Maheshwar Gurumayum

Maheshwar Gurumayum

Maheshwar Gurumayum

Maheshwar Gurumayum, Sub-Editor of Imphal Times is a resident of Sagolband Salam Leikai. He has been with Imphal Times since 2013. An avid adventure lover, writes mostly travelogue. He can be contacted at [email protected]

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It is heartening to learn that the construction  of tribe heritage museums  numbering 32 for different tribes of the state at different centres, are nearing completion, with the patronage of the Honourable Chief Minister with his  generous sanction of ₹10 lakhs for each museum. The Department of Arts & Culture, Government of Manipur is thankful for the progress of works. After the completion of the museum, each tribe will be keeping the equipments, implements, household wares , etc., which our forefathers used at different times for running dwelling houses, fishing, hunting, ploughing, rearing of domestic animals, etc. These museums would be permanent assets of indigenous communities and the state also would proud of its rich cultural heritage. When these museums are opened, people from inside and outside the state / country would throng and the places would be important touristssites. Students of schools, colleges and universities mostly of History, Geography, Anthropology, Sociology, etc., would be greatly benefitted. The tourists and visitors can easily learn the names of tribes/ indigenous / native people who have been living in the state, their ways of life and culture, among others.

The very surprising and unexpected thing that happened in the recent newspaper reports are the missing of Meetei museum in the list of 32 tribalheritage museums to be established by the Department of Arts & Culture, Government of Manipur. It appears that the authorities in the concern department do not understand the meaning of tribe and indigenous people. The term “TRIBE” is used in the Indian Constitution and ’INDIGENOUS’ in the Supreme Court of India and UNO. The dictionary meaning of tribe here is not applicable.

Every tribe cannot be an indigenous people but every indigenouspeople is a tribe. Meetei community being an indigenous people in this land with 76 kings since MeidinguNangdaLairenPakhangba in 33AD upto Maharaja Bodhachandra till 1949 with written historical records is the clear evidence that Meetei community is an INDIGENOUS people/TRIBE of this land like Tangkhul, Kabui, Maram, Thangal, Mao, Anal, Maring, Moyon, Koireng, etc.  None can challenge this veracity. Any community or so called ’TRIBE’ of the state can challenge this statement.

Therefore, the authorities in the Department of Arts and Culture should include a museum for Meetei tribe / indigenous people to avoid any complicacy that may arise in future on account of wrong interpretation of ‘TRIBE’ in the narrow sense of dictionary/ Anthropology discipline. The demand for the inclusion in the ST list of the state and country by Scheduled Tribe Demand Committee (STDCM) is more than proved that the Meetei is a tribe, which is synonymous with indigenous people/native people/adivasi. The name of the tribe heritage museum should be “Indigenous Heritage Museum” to avoid any dispute in future.

Dr. Thangjam Ranjit

Sinam Leikai, Thangmaiband.

Mobile No. 8787692023

Thursday, 29 July 2021 19:01

Concern over our education system

By Kaustov Kashyap
The second wave of the corona is gradually winding down. Life is reverting to normalcy. Industry-business has started running smoothly only by crawling. Efforts are also being made to restore the economy. People are creating plans for the future while ignoring past losses, yet, in front of the mass of the population, there is a matter of saving and sustaining livelihood, which is impossible to resolve under the current circumstances. So no, but it appears to be extremely difficult.

Amid all the crises, the crisis prevailing on an important area looks unscathed by the concern and discussion of the people, but it is very reasonable to talk about it.That area is the domain of education, notably primary and secondary school education. Corona has ruined the country’s public education system, as well as strengthen economic, social, and gender inequities in an area already riddled with anomalies and injustices. Passing the pupils without passing the exam may appear to be the acceptable approach at the time, but in the age of competition, the consequences will undoubtedly be unpleasant in the future.

In our country, we have a variety of educational systems that can be split into two categories: first, government-funded educational institutions, and second, privately-funded educational institutions. There are both residential and non-residential government schools in government educational institutions, such as KendriyaVidyalayas and NavodayaVidyalayas. The disparity between them in terms of education and still children’s achievements is obvious. When it comes to private educational institutions, there are a variety of options, including English medium schools connected with CBSE, ICSE, and other accrediting bodies, as well as schools affiliated with state boards.

Private educational institutions were almost non-existent in India prior to 1991. Education was not a lucrative business, and governments were reluctant about establishing and recognizing private schools. But, Economic reform and the greater influence of capitalism over time, privatization began to have an impact in this area as well, and now, private schools can be found on almost every street.

Now, Education is a billion-dollar business.  People encourage their children to choose a career path by selecting an appropriate school based on their financial capacity. It’s obvious that the more jaggery you put in, the sweeter you’ll get; in other words, the more you pay, the better the facilities and education you’ll get. The difference between India and Indian in these schools can be seen clearly. This explanation is provided so that it is evident that education is riddled with disparities. This, however, will be examined in considerable depth later. 

