Home » June 18 again: but is Manipur’s territory safe?

June 18 again: but is Manipur’s territory safe?

by Rinku Khumukcham
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With the coming of June 18, Manipur once more remember peoples’ uprising where as many as 21 people braves the bullets of the security forces for protection of the territorial integrity of the state. This time too, the COVID-19 scare fails divert the mind of the people. Major civil bodies – particularly the AMUCO and the UCM is all set to pay homage to the martyrs, even as the Civil bodies may follow the social distancing due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
May be not many people may turnout at Kekrupat this time but the observance is a sign to prove the the spirit of unity.
Everybody knows the genesis of the historic uprising. 19 years has been passed and still the concept of Nagalim/Greater Nagaland, Kukiland, Mizoland, Meetei/Meiteiland still is a tool disrespecting the martyrs who had sacrifice their live for Mother Manipur.
What we need to recalled is that, June 18 is not the first time that people of this region had uproar against any attempt to distort the identity of the state. Remember Pundongbam incident of 1948. It was under the leadership of Hijam Irabot that vehemently opposed and agitates against the idea of Purbachand Pradesh by amalgamation of Chachar, Tripura, Manipur and some part of Assam.
This time too, after the June 18 incident has been failed, a supposedly new strategy in the name of delimitation is coming up. The delimitation is going to be conducted base on the 2001 census which the people of the state including the ruling BJP party is opposing it. The political parties and the CSOs are demanding to conduct the delimitation after conducting fresh census. However, the argument to conduct delimitation on fresh census is likely to be turn down as a survey on the bogus census of some district alleged by the CSOs and the Polical party has been conducted in between 2011 to around 2014. This showed that even though there are political pressure , the CEO will be conducting delimitation as scheduled by them. Whether this delimitation will be a threat to the integrity of Manipur or not is a matter yet to see.
While the demand itself is a serious threat to the future of the state as it exists at present in terms of its physical features, a far more treacherous and sinister outcome will be the mutual bitterness and suspicious attitudes of the communities that will eventually develop which will be almost impossible to get rid of. While the grievances and the concerns of the people in these parts of the state against the administration may very well be genuine, there is no denying the fact that the demand for a separate statehood entails a complex and insidious work of a few politically motivated and self-seeking individuals in the garb of righteous leaders and philanthropists. The question everyone in the state, especially those thousands rallying behind the leaders needs to ask, rather ponder over is: will the granting of a separate state be the ultimate solution to all their grievances and woes? Is there any certainty or assurance that there will not be further outcry or agitation for further demarcation or separation by the numerous sub-groups? Has it been established that the elected representatives of the various communities and regions of the state have tried their level best to address these complaints and fell short by way of the state government failing to cooperate or provide the required resources despite their due shares being in the possession of the government? Are the demands for these numerous separate states or administrative units even plausible?


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Imphal Times is a daily English newspaper published in Imphal and is registered with Registrar of the Newspapers for India with Regd. No MANENG/2013/51092


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