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Tuesday, 23 April 2019 - Imphal Times

Rich tribute paid to Martyred Heroes of Khongjom War

IT News

Imphal, April 23,

Remembering the brave sons who valiantly fought in the Anglo-Manipuri War in 1891, rich tributes were paid to them on Khongjom Day Observation 2019 today at Khongjom War Memorial Complex, Kheba Ching, Thoubal district. The Governor of Manipur, Dr. Najma Heptulla and Chief Minister, Shri N. Biren Singh led the other Ministers, MLAs, high level Government officers, top police brass and public in laying floral wreaths at the Khongjom War Memorial and Paona Brajabasi statue, offered Tarpon at Khongjom River and paid homage to Sankirtan. There were also guard of honour, general salute, reverse arms and order arms, sounding of last post, two minutes silence, slope arms and order arms.

Addressing as the Chief Guest at the observation, Dr. Heptulla told that in the battle of Khongjom, the Manipuris showed to the world their indomitable courage and spirit of patriotism. The historic and gory battle that took place at Khongjom where the brave sons of Manipur laid down their lives almost to the last man still reverberates and remembered in every home in the State. The Anglo-Manipuri War of 1891 is of great historical significance for the people of Manipur as it changed the course of history of the State. From an independent princely State, Manipur became a colonial subject of the British Empire after it lost the war. Historical records amply bear out the fact that a handful of Manipuri soldiers with primitive weapons fought ever so valiantly against an overwhelming number of British soldiers with far more superior weapons attacking from different directions. But the brave Manipuri soldiers stood their ground and never gave up even in that hopeless situation. The raw courage and love of their motherland demonstrated by our forefathers deserve praise and accolades from one and all. Paona Brajabashi and other freedom fighters like him have found their place in history and their heroic exploits have become over the years stuff of folklore. The battle of Khongjom is not only a glorious saga of the freedom struggle of Manipur but is truly representative of the spirit of freedom that engulfed the whole country in a later part of history.

Today, while remembering those who died for the cause of freedom of our motherland, we should also take a resolute stand to work with renewed vigour, dedication and selflessness for a better and brighter future. Let us all work for the common goal of making Manipur a peaceful and developed State and this way, we would be paying our true respect and tribute today to those brave souls who sacrificed their lives for their motherland, the chief guest added.

In his Presidential speech, Chief Minister Biren Singh said that in the 1891 Khongjom War, our forefathers sacrificed their lives fighting against the mighty British soldiers to save the freedom and sovereignty of the motherland. For paying respect and tribute to them particularly their spirit, courage and love for the motherland, we are observing 23rd April every year as Khongjom Day.

To live with freedom is the main concern for every human and nation. This is the reason that thousands and thousands sacrificed their lives for the cause of freedom. The then warriors of Manipur showed the highest discipline and moral of military in the 1891 Khongjom war. Our brave and courageous martyrs took that protection of freedom as the responsibility of each one of us. Like they made supreme sacrifice for our freedom, lets try to bring a better and developed Manipur by analysing the challenges and problems being faced by today’s generation, the Chief Minister appealed.

He also urged the people of the State to be true hearted, feel the sense of fraternity among different communities of both hill and plain and work together for the betterment of all the sections of the society through which our State make way towards peace and prosperity.

A drama based on the historic Khongjom war by Arts and Culture Department and Khongjom Parva recital by Smt. Laishram Ongbi Mani Devi was staged during the Observation. On the other hand,  in connection with the Khongjom Day 2019, Chief Medical Officer Thoubal also organised blood donation camp at the Khongjom War Memorial Complex.

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Questions regarding the installation of CCTVs at polling stations not answered till now - Sotinkumar

IT News
Imphal April 23,

Focusing on why there weren’t CCTV cameras installed at the polling stations of Heingang Assembly Constituency, CPI state Secretary Sotinkumar questioned the CEO about the information regarding the webcasting equipments or CCTV cameras installed on the polling day at various polling stations of Inner Manipur Parliamentary Constituency.
Speaking to media at Irawat Bhavan Sotinkumar said that the CEO hasn’t reply the questions enquired by them till now.
Highlighting on the information sought to the CEO he said that even though the CEO assured to install all the polling stations with CCTV cameras to conduct the election free and fair only 200 to 250 polling stations out of 1300 polling stations were installed. He further questioned why camera was not installed in every polling station.
On another issue he said that any valid identity card is compulsory to cast the vote in addition to EPIC but unfortunately many were allowed to vote without such identity proof. He added that Form 17-A should be than signed along with the evidence of identity proof other than EPIC and it should be packed and sealed in front of the inner agents.
Sotinkumar stressed that rule 49U Conduct of election rules 1961 was violated at the time of scrutiny held of 19th of April as the production of packets containing the registers of voters in Form 17-A in respect of the polling stations were in unsealed conditions.
He added that with the above evidence it was confirmed that most of the Assembly constituency and especially the areas where re-poll will be conducted were all well planned booth capture.
Sotinkumar alleges proxy voting in some of the polling station at Heingang on the ground that 90% plus voters cast their votes.
He said that many of the polling stations where they complaint were not re-polled and added that the whole of Heingang needs to be re-polled.  He said that the re-poll seems to be announced only for name sake.
He finally appealed the people for a movement against people who use muscle powers and violates the right to vote of the people.

