Wednesday, 07 August 2019 - Imphal Times

Voice of anger now spread far and wide across the state over the mysterious death of Ningthoujam Babysana, a class –VII student, in her hostel room at Standard Robarth (Hr. Sec) School. With the cry for justice becoming louder, people witnessed conducting the post mortem of the lifeless body of Babysana twice, in order to convince the people who are crying for justice of the ill fated 14 years old minor girl, the state government even prepared proceedings for handing over the case to the Central Bureau of Investigation. And to make sure that the government will not left any stone unturned in the case of the mysterious death, a Special Investigation Team under an Additional Superintendent of Police had been formed and speedy investigation in the matter is seen carrying out since the SIT took over the case.
The first suo moto case taken up regarding the mysterious and unnatural death of Babysana inside her hostel room was registered under section 305 of the IPC. But from the pressure of the JAC formed against the death, the police had now incorporated section 302 of the IPC. This means that there is going to be a slight diversion to the case; the final argument may be on the matter regarding IPC 302 and IPC 305, and as per report there seems no possibility of IPC 302, if in case it is proved then the case is settled either by awarding punishment of the culprits as per the law of the land. The matter ends as per the law and justice of 1000s babysanas will never be provided.
It shooked every Manipuri, when the tragic news of a minor girl was found dead in a mysterious way was heard by everyone. It was everybody’s demand that justice be delivered for the ill fated minor girl. People across the state expressed shock as there has been many such cases happened in the state.  
When the JAC formed against the mysterious death of the minor girl stuck to their demand for the specific case of Babysana, then it is not the right move. The society may witness more instances of the fate of Babysana forced to suicide. We should also keep in mind those incidents where minor girls were raped and molested in school-run hostels, torture of minor boys in hostels by the authorities, dead of a student after allegedly falling from the hostel stairs. All those incidents including Babysana were caused by negligence, irregularities and failure to follow guidelines by the hostel authorities in running the hostel.
While the people demands justice for Babysana it should be a demand for delivering justice for all students of the state. The soul of Late Babysana will only find peace and happiness when the system in hostels or residential schools of Manipur is made to conform to the rules and regulations both in letter and spirit. When corporal punishment is abolished and when children in hostels are provided love and affection to make feel homely.
 One more thing that the state machineries seem to forget is about the students of this school. It is being told that there are over 4000 students in Standard Robarth Higher Secondary School. What will be the condition of these students? What will the mental and psychological state of the 36 students with whom Babysana stayed together? Have the Social welfare department taken up any initiative to settle the mental disturbance of the 36 students which are reported to be living in mental trauma after the incident? And it seems that until the investigation is over, the school is likely to remain closed due to pressure from various groups.
Will Babysana be happy even if justice is delivered for her when the rights of her friends in the school are continued to be deprived? It is neither the JAC nor the School authority that should be blamed when it comes to the fate of the students of the school. Why no initiative is seen to be taken up for rescue of the students of Standard Robarth, why government is not ordering the concern department of the state to give counseling to the 36 students who shared the same dormitory with Babysana , when the tragic incident occurred?
A simple suggestion to the government is to take over the administration of the school until the case is over to save the students by appointing a representative from the government.
The SIT investigating the matter is showing its seriousness in the incident. Their inquiry had also revealed that the hostel that the Standard Robarth is running does not have a valid license. Many more irregularities and anomalies are likely to be found during the course of the investigation.
Let’s hope babysana turns out to be the last victim of injustice and apathy meted out to students in the state.