Schools and colleges were first closed in March 2020 as soon as Corona cases came to the fore. On March 24, 2020, an unexpectedly strict lockdown was announced across the country. The new academic year about to begin in April in most states, however, due to the lockdown, neither schools nor admission to the new session can actually happen. The process of opening schools commenced in December but was phased in, however, due to the second wave, the schools were closed again in March 2021.

Schools have been closed since then, and the second consecutive academic session is currently on the edge of being cancelled. Due to two consecutive academic sessions being cancelled, the private schools, especially schools run with small capital, have suffered a financial setback.  

The concerned section of these schools is the same, which has lost its employment-work-business in this corona period. When there is a lack of food in the house, the issue of depositing the fee becomes inconsequential. If the data are collected, it would be revealed that most private schools have shuttered as a result of Corona, with teachers on leave. Suicides by teachers and administrators have also been reported in some areas.For anyone, the two-year closure of a business can be a trigger of depression. They have received no assistance from whatsoever in the state or the center.

When it comes to children’s education, we can perceive that an effort has been made to continue it through online mediums. But the question is, has online education, on the other hand, become a viable alternative to traditional schooling? Economic inequality is a major issue in our society, and its consequences can be seen in our educational system. Online schooling demands a large number of smartphones, a strong network, and a data plan.

The majority of pupils in government and small private schools do not have access to these three resources. It is self-evident that the concept of online learning is useless to them. When we talk about their number, according to this NCERT survey, 27% of students out of 34,000 students were found to not have access to mobile phones in our country. Imagine the real numbers considering all the population, especially when we know that almost half of the population doesn’t have access to the internet.

When it comes to gender inequality, girls’ education has been affected more than boys’. In a poll conducted by several groups in the name of ‘Mapping the Impact of Covid-19’ in five states throughout the country, it is obvious that boys are given more priority in online education than girls. Girls were employed in domestic work in 70% of the homes. And now the majority of them are contemplating whether to resume their education. Child marriages have also surged dramatically.

If a study is conducted, it will become evident that the number of minor girls in marriages has increased significantly in the last two years. In the report of UNICEF, it has been said that the education of girls is affected more during the Corona period.

Children who study online are more likely to have weak eyes as a result of being exposed to adult content and spending so much time in front of a screen. There has also been a rise in the number of youngsters, many of these children, falling prey to drug addiction. Overall, the education system has deteriorated, when a nation needs to educate its citizens. These children are tomorrow’s citizens and future leaders; they are the nation’s most valuable asset. Governments should think hard about how to improve the educational system. Vaccination of school children should be taken seriously and implemented as soon as conceivable; otherwise, school closures could become a worse disaster for the country in the future than Corona, for which no alternatives exist.

Since time immemorial, cards have been a part of the Indian tradition and heritage. Almost every region in India have their own game of cards they have either invented or adopted to make their own. While the origins of cards games in India is a debatable notion, it’s widely believed that they became prevalent during the Mughal rule in the country.

Card games, in medieval India, were usually confined to the royal class in the country. But with time, card games became popular among the masses in India. Today, there are millions of players in India who enjoy trying their hands at land-based and online classic card games. In this article, we take a look at some of the most popular card games in India. Continue reading!

Teen Patti

Teen Patti is an Indian variant of the famous Poker game. The name Teen Patti in English means “Three Card Brag”, which is similar to the premise of the popular Western card game. Featuring simple rules and easy gameplay, the game of Teen Patti brings communal enjoyment for its players.

As a player, your aim in Teen Patti is to have the best three-card hand and to maximize the pot before the showdown. What makes Teen Patti unique among other card games is the fact that it allows you to play blind or seen. In other words, you can choose to know the value of your cards facing down or the other way around.

Being a popular card game, it’s no surprise that Teen Patti is available at many online gambling platforms in India. The opportunity to play Teen Patti offers convenience and several other benefits for both novice players and high rollers.

Andar Bahar

Andar Bahar is another popular card game that has been a part of social life in India for centuries now. Also referred to as Katti or Mankatha, the game of Andar Bahar is believed to have its origins in the city of Bangalore in Southern India. From there, the Andar Bahar game, even online, spread its way all across India.

The name ‘Andar Bahar’ refers to the sides where players can place their wagers on. Andar is the left side for the player and right side for the dealer, whereas Bahar is the left side for the dealer and right side for the player. The main aim of the game is to guess on which side, Andar or Bahar, will a card matching the value of the joker card show up.

Andar Bahar has been played at land-based gambling venues ever since they started to happen in India. And with the gamification of Indian card games, Andar Bahar can now be played online for both free and real money.

Jhandi Munda 

Jhandi Munda is a fun, engaging, and rewarding dice betting game that is enjoyed by millions of players in India. Having its roots in the Indian state Arunachal Pradesh, the game of Jhandi Munda first appeared on the scene in the 18th century. Since then, it has garnered immense popularity in almost every part of the country. 

