Archive for July 27, 2007

Zomi ka muhnop pen, ka hopih utte

Leitung ah a kidong mun mahmah dotna khat pen, ‘hun paisa ah lutkik thei hi lecin kua tawh na kimu nuam?’ cih ahi hi. Ahih kei leh, ‘na nu sung pan suakkik thei lecin kua bangin na suakkik nuam hiam?’ cih ahi hi.

Amasa pen khatvei Miss Universe kiteelna ah kidong a, mi khat in, Mother Teresa ci hi, midang khat in JF Kennedy ci hi. Tua bangin bang hanga hopih ut, kimu nuam, bang thei nuam cih a dot kik uh ciang amau mihing hinna na gen uh hi.

A nihna pen ah India nungak khat in, suakkik thei hi leng Indira Gandhi in ka suak nuam hi ci hi, kia pah hi. [Indira Gandhi pen India gama numei Prime Minister masa pen hi]. A lawmte khat in sawmvei ka suakkik zongin keimah in ka suak ding hi acih ciangin Miss hihna ngah pah hih tuak hi. Amah leh amah thupi kisa pen mihing khempeuh in a zahtak uh hi. Amah a kizumpih a, ama hih lohna pi a hi nuamte kizahtaklo a, ki thupi simlo cihna hi. Laphuakpa khat in, “Thank you God for making me me,” “Topa aw, kei kei a nong bawlman in ka nuam hi.”

Zomi in Pasian in hong piansak te aw, i mi pihte sungah, hong paisan sa i it mahmah i ngaih mahmah te sungah, na muh khak ngeiloh, na hopih khak ngeiloh, na theih khakloh na nungtheihte lak pan – kua na hopih ut pen, kua tawh na kiho ut pen, kua tawh na kikhawl nuam pen cih kidong leng i dawnna kibang lo ding hi. Pawlkhat in galhang Pu Thual Zen ci ding, pawlkhat in Pu Hau Cin Khup, Ukpi Kam Hau, Pu Vumson, Pu Vum Kho Hau, Col. Lian Cin Zam, etc. cih bangin a minthang mahmahte ci kha ding hi. Pawlkhat in mikim in a phawk kholloh mithupi mahmah hi kha ding hi.

A nungta lai te lak pan kua na mu nuam pen, na hopih ut pen, na kikhawl ut pen ci leeng i dawnna kibanglo leuleu ding hi.

Mihingin i thupi sim, i thupi ngaihsut kibang lo a, Zomi sungah zong i siamna lam, i nekzonna lam, i thupi sak dan kibanglo hi.

La uk te in lasiamte mu nuam dinga, Laisimna thupi ngaihsut te in Laisiamte mu nuam dinga, Pasian thu uk ngiatte in Pasian nasem minthangte mu nuam dinga, galkap ukte in galkap bu te, …….. tua bangin eima lunglut lamtek ki thupi sim ding hi mawk hi. Tua pen leitung dan zong ahi hi.

Bang hangin thupi sim, bang hangin hopih ut, kikhawl ut ci leeng amah pan pilna, meetna, hamphatna, siamna, thupha, etc i ngah ding lametna zong hi kha ding hi. Ahih kei leh amah tawh kimuh peuhpeuh pen khangkhat nuntak ah a thupi in a ngaihsun hi dinga, once in a lifetime chance dan in kingaihsun kha ding hi.

A taktakin ci leeng mihingin i etteh ding mihing Hero, ahih kei leh Role Model a kizong ciat, a kinei ciat hi a, tua te lak ah nang kua na etteh hiam cih ahi hi. Politics na lunglut leh politics siamte tawh kimuh ding na lunglut dia, lasak na lunglut leh lasiamte tawh kimuh ding na lunglut dia, Lai lam uk na hih leh lailam siamte tawh kimuh ding na lunglut dia, biakna lunglutmi na hih leh biakna sia te tawh kimuh ding na lunglut ding hi………

Tua bek hilo in, midang khatpeuh na thupi sim limlim om dinga, tua zong na mu ut ding hi.

Nang adingin Zomi sungah kua thupi in, kua etteh tak a, kua zuih tak a, kua kholhpih tak hiam?

Ahih kei leh na sihzawh ciang mite in bangci in hong thei leh na ci a? Na omnawnloh zawh ciangin mite in bangci in hong phawk leh, bangci in hong ciamteh leh na ci a? Tua dingin tuni in na gamtat dan, na nekzon dan, na hin dan, na ki uk dan, na kalsuan dan, mitawh kikholhdan bangci in na zang a, na siam hiam, na siamkei hiam?

