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Items filtered by date: Monday, 14 December 2015 - Imphal Times - A Daily Eveninger

Foods in Chinjak Festival at Hapta Kangjeibung unsafe for consumption’

Rabi Takhellambam
Manipur Chinjak festival which is being underway at Heritage Park, Hapta Kangjeibung since yesterday has skipped requisite procedure of organising such a festival by not getting prior permission from the Food Safety department of the state government.
Reporters witnessed around 32 food stalls selling varieties of food items and two flower stalls in the festival organised by Innovative Youth Society. Indigenous food items are exclusive extravaganzas of the festival and domestic tourist are seen attracting in large number. But none of the visitors have questioned anything about the safety of what they consume from the stalls as organising festival requires permission from the District Administration. May be the district administration might have not known that for festival like food festival it is required that prior permission from the food safety department is a must to assure maintenance of quality in the food product that they will sell during the festival.
Speaking to Imphal Times, Thounaojam Sunilkumar Singh, Food Safety Officer, Imphal West said that such festival need to be encouraged as it attracts tourists – both domestic and foreign. But one mistake that the organisers had committed is the skipping of the food safety department.

“No prior information had been received by the food safety department for organising the festival”, said the officer.
He further added that the food being sold in the festival has no guarantee on whether it is good for health or not. The organiser requires to take permission from the food safety division he said.
“It is illegal offence under the food safety and standard act to sell unsafe food as the food sold in the festival may be dangerous for health he added.
It may be mention that Food Safety department wings have been established at every districts of the state. But limited staffs have been a big obstacle for the department to check the quality of food. Last year, organisers took prior permission from the food safety office to organise such Chinjak Festival but this time no permission was seek from the office, another officer of the Food safety department Yumnam Sheityajit said.

Image: File Picture sourced from e-pao.net

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Economic blockades in Manipur cause substantial loss to the state

Frequent economic blockades called by various organizations in Manipur have been causing huge economic loss to the state. The obstruction also causes problem for local commuters besides affecting the supply of essential commodities.  
Vehicular movement on Imphal-Dimapur highway was obstructed and over 200 trucks carrying essential commodities remained stranded for many days.
The blockade which came into force on December 2 midnight was called by several civil societies of Sadar Hills including Kuki Inpi, KSO and Kuki Women Union.
They are demanding urgent repair of the highway. Though the blockade was later lifted, it has caused huge loss to the exchequer.
 ”It will lose lot of exchequer to the treasury of the government at least 2 to 3 crore per day. It has gone down one third. It will be around 50 lakhs nowadays,” said Md. Wahir-Ud-Din, Inspector, Taxation Department, Hengbung, Government of Manipur.

“Drivers are facing lot of problem. In Manipur, we are being involved into small issues. We are supplying daily commodities to the people. If we can’t serve people then how will they get essential commodities? What do they think about drivers? There should not be a blockade on small issues instead the issues should be sorted out with the government,” said Bishworjit Singh, truck driver.
In another strike called by Kuki Students’ Organization (KSO), protesters blocked NH 102 and burnt tyres causing severe problem for commuters.
They were protesting against alleged “inhumane conduct” by security forces in Sadar Hill district. Commuters were forced to walk on foot from Senapati headquarters to Matbung village of Sadar hills because of the bandh.
“Blockades should not be imposed. The issues should be resolved through dialogue with the government. They should not hassle the public,” said Sosho Singh, commuter.
The hill districts of Manipur have witnessed frequent blockades resulting in huge economic loss and inconvenience to public.

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ISI tag on Saifulla Islam questioned

Meitei Pangals or Muslims in the state has been continually condemning acts of terrorism perpetrated in the name of Islam, and will continue to do so while defending the pristine image and principles of the religion. This was stated in a press release signed by Ym. Latiful, General Secretary of Meira Paibi Development Association, Oinam Sawombung Imphal Barrage. Refuting the reports of one Saifulla Islam, apprehended by Imphal West police commando from Oinam Sawombung area ON 13/12 2015 of being an active member of ISI, the release further mentioned that the locality, being small, the residents are well known to one another and that the allegations are false and malicious. Raising questions as to why such a serious matter has been kept out of the reach of other media houses and the failure of the police to produce the documents alleged to have been recovered from the person, Latiful declared that no social organisations will harbour any outlaw or anti-social elements in the area, promising the help and assistance of the organisations in clearing the area of such individuals if specific informations are provided to them. He also appealed for everyone to refrain from spreading malicious rumours and false news and tarnishing the image of the small community.   

