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KUKIS AND MERGER OF MANIPUR

Holkhomang Haokip

I take this opportunity to write a few lines in connection with Manipur Merger Issue. It is an attempt to focus on the last minute events just before Maharajah Budhachandra Singh had to leave for Shillong to sign the Agreement against his will.
It is a fact that it was a group of Kuki Chiefs particularly Haokip Chiefs, who determined to help Maharajah and resist the Merger. Here, to be specific, a group of Kuki Chiefs was led by then Chief of Chassad and who was supported by Chief of Aihang, Chief of Nabil, Chief of Longpi and many other Haokip villages. These Chiefs went to the extent that about 200-300 volunteers with muzzle loading guns were kept at the gate of Palace to protect the Maharajah and his kingdom.

The leaders of Akhil Manipur Hindu Maha Sabha (AMHMS) organised strikes and procession to force the Maharajah to relinquish his throne and to merge with India. There was almost a clash between the volunteers of Haokip Chiefs on one side and AMHMS on the other. Meanwhile, two or three telegrams reached/came to Maharajah from the then Home Minister of India, Shri Sardar Vallabhai Patel but the Maharajah refused to go to Shillong.
Unfortunately, on that eventful day, against his will supported by the fact that Maharajah turned back two-three times then to God, into his car made ready for his journey to Shillong, but had to go to Shillong to sign the said Agreement.
People of Manipur or any historian have not recorded such important events of that decisive moment which took place at the palace gate. The Maharajah, out of his love for his supporters - the Haokip Chiefs and volunteers who stood by him for his protection and independent Manipur during those eventful time/moments till the last minute, have granted the Haokips to settle at Haokip Veng which itself is an axiom.

William Gurumayum

William Gurumayum, Sub-Editor of Imphal Times is a resident of Sagolband Salam Leikai. He has been with Imphal Times since beginning. He also looks after the website and application of Imphal Times. An avid adventure lover, writes mostly travelogue.

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