The recipe of bandh and blockade

Yoihenba *

"Bandh Bandh Kouba Nangse Eikhoi Manipurgiro" this is what our very own Tapta sings in one of his songs.

And poor Tapta what else he could sing for. But the Tapta here represnts every Manipuri who are so frustrated by the selfish acts of a few who call bandh at their will. Few weeks back I came to know from e-pao that there would a blockade of national highway on demand of apprehending the guilty law enforcers who were involved in robbing a woman.

Are you kidding me? Blockade of highway !!! for what? For a woman was robbed. This is ridiculous. A blockade!!

"NO" a big no to you who says calling a bandh is ridiculous. Because this is Manipur. In Manipur anyone can call a bandh. If you have appeared for an interview and the result is not yet out you can call a bandh pressing for the announcement of the result.

If the road that leads to your house is bad, if the transformer that stopped working last week is still lying unattended by the electricity department,if you want to get compensation for the three cows which were mowed down by a speeding bus on the national highway ,if the reverred principal of your college is being transferred, you can call a bandh.

But there is one condition. You have to form a joint action commitee and to send a copy of the resolution of calling the bandh to the local dailies. Hey do not forget to deliver a copy to ISTV. Above all it is matter of disgrace if ISTV doesn't announce the bandh on it's news.

A bandh is like a staple diet of Manipur. Say just after rice, Bandh comes next as the staple diet. And we the common people also are so used to bandh that we start feeling a little uneasy if there has been, say, two weeks without a bandh.

For a bandh means a holiday ,a feast. Start pouring the oil into the pan the chicken is ready. Today is bandh means it is party time. And for a lazy student like my youngest cousin it is like a holiday bonanza.

One thing about our great Motherland Manipur's bandhs and blockades is that they are indefinite. Sometimes the bandhs are such that a bandh overides an already existing bandh.

It is so easy to call a bandh. But the ever hungry stomach doesn't stop getting hungry because of a bandh. And hats off to my government because it always brings relief after six or seven days to the people from these indefinite bandhs and blockade. Enough, I will stop my nonsense here.

But the point is all are truth. So next is to whom should the gun be pointed towards. Obviously the Father i.e the Govt. Oh Government my powerful Government it is better to avoid breaking out of bandh fire instead of extinguishing the fire after it broke out.

Please take up measures to bring public awareness about bandh's harms and loss to our state's economy. Please dont forget that the Supreme Court on Sept 16, 2005 directed the Shiv Sena and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to deposit Rs 20 Lakhs each within a week as fine, imposed on them for Mumbai Bandh called by them two years ago to protest against Ghatkopar Bomb blast.

One simple step that we can do is play Tapta's song on bandh atleast three times a day in AIR, ISTV and DDK. I am so confident that it would definitely help. And some ads in major dailies would be a bonus.

Hold on, Is my suggsetion that bad?

This suggestions does not mean that you stop cracking down on those involved in calling the bandhs. Please stop the bandh and blockade in Manipur. Please dont make our life hareder. Our national highways are already so bad that one could say whether we are in Manipur or Nagaland bldindfolded if we happen to travel in a vehicle.

In Manipur the highways would be always bumpy and Nagaland would be so smooth. Probably our highways are the worst in the world as a Japanese traveller had remarked some years back on his visit here as part of his world tour.

This is a desperate request to all bandh callers and prospective bandh callers of Manipur to think twice before calling a bandh. Because I also rely on my mother's return from khwairambandh bazar to satisfy my hunger. And I am not the only one.

Please, please, please...... Last but not the least I am not a columnist or a freelance writer. I am just one of the frustrated Manipuris expressing my frustration. I, in any way, intended to make fun of the victim in the incident of robbibg and my full support to those demanding the punishment of the guilty.

My apologies to fellow readers if there was any spelling or gramatical mistake for I had no time to revise what I have typed earlier since I had to receive my mother from Khwairambandh.

If there is any other frustrated Manipuri because of bandh, please do express your concerns. And dont forget to express opinion about the feasibility of my suggestion, but only after listening to the song by Tapta.

God bless all the Manipuris.
God bless my Motherland

* Yoihenba (from Imphal, and a "Bandh-free" Manipur) writes for the first time . The writer can be contacted at aryan_21(at)yahoo(dot)com . This article was webcasted on November 15 2008.

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