E-Pao! Opinions - Will Manipur become another Bihar? A rejoinder

Will Manipur become another Bihar? A rejoinder
By: Laisram Indira, Laishram Doren, J.P. Sinha *

Will Manipur become another Bihar? A rejoinder by Laisram Indira
(Read this article by Whistleblower here ).

The very thought pushes my fear triggers to a high. Having been doggedly committed to a city job for years now, I never wavered from it. Nor, has a thought ever occured to me that I should go back and serve my motherland. The vices of the city well entrapped in me, I am, quite sure though that the feeling is not unique to me alone. However, the whistleblower's account has left me tripping on this "sublime fear", which, I argue, might be largely misplaced.

I am unaware if there exists even a frail Meitei exodus to greener pastures. No brainer but I am certainly aware of the student exodus to outside states so much so that we are indeed swarming in the metros. But this is no feature in permanence. And while it is a comforting thought that literacy in Manipur is higher than the national average, not many are willing to burn their educational expertise outside the state.

I don't need to dig too deep to understand this. My experience with many girls and boys who study outside Manipur has been rather disheartening. With all their potential, they insist on going back home only to lie in eternal wait for jobs that seldom come by. Fair enough for those who want to brain sweat at home and join the waiting game... But I think the answer is far too nasty.

We haven't gotten over our conservative psyche or are driven enough to demonstrate basic competitiveness nor do we nurture an enterprise culture. Add to it, our society has created cultures where the youth do not readily avail the freedom of choices they are exposed to. Such influences on choices are hard to measure. Parents still insist on traditional career forays, and often leaving the youth feet bounded - to stick to home and lead sedentary lifestyles.

At the end of the social scale too are the idle rich - a state aspired by too many. Even with the access to some of the best education, AIDS, drugs seem to be eating into the Meitei populace. Talk of Manipur to colleagues and it is AIDS they automatically identify with, much to my chagrin!! I digress. But which one do you think can we afford - finding a job outside the state or lying in eternal wait for jobs and kindling hope from a bunch of asses in the government who are too busy serving themselves instead of creating new employment and promoting growth. Forget that they will ever evolve an inward looking economic policy, of efficiently utilising young talents or local resources for our own good.

And yet, it is also unrealistic and naive to believe that we would witness dramatic population swings.

I don't think we are better placed than Bihar. The only saving grace may be that our backwardness index is a little less than the latter. But scams? Our government is fraught with it. Of politicians? The less said the better. Lawlessness? I bring out the tiredly repeated argument - aren't we in a qualitative sense the worst-hit state as far as insurgency is concerned.

How is this 'parallel government' levying 'taxes' on people, government officials and businessmen thriving? Nothing has changed for eons. So it does make a whole lot more sense to simply accept that we have almost reached that point of no redemption. I say leave the state to its own fate! Achievers go ahead pursue your dreams...

Coming to my third point, it's a job that has attracted wide attention for all the wrong reasons!!! Stats say with the call centre industry growing at over 20 per cent a year, it is expected two million Indians will be part of this BPO saga in five years' time. Why should the Meitei youth be left out? So what if it entails just picking up the phone with the phoney accent to boot?

Agreed, it may not be the best of possible career choices but we need to get rid of the conservative coddling and engage in gainful occupation of time. It is a rapid, breakneckworld that we live in today and finding a job not as arduous as before. I'd rather be on the side of work against idleness. The catch 22 situation is the longer you are idle the greater the chances to go astray.

A corollary that came home to me is making use of opportunities, wherever. That to me is improving ourselves, bit by bit.

* Laisram Indira contributes regularly to

Will Manipur become another Bihar? A rejoinder by Laisram Doren
(Read this article by Whistleblower here ).

I have been following few articles for the last few weeks coming up in this site. I think its unfair to even write an article comparing Bihar and Manipur. I agree that there are thousands of manipuris studying outside. But, eventhough there is no official figures, the number of manipuris working outside is increasing exponentially.

No other North-east state, even Assam has half the number as ours. We have a sizeable presence abroad also. The mindset of Manipuris have changed a lot, off course for the better. I have been to few metros around the country, I am quite impress to find so many manipuris working in MNCs and big Corporate. Many engineering students are doing well in campus placement.I recently come across, few manipuris recruited by L&T and some big companies.

Go to any big institute IIM, IIT or ISI you will find the presence of manipuris. Eventhough we can take this as a positive sign, this is a cause of alarm for us. We hope they will come back to Manipur after gaining worthy experience and contribute to the growth of our state.

One big reason for our usual "Homesickness syndrome" is the poor transport & communication system. For other state, if they catch a train, after 20 hrs they are at home. For us it takes nearly 5(five) days to come home. Railway connectivity is a must if we want to join the "Global Race". So lets believe in ourselves. "Manipur is shining".

* Laishram Doren contributes regularly to

Will Manipur become another Bihar? A rejoinder by J.P. Sinha
(Read this article by Whistleblower here ).

The Whistleblower’s musings that, Manipur is enroute to becoming another Bihar, echoes on a trend, which is increasingly in consonance with any developing society. Society today is becoming more cosmopolitan.

The law of economics governs that, people will keep on using the limited resources, which are in constant demand. Ones these resources gets depleted, people will look for alternate resources to replenish their ever growing needs.

The biggest problem being faced by any developing nation has been the ‘brain drain’. This has to do something with the depleting resources and opportunities that are hard to come by, which forces people to look for greener pastures.

