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A Dictionary of Problems in Manipur ::

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A Dictionary of Problems in Manipur By: H. Ranbir Singh, IAS Ret!."


$rotection o% consumers and t&eir wel%are: '&is was t&e t&eme o% a (egional )eminar &eld at t&e Kanan De*i #emorial +ollege o% ,ducation, $angei on t&e 12t& -uly, 200./ "%ter t&e Key 0ote "ddress by $ro%/ (/$/ )ing& 1(etd/2 o% #ani3ur 4ni*ersity w&o &as been studying t&e sub5ect %or some years in collaboration wit& t&e +ommerce De3artment o% t&e 4ni*ersity, 6 &ad to gi*e t&e 6naugural address as t&e +&ie% Guest/ '&is was to be %ollowed by twel*e $a3ers to be 3resented by s3ecialists/ 6n my "ddress 6 a33roac&ed t&e 3roblem %rom t&e 3oint o% *iew o% t&e wise trader w&o would 3rotect t&e rig&ts o% consumers in &is own interest/ '&e wise trader would o%%er goods o% acce3table 7uality at reasonable 3rices w&ic& may in*ol*e a lower margin o% 3ro%it 3er unit/ '&is would &owe*er attract regular customers, and more and more o% t&em in t&e course o% time, bringing in a larger and larger turno*er wit& a larger and larger amount o% total 3ro%it/ '&e trader may act in a sense o% ser*ice to t&e community/ '&ere is God in e*ery &uman being/ 6% t&e trader ser*es t&e community in a s3irit o% ser*ice to God, &e would be bene%ited s3iritually also/ '&is would be t&e beginning o% Karma Yoga in 8&a9ti and 9nowledge/ 2/ '&e brea9 down o% t&e +i*il )ociety '&e 3roblem now in t&e #ani3ur :alley in 3articular, is t&e brea9down o% t&e +i*il )ociety/ ,*ery one in &is 3ro%ession can ser*e God in t&e ser*ice o% &umanity/ '&is s3irit will be a great ste3 %orward in restoring t&e ci*il society in #ani3ur/ We may recollect '&omas ;obbe<s t&eory on t&e %ormation o% t&e )tate/ '&ere was %irst =#an in t&e state o% nature<, eac& 1or eac& grou32 against all, and all against eac&/ '&en t&e =)ocial +ontract<, surrendering t&e rig&t to t&e legitimate use o% %orce to t&e =)tate< and )tate alone, e>ce3t in t&e case o% =sel%?de%ence only/ > > > 8ut &ere in #ani3ur now, t&ere are so many grou3s using %orce %or e>tortion o% money %rom ot&er 3eo3le and e*en %rom t&e Go*ernment De3artments, ma9ing it di%%icult %or t&ese De3artments to utili@e %unds 3ro3erly, in time, and in sa%ety/ 6% t&e money allotted is 3ro3erly used in time, more money will come to enable us to ma9e #ani3ur a 3ros3erous state, enabling us to gi*e em3loyment to a larger and larger number o% 3eo3le, including t&ose w&o 5oin underground grou3s %or want o% em3loyment/ '&e underground grou3s s&ould come toget&er and negotiate wit& t&e Go*ernment to restore t&e +i*il )ociety/ (eligionism and )3linter?et&nic nationalism, w&ic& loo9 bac9 to t&e 3ast and not to t&e common Auture, is a t&orn in t&e %les&, w&ic& ma9e it di%%icult %or good 3eo3le to wor9 toget&er, in coo3eration, %or co?de*elo3ment and co?3ros3erity/ Bet us not loo9 bac9/ Bet us, in t&e 0ort&?,ast, t&e 6ndo?#ongoloid 1to start wit&2, loo9 %orward towards a common 3ros3erous %uture/ "merican 3ragmatism and "merican %uturism is a good e>am3le %or building suc& a common %uture, based on &uman *alues, rat&er t&an sectarian interests/ C/ Democracy and De*elo3ment

