TODAY -

For the love of football

Ningthoujam Rameshchandra *

Final Match : 1st RKFD Sangai Trophy Veteran Football Championship at Khuman Lampak :: June 04 2017
1st RKFD Sangai Trophy Veteran Football Championship at Khuman Lampak on June 04 2017 :: Pix - Shankar Khangembam



Since FOOTBALL was introduced to the people of Manipur during the fag end of the nineteenth century (by the colonial British), there is no dearth of football fan and football lover/players in Manipur. Many footballers from this hinterland have achieved their goals of becoming successful national as well as international football players who have made football as their career.

Mention may be made here that the NEROCA FC which was formed in 1965 as a local club [1] (and that has recently focussed into professionalization of football) has created a history in the annals of Manipur football to become the first club to qualify for India's top division – the I-League. That too, undefeated in the entire 2nd division home-away league matches that made them an invisible team – the champions of I-league II-division.

This turn of events has made the people of Manipur even crazier about football, and this particular event will pull more crowds to witness this beautiful game for sure. Many local clubs may follow suit of NEROCA FC in the near future too.

There is no concrete evidence found on the website of the All Manipur Football Association (AMFA) (that hardly update or never care to update) or District Sports Associations (DSA), regarding the numbers of football clubs that has affiliation with them, but there can be more than one thousand local football clubs (irrespective of their affiliation) whose main focus is football.

Likewise, the Sainik School Imphal Old Boys Football Club popularly known as SFC is one among many football clubs that was formed very recently (not even a year old). This club was particularly formed by the alumni of the Sainik School Imphal, who believes in brotherhood, where football is used as a means to spread peace and harmony at every nook and corners of the north-east India, or even farther/wider in the near future.

So far, SFC has taken part in many local tournaments and their popularity gains momentum in and around Manipur. In fact, this club is a mosaic of all the ethnic communities in Manipur or you may say north-east India. Because this club has many fans from Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura, and even from Bhutan who are alumni of Sainik School Imphal. But what strike the most to me is their accidental approach towards Manipur's fragile ethnic structure and its elusive peace, albeit this club was formed on an apolitical line.

It is not an uncommon scene of today to witness most of the local clubs playing football for the love of this beautiful game, but SFC's approach towards football is much more beyond the love of this game. In fact, no other local (football) clubs might have never thought of playing a friendly match at far corner and remote areas of Manipur.

But SFC does. This club does not have a benevolent funding or Good Samaritan but put an effort to run this club from their pocket money. They had managed to organise many football friendlies in and around Imphal Valley, but what commendable thing about this club is that they have the guts to have football friendlies even with the clubs from Ukhrul, or with some clubs at Chandel District, Senapati District and so on [2].

This is the reason why I find noteworthy to say that the approach of this club's is beyond the love for football, as this club's approach is very much toward spreading brotherhood, peace and harmony in the already peace hungry hinterland like Manipur.

SFC has not achieved much in terms of trophy, (with all their ambition of becoming a professional football club which are only in natal stage), nevertheless it has certainly achieved something in terms of winning hearts of many people, particularly at the hill districts of Manipur.

It was the organizer – Chandel Football Friends (CFF), who had organised a football friendly with SFC– the Connecting Cup-2017 on the theme of 'connecting people through football', who expressed their gratitude towards SFC saying that, "this is more than just a football game, but a day to remember for many of the people in Chandel....".

Perhaps, the organiser must have said this because they see a sight of positive peace not far and smell the fragrance of brotherhood in an ethnically disturbed state like Manipur, or perhaps, they are delighted to have some former international as well as national football players like Mr. Mutum Bijen Singh (former Indian football captain), Mr. Thangjam Saran Singh (Midfielder of the year 2017, NEROCA FC), Mr. Leishangthem Raman (former Pune FC player), and so on, who are also happen to be the alumni of Sainik School Imphal.

Whatever the case may be, SFC has done a great job to connect people through football, irrespective of caste, creed, hill or valley in and around Manipur. Let many other local clubs of Manipur follow the suit of this club and its approach to bring peace and harmony in this region. Let SFC shine in their future endeavours. Lets football!

References:

[1] Most of the Sports/Football clubs in Manipur are born out of the idea of ''Civil Society" that focus on the idea of vigilantism and advocacy, and football or other sports become a part of it. While, NEROCA FC is the only Clubs in Manipur that functions as a professional football club so far.

[2] Hill-valley divide in Manipur, either emotionally or ideologically perhaps due to religion or economic imbalance, is almost tangible


* Ningthoujam Rameshchandra wrote this article for e-pao.net
Ningthoujam Rameshchandra is an ICSSR Post Doctoral Research Fellow at Sikkim University. He has played up to National level football tournament. He has also played in State Level football tournaments including, Manipur State League with USA-Khurai, CC-Meet with Citizens Club – Soibam Leikei and so on
The writer can be contacted at rameshningthoujam(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was posted on June 13, 2017.


* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Meira Rally protest of MU VC : Gallery
  • Jianthailiu, Paopu :: eMing
  • Role of Bamboo in Social Housing
  • Issues surrounding boundary of Manipur
  • To Adya Prasad Pandey :: Poem
  • Troubles -from Buddhist point of view
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • 13 July Moreh Terror Attack
  • Opposition's stand: A new turning point
  • Waiting for PMP Bill
  • Kangkhui Khullen, Mt Khorung #1 : Gallery
  • Bandh demanding VC removal #2 : Gallery
  • Front Page Photo 2018 #3: Gallery
  • ILP bill yelhoumee di kanba ngamloi
  • The Killing Fields - 2013-18 : News Timeline
  • Slow Loris: only known venomous primate
  • The mystery of nine :: Poem
  • Student protesters met with police brutality
  • Why MU rejects fact finding committee
  • 48 hrs bandh total : MUSU delivers point
  • Ravi explains basis of framework agreement
  • Bandh demanding VC removal #1 : Gallery
  • Greater Nagaland or Mini Nagaland ? #1
  • We just need a little bit of luck
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • Cry of a Dying River - 37 :: Poem
  • Manipur : Context & Structural Violence
  • Procrastinations and protests
  • Protests against MHRD at New Delhi
  • Scientists from NASA during IIT Techniche
  • Mission 'Go to Village'
  • Even Monkey falls from the tree
  • Lim divide : Strong statement from CM
  • DESAM Protest- remove MU VC : Gallery
  • Konung Kang Chingba #2 : Gallery
  • Unbiased Retake Manipur University Issues
  • BoSEM Imbroglio: Educational smuggling
  • Jobs available in NIELIT centers
  • Commanding Officer-i-c must be punished
  • Public official's escorts assault lawyer
  • Is Govt underestimating MU Community
  • MU impasses : Getting uglier
  • Art Exhibit @Imphal Art College #1 : Gallery
  • HSLC students @ Chalwa, KPI : Gallery
  • Arambam Modhu Kalabhusan-Lairik Haiba
  • Interferences in private school affairs
  • Diagnostic Testing Phases -complexities
  • The Kite Runner :: Poem
  • Call for joint mass protest at New Delhi
  • Manipur CM warns of extreme steps
  • Naga civil society playing key role
  • This will be an Acid test for N. Biren
  • Best option : A graceful exit ..for Pandey
  • Kang Khichri chaba @Kwakeithel : Gallery
  • Plastic Surgery Day @RIMS : Gallery
  • Kang Chingba @Keishampat : Gallery
  • Human rights of women in our society
  • AFSPA Gesture and Better Alternative
  • Leisure :: Poem
  • Restore Life After Burns : Plastic Surgery
  • Konung Kang Chingba #1 : Gallery
  • Dont waste searching for word/phrases
  • Hill People & Merger of Manipur
  • Manipur State Constitution Act 1947 #5
  • U-Mangra for biofuel for economic devpt
  • Painting competition on environment
  • Condemn Moreh terror attack
  • Climbing Shirui Hills, Ukhrul #3 : Gallery
  • Kang Chingba - Rath Yatra : Book
  • Why the impasse at Manipur University
  • Condolence Message for Tamenglong
  • Maharaj parleys Bizando
  • Opt for fruit/vegetable beauty product
  • DG Assam Rifles meets Governor
  • Recreation - a Serious Business
  • Tuilha Kolt waterfall @Kpi #1 : Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Lamjing Meira Ningsing Numit #2 : Gallery
  • Who Created the Border Pillar Conflict ?
  • EEVFAM amidst Numbness and Noise
  • Special Olympics Unified Cup 2018
  • Path for youth's bright future
  • Addressing core issues
  • Students Vs Centre's man : MU
  • Thangjam Manorama Anniversary: Gallery
  • A reflection on POCSO Act, 2012
  • Fear :: Poem
  • War veterans laboured to clean compound
  • Free Career Counselling Program
  • NEFIS writes to University bodies
  • Sit-in-Protest Against House Search
  • 50th World Population Day celebrated
  • Something worrying
  • Congress : 2 days session too short
  • Jadugi Chei :: Funga Wari
  • Tribal protest for MU normalcy : Gallery
  • Framework Agreement: What is it ?
  • Some cairns from the way: Artist's retake #2
  • Cry of a Dying River # 36 :: Poem
  • Overview on Manipur University imbroglio
  • Tribal Students memo to HRD on MU
  • India-Vietnam Film Show 2018 at Delhi
  • Why the CM is helpless ?
  • No end in sight to MU crisis
  • Indo-Myanmar Pillar 81 @Kwatha #1: Gallery
  • Global Bamboo Congress @Beijing : Gallery
  • Manipur State Constitution Act 1947 #4
  • Kamesh Salam : Speaker at BARC, Beijing
  • Career in Cooperatives
  • Nagaland CM's speech at NEC
  • NPF Rejoinder to JD (U) of July 9
  • Unfair Game
  • Expecting documentary proof from villagers
  • Lamjing Meira Ningsing Numit #1 : Gallery
  • Woken Youth Clubs in season of World Cup
  • Converting tourism potential into reality
