A seed once sown in a fertile place with favourable conditions will surely sprout, and even if a boulder is set upon it to retard or stop its growth, will surely wriggle its way out from under to find the light. This metaphor perhaps explains the unflinching resolve of the people of the state and the region of North East India in general to assert its rights and respect as equal citizens of the country.
The endless discriminations and unprovoked assaults on the people from the region in various places in mainland India is a clear manifestation of the distorted politics being propagated and practiced based on caste and communities. A concrete example is the attitude of some Chennai boys towards some NE girls watching a football match, who were later arrested by police.
The feeling of alienation, of not belonging and of being treated as less than equal by those residing in mainland India has been a pervading experience for us all.
With the kind of happening it is sometimes not wrong to say that North East is being viewed as a territory to be held secure purely for strategic reasons, while the inhabitants are mere incidental collaterals.
The long standing demand that can ensure the protection and preservation of the interests of indigenous inhabitants of the state is a sum effect of the protracted mistreatment and myopic view of those at the centre regarding the interests and aspirations of the people of the region.
Permit system which restrict entry of outsider has already been implemented at many of the North Eastern states including Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram, and yet there has been an uninterrupted flow of visitors to these states, perhaps more so than Manipur in comparison which undeniably proved that the permit system for entry to states does not hamper the prospects of tourism in the state, nor will it pose any inconvenience or discomfort to any visitor.
The demand is only for the survival, preservation and continuity of our traditions, customs and communities. There were misunderstandings over this issue with some communities but as assumed it has been sorted by now.
It is known by everyone that the present danger of the state being overwhelmed and overpowered financially or territorially by forces which even the state government will find impossible to fend off, thereby relegating our cultural identity to mere history and our own people to a insignificant minority in its own land.
Moreover, the coming of act east policy is another factor that the state urgently requires some legislation to protect the indigenous people of the state
December 20, the winter session of the Manipur Legislative Assembly is going to start. It is time that the government prepared some kind of legislation for the protection of the people of the state after taking opinions of all stakeholders of the state.