Home » Manipur’s Youth in Limbo: Internet Restrictions and Broken Dreams

Manipur’s Youth in Limbo: Internet Restrictions and Broken Dreams

by Aribam Bishwajit
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In an age where global connectivity and digital progress dictate the pace of a nation’s development, the Manipur Government’s frequent recourse to internet bans reflects a glaring contradiction. While on one hand, it professes support for entrepreneurship and modernization, its actions vehemently belie its words. The grim irony is inescapable: the same government that champions innovation turns around and pulls the plug on its digital lifeline, throwing its people into a communication void.
The N Biren Singh-led Manipur Government has, time and again, sanctioned internet blackouts. Such a draconian measure, while might seem an immediate solution to civil unrest, is short-sighted and catastrophic. Not only does it suppress voices, but it also sabotages the very entrepreneurial spirit it claims to foster.
The recent surge of violence, accentuated by a relentless internet ban, has driven many from their homes in Manipur to seek solace in Assam’s Gauhati and beyond. The digital siege has particularly strangled the income streams of small businesses that rely heavily on online platforms. Rewind to the days of the COVID-19 pandemic; the boon of online education was a silver lining amidst the global chaos. Yet, the current strife between the Meitei and Zo-Kuki communities has led to a torrent of curfews and internet restrictions, upending the education sector once more.
The Biren Singh government’s ineffectual handling of these crises has shattered the aspirations of a budding generation. The young minds and hearts, which once saw the internet as a beacon of hope and opportunity, now confront a bleak landscape, littered with the debris of broken promises and failed governance. The overarching message seems to be clear: think long and hard before you dream or invest in Manipur.
The state’s floundering economy, further weakened by this mismanagement, requires more than just platitudes to recover. The path to revival is steep and treacherous. Yet, instead of seeking the counsel of intellectuals and experts, the government chooses hubris over humility. Such an attitude erodes the public’s trust at its core.
It is high time the government not only acknowledges its shortcomings but also rectifies them. Refusing to accept mistakes, especially those that push a state’s economy into the abyss, is not a sign of strength. True leadership lies in instilling hope, restoring faith, and, above all, being accountable for one’s actions. The citizens of Manipur warrant more than a government that squanders its resources on self-aggrandizing propaganda. Their deeds have wreaked havoc on the very taxpayers they claim to serve.

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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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