Published in Editorial
Wednesday, 07 August 2019 19:20

Protest rows against the death of Babysana 

IT News
Imphal Aug 7,

Several protests continue to stage demanding justice for N. Babysana who died in her hostel.
Tingjinpong Eveninglories Prayer Centre today staged a sit-in-protest at RNBA complex, Tarung.
 Speaking to media persons Promoter of TEPC Panti Gonmei urged the government to take up step for the dispense of justice against the death of Babysana and added that they will stand in the movement initiated by JAC for the justice of Babysana.
Deploring against the hostile conditions and attitudes of Standard Robarth Higher Secondary School Panti said that authorities concerned and the law enforcing agencies have shown their incompetency and added that students are sent to learn and not to be killed, harassed, tortured or insulted mentally or physically.
She further demanded that the culprits should be punished with iron hand to eradicate the evils once and for all.
Panti warned the school authorities, teachers and wardens should stop mental and physical tortures which were not allowed by the new education system.
She further urged the parents not to hesitate to agitate and face situation boldly and added that there is nothing to fear and both parents and students should communicate frequently to find out any evil designs on the part of the school staff concerned.

Published in News

IT News
Imphal, Aug 7,

The Manipur Alliance for Child Rights Manipur urged the Manipur Human Rights Commission (MHRC) to take up appropriate action for proving of the long pending draft State Child Policy. It also urged the MHRSC for giving direction to the  State Cabinet for proper implementation at the earliest.
Regarding the mysterious death of Ningthoujam Babysana Chanu. a student of Class VII of Standard Robarth Hr. Sec. School Canchipur on 18‘“ July, 2019 inside the hostel’s room run by the school; MACR requested the  MHRC to take up appropriate steps to provide immediate Psycho-social care initiatives in order to address any possible “Post Traumatic Stress Disorder” (l’l’SD) syndrome inflicted to the 36 room inmates of the deceased minor.

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IT News
Imphal Aug 7,
Decrying over the recent scrapping of Article 370 and 35 A in the Parliament by BJP led government, National Executive member of CPI, M. Nara said that it was the beginning of the onslaught on democracy.
This was stated in a protest meeting held today against the scrapping of Article 370 and reducing the political status of Jammu and Kashmir at Irawat Bhavan complex. 
With such act of BJP Nara stressed that the BJP have proved it that their government is authoritarian, fascistic and dictatorial and added that it is not a good trend and moving backward in today’s 21st Century.
He added that the fate of the North East is not known with such dictatorial government.
He further said that there will be a huge repercussion from various sides. 
With the sole objective of BJP in making a Hindu Rashtra, the left leaning political parties considered being a dark future.
Various protest and campaigns begin all over the India and will continue. He added that there is a need for discussion academically and politically. 
Assistant Secretary of CPI Manipur State Council Th Surchand said that it was the manifestation of Hindu fascism. He added that scrapping of Article 370 and 35 A is one of the 100 days programme of NDA government to built a Hindu Rashtra.
Condemning the act of BJP where the central government bifurcate Jammu and Kashmir by enforcing thousands of military and disconnecting all communication and shutting down of Institutions.
 Surchand further said that the actions of BJP has destroyed the federal and autonomy model of India and added that its core objective is to out numbered the Muslim community to make a Hindu Rashtra.
The progressive, secular, democratic forces of the nation has strongly condemned the scrapping of Article 370, he added.
Surchand stressed that Kashmir was a trial and added that the BJP didn’t want a parliamentary form of government but instead they wanted a presidential form.
He concluded that such things might never happen in any part of the world and added that they should fight and struggle for it.
 The protest meeting was attended by M. Nara, Sotinkumar, Shanta, Ratan, Gyaneshwor, Apanthoi and Sharat Salam as the Dias members.
The protest meeting was jointly organised by the left leaning political parties- CPI, CPI (M), RSP, AIFB.