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People unhappy with DIPR Journal on Khongjom day

IT News

Thoubal, April.23,

Every year “Khongjom Day” is celebrated to remember the brave martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the motherland fighting the British at the battle of Khongjom in 1891. The state government which celebrates this event remembering every year and DIPR publishes a journal called Khongjom Today with articles on Khongjom Lal. However, this year many have expressed that they do not see any articles on the matter this time.

Many who visited Khongjom to commemorate Khongjom Day have expressed that DIPR used to publish a journal for the people called “Khongjom Today” consisting of articles on Khongjom war and with the photos of Paona Brajabasi’s memorial as cover. The journal earlier served to increase the value of the event. However, we do not see any of it this time. This time a journal was distributed which has nothing to do with Khongjom Day. Even the cover photo has nothing to do with the event. Instead, a booklet called “Go to Village Mission” was distributed to the people. People have expressed that this act serves to devalue the memory of Khongjom day.

People who were attending Khongjom Day have asked that whether they are going to see the journal called “Khongjom Today” with articles about Khongjom Lal released by DIPR ever again. They have also said that the booklet which was distributed today would be more appropriate if it is published and distributed on the occasion of 26th January and 15th August. 

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KCP MC claims responsibility of the bomb near LFS

IT News
Imphal, April 23,

Kangleipak Communist Party, Military Council (KCP MC) today claimed responsibility of placing the bomb in front of Little Flower School. A statement by Comrade Lanchenba Meitei, Secretary, Information and Publicity, Military Affairs, KCP-MC said that the party’s name had been used for admission to the Catholic Schools by two members of the Parents Teachers Association whereas, KCP-MC had never admitted and has ever tried to admit students to these schools. It said that the two members of the PTA had admitted 16 students in connivance with an armed group by bringing in the name of the KCP-MC. As appealed to stop using the name of the outfit has not been listen the party has to place the bomb.
The KCP MC statement compares the act of admitting students on backdoor with that of selling the vote in the recently concluded election. It said the bomb was placed during study leave of the students and is the last warning to those who are giving bad name to the party. The outfit names two members of the PTA and another contact person and also some students who had collected money for admitting students.
The statement also said that the placing of bomb at Little Flower School is the beginning and not the last. It appealed those involved in the maligning of the party’s name and the Catholic Schools authorities to clarify over the matter.

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Manipur Maoist cleans hands on LFS bomb

IT News
Imphal, April 23,

Maoist Communist Party Manipur (MCPM) clean hands to the placing of the bomb at Little Flower School saying that they are in no way related with the bomb found at the school.
In a press statement by Kyonghan Mangang , Coordinator, Standing Committee, MCPM, the outfit blamed 2 members of the Parents Teachers’ Association for all the fiasco at Catholic Schools. The Maoist also stated that the two members of the PTA admitted 16 students at backdoor using the name of an outfit amid the appealed by the Maoist to the Catholic Education Society.

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A thought on Khongjom Day

The people of the state today paid fitting tribute to the martyrs who had sacrifices their life fighting to safeguarding the freedom of the erstwhile kingdom at the battlefield of Khongjom in 1891. The courage and spirit of our ancestors is worth remembering and paying tribute to those martyrs is our pride to prove the world that we the Manipuri were courageous, hardworking people who had always wanted to live life with dignity. It is a known fact that, our ancestors of that time knows well that there was no possibility of winning the war against the huge army of the British Empire, but they still fought knowing that they will defeat in that war. Those ancestors like PaonaBrajabashi, BirTikendrajit and other unknown soldiers of the erstwhile kingdom would certainly dream of a nation at which people from across the world have great respect.
Points wanted to make here is that, have we paid enough respect to our ancestors who had sacrificed for the cause of the nation’s freedom. The state of Manipur at present is in the most shameful state. The so called leaders of the present state and those who had been elected with thousands of hopes have been completely depending to the money sanction from the central government for running the state. A change in the government at the centre gives so much worried to the state government that sometimes it gives all its effort to go with them using any means. Lack of sincerity among those in the government has always been a matter of reality that the present day people face.
Unfulfilled promises, threats to the free speech, threats to the existence of indigenous people VIP culture are what the people are experiencing today.
The greatest tragedy of our state is that nothing seems to move until and unless extreme measures are resorted to: be it implementing rules of law or conveying the aspirations and needs of the public. Add to it the fact that we, as a collective, have yet to realize the undeniable truth that the centre is evidently more concerned with preserving its national territory rather than improving the welfare of its citizens when it comes to affairs of the north east region of the country, in effect, reducing the importance of the region to that of a mere geographical entity.
The peculiarity of the situations confronting Manipur: from its geopolitical to socio-economic conditions needs to be tackled in ways that involves innovative and unorthodox methods. This calls for a more alert, swifter and sterner government capable of dispensing its plans and proposals more smoothly and effectively. The frustrations being felt by the public for a long time now need to be addressed. Every aspect of public life and governance has been beset with corruptions, controversies, scandals, accusations of favoritism, despotism and cronyism. The sooner the present guardians of the state admit to the allegations and own up to such aberrations, the sooner it can address and rectify itself. Bringing in a system of governance that takes into confidence its people and their needs rather than dispensing administration by tweaking the system to suit its every whim will eventually prove to be the spark that lit up the fire of frustrations trampled expectations.
People faced draught in non-rainy season and flood during rainy season. The drainage system constructed in and around Imphal city by spending huge amount of many do not serve its purpose. And every one of us knows that these moneys meant for construction of the public properties are hijacked by people who are near and dear ones with those in the government.
This situation is not what our ancestors had wanted. They might now feel shame of what we are no. A simple offering of floral tribute is really not enough to pay respect to our ancestors, we need to build a strong state if we really wanted a fitting tribute to our leaders.   