  • Let me live in your heart :: Poem
  • D-Jent.... Djentleman... Anyone ?
  • Socialism or destruction of humanity ?
  • Demand action against KSO activists
  • Ichangi Laidhi #3 :: eRang
  • Modernizing Manipur University Library
  • In the grip of nothingness :: Poem
  • Password protection - I
  • Congenital Heart Defect operated
  • Hill area bandh relaxed temporarily
  • State & central govt must stop conflict
  • Cohesion is sports
  • Explain 'devious purpose'
  • Willong Khullen, Maram #2 : Gallery
  • Manipur merger agreement 1947
  • Wari Jalsa at New Delhi
  • Congress grass menace in North-East
  • M A Thomas National Human Rights Award
  • What does worry do to us ?
  • Is Manipur a part of India ?
  • Rumours of child lifters : Dangerous
  • List of MLA (Jan 2018) #3 : Gallery
  • Forest Rights Act 2006 -context of Manipur
  • Supreme Court Hearing on EEVFAM case
  • Cry of a Dying River - 35 :: Poem
  • Terirama Th. met South Korea's first lady
  • Securing security cameras: invisible eye
  • Rejoinder to Nagaland CM's statement
  • Meitei Mayek - are the scales tipped now
  • Patronising non-locals : Nail the insiders
  • Tribal University @ Senapati : Gallery
  • Rally to remove MU VC #2 : Gallery
  • Some cairns from the way: Artist's retake #1
  • Manipur State Constitution Act 1947 #3
  • UN experts on 'fake encounter' killings
  • Nagaland CM Rio statement on July 4
  • Condemns inhuman eviction by Govt
  • Trainees Certificate of RPL at Kamrup
  • Minor reunited with mother after 26 days
  • Non-Operative Closure of "hole in the heart"
  • We are for the people, for the society
  • Over 30 days : Centre sleeps, MU 'burns'
  • Thokchom Brindashabi Devi :: Profile
  • Kshetri-bengoon Eviction Protest : Gallery
  • Successive pay commissions: It's impact
  • Research Support @ R-Square Design
  • leingakki thouwong - state terrorism
  • Rebuttal: Interview of Ranju Singh
  • Different forces pulling Manipur : Lim
  • Pakhangba Cheng Hongba #3 : Gallery
  • Some ideas for prevention of flood
  • Satisfaction :: Poem
  • Supreme Court hearing on EEVFAM - 2 July
  • Dark lips .. causes and care
  • Training on Handloom Weaver at Hojai
  • CME on 'Congenital Heart Diseases'
  • Nagaland CM should make his stand clear
  • 2019 LS polls : BJP on the offensive
  • Great June Uprising @Kekrupat #4 : Gallery
  • Naga American conference in California
  • Life of an army officer's daughter
  • The Winter Blues :: Poem
  • 16th Mega Miss North East
  • NDPP on Naga integration
  • Allegations against VC holds no ground
  • Rally to remove MU VC #1 : Gallery
  • July Calendar for Year 2018 :: Tools
  • A Washed-Out Summer Vacation in MU
  • Manipur State Constitution Act 1947 #2
  • My short interaction with Penna Donna
  • 9th Men Mega Mister North East
  • Memo submitted to Kiren Rijiju
  • India- no interest to protect its boundary
  • Idea of who is a citizen of the land
  • Poumai Purul Hiimai Paoki #3 : Gallery
  • Dr Thingnam Kishan Memorial : Gallery
  • Black sheep in movement for ILPS #3
  • Our Common Crisis: What are We to Do #2
  • Jackichand Singh signs for FC Goa
  • No co-operation to MU VC
  • Nagaland CM contradicting himself : NPF
  • Career Guidance Workshop at Ukhrul
  • The tales of a forgotten University
  • Pulling at idea of Manipur : Lim, ATC
  • Climbing Shirui Hills, Ukhrul #2 : Gallery
  • Moirangthem Arup: 90 Km Marathon, Africa
  • Pitfalls on land acquisition for Mapithel Dam
  • Chinese dominance in 21st century
  • Caring for the elderly
  • IIT-G's Technothlon prelims at UAE
  • Mass Rally from Manipur University
  • Nagaland CM releases book by teenager
  • Why trying to dictate media time & again
  • MU, border pillar, Citizenship Bill
  • Oinam Dilip's Painting Exhibition
  • Intl Day Against Drug Abuse : Gallery
  • The Manipur Merger Agreement 1949
  • A road to Mandalay
  • Keeping up: medical diagnostics tech
  • The mother of all preventive strategies
  • Relief camps for Flood affected families
  • The dark side of Indian democracy
  • From three time CM to Oppn leader
  • Khumang Pokpa Haraoba #1 : Gallery
  • Great June Uprising @Kekrupat #3 : Gallery
  • Mova Cave, Hungpung, Ukhrul #1 : Gallery
  • Tribal Cultural Festival #2 : Gallery
  • General Thangal Eco Park : Gallery
  • Dzuko valley #4 :: 360 Panorama View
  • Manglandasu Nang - OST :: e-pao Radio
  • HSLC 208 Exam Toppers : Gallery
  • Class XII Exam Toppers : Gallery
  • Temples of Manipur : Gallery
  • Recipients of Akademi Awards for 2014
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic
  • SPONSORED ADS