TODAY -

Birth Centenary Celebrations of Jananeta Irabat Singh, 1996 : Book Translation
- Part 5 -
Patriotic Songs of Irabot: Part 2

James Oinam *

 Birth Centenary Celebrations of Jananeta Irabat Singh, 1996 : Book Cover
Birth Centenary Celebrations of Jananeta Irabat Singh, 1996 : Book Cover



Patriotic Songs of Irabot: Part 2
B. Jayantakumar Sharma


Translatorís Note: Translated from Manipuri section of the book below
Book: Birth Centenary Celebrations of Jananeta Irabat Singh, 1996
Editor: L. Damodar Singh
Joint Editor: Dr. N. Tombi Singh
Jointly Organised by Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre, Calcutta
and Department of Art and Culture, Manipur,
Sept. 29 and Oct. 13, 1996

Cover design: Premananda Roy
Published by: Shri Th. Subol Singh
Printed at: Padma Printers (Computerised), Paona Bazar, Imphal Ė 795001

The poet sings: "Haigatli wangna firansi nganglaba lairabagi eena" (Waving the flag high, red with blood of the poor), because smeared in mud the farmers work the field in the rain and in the sun. But the fruit is taken by the sycophants of the king and high dignitaries and rich businessmen.

From this comes from the lips of the poet the song of anger and despair:

Khangle nashak khangledo
Uredo natau uredo
Khugrang tongbana nomlaga
Khong-up tongbana chabani
Laumigi thawai laumigi mai
Amuk yollaroi, amuk yollaroi
Eena sumba phausay eikhoigi thawaini


[Seen your real face
Seen your deeds
One with callus works
One with shoes eats
Farmersí life, farmersí face
Wonít sell again, wonít sell again
These paddy watered with blood is our life]

The poet sings, "Cheksillu hai, chesillu hai, cheksillu hai, phaudo" (take care, take care of the paddy). Thus, the poet tries to awaken farmers steeped in superstition and foolish faith, whose blood has been sucked by the clever. He tries to give social consciousness.

To know the value of the sickle, he calls often:

Thangol adu maya thang-u thauna
Laukhao tam oiraga khaogani sana phau
Minai yotling kokkani sana leibak emagi
.

[Sharpen the blades of the sickle
When time for harvest comes, will harvest the golden paddy
Chains of slavery will be broken of golden motherland]

Farmers could not stand as equal due to poverty; with oneís own labour when the granary is full of paddy one can eat full meal. At that time, you wouldnít be under anyone. Chain of slavery will be broken. Therefore, the plough and sickle will be sharpened and production will increase.

To be free from poverty letís farm:

Lau udana laumi ekhoigi
Upai kari lei
Eikhoina phauthok helhansi
Leibak pumba kansi


[What else for we farmers
Than till the farms
Letís increase paddy production
Letís save the entire land]

The poet sings loudly, "Laushu ling-u phaushu khao khaowi thangolni marupni, maya thang-u thauna thang-u thang-u toina toina"
(Plant the paddy, harvest the paddy, the sickle is a friend, sharpen its teeth often, sharpen it often).

Poet Irabot is one who leads the way; he is peopleís leader who enlightens the farmers who were steeped in superstition. He says that farmers do not have a share in the glitter of the city.

They are in the dark villages, covered in superstition and in the huts are waiting to die, while thinking it is just their fate. They do not think because of whose fault they are under this curse, and are satisfied thinking it is godís will. But o country what is your fate:

Laushing uriba makhoina
Laira chudatnaduna leiraga
Ningtambagi artha kari lei ?


[Those who harvest
Live in dire poverty
What is the meaning of freedom?]

To be free from poverty is the true meaning of freedom. Without economic freedom and economic independence, it cannot be called freedom. Without educating the children of the poor, they will remain in the well of superstition. This is the fate of the farmers of India and Manipur.

Thus, the poet sings in the song "Machi amatadani langlibadi":

Deski liching oiriba
Laumi shimmy prajadi
Andhabiswasna kuptuna
Leiri amamba marakta
Laira-nangbana yomduna
Lainaga yaonaminnaduna


[Who is pulling the country
The farmer-citizens
Covered in superstition
Wrapped in poverty
Living with disease]

To be continued .....


* James Oinam wrote this translated article for e-pao.net
The writer can be contacted at jamesoinam(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on June 10 2024 .



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