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FIFAWC and Sangai Festival : Splendid recipe
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: November 24, 2022 -



Manipur has not had it so good for a long time and the festive spirit that has gripped the people is understandable though the heavy traffic on the roads of Imphal is a bit of a dampener.

If the Sangai Festival has come with a sort of a new look, spread out as it is over different venues, the festival was waited with more exuberance this time, as the global pandemic made sure that the festival was cancelled in the last two years.

Top this off with the ongoing FIFA World Cup and surely the cup of cheers must be overflowing for every Manipuri.

Messi's magic may have failed to click in the opening match of Argentina with the team going down to minnows Saudi Arabia, but then this is precisely what has made football that beautiful game.

Over confident, taking the other team too lightly, underlines the point that at the World Cup stage no team can be taken for granted-these are lines that dominated the talks after Argentina went down to Saudi Arabia and these talks could be heard at the leikai tea stalls, amongst the neighbourhood boys who gather every evening to watch the World Cup matches live etc.

All indications that the World Cup matches will continue to dominate every conversation and it has already started gaining traction, even though the tournament is yet to enter the knock out stage.

Lodged in between the festive air brought about by the World Cup and the Sangai Festival will be the happy homes of some parents and guardians whose children or ward have cleared the Manipur Civil Services Combined Competitive (Main) Examination and are set to become officers in the State Government.

Some must have made the grade after a lot toil and sweat and The Sangai Express joins in congratulating the successful candidates.

In the same vein, there must be satisfied and happy family whose wards and children have done creditably well in the Common University Entrance Test to get admission in some of the more sought after universities of the country.

Manipur is obviously living it up at the moment, but there are still clouds lurking above which threaten to darken the sky.

The All Tribal Students' Union, Manipur (ATSUM) has been to Delhi to lobby with Central leaders to oppose the demand that the Meeteis/Meiteis be included in the ST list of the Constitution of India while the State Government did initiate the process of conducting a poll and put the issue to vote.

The Scheduled Tribe Demand Committee, Manipur and the World Meetei Council have already made their stand known against the proposed opinion poll and while it is still not yet known how the Government would have taken the stand of the two voluntary organisations, it is amid this that ATSUM leaders were in Delhi to campaign against the ST demand for the Meeteis/Meiteis.

The ST demand is but just one issue which continues to haunt the collective psyche of Manipur for there is the more than 25 years old political dialogue progressing between New Delhi and the NSCN (IM) and between the Centre and the NNPGs on the other.

Will any final pact with either the NSCN (IM) or the NNPGs impact on the existence of Manipur as a geo-political entity ?

These are issues which are lurking in the corner and while Manipur is going through a festive season, thanks to the FIFA World Cup and the Sangai Festival, these two issues would not have been lost on consciousness of many in Manipur.

For the moment, all eyes are on the World Cup and the Sangai Festival and despite the heavy traffic, the festive air cannot be missed.



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