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DESAM and CADA inspected CHC Jiribam

Democratic Students Alliance of Manipur (DESAM) Jiri Local Council Jiribam and Coalition Against Drugs & Alcohol (CADA) Jiribam District Committee jointly inspected the condition of the Community Health Centre (CHC),Jiribam today morning at around 11 am. During the visit the visiting volunteers found only 5 doctors working in the hospital. A total of 22 doctors are supposed to work in the hospital. Both the organisation urged the concerned authority to look into the matter before the people of Jiribam begins another agitation. Leaders of the both the organisation also drew the attention of the local MLA to look into the matter.

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Imphal-Mandalay bus trial run succeeded

Trial run of Imphal- Mandalay bus service which was flagged off by the Chief Minister of Manipur on Dec. 9 from Imphal Hotel  has return back today along with 27 passengers from Myanmar. The team had crossed Moreh, the border town of Manipur at around 2 pm.

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Sainik School Imphal inaugurates 41st annual athletics meet

41st Annual Athletics Meet of Sainik School Imphal was inaugurated yesterday at the school athletics ground by W Bhaktaraj Singh, Director, Youth Affairs & Sports, Govt of Manipur,who presided over the function as Chief Guest. On the opening ceremony, the senior most cadet of the school lighted the athletic flame. The sacred flame of the meet was brought by the cadets of the school in a torch rally from the Imphal International Airport, Tulihal where the school was first instituted in 1971.
On the occasion, the Hon’ble Chief Guest addressed the cadets. In his address, he expressed the importance of games and sports in life. He also lauded the turn out and performance of the cadets after a thorough review of the march past by the house contingents. He appreciated the staff and faculties for imparting quality education and moulding the young cadets towards the disciplined life. The athletics meet which will continue till December 16, and will include various athletic events such as race, relay, hurdles, jumps, throws etc.  In the end, the principal of the school, Lt Col Praveen Kumar thanked the chief guest on behalf of the school and presented him with a memento.

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Neroca FC dominate KLASA: 59th CC Meet, 2015

NEROCA FC crushes KLASA by 4-0 at the last pre-quarter match of the ongoing 59th Sir Churachand Singh KCSI, CBE Memorial Football Tournament 2015, organized by the All Manipur Football Association (AMFA) at Mapal Kangjeibung. All the 4 goals of today’s match were score by 3 players of NEROCA FC. The goal scorers of NEROCA FC are 1) O Emeka Christian, sweater no. 25, 2) A Jeremiah ElekWachi , sweater no. 5 and 3) Ng Ronald Singh, sweater no. 10, he score 2 goals.
All the 4 goals were scored at 22st, 30th, 64st and 82nd minutes which lead the NEROCA FC players to dominate the whole match over KLASA players. Despite many attempts, KLASA players were unable to make any score till the end of full time of the match.

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Progressive Parliament

The best of intents does nobody any good unless acted upon. The same goes for issues that needs resolved. Protests, demonstrations, marches, rallies and agitations provides a means of raising social and political issues and flaws that needs to be addressed in time. Protests have a remarkable emotional appeal – often morally persuasive and deeply moving. Yet they can also be disappointing, with the immediacy and vitality of the protest often challenged and sometimes marked by the reassertion of existing authority. In an article reflecting on ‘The Alchemy of Protest’, Christian Caryl points out that the power of demonstrations lies in the overtly public nature of the challenge that they pose. On the same breadth, it must be understood that protests are not, and should not be considered the means to obtain or achieve the stated objective or goal. Protests create space for discussions and deliberations on the issues and objections raised by the participants. A more objective view of protests should be one where it is treated as a catalyst for the change and a point of initiation of public dialogues, discussions and negotiations. Perhaps the recent developments in the social spheres of the state bear testimony to the above points. The successful conclusion of the 3-day 1st NorthEast Indigenous Peoples’ Parliament in Manipur with the participation of representatives of various ethnic communities from the North East states augurs well for the numerous indigenous communities in the region and must be regarded as a welcome change from the suffocating one sided declarations and dictations of the communities. The event is a culmination of the protests and agitations being raised by the communities highlighting their grievances and concerns, some of which appears contradictory to one another thus raising the very real danger of starting a communal flare-up which will leave everybody the worse for it. The parliament also provides a timely and vital opportunity for the concerned and proactive groups of individuals and organizations representing the different communities to interact and rest their points and views for discussion and deliberation. In effect, it sets a healthy precedent of openly discussing sensitive social issues and concerns which otherwise could very well snowball into hostilities and unsettling suspicions. The already regressively administered region does not need the extra impediments to progress and development. And while the initiative might not have produced any definite resolution or result, the cordial atmosphere it created amongst the different indigenous communities should be counted as the greatest achievement. The agreement to invite and entertain recommendations on a wide range of issues from representative organizations of every indigenous community in the region in an attempt to draw up amicable resolutions after subsequent sessions also raises the opportunity of these groups to iron out the glitches and sensitive subjects not covered earlier, and hopefully, the resolutions will reflect the collective aspirations and dreams of the region without the threat of the larger communities trampling on the interests and rights of the smaller ones.

