TODAY -

Buonglienkung - A Man Of Life

By Joyful Thiek *



Last night I could not sleep, not that I could at other times. But last night it was different. It was the death of Buonglienkung.

For the information of those staring right now at their computer screens with blank faces, Mr. Buonglienkung Buongpui is a song writer, a music composer, a musician and a singer of the finest order, at least in so far as our standards are concerned, a father of five and a caring husband to a beautiful wife. But that's not what I want to say; rather his ability to inspire, his zeal and passion in serving the Lord, his love for life, that is.

Born in the then small village of Muolvaiphei, Churachandpur, Manipur in 1970 and living there ever since, Mr. Buonglienkung (so he is commonly known) belongs to the Hmar tribe of Mizo, is, by denomination, a member of the Independent Church of India (ICI), and by early profession, a cultivator. His testimonies talk of climbing the steep slopes of Kangzam hills in search of firewood or for the purpose of burning charcoal to help support his family - harsh moments made harsher by the reality of it all.

Buonglienkung was not born great. God remade him into what we now fondly remember him as, but only after much trials and hardships, for that is how a man is born. For the same reason, many of his songs are in praise of the Lord, seeking to thank God for the blessings He's bestowed upon mankind after the many fights and struggles. Buonglienkung's craze for music did come early in life, but the opportunities did not. Fortunately for him, the lack of opportunities didn't stop him from dreaming. Instead, he chose to linger and that is what made him what he is today.

I was nine when I first met him in 1997. My family had just moved in to Muolvaiphei on account of Dad's theological studies. Mr. Buonglienkung was then our Sunday School teacher. Even then, he'd already taught us his songs. But I did not realise they were his songs back then, and for all I knew, they were good songs and I enjoyed singing them. When there was the annual conference of Naupang Sunday School Union coming up, he'd teach each of us our own parts for the group singing competition. When there was nothing coming up, he'd teach us Tonic Solfa, which I made it a point to miss. How I hated Tonic Solfa when I so much loved singing!

When his first kid, Esther, became of age, he sent her to Mount Carmel School, Muolvaiphei. Likewise thus followed the other kids. But the thing about these girls was that they had already begun singing even before they started school, and what with the huge appreciation for singing prevalent at the time in Mount Carmel School, the girls had much better platforms for showcasing their talents and praising God in the mean time.

That was one thing Mr. Buonglienkung made sure of. As of now, the girls had even done their own recording with their Mom and Dad, singing one of their daddy's own songs and their family's favourite for that matter, 'Rinumna Khelah Malsawmna (Blessings beyond Afflictions)'.

The year of 1999 marked a change for Buonglienkung as he joined the Rural Women Upliftment Society (RWUS), a Churachandpur based NGO. In the mean time, he served the ICI as a music promoter on a contract basis, travelling to places as different and distant, rural and urban, teaching music to the Christian youths under the initiative of the ICI.

Even before this, he had been with the ICI Central Choir as choir conductor for almost a decade, and has been, in fact, to this day. Then in 2004, he was elected as an Assembly Member of ICI and has been ever since. He also worked with the New Life Ministries as music instructor.

Many of us probably came to learn of him from the Champhai-Aizawl Tour of celebrated singer Lalruotmawi in 2006. Worth mentioning here is the fact that most of Lalruotmawi's first songs were written by Buonglienkung, including the hits 'Kros Thilthawtheina' and 'Thiemthu Hril Thei Kan Ta Nawh'. You might have noticed his enthusiasm and energy then at the Tour.

That is a characteristic of Buonglienkung he is so known for. Everywhere he goes, from the remote village of Saipung in the Jaintia Hills, Meghalaya to Phulpui in the Vangai Hills of Churachandpur, from the North Cachar Hills to Aizawl or Delhi, he is unchanged. He always bear in mind the fact that the God he serves is unchanged no matter where, no matter when, and that gives him the ability to not differentiate a gathering of ten and a gathering of thousands. And that is why he is a life-long champion of musical gatherings.

