TODAY -

The Kombirei of Lamphelpat

Omila Thounaojam *

Kombirei
Kombirei :: Pix - Jinendra Maibam



You are not to be seen these days as if you are hiding, nor no one seems to remember the worth in your unique texture that can equal any rare flower of any grand locale. Old Manipuri songs have you in its lyrics that make us remember at least that you were of great relevance in olden days.

A symbolic presence, the Godly crafted ornament found in abundance at the most popular region of Lamphelpat. Just like our culture that has drifted apart, even you "Kombirei" couldn't be left untouched. Even you were to be bombarded by the stormy blows of sea change that has left no one the same.

On occasions one or two, some succeeds in tracing some blooms of you to be part of sacred rituals like in Sajibu Cheiraoba or elsewhere could we trace your presence. The blue in you once upon a time had made blossoms flowered in the soil of Manipur feel more complete and proud.

Sadly today, those blues are extended definers of Blues that echoes magnified tunes with ignored messages through forces of notes in perfect harmony. It is destiny or not, but the image of Kombirei seems to be gradually fading away just like that of Sangai, the gem of Manipur.

Today as one could see, Lamphelpat represents a modernized urban location and the price one has paid is the near extinction of 'once upon a time' glorified inhabitants of this nature bound space.

Where would you live and how could you struggle hey Kombirei when even mysterious multitudes of small fishes that sprung out of nowhere during rainy seasons in this geographic terrain are deemed unfit to consume anymore. Some experts label the soil of this region as poisoned owing to the toxic presence of the garbage and chemically charged waste particles disposed from hospitals nearby.

The open fields near the game village side are no longer nature's open arms that welcome migratory birds from different parts of the world as it used to be some decades back.

Nowadays piles of garbage in the proper shape of the Langol Mountains blink to us sarcastically and stand proudly as if they are making fun of man's false pride in knowledge and reason.

It's the great scheme of nature that you follow obediently and as such, just like life patterns change in and around Lamphelpat enormously, beyond recognition level, you too conform to this path. Then what may probably happen to us in some time.

Who knows day by day, floras and faunas signifying our land and cultural identity may start shrinking up.

Who knows A NAME plus A SURNAME may be the leftovers, lone definers of our sense of identities. As of now, we have unique and rare specimens of wild life and nature's magnificent life forms designed to survive only in our region to make us recorded in the global map because of its priceless worth.

But who knows, in near days to come, they will still be there with us breathing the harshest of air we generate through our greed-bound activities that are hostile to its healthy survival.

Green houses and what not are constructed as temporal homes to forgotten specimens of plants, as scientific attempts to save unique life forms. Even then who could ever guarantee that missions mixed with chemicals could be the ultimate substitute for natural grounds.

Hey Kombirei...hope you stay with us as long as you could, hope you your presence is celebrated on time so that an accidental encounter of a song with you on its lyrics is no more the 'only' reminder of you-a neglected princess.


* Omila Thounaojam wrote this article for Hueiyen Lanpao (as part of 'Da Voiceless Speaks' )
The writer is Research Scholar at Assam University (Silchar)
This article was webcasted on April 26 , 2013.



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