'&e em3&asis o% t&e $rime #inister, Dr/ #anmo&an )ing& on economic de*elo3ment and &is e>3ertise in t&e %ield is yielding results in t&e im3ro*ement o% relations wit& 8anglades& and #yanmar, and e*en wit& +&ina/ One great t&ing in 6ndia is t&at go*ernments are c&anged in t&e +entre and t&e )tates in a general election/ '&e su3remacy o% t&e )u3reme +ourt and t&e ,lection +ommission in t&eir own res3ecti*e s3&eres is a great t&ing in 6ndia/ 6% #ani3ur is le%t alone, t&ere is all t&e 3ossibility o% #ani3ur being ruled by a #ilitary -unta li9e in 8urma/ +ould we &a*e suc& &ig& 7uality institutions li9e t&e (egional 6nstitute o% #edical )ciences 1(6#)2, t&e +entral "gricultural 4ni*ersity wit& $ro5ects under its guidance, and t&e now +entral #ani3ur 4ni*ersity w&ic& started as a +entre o% -awa&arlal 0e&ru 4ni*ersity in Del&i, i% we were le%t alone to %end %or oursel*esD 6 am only raising 7uestions t&at arise in my mind %or wiser 3eo3le to consider t&e 3ros and cons and arri*e at a consensus/ E/ '&e 6nner Bine $ermit )ystem '&ere is a genuine %ear in t&e minds o% t&e 3eo3le o% #ani3ur t&at t&e nati*e 3o3ulation may be o*erw&elmed by immigrant labour and ot&er immigrants %rom ot&er 3arts o% 6ndia, 5ust li9e 'ri3ura w&ere on 3artition o% t&e country, 8engalis came and o*erw&elmed t&e nati*e 3o3ulation and too9 o*er t&e stateF it is now a 8engali state and t&e nati*es &a*e gone underground/ 6t is, t&ere%ore, absolutely necessary to reintroduce Gt&e 6nner Bine $ermit )ystemH %or t&e 3rotection o% t&e rig&t o% t&e nati*e #ani3uris to &a*e #ani3ur as t&eir &omelandF and allowing t&e non? nati*es to *ote %or elections in t&eir &ome?states by 3ostal ballot/ '&is may in*ol*e an amendment to t&e +onstitution/ 6% t&e +onstitution can be amended %or 3rotection o% &ig& dignitaries in t&e matter o% Go%%ice o% 3ro%itH, it s&ould also be amended %or t&e 3rotection o% a small community %rom losing t&eir &omeland/ '&is may in*ol*e some s3ecial arrangements in t&e +ensus to di%%erentiate immigrants %rom t&e nati*es and in t&e electoral rolls/ 8ut all %acilities s&ould be 3ro*ided %or 7uic9 mo*ement o% goods and 3eo3le into #ani3ur and %rom #ani3ur wit&out any delays and &indrances as re7uired by modern trade and industries, and tourism/ I/ 6m3ossible (ate o% Growt& o% $o3ulation One sur3rising t&ing w&ic& is not recei*ing 3ro3er attention is t&e 7uestion, &ow t&ere could be an 0 to 100 3er cent increase in 3o3ulation in some &ill districts/ '&is may be a case o% illegal immigrants %rom t&e neig&bouring country, or some 3roblem in t&e 3ro3er conduct o% t&e census w&ere t&e census 3eo3le 1generally sc&ool teac&ers and ot&er low grade Go*ernment em3loyees, em3loyed %or t&e 3ur3ose2 did not ma9e an issue o% it %or %ear o% entanglement in dis3utes in t&e 3resent atmos3&ere o% lawlessness and *iolence/ '&e ,lection +ommission is only a &and and a tool/ '&e &eart and t&e brain, Gt&e &eartH in 3articular at t&e &ig&est le*el o% t&e go*ernment o% 6ndia s&ould come into o3eration in sol*ing t&e 3roblem/ '&is is not a routine matter, but a great t&reat to t&e balance o% 3o3ulation/