In his short lifetime of 38 years, Buonglienkung had written more than 210 songs, a figure the equal of which you'd normally not see. It's not just that. His songs are almost always instantly appreciated, a number of them being translated to different languages, and an even greater number sung by almost everyone.

To get an idea of the magnitude of his songs, try going to any Hmar christian youth gathering or something the like, you're most likely to hear a couple of his songs being sung, if not more. That is Buonglienkung. That is God working through him. And in fact, most of the Hmar christian youth songs (Thalai songs) that I know of are his, what a shame I didn't give much attention to the details of songs I'd come across in the past years.

His songs had won him many awards and so thus his personality. The list includes Lelte award for Best Composer of the Year (2007), Achievement Award from DHWA (2004), etc, you name it. He also received citations and mementos from different organisations and christian groups, and his songs had been favourited in local music channels over weeks, and sometimes months.

Now just when things have finally began to fall into place however, just when his children are beginning to grow into shape, just when his family is getting settled, the cruel hands of fate should come creeping in and steal from us that we love, oh how so unfair! How so miseraby unfair when he spent even the last moments of his life serving God.

On the 29th of October, 2008 (Thursday), Mr. Buonglienkung was still in the Parbung-Pherzawl hill areas of Churachandpur with the local church youths when a high fever gripped him. The malarial fever coupled with his diabetic body was too much to continue his mission there and was immediately rushed back home.

On the 1st of November, Saturday, he was admitted to Churachandpur Civil Hospital from where he was transferred to the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS), Imphal the next day. Then this morning (3rd Nov., 2008) around 1:30 am, Buonglienkung left this world for his heavenly abode, leaving behind his loved ones, to be with the God he's served all through this time.

To the world, he died a music legend. To his four daughters and his son, he died a caring father. To his wife, a loving husband. And to me, he left as an inspiration. A man so dear and true, this world is too poor to hold him. And he may have died today, but ten, twenty, a hundred years from now, his songs will still live on.

God be with the bereaved family!




* Joyful Thiek writes for the first time to e-pao.net . The writer can be contacted at joyful(dot)thiek(at)gmail(dot)com . This article was webcasted on November 13th, 2008

* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • The Vanishing Meitei Tribe
  • Violence in Manipur 2023-2024 : Timeline
  • Building career in defence & strategic study
  • Why example of model code of conduct ?
  • Ownership of responsibility
  • Will pressure mount on key players in NE
  • How to save your foot after an accident
  • Children Camp @JNMDA Imphal #3 : Gallery
  • Education Fair @Imphal #1 : Gallery
  • Project Associate @ CSE, Assam Univ
  • Understanding schizophrenia
  • Advancement in Multi Objective Optimization
  • When will women in voter list increase ?
  • Making 2 plus 2 is equal to 5
  • Changing face of drug menace
  • Scientist of Manipur: Jayanta Manoharmayum
  • 25 yrs since Atal Vajpayee visit to RIMS
  • 4 Lakhs donated to support (L) Maipak Family
  • Clarification: Guwahati Meet on Humanitarian
  • Start UPSC prep after 12th for success
  • Tips to avoid melting makeup in summer
  • Giving a big solid push to ST demand
  • Time to come clean
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba: 1 occasion, 2 narratives #3
  • Khongjom Day @Khebaching #2 : Gallery
  • A year of hostilities
  • Licypriya Kangujam to travel to Italy
  • Declining moral standards in public life
  • Healthy democracy with independent media
  • Why endangered species matter to us
  • Significant Guwahati meeting : 1st visible step
  • The Pallel story
  • Aftermath of ferocious hailstorm #2 : Gallery
  • Ukhrul: Climate change grip on water supply
  • Commemoration of World Eld's Deer Day
  • Indo-Naga Talks (From 2012) :: Timeline
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Hiyanglam
  • Dance of democracy, a miracle in making !
  • Learn to look 10/20/30 years hence
  • The zero FIR, zero lesson
  • 'Ishanou' Selection @ Cannes #1: Gallery
  • MOU signed: MTI-HUB & KIIT-TBI & SAbF
  • Lament of the Mourning Choir :: Poem
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Wabagai
  • RSS-BJP fracas
  • Trials for Canoe Slalom World Cup
  • Poser from a villager says it all Kamjong
  • The cover-up effort
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #2
  • Manipuri women in the arena of politics
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Assam
  • Aimee Baruah at red carpet of Cannes
  • National Defence Academy Exam 2024
  • How digital media changed communications
  • Manipur stands scandalised
  • All eyes on UP battle
  • Descent of Radha-Krishna #32: Download
  • Riots to a shrine- Ram Mandir of Ayodhya
  • Handle with care. F.R.I.E.N.D.S inside!
  • The Power of Poppy - 31 :: Poem
  • Celebrate the journey !
  • Career counselling : A life guidance tool
  • Scientist of Manipur: Amom Ruhikanta
  • Conspiracy, thy name is Kuki !
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Thounaojam
  • Ket Meth New Album "Ghost Stories"
  • World Hypertension Day
  • International Day of Families
  • Let the rule of law prevail
  • When donation becomes obligatory demand
  • Tourism of Manipur through Gastronomy
  • Beyond Eternity :: Poem
  • Patriarch subjugation on women
  • Celebrate Manipuri Cinema shine at Cannes
  • Training on cultivation of various mushroom
  • Transformative impact of Ayurveda & Yoga
  • War for over a year : Delhi is answerable
  • The logic behind illogical chargesheet
  • Preserving Thang-Ta :: Rare Photos
  • Regarding Human Rights Situation in Manipur
  • World Hypertension Day 2024
  • Article 355 of Constitution of India #3
  • Disinformation campaign touba thengnarey
  • Deeply mourn the demise of Oja Biren Lamba
  • Water Mimosa for sustainable development
  • Publicity drives of educational institutions
  • ED's revolutionary move!!!
  • Malemnganbi Laishram : Science Topper
  • Featured Front Page Photo 2024 #2: Gallery
  • Thokchom Sheityajit : Arts Topper
  • Aiena Naorem : Commerce Topper
  • AISSE 2024 Exam Result- RKM Imphal
  • Gold, new world currency !
  • Milk for hair and skin
  • Of illegal immigrants & the larger picture
  • The missive from Kamjong
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Science Topper
  • HSE 2024 : Subject Pass Percentage
  • HSE 2024 : District Pass Percentage
  • HSE 2024 : Candidates with Highest Marks
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Science Full Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Arts Full Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Commerce Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Arts Topper
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Commerce Topper
  • Sezo Ringa- Debut Music Video "Revival"
  • Journalism - A thrilling career #2
  • After Class XII where? The eternal question
  • Entry of Arvind Kejriwal
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #1
  • Our nurses, our future: Power of care
  • Screenplay Writing course concluded
  • Workshop on IP & Patent Filing held
  • Let there be less Politics in Sports
  • Sam Pitroda is absolutely white
  • Motherhood: Soul & spirit of family & society
  • Time has come to criminalise ecocide