Published in News
Wednesday, 07 August 2019 19:18

Assam Rifles foils a major incident

IT News
Imphal, Aug 7,

Assam Rifles Battalion under the aegis of HQ IGAR (South) successfully foiled an attempt by miscreants (likely UGs) to perpetrate an untoward incident in the run up to Independence Day 2019 by recovering large quantity of explosives.   
In the view of the heightened security situation leading to Independence Day 2019, the AR Battalion had deployed number of troops along the Indo-Myanmar Border to prevent any action by the UGs. On the night of 03 August, one of the teams detected and prevented the movement of likely UGs into Indian territory from Myanmar. The UGs taking advantage of hours of darkness and heavy rains disengaged themselves from the pursuing security forces and fled from the scene. A deliberate search operation was carried out the next day wherein large cache of war like stores to include four Chinese made hand grenades, 21 locally made unmarked hand grenades, one mine, 29 detonators and 12 Kg of gelatin was recovered. The recovered items have been handed over to police for investigation.    
The activity seemed likely to be an attempt by UGs to perpetrate a major incident in Manipur in the run up of Independence Day 2019. The vigil and timely action by Assam Rifles troops have prevented any major mishap that could have occurred in the days to come.

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IT News
Imphal, Aug 7,
After a gap of 8 years, the Regional Institute Medical Sciences (RIMS), Imphal appointed 13 candidates as regular employee under the Compassionate appointment of RIMS Die-in-Harness Scheme. A program was held yesterday to distribute “Offer of Appointment” to the candidates in the Jubilee hall, RIMS, Imphal. The Director of RIMS, Prof. A. Santa Singh, the Medical Superintendent Prof. Ch. Arunkumar Singh, Principal of Dental College, Prof. Praveen Reddy, Deputy Director and Chief Accounts Officer are on the dais. The program was attended by Heads of Departments, faculty members, officials, staff, students and prominent leaders of Civil Society Organizations.
It may be mentioned that Compassionate Appointment Scheme is to grant appointment on compassionate grounds to a dependent family member of a Government servant dying in harness or who is retired on medical grounds, thereby leaving his family in penury and without any means of livelihood, to relieve the family of the Government servant concerned from financial destitution and to help it get over the emergency. The ceiling of 5% of direct recruitment vacancies can be utilized for making compassionate appointment.
In RIMS, Imphal the Compassionate appointment under the scheme has not been made since 2011. The application of more than 126 dependents received however the cases could not be processed for what of vacancies and other administrative issues. As a result of delay in processing of the cases, there was wide resentment among the applicant. Compassionate appointment has also been one of the major persistent demands of the Non-Teaching Employee Welfare Association (NTEWA) of RIMS, Imphal.
The members attended in the program appreciated the Director for his dynamic leadership, compassionate, strong will and commitment for the welfare of the institute. It is due to his fueled inspiration towards this vision, RIMS, Imphal could dole out  Offer of Appointment to 13 family members of the  deceased employees/employees retired on medical grounds, after verifying their accuracy of depending and financial position from the concerned authorities. The case of other eligible candidates will also be processed as and when adequate vacancies for appointment under the scheme are available.
On the other hand, 117 regular non-teaching employees of the institute were also given Financial Upgradation facility under the MACP Scheme (for 10, 20 and 30 years).

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22nd National Conference on e-Governance 2019 to be held at Shillong on August 8-9, under the theme - “Digital India: Success to Excellence”

