablaze, looted and destroyed by miscreants, and now our native village wears the look of a war devastated zone.”

Ronal and Amarjit are among around 15,000 odd Meiteis whose houses in 11 different Meitei villages in Churachandpur were destroyed in the unprecedented ethnic violence unfolded in Manipur on May 3.

They are currently taking refuge at different relief camps in the valley districts. What fuels more ire to the duo is the demolition of numerous houses belonging to the Meiteis after they left their Churachandpur homesteads by miscreants in front of the police.

“After we left Churachandpur owing to the violence, numerous Meitei houses, including ours, have been flattened in a systematic by using heavy machineries by miscreants as if they are the rightful owners of the Meitei plots,” an emotional Ronald told the Waari Singbul. The police, who are well aware of these unlawful acts, have not taken any action against the culprits,” he lamented.

Chief minister N Biren Singh, who had been informed about these illegal activities, has assured action against the perpetrators. Sadly, there has been no report of arrest of the culprits to date, compounding the angst to the hapless owners.

“Unlike Churchandpur, none of the Kuki houses and the properties that were destroyed in the valley districts during the clash, have not been bulldozed and flattened, and the structures are heavily guarded by the police and the security forces round the clock. Upon this, we strongly feel that there are two separate laws –one in the valley and the other in the hills,” he lamented.

Meanwhile a highly reliable state official told Waari Singbul that Churachandpur SP has already taken up a suo moto case on the matters of levelling the Meitei localities in Churachandpur by miscreants. The Official asserted that all those found guilty during investigation would be punished as per law.

He further informed that internally displaced persons or other victims of the conflict who have lost important documents or records like Pattas of landholdings, educational certificates and even financial records need not worry as these legal documents would be re-issued to them by the concerned District Magistrates where they are currently seeking refuge. All they have to do is file complaints with the concerned District Magistrate of the district. All District Magistrates have been accordingly instructed to do the needful, the top bureaucrat said.

Though the state sees no semblance of immediate restoration of normalcy, the two, like other displaced Meities, have the deep zeal to return back to their native homes to avoid snapping the legacy of their lineage there.

“Churachandpur is the only tribal district in the state where the largest number of Meiteis are living. We don’t want to set a new history when all Meiteis leave the district and scatter in the valley areas or elsewhere,” Ronald said. “My father, who was born at the same Mandop Leikai residence, was reluctant to leave home even in the peak of attack by Kuki miscreants on May 3, asking why he should run away from his birthplace. Only after our hard insistence, we all left home with all despondency,” he added.

Recapitulating the socio-political changes and militants’ dominance in Churachandpur, Ronald said soon after the Kuki-Paite clash broke out in 1997, the Zomi Revolutionary Army ZRA was formed to protect the Zo people.

Upon such formation, other Kuki militant groups in the district also enhanced ground control, and since then these outfits made up their strongholds in their respective areas in Churachandpur, Ronald said. In the wake of this development, the Meities, who had strong socio-fabric bindings with all communities in the district, gradually loosened from the circle and began facing uneasiness in the society.

The Meiteis also faced difficulties in getting their basic fundamental rights in Churachandpur. “Because of various factors, including the inconsequential outlook towards them, many Meitei people had a hard time to get domicile certificates and even Patta/Jamabandi for their own land from the concerned office in Churachandpur.

Among the Meiteis, those who had connections with influential persons got such dossiers, and others were left in the lurch,” lamented Ronald. There was a time when a large number of Meiteis living at Khumujmaba Leikai had joined hands together and formed a body christened “Khumujamba Pattadar Association” only to pursue to the district officials to get their land Pattas.

Because of the unconducive atmosphere, some Meiteis had left their native villages and shifted to other valley districts, he recalled. “In the midst of this perturbing situation, our rich neighbours had offered huge amounts to buy our land, but my father flatly rejected it only for the love of his birth place. Now everything is gone after the ethnic clash unfolded,” said Ronal, who got his BE (Electronics and Communications) degree from Manipur Institute of Technology (MIT).

