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E-Pao! Opinion :: An open letter to all parents

An open letter to all parents
and armed guardians of Manipuri culture

Yumnam Devjit Singh *


My name is Yumnam Devjit Singh. I am doing my 3rd Sem in Bangalore.

On 10th November there was a thabal in Austin town, Bangalore. I went there and had an entertaining time. On 15th calls came from Manipur asking if any of us had gone there, the tones sounded very concerned.

Turned out the event had turned into a fiasco in Manipur. Portraying all those who were present there in a very negative image. Comments were on dress like skin tight pants....

I believe the organizers were also asked to summit to and apologize for their distorted portrayal of Manipuri culture. I don't know who the organizers were. On the Rs 70 ticket M.C.B.A. was stamped on it.

YES! people may find some of the scenes as eye soaring. Pairing up of people, seeing them in a corner talking to themselves.

I rather find it inspiring, to see people in love (may be because I have been unsuccessful in finding "the girl"). Anyway these are forces no one can stop.

And yes, there are students who have come to Bangalore and spoilt themselves beyond help. Indulging themselves into drugs, marijuana, alcohol and uncultured relationships.

But banning thabal and putting squarely the blame of all these on thabal is an ill perceived decision.

The detailed mention of number of people present on the thabal and the calculation of financial gains made by the organizer tend to give an image of the vigilantes as that of one quite different from one of social cause.

The thing is banning thabal does not solve the problem at hand. It only tries to remove the symptoms. What about the numerous clubs and in house parties??? Can you stop them???

It is a very complex problem which needs to be tackled in a more serious, realistic and broadminded way.

Making comments like "many students have bikes which are not at all required" are very cliche comments pointing out the mis-understood nature of the parents - an elder's mindset. They are not at all assessing the real life situations.

My college, like all other colleges, starts at 9:00 am. Lakhs of students use the Bangalore Municipality Transport Corporation Buses in a short span of 30-40 minutes.

If I am late for college I am not let in losing precious attendance. Without a vehicle one is forced to follow the daily hectic struggle for bus space (because getting a seat is out of the question).

One can only appreciate it when they see the bus with people dangling from everywhere.

I don't believe the thabal organizers have portrayed the culture of Manipur in a distorted way. I believe they have succeeded in showing the true image of Manipuri culture.

Corruption, Extortion, Gun rule, Joblessness, where lawlessness is the normalcy. Have no illusions this is the culture of Manipur and we the eye soaring students are the product of this culture.

We are tired. Tired of facing questions like : don't you have colleges at your place? By teachers.

Struggling in other's land trying to be successful and earn respect to bring up the image of my place, places where people can't appreciate our struggle.

We want to be home, eat home-cooked food, not take tough decisions alone, be protected by parents. But still, we put up with it dreaming one day when we finish our studies we will go back and improve Manipur knowing very well it is wishful thinking.

I have been taught to stand for truth and justice. I am convinced that the article about thabal in Bangalore does not portray the truth. The truth is lost in a thick curtain of ill understanding and misconceptions.

The problem can be solved only by providing peace and stability to Manipur and making way for development of educational institutes and industries to bring home the countless misguided sons and daughters.

Disposal of arms is paramount for peace in Manipur!


* Yumnam Devjit Singh contributes for the first time to e-pao.net . The writer can be contacted at yumnam_devjit(at)yahoo(dot)co(dot)in . This article was webcasted on 19th November 2007.


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