Kua na mu nuam pen hiam? Hi thei leh kua na kimuhpih nuam pen hiam? Kua na hopih nuam pen hiam? Miten nang hong muhnop dingin na kiseek hiam? Siksekpa in Tem a sek ciang a deih bangin a sek bangin nang zong na ut bangin na kisek thei hi. Na tate na sek thei hi. Na nuntakna a hoih a hoih loh ding nang na sek theih tampi om hi.

Kua a ka muhnop pen, kua a ka thupi sim mahmah, nang zong hi thei, na lawmpa zong hi thei hi. Nang hi lecin na utzaw hiam?

Hau Za Cin
Phuitong Liim


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Meitei-Mayek: Uneasy script

By U A Shimray

The Meitei-Mayek (traditional script of the Mei-tei community) is back in the news. The organisation Meetei Erol Eyek Loina-sinlon Apunba Lup (MEE-LAL) who is spearheading the Meitei-Mayek movement reiterates that the number plates of all vehicles should be written in Meitei-Mayek and warned that violators will be held responsible for any untoward incident from July 26. The last date for fulfilling the same is July 25. Also, to enable the people to get their number plates written in Meitei Mayek, nine centres have also been op-ened.

“Laying down the guidelines, MEELAL said that if the people want to carry the Roman script al-ong with Meitei Mayek, then the same should be put on the front plate as well as the rear plate. On the other hand, if the people desire only the Meitei Mayek, then they may put up the same either on the front plate or the rear plate. Government vehicles will also come under the conditions imposed. MEELAL further said that the drive will cover the hill districts soon” (The Sangai Express, 21st July 2007: In-ternet version).

Ethnic relationship in Manipur is “uneasy” since the event of bloody ethnic clashes in 1990s. The politics of ethnic assertion ba-sed on social, cultural, linguistic is conspicuously expressive in the early 2000s. Ethnic politics is also closely related to the issue of ethnic-hegemony, cultural and political domination. Recent Manipuri language (indigenous language of the Meitei community) movement to replace Bengali script by Meitei-Mayek in fact thre-atens the ethnic relationship.

Certainly, language being important cultural component has immense social and political implications. Language is also the glue that holds societies together; therefore language policy constitutes one of the backbones of assimilation efforts. The case of coerced assimilation has been witnessed in different parts of the world as John and O’Leary emphasise: “The role of assi-milation in the intensification of inter-ethnic conflict: they claim that assimilation cannot be successful if it happens only on the terms of one group (its language, culture and religion) because then what is under discussion is annexation and ethno-cide. Such assimilation requires coercion, including compulsory education in a selected language” (John, McCarry and Brendan O’ Leary (ed.). 1993. The Politics of Ethnic Conflict. Ro-utledge: London).

In Manipur, Manipuri or Meiteilon was declared Manipur Official Language in 1979. Meiteilon is also commonly used as the lingua franca of the various ethnic groups in the State. However, a majority of the hill communities (tribals) cannot read or write because it uses Bengali scri-pt.

Tribal groups have the-ir respective dialects and use Roman script. Language problem is not a new item in Manipur. The language problem in Ma-nipur began during the early 1980s when the Government of Manipur tried to introduce Meiteilon as a compulsory subject in Class X. But the issue was settled by keeping Meitei-lon as an option for the tribal students in lieu of Additional English or the State’s recognised tribal languages. In 1992, Government of India recognised Manipuri under Eighth Schedule of the Indian Constitution.

Now, the MEELAL is spearheading to replace the Bengali script by the original Meetei-Mayek. As a part of the movement, MEELAL activists goes spree burning of Manipuri-Bengali textbooks and also targeted public institutions. Noteworthy incidents is burning down of the 47 (Forty-seven) -year old Manipur State Central Library, Railway extension counter and Community Information Centre (CIC) on 13th April 2006.

However, Meitei-Ma-yek movement is strongly antagonized by the hill co-mmunities. The organisations like All Tribal Students Union, Manipur (ATSUM), All Naga Students Association, Mani-pur (ANSAM) and Kuki Student Organisation (KS-O), United Naga Council (UNC) articulate their opposition towards introduction of Meetei-Mayek to the tribal communities. Not long ago, the Chura-chandpur District Students Union (CDSU) and its activists confiscated a good number of Meitei-Mayek textbooks and set them ablaze in Chura-chandpur town. The tri-bals felt that such approaches induce to “cultural imposition,” and also attempt to use language issue as a political tool for ethnic assertion and hegemony.