Ronald is one of the displaced Meiteis who raised the popular demand to the government to take stringent legal action against those miscreants who flattened their houses. “We are at the crossroads now. We strongly urge the government to give exemplary punishment to those perpetrators who bull-dozed and flattened our native houses. The government should also take necessary measures to ensure we return back to our native homes and resettle there,” he said


Churachandpur gi Meitei sing kakngaonare, achumba phanghanbiyu hairakli

Chahi 37 suraba Ronald Meisnam na hek ubada ting shokna shaoningba tongan tonganba photo anee khak lei—amana mahakki pokpham oiriba, tribal singna pumkoi koisinba maphamda chaorakpa amadi Kuki-Zo lon sing ningthijana ngangba ngamlakkhiba, Churachandpur district head quarter da leiba Meitei gi leikai, Mandop Leikai amasung mahakki maang taak-hanbikhraba yum leiramba, houjikna leitem mannana temkhaikhraba yumpham asini.

Kuki-Chin-Mizo na mapung oina khundaba district asidagi mahakki awaba nanglaba naha oiriba marup, Amarjit Maibam nasu yamna nungaitana hai, “Khuga tampakta leiramba mahakki yaona Meitei gi yum 1000 rom Kuki singna tora tuna mei thadokpikhre, loot toukhre amadi thugaiduna pura maang taak-hankhre. Houjikti eikhioigi khun asi lanjao amana maang taak-hallaba mapham ga chap mannare.

Houkhiba May 3 da mamangda amukta thokkhidriba mawongda phurup aneegi irangda mayum makei loina maang taak-hanbikhraba Churachandpur da leiramba Meitei khun 11 dagi lanjennarakkhiba Meitei 15,000 rom gi manungda Ronald amasung Amarjit su yaoribani. Makhoi houjik houjik tampakki district singda hangba tongan tonganba relief camp singda changjapham louduna leiri.

Makhoi aneegi ashaoba amukka hengat-hallibasi makhoina Churachandpurda mashagi yum thadoklamlaba matungda Kuki lamhenbasingna Police ki mamangmaktada yum kei kaya ama sheedoktuna maang taak-hankhiba aduni.

Thammoi shoklaba Ronald na khonjel nikna Waari Singbul da hai, “Hingsa thorakpadagi eikhoina Churachandpur thadoklamlaba matungda eikhoigisu yaona Meitei singgi yum loinamak achouba machine sheejinnaduna ka henba toubasingna makhoi mashagi maram-douna mathang mathang temthokkhre.”

Law na yadaba thabakni khanglaba phaobada Police na ka henba touba meeoisingdugi mathakta karimatta toukhide haina Ronald na hai.

“Asigumba law na yadaba thabak sing asigi matangda Chief Minister da khanghankhre, mahakna adugumba aranba toubasinggi mathakta matik chaba thabak loukhatkani haina thajaba peerakkhi. Adubu houjik phaobadi ka henba toubasingdu phaba punbagi pao leitri, masina panggal thokpa ngamdraba lam mapu singda khoirang khoishaonaba hengat-halli.”

“Churachandpurda toukhibagumna tampakta Kuki gi yum amadi lan-thum amatta maang taak-hande, bull dozer sheejinnaduna temkhaibagi thouwong amatta chatthade. Houjik su police amadi Security Force singna ahing-nungthil ngak senduna leiri. Masidagi eikhoina khanbadi tampakta law ama, chingdana law ama-- tongan tonganba law anee chalairabara haibasini.”

Maraksida awangba thakki thajaba yaba State Official amana Wari Shingbul da hai madudi Churachandpur da lam henba meeoisingna Meitei leikai sing temthokpa ga maree leinana Churachandpur SP na hannana Suo Motu case ama loukhatkhre. Thijinbagi matung inna maral leire khanglaba meeoi pumnamak law gi matung inna cheirak phanghangani haina Official aduna hai.

Mahakna makha tana khanghallakhi madudi lanjennaraklaba meeoising nattraga irang asida awaba nanglaba meeoisingna makhoigi maru oiba document sing nattraga record sing-- khudam oina lamgi patta, mahei-masin tambagi certificate amadi shel-thum gi record sing maangkhre haiduna karisu waningai leite, hairiba legal document sing adu makhoina changjapham louduna leiriba maphamdugi maree leinaba District Magistrate singna makhoida amuk hanna issue tougani.

Makhoina tougadaba haibabu district adugi District Magistrate aduda complaint amamam file tougadabani. District Magistrate pumnamak ta mathou taba thabaksing pangthoknaba hannana paotak peekhrabani haina awangba thakki bureaucrat asina hairakkhi.