'&ere was a re3ort in earlier elections in Ku9i *illage w&ere t&e &ill c&ie%s cast t&e *otes o% as many 3eo3le as t&ey wanted/ 8ut t&e election 3eo3le did not ma9e an issue o% it %or %ear o% entanglement in dis3utes w&ic& may in*ol*e t&reats to t&eir li*es/ ./ '&e $roblem o% 'e>t?boo9s )ome teac&ers w&o were 3osted %or a long time in di%%erent 3laces in 49&rul re3orted t&at 3eo3le in distant 3laces in t&e 49&rul District 1)ub?di*ision at t&at time2 did not understand eac& ot&er<s dialects/ '&e o%%icial 'ang9&ul language is t&e #eitei?3&one as s3o9en by t&e 'ang9&uls o% 49&rul town, written in t&e (oman scri3t, and taug&t in sc&ools all o*er t&e district/ '&ere is also a 'ang9&ul myt& t&at t&e ,lder 8rot&er in&erited t&e 'ang9&ul ;ills and t&e younger brot&er went down t&e :alley 1and t&us became one o% t&e %ounding %at&ers o% t&e :alley 3eo3le2/ 8ecause o% our &istorical contact wit& t&e 8ritis&, 6ndia is an "nglo?3&one country using ,nglis& in education in many sub5ects, and using ,nglis& words in our common 3arlance in our own *ernaculars, and using ,nglis& terms e*en in writing in t&e 6ndian languages w&ere*er t&ere is a need %or it 1wit& 3er&a3s a new coinage in t&e language as t&e e7ui*alent2/ '&ere are Aranco? 3&one countries w&ere Arenc& is used li9e t&at/ '&e *ernaculars and languages in t&e &ills in #ani3ur are li9ewise #eitei?3&oneF because o% t&e geogra3&ical 3ro>imity and daily contact, w&ile t&e *ernaculars in 0agaland are "ssom?3&oneF and 0agamese, t&e lin7ua?%ranca o% 0agaland, is "ssamese as s3o9en by t&e 0aga +ommunities o% 0agaland, written in t&e (oman scri3t/ W&at a &ea*y burden it will be on t&e young c&ild in t&e &ills o% #ani3ur to teac& 0aga? "ssamese in addition to ot&er sub5ects li9e ,nglis&, #at&ematics, etc/ w&ile &e or s&e s3ea9s a #eitei3&one dialect at &ome J '&ere is also t&e 3roblem o% %inding additional teac&ers w&o can teac& 0agamese/ !/ "33earance and (eality 8ecause o% t&e reser*ation o% seats %or t&e )c&eduled 'ribes most o% t&e to3 bureaucrats in #ani3ur in most o% t&e De3artments o% t&e Go*ernment are ;ill 3eo3le/ '&e #eiteis o% t&e :alley cannot a*ail o% t&e 7uota %or t&e O8+s 1Ot&er 8ac9ward +lasses2 because t&ey cannot com3ete wit& t&e O8+s o% t&e more ad*anced states/ 6t is only t&e larger number o% #inisters in t&e go*ernment t&at gi*es an im3ression o% #eitei su3remacy/ 8ut t&e to3 bureaucrats %rom t&e ;ills do not go bac9 to t&eir original &omes in t&e ;ills on retirement and stimulate de*elo3ment in t&eir 3laces o% birt&, but settle down in &ig& rise buildings in t&e *alley/ 8ut t&ey are welcome/ #eiteis t&emsel*es are se*en tribes wit& immigrant 8ra&mins %rom t&e west, and immigrants %rom t&e east 1#yanmar and beyond2F by t&e way, one 8engali $ro%essor o% "nt&ro3ology w&om 6 &a33ened to meet at a +ultural ,>&ibition in t&e +alcutta 4ni*ersity a33roac&ed me and suggested t&at #eit&eis are G#ee?'