TODAY -

Mt Koubru to Thangjing Hill : Mischievous restrictions
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: May 10, 2022 -



From Mt Koubru to Thangjing Hill and the circle seems to be complete, with the addendum that the circle may be widened or broadened with the addition of more such places if corrective measures are not taken up firmly and immediately.

No one would have forgotten how a stink was raised when some sort of a restriction was placed on pilgrims climbing Mt Koubru some time back in 2021 and now the same stink seems to be threatening to engulf Thangjing Hill, if the restrictions on climbing or entering the areas under Thangjing Hill are anything to go by.

Spelling out certain conditions for entering or climbing Thangjing Hill tantamounts to some sort of an assertion that the rules and regulations have been laid down by a group which have the right to do so and the place has been associated with them from the days of yore.

The only hitch is the conditions laid down have come from the Kuki Students’ Organisation, Henglep Block.

Nothing can be more farcically unfortunate than this, for in the unfortunateness of it all, is the element of the farcical and this is what has led to many raising their voices against the purported stand taken by the Henglep based student body.

The social media site is already rife with the latest ‘diktats’ issued by the student body and the intriguing part is the seeming silence of the State Government on the issue.

Go back to history, history as understood and recognised all over the world and go by the writings and memoirs written by the British officers who were here at Manipur is a line that may taken up here.

Any move to rub anyone the wrong way should be dealt with promptly and firmly and this is where the Government would need to act on time, before things take an uglier turn.

At the moment, the stand off or rather the opposing viewpoints seem to be confined to speaking out to the media and letting all know the position of where one stands on the issue at hand, and this is the time for the Government to act and see what may be done to defuse the situation.

In many ways what is happening at Thangjing can also be said to be a reflection of how communities are pitting themselves against each other over reckless claims over a place which has been deemed to be some sort of a sacred site for one group of people and this is perhaps the most undesirable part of it all.

At the moment the issue may be seen as a stand off between a student organisation, purportedly representing a group of people and some organisations, which again are purportedly representing a section of the people.

The potential that it may blow into something bigger is what is worrying and this is where voices of sanity ought to be raised.

Let the Government take the lead in raising the voice of sanity and let the others stick to the decision thus taken.

Manipur has already seen and experienced enough problems and troubles over conflicting claims and if this is what is read into the diktats issued on entering Thangjing Hill, then things can only take a more tragic turn.

Such a situation should be avoided and at the same time the sentiments of the people, who trace a big part of their culture, literature and folklores from any spot or place, Thangjing in this case, should be respected.

The epic Khamba Thoibi would not be complete without a reference to Thangjing Hill.

The very fact that many Meiteis believe that Thangjing Hill range is the abode of Eputhou Thangjing and other Meitei deities underlines the sacred value attached to the hill range and this is something which should be respected.

Restrictions placed on a place which has sacred values which may be based on myths or otherwise would amount to disrespecting the beliefs and cultures of other people and this is what is unacceptable.

Let better sense prevail and let the Government intervene.



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