If Manipur today is facing the same problem, it has a direct bearing on the state of its economy to a very large extent. For a small state like Manipur with little mineral resources, the scope for industrial development is limited. The only industries, which has thrived and will continue to do so for another decade is the artisan and skill based industries with very few employment opportunities and economic gains.

It is here that the difference between a State like Manipur and Bihar lies. While endowed with rich mineral deposits, the state languishes at the bottom in terms of the state of its economy. The poor literacy rate, compounded with casteism and an inefficient political setup allowed the state to become one of the poorest states in India. The nature of migration of population from the rural to the urban areas is more because of the economic need rather than societal change.

Manipur on the other hand has a high literacy rate, with highly skilled workforce. The exodus of this workforce is because, the society is changing in perspective. The quest for higher academics, jobs and better professions are the driving force behind this exodus.

The law and order situation has also different tones in both the state. While the law and order situation is more because of the making of a social unrest because of its youths taking up arms to make themselves economically more empowered. The law and order situation in Bihar is more to do with the upper caste trying to control the society from the lower castes.

Yes, both these states today may have become ungovernable, but the entire aspect of the ungovernance is totally different in both the states. Again it is caste politics, which plays a major role in the state’s politico-affairs in Bihar. In Manipur, the political colour has a different tune. Here the state is in constant political turmoil because of lack of commitment of its politicians, who are more inclined to follow there instinct of survival. The instinct is more so strong because of a conscious electorate, who will not shrug in denying them a second term at the chair. It is because of this jealous pursuit and goal that most politicians in Manipur would like to ‘make hay when it shines’. And thus the vicious cycle follows.

I do not think Manipur will become another Bihar. Yes, Manipur may become considerably poor in terms of depletion of intellectual resources, academicians, young aspirants and professionals, but no way it is going to turn into another Bihar, as we do not have any menial workforce who are forced into exodus because of discrimination, caste intolerance, hooliganism and no means of subsistence.

I do however hope that this so called societal change will usher in a new era of change, change from the present mindset, change from cultural stagnation and change from socio-politico nepotism. For this, todays young aspirants have to realise that the bubble of opportunities driven by the air of economic prosperity will last as long as the market economy is bullish. They should therefore tread carefully while planning their careers. It is no harm for them to earn few bucks while in pursuit of their goals but they need to make themselves more versatile and professionally more demanding to adapt themselves in the ever changing economic scenario both within their own state and outside the state.

* J.P. Sinha contributes regularly to

Will Manipur become another Bihar? A rejoinder by Ang-ica *
(Read this article by Whistleblower here ).

L. Indira's and others' views on the above topic were really interesting and rather amusing to read. Firstly, Before we degrade Bihar, let us ponder what is the ground reality prevailing in Manipur?

Here every one from the police to the rickshaw puller pays tax to some or the other mafias existing in the name of patriotic freedom fighters(?). Every commodity that comes to Manipur goes through multiple taxation points maintained by different armed groups. Every development work (If any one differs on this, pliz name a single exception) is either 'taxed' at source, or is executed by some frontline agent of these sinister organisations.

Surprisingly, not a single individual dares to speak up against them. Their writ runs almost everywhere right upto our own bedrooms. The rule of law and justice which is the hallmark of every civilized society is simply absent here. Take a look at any day's newspaper: each day there will be at least a report of either killing/kidnapping for ransom/unclaimed unidentified body lying around etc. The point to be noted is that none of these cases are ever investigated. It is all mutely accepted as a part of life like birth, growth, marriage etc. And Where in India do we find appeals to terrorist groups in the newspaper columns?

Certainly not in Bihar.And have we ever look into the manner in which inter tribal differences are exploited for petty gains? Where else in India have massive ethnic cleansing occured for a few acres of land? Remeber the Kuki-Naga, Meitei-Pangal and now the ever increasingly possible Meitei-Naga(in the context of the NSCN -IM dangerous game of divide and divide). No, it is not to support any faction/tribe : But we all suffered. both inside and outside. Have we ever noticed the way the blackmailing done by small pettyminded groups( The Medical Exams, The Highway Blockades etc.)? Where is the Govt? Where is the People? You are either on my side or on their side. There is no common point.

In Manipur, earlier there used to be parallel governments. Now it is not so. The Manipur Govt is confined to the few acres of land on which the Governor's residence is sited. The rest is no man's land. You shoot first. You are the winner. You shoot next. You are the loser. Winner takes all. That is the law in Manipur.

Forget Bihar. At least the police can move with arms there. Here,in Manipur, there are several areas where even the great Indian army with all its imported hi-fi equipments can not even dare to dream about entering.

Manipur is not even a state in the normal sense of the word. It is a failed state. A once state which have degenerated into a mouldy and putrid slum hole.

Earlier, we used to gape at the depths at which Manipur has fallen and draw solace from the dreary hope that it can not possibly get worse. After all the worst is already upon us. No. Manipur surprises us everyday. Everyday It sinks to another deeper abyys.

Time will come when we will all woke up and realise that we have become the untouchables, our menfolk will have become coollies and lowly servants and and our women folks will have become prostitutes and pleasuregivers. Till then let us dream---- Manipur is shining. Manipur is on the verge of development.
Dream on.

* Ang-ica , a Pseudonym contributes for the first time to

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