As with many other traditional Indian games, Jhandi Munda comes with simple and easy-to-understand rules. The game is played with six, six-sided dice. The dice feature six different symbols on each of the sides, including a heart, a spade, a diamond, a club, a face, and a flag. The main aim of the game is to bet on which symbol will appear face up most often. 

Jhandi Munda is a game that evolved to entertain and possibly offer some monetary rewards. The entertainment value and the social factor are what have kept Jhandi Munda so popular for decades. Today, Jhandi Munda can be played on the streets, in land-based casinos in Arunachal Pradesh, and at international online casino sites. 

Rummy

Rummy is an exciting card game that is popular all across the globe, and Indian is no exception to that. The game of Rummy has a rich history, and it is believed to have evolved from the Mexican game Conquian and the 18th-century Chinese games that shared the same premise.

While the game of Rummy has several versions, its variant called Indian Rummy is most popular in India, especially in the South-west part of the country. The popularity of Rummy can be attributed to the fact that it comes with easy-to-understand rules and features simple gameplay. 

In India, Rummy is often played at homes, clubs, and land-based casinos. Yet recently, more and more players are flocking to online gaming platforms. This is because online platforms offer 24/7 games and have community elements where players can chat, share tips and learn how to play.

The Indian subcontinent as a whole, has had a long history with gaming. Historians have discovered dices of sandstone and terracotta that date back to 3300 BC and they have also found evidence which state that the civilians of the Indus Valley engaged in betting and gambling. Even ancient Indian mythologies have made a reference to gaming somewhere or the other.

Under the British rule, the practice of games which required skill were allowed by the British government. However, the practice of gambling in India Indian gambling was governed by the Indian Gambling Act of 1857. This act deemed public gambling and maintaining common gaming houses as unlawful. But, the practice and conduct of lotteries and horse racing were highly legal.

After India became an independent nation in 1947 and after the enactment of the constitution in 1950, a lot of new rules were brought in and a number of old rules were demolished.

The Constitution of India entrusts the power to make laws relating to lotteries with the Parliament of India, as stated in Entry40, List1 of the Constitution.

However, the same Constitution of India entrusts the States with the power to enact state-specific laws on betting and gambling. While a number of States have adopted the rules under the Public Gambling Act of 1867, a number of other States have enacted their own laws on gambling for their respectives states.

The northeastern states, like every other Indian State, have their own individual gambling laws. While the State of Assam in the northeast sees gambling as an offence, the States of Nagaland and Sikkim have legalised land-based casinos and online gambling.

Gaming market in India

In India, the gaming industry is found to be worth 60 billion dollars. But remember, this includes both regulated as well as unregulated gaming. The Indian gaming industry can be categorised into six headings- lotteries, prize competitions, horse racing, sports betting, games of skill and games of chance. While most of the gambling games come under the last category, many of the gambling games have been made legal in India assuming them to be under the game of skill category.

The mindset around gambling in India

A lot of gambling is seen as a game of chance in India. Game of chance involves every other game which is based on luck. One does not need any specific knowledge base for these kinds of games and are thus different from games of skill. These games of chance are considered illegal in India.

However, if any amount of skill, understanding or knowledge is required by a particular gambling game, it might not be considered illegal in the country. Therefore, the gambling games are subject to a lot of bias in the Indian subcontinent.

Legal laws revolving gambling in various northeastern states

  • The practice and conducting of lotteries in any of the eight northeastern states-Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Sikkim, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Tripura- is legal and does not account to any offence.
  • Online gambling and even land-based casinos are completely legalized in the northeastern state of Sikkim.
  • Like in Sikkim, online casino India or offline casinos on land are permitted in the northeastern state of Nagaland as well. These were legalized under the Public Gambling Act of 1976.
  • While two of the northeastern states have legalized online casinos in India, the State of Tripura bans the maintenance of gambling houses publicly or privately along with the practice of gambling in any form.
  • Assam, like Tripura, sees gambling as an offence and does not tolerate such acts.
  • In 2012, the State of Arunachal Pradesh introduced the Arunachal Pradesh Gambling(Prohibition) Act, in order to prohibit and provide punishment for “ public gambling and keeping of common gaming houses in the State of Arunachal Pradesh.”
  • E-gaming of games of chance has been permitted by law in Sikkim as well as Nagaland.
  • Manipur follows the Public Gambling Act, 1867 and therefore provides for “the punishment of public gambling and the keeping of common gaming house.”
  • The State of Mizoram also abides by the provisions of the Public Gambling Act of 1867, as stated by the Public Gambling(Extension to Mizo district)Act, 1962.
  • Meghalaya passed the Meghalaya Regulation of Gaming Ordinance in February 2021 to become the third Northeastern state to regulate gambling and gaming under a license-based regime.

These laws have been formulated by experts and are subject to changes in the modern world. While many people believe that gambling should not be made legal, there are a major number of supporters for the legalization of gambling. Moreover, the prevalence of online casinos around the world has made a huge impact on gambling practices. With popular support and changing mindsets, we are very likely to see an assuage of laws around gambling in various States in the region.

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