TODAY -

Dark shadow of the past events

Kambam Ibohal Singh *



Everyone big and small aware the present situation. Not a single day passes without loss of life or suffering caused to the people. Lobbing of bombs, extortion, monetary demand, kidnapping and abduction for ransom have been the order of the day. Protest against illegal acts are witnessed almost everyday.

The black sheeps in the security forces are also creating serious law and order problems in the State. The conflict situation between proscribed outfits and security agencies has direct impact on the common innocent public.

No body knows what historians would write describing the present situation of this tiny State, Manipur would be of great surprise, if the present happenings are carefully studied by the historians. The historians might have presented the current recurring occurrence in many topics as political, economic, social, ethnic and Cultural Revolution of the time.

The historian might also add views of his own to enlighten or criticise giving different accounts of every event. But personal experience would also be of different history from that of historians. There would be no chance of giving personal colour or opinion in interpretation of the current events, had honesty been the basis of writing.

In earlier period the people of Manipur lived in a monarchy and the king was supreme ruler. The ruler king was highly respected and honoured by his subjects and always carried out his orders politely. The king was honoured as Saviour and worshipped by the people for kind, generous and just administration; on the other hand the king loved his subjects as his own children and tried his best to do everything for the betterment and prosperity of his people.

That was a good and ideal relationship between the king and his people. But in later period the king become tyrant towards his subjects by going beyond the tolerable limit of the people. The king himself became a law breaker. He used to marry those women having husband and children in spite of protecting them from lawlessness and giving proper attention towards the welfare of his subjects. The king became a detector ignoring the rights of the people.

The king had more than one queen and the princes could not maintain full cooperation and coordination amongst themselves due to lack of discipline and fought each other for kingship. This was the main reason of becoming unpopular of the king day by day. There was strong reservation in the mind of people who were unable to express openly for fear of penalties against them.

Politically the kingdom became very weak and was subject to external subjugation. The erstwhile king and his advisers could not think of future betterment of the political and social structure. There was no distinct policy in regard to education, religion, culture, social setup etc. As a result Manipuri literatures were destroyed by burning and not allowed to learn and write our script.

People were forced to learn Bengali Script and literature. Now Manipuri literature is to be written in original script which would take several years. Religion is another topic along with tradition and custom. The religion followed by our forefathers had been completely changed bringing to an end to the traditions, belief and wears and religious customs.

Nothing left in original form for the coming generation except social evils, untouchabilities, separating all communities in the name of religion, embarrassment and emotional harassment. All were done under the powerful influence of the past ruler and senior citizens. The loss experienced prior to 1891 had far reaching effect even for generations.

In this stained and disgraced relationship between the ruler and the ruled the merger agreement between the king and Government of India (with heavy pressure of Government of India) had not brought any effect to the people of the State; because everybody wished to be without such moral less king and felt a bit relieved. The people of Manipur could protest in all strength and possible ways against the merger agreement as was struggled on 18th Jun 2001.

But the people remained silent to register their disagreement with the king or otherwise. The people in general and the senior citizens in particular were also ignorant or unaware politically and could not articulate their common desire/wishes for a well furnished independent State.

The political leaders especially those dishonest and selfish politicians misguided the people to fulfil their selfish interest. The dissatisfaction of the past events is now a burning topic of the people especially amongst the younger generation. The explosive situation erupted in the tiny State everyday is an unbearable burden on the innocent people.

Since 1942 there had been a series of events in the memory of the people. The Japanese aerial attack of North AOC (Erstwhile BOC) was beginning of World War II in Manipur. Following years till 1945 the war continued during which people of Manipur suffered very much from unsettled condition having no shelter and food and found no means how to deal with the plight of the people.

After World War II, the people of Manipur was free to choose any path as desired by them. Independent India disarranged all the binding of the old ruler, the king. There was renaissance of the old religion and preaching of the old system against Hinduism started gradually.

Nevertheless, the onus of all present unwanted happenings are on the immediate past rulers and elder citizens who were not farsighted; Playing in the hands of alien people exploited our old system and disappointed every one. Now everything has been deep-rooted and there is no scope of immediate come back. It is after WW II, the facts came in the limelight.

In 1947 state of Manipur too was freed from the yoke of British rule and lived as an independent kingdom. But nobody inspired to bring Manipuri script into use which could have been done quite ahead of inclusion in the eight schedules of Indian Constitution. It was also the very fact of our lack of far-sightedness realized after a lapse of long 50 years.

Now in the name of struggle for our old glories there have been various underground outfits. It is apparent that every community by and large has established such outfit. There are as many as 36 communities in the state. For these outfits the maintenance cost becomes a great forceful burden on the people of the state. Then what would be the outcome in the state? Over and above a new armed outfit viz Manipur Naga Revolutionary Front (MNRF) has been floated. This is another additional burden for the people.

Killing and violence are on the increase; deaths in the prime of life and before natural death are heading towards destruction of hope and aspiration of myriad families. The miseries and troubles of young widows with children are in a state of helplessness having no one to shed tear for the grievances. Just imagine the long journey of life of those relatives whose sons, husbands and near and dear ones have been victims of needless violence.

What more may be expected except culmination of violence like suicide bomb or human bomb to add more and more widows and orphans. In the present situation if some one thinks to be in a happy, satisfied and successful life then it would be a living in a fool's paradise. It is an appeal to all concerned to shun violence and all heinous activities.

We have already paid very heavy price to face the mighty Indian Army. Let us seek an alternative mean to fight against the Govt. of India by making ourselves fit for the confrontation. Let us make ourselves fully equipped with hard work, tolerance, self sufficient development in all realms including education crossing all ethnic lines.

Let us make our land prosperous and shine like a bright star in the North Eastern Region despite limited resources. Natural beauties, cultural activities, traditional customs irrespective of all community, sport activities etc. are required to be made more attractive to the world and India in particular and let us rise as one. The people of this land would get more strength to fight the Indian mentality not the Indian Army.

Like Japan, the most prosperous and the richest country in the world let our land be the most powerful nation beyond imagination. Only then we can raise our head to challenge the Indian Govt. The subjugation thrown upon us since long time should be kept in mind and not to forget. If the present trend is continued indulging in fruitless struggle one day surely we would be nowhere in the world. There are many areas to look into to bring a solution without violence.

Free from corruption, honesty, sincerity and hard work could bring us UTOPIA; else future generation would not excuse us for the grave mistake as done by Adolf Hitler who is not honoured by the new German generation. Today being a poor man, the author makes an appeal in broken language unable to bear/see the pains and suffering of the innocent poor people, to shun violence. Always eager to see a violence-free and developed state during the uncertain short life time.

To challenge subjugation every body should be a man of integrity and hard work. Never say die to be honoured and awarded. Once again sincere appeal is made to all concerned indulged in violent activities to make a surprise "U" turn by taking a reversal policy to campaign for peace and development. The bridge between violence and peace is not long.

The heavy influx of outsiders from different places of India has become a point to mull over. The GOI introduced inner permit system for a long period. But one M.P. requested GOI in parliament to lift the system. This was one sign of lack of fore sightednesses of our elder generation; only remedy is to replace the outsiders by the native people in all occupation of manual labour as well as business enterprises.


* Kambam Ibohal Singh wrote this article for The Sangai Express . This article was webcasted on July 15th, 2009.



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