Imphal, Aug 7,

The Department of Administrative Reforms & Public Grievances (DARPG), in association with Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY), Government of India and the State Government of Meghalaya will organize the 22nd National Conference on e-Governance (NCeG) 2019 on 8-9th August, 2019 at Shillong, Meghalaya.
Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region and Minister of State for Prime Minister’s Office, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Department of Atomic Energy and Department of Space, Dr.Jitendra Singh will preside over the function. ShriConardKongalSangma, Chief Minister of Meghalaya will be the Chief Guest of the event. The theme of this Conference is “Digital India: Success to Excellence”.
The Conference is a part of the DARPG’s 100 days initiatives in the new Government. This is the first time the event is being organized in North-Eastern region of the country. This Conference provides a platform to disseminate knowledge on effective methods of designing and implementing sustainable e-Governance initiatives to provide end-to-end Digital Services, exchange experiences in solving problems, mitigating risks, resolving issues and planning for success.
Discussions will be held on six sub-themes in Plenary session during the Conference: India Enterprise Architecture (INDEA), Digital Infrastructure, Inclusion and capacity building, Emerging Technology for Practitioners, Secretariat Reforms, National e-Governance Service Delivery Assessment (NeSDA). Four Breakout Sessions will be held on sub-themes - One Nation One Platform, Engaging with Innovators and Industry, End-to-End Digital Services: IT initiatives of State Governments.
The Conference would provide considerable momentum to the e-Governance initiatives in the North Eastern region, providing opportunities for civil servants and industry captains of the region to showcase their successful interventions in e-Governance in improving end to end service delivery. 15 States would be presenting their IT initiatives and success stories in the breakout sessions.
28 States and 8 Union Territories have confirmed their participation in the Conference and over 500 delegates are expected to attend it. An Exhibition will also be organized during the event to showcase India’s achievements in the field of e-Governance, along with a Hall of Fame/ photo exhibition on the award winners.
ShriHamletsonDohling, Minister of Information Technology & Communication and Urban Affairs Department, Government of Meghalaya will address the inaugural session. Senior Secretaries from the Government of India including Shri K.V. Eapen, Secretary, Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances and Pensions and Shri Ajay PrakashSawhney, Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology would address the conference.

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IT Exclusive

HARIS ADHIKARI is a widely published poet and translator from Nepal. A lecturer of English at Kathmandu University, Adhikari edits Misty Mountain Review. He has three books of poetry and translation to his credit, and is currently working on his upcoming book of Nepali poetry and an experimental poetry project—clipoetry, apart from some works of research. In the past, he has served as a researcher, interviewer, translator and contributor for Nepal Monitor. He has also been a guest translator for Grey Sparrow, a US based literary journal.
His poems and works of translation have appeared in various national & international journals. Siam Sarower Jamil talks to him about his poetry and dreams for Imphal Times.

Siam - When did you start writing and what do you think attracted you to poetry?

HARIS- Writing, particularly poetry, has always fascinated me. I wrote my first poem when I was 9. Initially, it was nature that filled me with awe and inspiration. In particular, flowers, birds, rivulets, rainbows, the open sky, and the illusive horizon attracted me the most. Later, frictions of different kinds—from socio-cultural to personal ones—ignited my poetic sensibilities.  
But I wrote sporadically until 2007, in Nepali, English and Hindi languages. Then, after my master’s studies, I gave more of myself to reading and writing poetry, and in recent years, to poetry translation and my research interests. I think in the last ten years I’ve focused more on personal, spiritual, social, and cultural issues—more importantly on the crooked ways of this society that I’ve come across.
Different worlds of mythoi have also been my poetic preoccupations these days. I am interested in reading the dramatics of life and world, the difference between what we’re told and what really is, through mythoi—through the power dynamics and illusion created in (or by) most of them.
My recent realization is—in poetry I can more freely express what I’ve in my heart and mind. Yet I sometimes find myself distant from poetry. What I also have come to realize is it’s essential for a poet to be able to make even the most familiar, most quotidian, most drab, the vehicle to the exquisitely exotic, mysterious, insightful or thought-provoking world of poetry.

Siam - How do you think you’ve evolved as a writer over the years?