&aiH, '&ai 3eo3le 1does it &a*e anyt&ing to do wit& somet&ing li9e G$oireiton K&unt&o93aH, t&e immigration o% =$oirei?ton<, 6 do not 9now2/ '&e 3re*ention o% endogamy wit&in eac& tribe &as broug&t about a %usion o% t&e se*en tribes into one #eitei society/ '&ere are %our 'ang9&ul and one K&asi wi*es in #eitei %amilies in my immediate neig&bour&ood/ 6 would li9e to suggest t&e same 3rocess among t&e &ill tribes, intermarriage between 0agas and Ku9is/ One 3roblem is t&at #eitei girls %ig&t s&y o% marrying &ig&ly eligible tribal &usbands because o% t&eir ingrained conser*ati*e %ood &abits/ We &a*e yet to see &ow #eit&ei +&ristian girls res3ond/ 8ut marriage is a &ig&ly 3ersonal t&ing about w&ic& t&ere can be no 3lanning/

/ #,6',6 #"Y,K #eiteis &a*e t&eir own &eadac&es/ 6t is good to teac& #eitei maye9, t&e old #eitei scri3t to #eitei students only 1t&e &ill students &a*e no need %or it2 at some stage 1say, at classes 666 and 6:2 to enable t&e young 3eo3le to read t&e old $uyas 1scri3tures, &istory, myt&s and lore etc/2 on t&eir own/ 8ut many o% t&em &a*e been re3roduced in t&e current 8engali scri3t wit& notes and commentaries/ 6n t&e beginning t&ere was no 3rinting 3ress/ Wit& t&e ad*ent o% t&e 8ritis& rule, a go*ernment 3ress was set u3/ W&ere is t&e 7uestion o% meitei maye9 at t&at time D 6t was t&e more educated =)urma :alley< 1+ac&ar and )yl&et2 8engalis, and t&e less educated #ani3uris %rom t&e same area, w&o began writing $rimers in #ani3uri in t&e 8engali scri3t and teac&ing us to read and write #ani3uri in t&e 8engali scri3t/ "nd t&en in t&e absence o% modern boo9s in #ani3uri in t&e di%%erent sub5ects, we &ad to read 8engali as our *ernacular %rom classes?6 and 66 onwards/ 6 &ad to read 8engali as my *ernacular u3to class 666/ '&en %rom class 6: onwards we started reading #ani3uri as *ernacular/ 8ut t&e boo9s were all translations %rom modern 8engali te>tboo9s/ 6t was only muc& later t&at +&aoba, Kamal and ot&ers w&o read 8engali, and were ins3ired by t&e great 8engali literature o% t&e 6ndian (enaissance 18an9im, )&arat, 'agore and a &ost o% ot&ers2, created t&e modern #ani3uri literature o% our own (enaissance in #ani3uri literature/ '&ey o% course &ad wider reading in ,nglis& also/ #ani3uri literature was gradually recogni@ed %or t&e #atriculation and 6ntermediate 1$lus 'wo2 e>aminations only, by t&e +alcutta 4ni*ersity, but not %or t&e 8/"/ e>amination/ 6 &ad t&ere%ore to ta9e G"lternati*e ,nglis&H %or my *ernacular at t&e 8/"/ e>amination/ '&at, by t&e way was no 3roblem %or me %or 6 lo*ed ,nglis& literature and &ad wide reading in ,nglis& 3oetry and ,nglis& essays/ 6 started reading $algra*e<s GGolden 'reasuryH rig&t %rom +lass :666 on my own/ 6t too9 about ten to %i%teen years o% agitation %or recognition o% #ani3uri as a $ass +ourse sub5ect at t&e 8/"/ le*el by t&e +alcutta 4ni*ersity w&ic& was t&e only uni*ersity in "ssam and 8engal/ 8ut w&en t&e recognition came t&ere were no #/"s/ in #ani3uri to teac& #ani3uri at t&e +ollege le*el 16ntermediate and 8/"/2/ 6 was t&e %irst e*er lecturer in #ani3uri at t&e college