Houjik State asida khudakta mahousagi phibhamda hanjinbagi mami machet amatta udrabasu atei lanjennaraba Meitei singgumna makhoi aneesu mashagi mayumda hanjinduna mashagi charol-surol makha chatthajaningbagi apamba phongdorakkhi.

Ronald na hai, “Meitei khwaidagi mashing yamna leiba tribal taba districtsingi manungda Churachandpur khaktani. Meitei loinamak ching thadoktuna tampakta chatkhi haiba history thamlamba eikhoi pamde.”

“May 3 da Kuki singna yamna kanna attack chattharaklaba matam adu phaobada eikhoigi Ipa di Mandop Leikai thadoktuna chatsi haiba yaningkhidabani. Ishagi poknapham lamdam thadoktuna karigi chengadouribano haikhibani. Adubu eikhoina kanna takmanbadagi tangai phadana yamna nungaitana yum thadoklakkhibani,” mahakna hai.

Churachandpur da lakkhiba socio-political gi ahongbasing amadi militant singna khutlingna panba hourakpagi waree ningsingladuna Ronald na hai, kumja 1997 ta Kuki-Paite haatnabagi thoudok thokkhraba matungda Zomi Revolutionary Army (ZRA) haibasi Zo meeeyambu ngak-sennaba shemkhibani.

Masigumba lup sing shemnarakpadagi Kuki militant group singsu Churachandpur da makhoi makhoigi gi mapham henna pak sanna kalhounaba hotnarakkhibani haina Ronald na paodamlakkhi.

Asigumba phibham ama lakkhibadagi hanna district asida community khudingmakka Meitei singga totna-tinnana leiminnaramba achetpa maree adu tapna tapna komthokpa hourakkhi amadi khunai aduda hingbada nungaitaba phaoba hourakkhi.

Churachandpur da Meitei singna hingbada phangpham thokpa fundamental right phaoba phangnaba hotnabada awaba ama oirakkhi.

“Asigumba maram kaya amana amadi makhoibu usittana yengbagi mityeng amana Meitei ayambana Churachandpur da makhoi mashagi leiphamgi certificate nattraga lamgi patta/Zamabandi maree lienaba office tagi tannaba hotnabada asukki matik awaba oirakkhi. Meitei marakta shanga chaoba meeoiga tinnaba meeoisingdi asigumba che chang phangba ngamlaga shangga leitabasingdi phangba ngamdana leiba ngaktani” haina Ronald na makha takhi.

Matam amadadi Khumujamba leikai da leiba Meitei singna punsillaga “Khumujamba Pattadar Association” haina mingthonba lup ama shemlaga district asigi maree leinaba official singda makhoi mashagi lamgi patta phangnaba kanna hotanakhiba lei.

Asummaina leiminnabada yamna nungairaktaba phibham ama lakpadagi Meitei kharadi mashagi poknapham khun thadoktuna tampakki district ateida yum hongba yaonakhre haina mahakna pankhi.

“Asuk yamna phibham phatlaktrabaduda eikhoiga yumlonnaba inak khunba imungsingna eikhoigi lam adu leirage haina mamal wangna sollaklaba phaobada eigi ipana mahakki pokpham lamdambu nungsi haiduna yonsi yakhidabani. Houjikti phurup ki irang asida loina maang-taakkhre” haina Manipur Institute of Technology (MIT) dagi BE (Electronics and Communications) ta degree phanglaba Ronald na hairakkhi.

Lanjennaraklaba Meitei singna makhoigi mayum-makei sing paktaknana temkhaibada chennaba Kuki singgi mathakta leingakna akanba thabak loukhatlu hairiba singgi manungda Ronald su amani.

“Houjik eikhoi kari tougadabano khangdre. Eikhoigi yum temkhaibada yaoba meeoisingdugi mathakta leingakna matik chaba cheirak peehanningi. Leingakna eikhoibu hannagi ishagi iramda hallaga amuk hanna khunda-leitaba yanaba mathou taba thourang khudingmak loukhatpiyu” hainasu Ronald na hairakkhi.

* Waari Singbul Network wrote this article for
Waari Singbul Network is a start-up news agency and can be contacted at warisingbul1(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on 09 September 2023.

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