  • Meiteis, a disappearing community in Manipur
  • World Bamboo Congress @Taiwan : Gallery
  • Ima Manipur should smile more
  • 2nd National Lok Adalat at High Court
  • The Power of Poppy - 30 :: Poem
  • Army impact on Tamphasana Wushu odyssey
  • Aftermath of ferocious hailstorm #1 : Gallery
  • "Dynamic library service" :: Book Rvw
  • Radio E-pao: Manipuri Film OST (130+ song)
  • Artificial Intelligence & Environment
  • Article 355 of Constitution of India #2
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #4
  • Delhi's stand after 1 year of clash
  • A new type of terrorism
  • Scientist of Manipur: Waikhom Vishwanath
  • SRF, JRF, RA @ Assam University
  • The Bleeding River :: Poem
  • Executive Meeting of WMC Assam Unit
  • Journalism - A thrilling career #1
  • Raising the call to replace Minister
  • A storm in a political teacup
  • Cheirao-chingkaba @ Chinga : Gallery
  • Happy Mother's Day
  • Empowering hill communities via U-Mangra
  • African Swine Fever
  • Free Training on Mushroom at Nagamapal
  • Harshit Dhingaun recieves award from Korea
  • Look for ways to restore normalcy
  • The danger of last kicks of a dying horse
  • Preserving Thang-Ta traditions
  • Resolving ST issue by democratic process
  • Top 5 songs to awaken your inner patriot
  • Project Assistant @ Manipur University
  • Leishemba Sanajaoba conferred Doctorate
  • Double tragedy: No time for red-tapism
  • A Youtuber called Dhruv
  • Nupi Landa Thaunaphabishing : Full Book
  • 174th Anniv Maharaj Narasingh #2 : Gallery
  • Challenges in Healthcare in rural Manipur
  • A salute to leadership quality of PM Modi
  • Career in press for freedom of expression
  • One day after devastating hailstorm
  • Understanding the suffering of others
  • A ferocious hailstorm @Imphal : Gallery
  • Article 355 of Constitution of India #1
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #3
  • Election gossip & rumours
  • 'Melodic Minds' Tour in Guwahati
  • Leaving a trail of destruction
  • Political see-saw
  • A brand-new Scientific discovery
  • In memoriam of the happiness we shared !
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #5
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Sekmaijin
  • Oh Motherland :: Poem
  • Animal life should be treated with dignity
  • '365 Days of Chin-Kuki Aggression' : Gallery
  • Renaissance of politics in our youth
  • TB & tobacco co-epidemics in Indonesia
  • The Power of Poppy - 29 :: Poem
  • Advanced Charging Infrastructure in NE
  • Lessons learnt in the last one year
  • True colour of politics
  • World Heritage Day @ MU : Gallery
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Kakwa
  • Joint Combing Operations in Jiribam
  • Reboot PSUs for jobs: Task for new Govt
  • Ayurvedic remedies to keep healthy eyes
  • May 3, 2023 to May 3, 2024
  • One year of crisis, and what next ?
  • Scientist of Manipur: Nongmaithem Rajmuhon
  • Whither social justice & work for women?
  • Taiwan to enhancing economic ties with India
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #2
  • Athoubasingi Numit #2 : Gallery
  • Privilege trap of While Male Meitei
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #4
  • 'Chizami Model' working in Gujarat ?
  • Racing towards the one year mark
  • On misattribution & falsifying history
  • Nupi Landa Thaunaphabishing #15 :: Book
  • May Calendar for Year 2024 : Tools
  • 12th World Bamboo Congress at Taiwan
  • Complex dance of democracy in Manipur
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Pangaltabi
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #1
  • Showing ugly face of muscle power
  • Spare the rod, spoil the monster
  • Descent of Radha-Krishna #31: Download
  • Socio-Historical analysis on Ethnic Conflict
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Langmeidong
  • Ngangbam Dipapati- Gold @European Cup
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #3
  • Fresh surge in violence
  • The real culprit
  • National Science Teacher workshop
  • Livelihood Disaster in Mapithel Region
  • Scientists of Manipur : Laishram Ladu Singh
  • Imphal Ring Road Project to Transform
  • Lok Sabha polls in Manipur #2 : Gallery
  • The Happiness Code : Download
  • NH-2 Bridge bombed @Sapermeina : Gallery
  • Khongjom Day @Khebaching #1 : Gallery
  • Id-ul-Fitr @Hatta #2 : Gallery
  • Workshop @ NSU Manipur : Gallery
  • 174th Anniv Maharaj Narasingh #1 : Gallery
  • Lok Sabha polls in Manipur #1 : Gallery
  • Children Camp @JNMDA Imphal #2 : Gallery
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba Chak Katpa #2 : Gallery
  • Scientists of Manipur : Laitonjam Warjeet
  • Community seed bank @Umathel : Gallery
  • Athoubasingi Numit #1 : Gallery
  • Scientists of Manipur : Ngangkham Nimai
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba Chak Katpa #1 : Gallery
  • Kenedy Khuman (Singer) : Gallery
  • Students @ Class X Exam : Gallery
  • GHOST of PEACE :: Download Booklet
  • List of Kings of Manipur: 33 - 1984 AD