le*el in t&e D/#/ +ollege w&ic& was t&e only college at t&at time/ 6 wrote an 6ntroduction to GK&angat&a )&eirengH 1)elect $oems2 3ublis&ed by t&e #ani3uri )a&itya $aris&ad %or t&e 6ntermediate class, w&ic& was li9e a t&esis on $oetry/ '&at was a great &el3 to t&e students/ W&en more colleges came u3 we &ad to recruit )econd +lass #/"/s in non?science sub5ects %or teac&ing #ani3uri at t&e college le*el, as second class #/"<s in ,nglis& were &ardly a*ailable e*en %or teac&ing ,nglis&/ 8ut during t&e 3eriod o% about &al% a century #ani3uri literature &ad a 3&enomenal growt& in t&e %ields 162 o% studies in ancient #ani3uri literature, 3rose wor9s, &istorical treatises, c&ronicles, etc/, 1662 and modern #ani3uri literature in t&e %ields o% 3oetry, drama, no*els, s&ort stories, literary criticism, linguistics, and 6ndology, ins3ired and stimulated in t&e beginning by t&e great literary renaissance in 8engal, wit&, o% course, t&e necessary nati*e #ani3uri ada3tations/ 16662 #any 3lay &ouses also came u3 wit& stages %or t&e modern 3lays, and scri3ts were 3re3ared %or regular s&ows, mainly ins3ired by 8engali 3lays but wit& necessary ada3tations %or t&e local needs and 3roblems/ 16:2 '&en t&e %amous )&umaang Beelas o% #ani3ur began to be based on new written scri3ts/ '&us t&e nati*e talent o% t&e #ani3uris %ound e>3ression in a 3&enomenal growt& in literature/ 1:2 #ention also s&ould be made o% t&e great e3ic 3oem G'&e K&amba?'&oibi )&eirengH wit& CI,000 lines or more, o% #a&a9a*i "nga&al, t&e ;omer o% #ani3ur/

6 &a33ened to write t&e GGlim3ses o% #ani3uri Banguage, Biterature and +ultureH on t&e re7uest o% my student in #ani3uri Biterature, t&e late $ro%essor 0andalal )&arma w&o was teac&ing #ani3uri in #ani3ur +ollege, wit& &is &el3 in t&e 3ortion concerning early #ani3uri literatureF and it was 3ublis&ed by t&e #ani3uri )a&itya $aris&ad in 19!0/ '&is was submitted to t&e Go*ernment o% 6ndia by t&e #ani3uri )&aitya $aris&ad as t&e "nne>ure to t&eir memorandum %or t&e inclusion o% #ani3uri in t&e :666t& )c&edule to t&e +onstitution/ '&e recognition came/ '&e labour was not in *ain/ "nd t&en we &a*e to note t&e *ast growt& o% #ani3uri literature %rom 19!0 to 200. "/D/ J We now come bac9 to t&e sub5ect o% #ani3uri )cri3t, wit& w&ic& we started t&e discussion : We are 3roud t&at we &a*e a scri3t o% our own and we certainly s&ould 9now it to be able to read our $uyas 1old scri3tures2/ '&e 7uestion now is : 1i2 6% all t&ese *olumes are burnt u3 %or being 3rinted in t&e 8engali scri3t, w&at would remain to be read in t&e #eitei scri3t, e>ce3t t&e old $uyas in manuscri3t in a %ew &ands D 8ut t&ese are not %or t&e general readers, or young learners, but %or a %ew s3ecialists/ 1ii2 "not&er 7uestion is, i% all t&e boo9s are to be re3rinted, &ow many la9&s and crores o% ru3ees would be re7uired D W&o will %inance t&ese D 1iii2 '&e great ,nglis& and "merican literature, as also t&e Arenc& and German literatures, not to mention ot&ers, are 3rinted in t&e (oman scri3t/ W&at is t&e &arm in t&at D 1i*2 6% we 3rint #ani3uri in t&e #eitei