In case of the Nagas, as a part of their political movement “Naga Integration,” the private schools in Naga areas started to affiliate with Nagaland Board of School Education (NBSE). As first batch, more than 2000 (two thousand) Nagas students from Manipur already appeared in the Matriculation examination in Nagaland in 2007. Affiliation of schools from the four hill districts (Ukhrul, Tamenglong, Se-napati and Chandel) of Manipur, the Naga civil societies including traditional apex body Naga Hoho, Naga Mothers Association (NMA), Naga Peoples’ Movement for Human Rights (NPMHR) and the Naga Students Federation (NSF) have issued a joint statement explaining the stand made in this regard. The frontline Nagas organisations explained the various dynamics involved in the process which subsequently elicited support from the organisations themselves. The area of their “justification” is on the grounds of syllabi, educational policies and administrative concerns. The statement is signed by respective executives of the organisations. The sta-tement mentioned that: “ In the first place, schools of the said areas opted for NBSE affiliation because of the varied and ‘innumerable’ reasons within the Board of Secondary Education Manipur (BS-EM). One of the most da-maging reasons is the imposition of Meitei-Mayek and distortion of Naga history in the syllabi, the statement explained adding that schools of the stated areas are convinced that Nagaland’s syllabi is ‘undoubtedly far better’ than BSEM’s.”


Indeed, the social co-existent is weakened by the contention of ethnic sentiment, partisan interest, jealousy and individualism.

The present language row is a very serious subject and has to be debated across every section of the society and community. Now, the State faces inevitable “counter-productive” reactions from the peripheral hills.

Not only the language issue, but it is clearly portrayed that there is serious socio-economic inequality between hills and valley districts as well as tribals and non-tribals. Today, valley districts are rather well ahead in all round economic and in-frastructural development.

Such economic inequality as well as Meitei-Mayek issue would further foster ethnicism and sectarian aspirations.

Language is a culturally sensitive issue because it touches the core of social element as well as identity. Present language imbroglio is seen as another potential factor that can stir up an ethnic hornet.

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Goenka Journalism Award for State Native

Manipur Info Centre

NEW DELHI, Jul 23: It is a matter of pride for all North-easterners that David Buh- ril, a young man from Chu-rachandpur district of Ma- nipur working as Sub-Editor in the North East Sun, a weekly magazine published from Delhi received an honour of awarding the Ram- nath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Awards 2006-07, the country’s most pres- tigious journalism award recently.

David Buhril received the award carrying the prize of Rs 50,000 from the President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam at the solemn awards ceremony held at Taj Palace Hotel here on July 16 last. He won the award in Regional (North East) category in print media. This year was the second edition of the awards instituted by the Indian Express Group.

Kishalay Bhattacharjee of NDTV won this year’s Regional (North East) award in Broadcast media. In the last year, Ratna Bha-rati Talukdar, a freelance journalist won the Regional (North East) award in print media for her in-depth reports chronicling the lives and struggles of coal-mine workers in Upper Assam.
The broadcast award last year for North East category went to Sutapa Dev of NDTV for a report that ventured into the heart of unrest in Manipur and told the story of its victims.

The Indian Express, in its issue dated July 22 narrated stories of this year’s award winners numbering 24 who received the awards in its respective categories.

About David Buhril, it quotes, “The man from Chu-rachandpur, Manipur looks at a story in two different ways: how will his readers outside the North east relate to it? And how will those at the helm of affairs in the region respond to it?

Buhril went into the hills of Manipur last year, to Ti-paimukh, where activists of militant groups had unleashed a brutal campaign against ethnic groups.

“We visited one village where a group of women who were raped had taken shelter and they had been given no medical facilities.”

Buhril arranged for their transport to the nearest town. Spending a week in the village, he saw the land-mines the militants had strewn the hills with. He saw first –hand the plight of refugees who had fled to neigh- bouring Mizoram.

“One of the aims of my stories was to get the message across to those who ought to be responsible,” David says.

About Kishalay Bhatta-charjee, it writes, “Kishalay Bhattacharjee came to the North east seven years ago, planning to stay for a year. He stayed on, ‘the region is a great place to work; it has conflict, wildlife, rock music, diverse elements. The downside is stories from the NE do not generate much sponsorship.’

In the recent past, Bhat-tacharjee has begun con- centrating on the big picture. He says he has been lucky that the stories to whose roots he reached became bigger issues, such as narco-terrorism. For the future, though, the journalist who pays equal attention to technical details sees ‘no possibility of the region’ fi-guring prominently in TV news.

‘Viewers outside know about Sania Mirza, 38th in world tennis, but not about Mary Kom, No.1 in world boxing,’ he says.”

The Sangai Express

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