‘Women of Manipur Rise Up For United Struggle’

(CPDM Statement on the occasion of the commemoration of Manipur Women’s War 1939)

By : Dr. Malem Ningthouja
On the occasion of the commemoration of the Manipur Women’s War 1939 on 12 December, the Campaign for Peace & Democracy (Manipur) hails high the historical resistances that the women of Manipur had carried out during the British colonial period. At the same time, CPDM acknowledges and pays homage to the courage, commitment and selfless contribution of the women democratic forces in Manipur who are fighting injustice and asserting democratic rights. May your democratic voices spread across the borders and be remembered in the canon of resistance history.
To recollect, it was on this day, in 1939, that a bulk of aggrieved women in the capital Imphal, largely composed of famine affected petty-traders, launched an agitation to immediately impose an embargo on the British policy of exporting rice which had created the famine. In the following months, agitation became widespread and targeted British Indian monopoly traders (Marwaris), rice mills owned by them and their local rice suppliers. The agitation added to the tempo of rural anti-tax agitations and it culminated into a popular struggle for a responsible government. The December event came to be known as the Second Women’s War; the first being occurred in 1904, when women rose in agitation to boycott colonial punitive measures directed against recalcitrant princes and collective forced labour imposed on men to avenge certain sporadic ‘incendiarism’. In all these events of 1904, 1939 and the Zeliangrong movement under the leadership of Gaidinliu from 1931 onwards, women had played leading roles.
After the annexation of Manipur by India in 1949, the latter’s geo-strategic-market interests and ‘national’ security concerns have created a situation of misrule and humiliation amongst the Manipur patriots. Many women could not remain unaffected when; (a) their ‘nation’ was subdued and denied statehood (1950- 1971); (b) Kabow Valley was arbitrarily ceded away to appease a neighbouring country (1953); (c) there was militarisation and violation of human rights (e.g., Armed Forces Special Powers Act in 1958 and other repressive laws); (d) there was underdevelopment and capture of market by the ‘outside’ market forces; (e) unregulated immigrants were causing negative impacts on land ownership, labour market and ‘indigenous’ culture; (f) there were displacement and destruction as land and natural resources were no longer under their ‘social’ control; (g) divisive policies were creating communal tensions and sectarian conflicts, and; (h) the peoples were subjected to corruption, oppression and misrule by the local regimes composed of the parasitic rentier bourgeoisies that were are promoted and protected by Delhi regime. Against the backdrop of the scenario, many women took up arms to join insurgency to fight for their respective ‘sovereign’ ‘nationhood’. Some of them became ‘martyrs’ at young age and some others are in the jails. Several innocent women fought against tortures and penalties, arbitrarily imposed on them because each was either a ‘suspect’ or her husbands (if not fiancée) were an insurgent or she was sympathetic to the cause of insurgency. Many women whose husbands or children or dear ones or relatives were forced disappeared or killed or incapacitated in fake encounters are fighting for justice. Many women who are organised into human rights vigilant groups and civil society organisations are fighting injustice and for the protection of human rights. At the same time, many women (including school and collegiate students) who are on the forefront of popular agitations for social, economic and political rights were either killed or wounded or disabled in brutal police repressions.
Although the tradition of resistance prevails; the women’s democratic forces operate in a fragmented society that is disunited due to vested ethnic (communal), party, partisan, sectarian, individual and political interests. Women’s resistances and democratic assertions, therefore, occurred in different regions in different times and led by different forces; thereby, sporadically organised, localised, sectarian, and some of them ended with self-defeating tactics. There is no unified command structure; no common ideological, strategic and tactical position to strive for a collective goal across communities, sections, and regions. Inasmuch as there is lack of internal cohesion, there is also lack of ‘internationalism’ as many do not endeavour to relate their struggle with the international movement against imperialism, neo-liberal exploitation and local reactions; except some breakthrough in internationalisation of certain selective issues by the NGO networks that operate within the framework of international human rights movement.
Despite weaknesses and shortcomings; women’s resistances against misrule and struggles for justice at different layers, locations, sectors, times and issues constitute a general trend that deserves commendation. Instead of being completely fallen to become silently submissive to injustice, there are women who resist and fight for justice in their own ways. Their actions exemplify progressive role; as these expose the bourgeoisie misrule, keep the spirit of resistance alive, and pose some forms of threat to the regime. We valorise these resistances with the hope that these can keep the door open to future consolidation of common goal towards building a society free from subjugation, exploitation and oppression.

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