HARIS- I am still learning. My interest in poetry has now led me also to poetry translation and research in different areas of creative writing and translation. Of course, my experiences in writing, editing and publication are what I’ve learned a lot from.
One example: One of my manuscripts of English poetry was going through editing process for publication last year. The editor and publisher was so excited to publish the book. We worked on the manuscript for about three months. But then, at the eleventh hour, after more than 3 scores of correspondences, we could not agree on certain linguistic and ideological issues. Then I kept the manuscript aside for some months before I made some significant changes in it. Now I’m looking for publication venues, also for my other books.
What I have learned is good writing requires not only a lot of passion, diligence and rigor but also a lot of patience, humility and honesty. Rejection or disagreement, like success, is part of what you do as a writer. It’s not the end of the world. Eventually what counts is learning and improvement.  
In this regard, I remember a wonderful occasion from last year, when a senior friend of mine took me to Dufftown in Scotland, where we made a tour of the famously traditional Glenfiddich Distillery and learned about the whole process of whiskey-making. I was so impressed to see how the finest and most expensive whiskey comes to us after nearly half a century. Even the eighteen-year-old whiskey that I got to taste there still lingers on my tongue, with its perfectly fine flavor and tantalizing scent. I just happen to think of this whenever the issue of good writing pops up!
It’s amazing how the oak casks take the raw liquors in for years and decades and enhance their colors, soften and round out their flavors, imparting their entire aroma to their being and becoming! And it’s amazing how long people (can) wait! I’m convinced that it takes a lot of hard work and patience to be or have such ‘finest whiskey’ in writing.
At any rate, what I’m doing is trying my best. At the same time, I’ve been learning a lot from some of the finest poetry I’ve come across. I’ve also been asking myself questions such as ‘what new did I do?’ or ‘is it worth my time?’
I have some plans to come up with signature experiments in poetry, apart from the works of research I’m involved in.

Siam - How do you balance your writing life and teaching life?

HARIS- These days in the university, I get busier in different sorts of activities, ranging from teaching to editing to reviewing papers to doing research. And I often bring home some of these duties. So, I’ve not been able to devote as much time as I should. But I do make good use of holidays and vacations. I’m also a kind of nocturnal being!
Siam- You’ve translated several Nepali & Western poets. Do you think that translating has affected your own poetry? How?

HARIS - Yes, it has. The books and papers on translation and poetry that I read during and after my translation and research projects helped me broaden my perspectives of writing and translation and refine their craft of mine. I came through gradual changes of perceptions, to take the original texts as ‘organic whole’ and the translated ones generally as ‘sum of the whole,’ to borrow from Gestalt theory.
The translation efforts I made have enriched my repertoire of mythological, historical and cultural as well as literary knowledge. And I’ve found some interesting areas for further research. I also came across, among other things, different matters of semiotic layers and styles, textual contexts and connections, cultural nuances and dilemmas, and tone and texture, from which I do hope to, somehow, enrich my poetry. I think some of this learning gets reflected in some poems of mine, basically in matters of register, experiment, variety, and craft.
All these experiences have led me to how I can make my poetry organically rich from every angle.  

Siam- How do you respond to writer’s block or not knowing what to write?

HARIS-  At times, I get restless. But I try to find inspiration from movies and documentaries I watch, from places I visit, from books I read, from people I interact with. I think it’s important to fill you first with something interesting, something funny, something disturbing, or something serious—so that you get to churn it in your heart and mind before you take it out!   

Siam- What’s the best experience you’ve gained through your writing?

HARIS- The most important thing is writing has time and again helped me regain my sanity and peace of mind. It has helped me open up and express what I probably would not have expressed, what I probably would not have been able to express in other forms.
There are many miscellaneous experiences. But for now my focus is more on learning—learning from the processes involved. As an aspiring person in this field, this is what counts as most important for me.
My last year’s project was unsuccessful. But my experience of working with the native editor has been helpful for me. At any rate, I saw certain places where I needed to bring finesse in. The craft and skills I learned from the editing process are enriching. I basically learned to refine my language, especially as regards the personas’ age factors and milieus, avoid tautology and repetition, and make the writing concisely structured with fine tone and texture. I also learned how the native speakers express in poetry a certain idea not as an idea alone, as in a usual sentence construction, but as something deeply felt. For instance, I remember how I once translated a passage as they taste sweet, which the editor changed to this sweet taste, thus changing the meaning just enough to better reflect the native language and culture’s understanding of a deeply-felt concept. Apart from this, I learned to take as well as give constructive inputs on manuscripts. In short, I learned to revise, reformat and refine during those three months’ intensive editing process.
Now, after a whole year, the manuscript has undergone significant changes, and is a (more) beautiful butterfly, I suppose!