scri3t, t&e &ill 3eo3le will be 3rinting #ani3uri boo9s, i% at all, in t&e (oman scri3t, wit& all t&e 3roblems o% s3elling/ "nd t&ose ;ill 3eo3le w&o &a*e been reading #ani3uri boo9s and dailies and 3eriodicals will cease to do soF and t&us introducing a great di*ide between t&e ;ills and :alley 3eo3le at a time w&en we need closer lin9s/ 1*2 6 am not 3reac&ing/ 6 am only raising 7uestions w&ic& arise in my mind and ot&er 3eo3le li9e mysel%/ "nd we only want some wiser 3eo3le to %ind t&e answers and come to a consensus/ We s&ould not be %anaticsF we s&ould &a*e t&e &abit o% discussion and coming to a consensus/ '&is is t&e great lesson we &a*e to learn %rom t&e 8ritis& 3eo3le/ 9/ Biterature in t&e languages in our ;ills 6 would now ta9e u3 anot&er 7uestion : W&at are we doing to learn t&e literature in t&e languages in our ;ills, written in t&e (oman scri3t D )&ould we not ma9e some attem3t to get t&em translated into #eitei?#ani3uri in collaboration wit& t&e writers and sc&olars in t&ese languagesF i% not all t&e boo9s, select 3ieces at least %rom t&ese boo9s/ 6 t&in9 t&at will be a great &el3 in t&e 3romotion o% mutual understanding/ "wards also s&ould be gi*en %or good literature in t&e ;ills/ 10/ '&e 4nity o% #odern #ani3ur : t&e Aounding Aat&ers

#a&ara59umar $riyabrata )ing& 1t&e $rince +&arming o% t&e legends2, #a5or K&at&ing, "t&i9&o Dai&o, Dr/ Kam3u, and later on, 'eba KilongF along wit& O5a )/ Kris&namo&an )ing&, t&e Gand&ian, #/"/ wit& a degree in law, w&o was t&e 3ersonal ad*iser o% #/K/ $/8/ during t&e time o% dra%ting t&e #ani3ur +onstitution "ct 1t&oug& &e was not a man o% electoral 3olitics2F t&ese may be regarded as t&e Aounding Aat&ers o% a united #odern #ani3ur/ '&eir statues s&ould be installed in some central 3lace, to ins3ire us in t&e wor9 o% building a united and 3rogressi*e #odern #ani3ur/ We s&ould not betray t&em/ 11/ '&e )tillwell (oad 6% t&e law and order situation as a result o% insurgency continues li9e w&at it is at 3resent, t&e dream o% our 6ndo?)out& "sian ;ig&way t&roug& #ani3ur will *anis&/ "ssam is 3leading %or t&e )tillwell road t&roug& Bedo/ 6% t&is gets t&roug&, #ani3ur will remain in t&e bac9yard as unde*elo3ed as it is nowF and t&e number o% unem3loyed yout& and older 3eo3le will grow/ )ocial turmoil will increase as a result, %rom bad to worse and worse/ 6t is now time %or t&e underground grou3s to come toget&er and start negotiation wit& t&e Go*ernment and come to an agreement/ (estoration o% t&e G6nner?line $ermit )ystemH is t&e one crucial t&ing/ '&e rail connection %rom -iribam to 'u3ul and onwards to #ore& is anot&er 3oint o% crucial im3ortanceF and t&ere s&ould be no delay in t&is/ '&e 'i3aimu9& $ro5ect may be a great geological t&reat 3otentialF and all 3ossible case s&ould be ta9en in its im3lementation to a*oid any ad*erse conse7uences/ '&e ole 'ong5ai #ari (oad, straig&t to -iribam, i% 3ro3erly de*elo3ed, will &el3 reduce 3rices and cost o% li*ing in #ani3ur, and t&is is a *ery im3ortant ob5ecti*e in go*ernance/

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