Siam- Where do you see yourself going next?

HARIS- I’m simultaneously working on three manuscripts, tweaking here and there in them. Hopefully, I will find some good publishers for them this year.
I will also be (re-)working on my papers—on poetics and translation, street theatre in Nepal, myth dominance in life and world, teaching and learning, systemic regeneration and its persistence in Nepali academia, etcetera.  
I also have plans to bring out books of experimental poetry and poetics. 

Published in News
Wednesday, 07 August 2019 19:10

A Letter to my Mother

By - Inamul Haq
Dear Mom,

I am not really sure where to start this letter, because I have so much to say. I think it’s always difficult as a child to express a lot of things to their mother, especially if it’s just telling the trauma through which I am going. The trauma is not one-sided and I know you feel more than me. Dear mom, there is no communication between us as you know that Indian dictatorshiphas scrapped the Article 370 and had done bifurcation of our state. But before that, they made stories and issued a notice to their people to leave the valley. The story was interesting that we are listening from 1947 that there is a terrorist threat from Pakistan. However, they were successful in taking out their citizens. Do not be confused that why I am using their people. Obviously, when care and concern are given to one section and left another section on the mercy of God, then this difference is visible (Hum aur Aap). The Britishers also used such terms in their colonial era, when they were framing laws and regulations or making decisions in India. India only changed its cover and applied the same strategies and methods in Kashmir. There would be plenty of questions in your mind that why are we being deprivedof basic rights. If India celebrates and why Kashmiri people are being sieged in their homes, Indefinite curfew, communication gag, internet snapped, roads blocked, even patients dying at home and why such detention is being imposed here.
Dear mom, I cannot explain to you all, but I just inform you about certain things through which you can understand, why our rights do not matter. Detaining people or curfews and other deprivations are basically one of the tactics that are applied by a state with the help of their law enforcement agencies especially against those who are against their policy.  India is using allthese practices not for the interest of the public, but rather to states interest. The heavy militarization in Kashmir with unlimited powers is a form of state violence. The state violence can be destructive because it manifests itself in the bodies of individuals and causes physical pain and mental distress. The law is one of the tools that help the state to regulate violence for the maintenance of social order and seeks to change human behaviour. However, instead of that, it asserts authority on the lives of individuals and even asserts authority over authority itself. In this process, somebody loses liberty, property, family and even life (Parray, 2006). The principle of modern states violence which operate through the principle of law and state powers are known as ‘exceptions’ in which inhabitants are stripped of their basic rights like the right to liberty, expression, and freedom and submitted to the sovereign power of the state.
According to Agamben, the twentieth century had produced a paradoxical phenomenon known as legal civil war which is enacted between state and non-state actors. In this matter, the “state of exception” remains undeclared allowing for its subjugation (2002). In this suppression, not only political adversaries become the victims, but the entire categories of the population that resists against the state being integrated into the political system. In modern democracies, the intentional creation of a permanent “state of exception” has become one of the dominant measures.A “state of exception” is a lawless void, in which state authorities act in extreme situations with the force of law. The force of law makes law and life indistinguishable. Giorgio Agamben is of the view that every action should be dealt with legal action, but unfortunately, that is not possible in the “state of exception “because the functions of law depend on violence. The state uses its extra-legal violence against its own people in order to combat an emerging threat and there is no role of the judiciary in the state of Emergency/Exception.
Dear mom, in the next letter, I will text you further about the exception and how rule of law works in it.Thank you for being there for me whenever I needed you. In such Panic situation, I need you again and every time, I am thinking about you and father. I cannot eat and sleep well like you. Not on phone, but everyday I am talking to you in Imagination. I hope the blockade would end soon and I shall contact you and want to share and listen from you.

With Love!
Your obedient son

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