Rongali Bihu Celebrated at Rajiv Gandhi University

From a Correspondent

Itanagar April 23,

The 18th Rongali Bihu Celebration of Rajiv Gandhi University (RGU) was held recently at the Main Auditorium of Rajiv Gandhi University with much fanfare and gaiety. The main programme of the celebration started with the lighting of the ceremonial lamp and paying homage and floral tributes to Bharat Ratna Dr. Bhupen Hazarika followed by a welcome address by Prof. Hirendra Nath Sharma, the President of the 18th Rongali Bihu Celebration Committee RGU.

The Chief Guest on the occasion, Vice Chancellor of RGU, Prof. Saket Kushwaha was accorded a warm welcome and felicitated with the traditional Assamese Phulan Gamosa, Jaapi, and Xofura. Prof. Kushwaha declared the programme to be open and wished everyone a very happy and prosperous Assamese New Year and Rongali Bihu. In his message, Prof. Kushwaha expressed that Rongali Bihu is a colorful festival celebrated by the vibrant Assamese community wherever they reside and how it continues to be the lifeline of the socio-cultural life of the greater Assamese community.

The organizers also felicitated the Registrar of Rajiv Gandhi University, Prof. Tomo Riba who has been associated with the Bihu Celebrations at RGU from its very inception. Prof Riba highlighted that Rongali Bihu has come to fill the vacuum in Rono Hills after the Nyokum, Losar, Holi and Mopin celebrations and to rejuvenate the festive minds of the residents of Rono to dance again to the tune of the Bihu. Prof. Riba also sang a Bihu song and thus marked the close communion between the Assamese and Arunachali communities.

RONGILEE RONO, a Bihu Souvenir of Rajiv Gandhi University Bihu Celebration Committee, 2019 was also released. A number of Xusori and Bihu dances were performed by the RGU Assam Community, RGU Assam Students Forum and other invited Bihu troupes. Several other songs and dances celebrating the vibrant colours and diverse cultures of different communities were also presented. A musical presentation by the students of the Bihpuria Blind School remained the highlight and most pleasant part of the entire programme. Their performance enthralled and humbled the audience. The prizes for the painting and essay competitions held in the morning were also distributed.

Earlier in the morning, the day-long Bihu celebration started with the hoisting of the Bihu flag in front of the RGU main Auditorium by Prof. H.N. Sharma, the President of the Bihu Celebration Committee. Speaking at the event, Prof. Sharma highlighted the journey of the Bihu Celebration at RGU that started eighteen years ago and how it has bridged the hills and the plains by celebrating different hues and colours of life and the diversity among the different cultures.

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Governor meets with Sehlon Villagers

IT News
Imphal April 23,

The unheard voice of tribal villagers echoed at Raj Bhawan, Imphal in the presence of Hon’ble Governor of Manipur on 22 Apr 2019. In yet another initiative of Assam Rifles under aegis of IGAR (South), a 24 member delegation of tribal villagers of Sehlon region had an interaction with Hon’ble Governor. During this historic meeting, various issues pertaining to civil administration were brought into notice of the government. The delegation conveyed that the lack of basic amenities such as electricity, communication and education exists in the extremely remote region surrounding Sehlon.    Lack of employment opportunities was also flagged in the isolated region contiguous to the Indo-Myanmar border.
The Governor was also briefed by officers of Assam Rifles on additional initiatives taken by Assam Rifles under aegis of 28 Sector to encourage the locals in terms of commercial crop cultivation, export of exotic spices like cinnamon, creation of arts and crafts centre for employment generation and to provide alternatives to the locals for timber trade.
The Governor lauded the efforts of Assam Rifles and vowed uninhibited support to the villagers for bringing development in possibly the remotest region of the state.

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Assam Rifles Celebrates World Earth Day

IT News
Imphal April 23,

Under the theme of this year’s World Earth Day “Protect Our Species”, 9 Sector Assam Rifles under the aegis of IGAR(South) organised various activities on 22 April to acknowledge the role of earth which sustains and nurtures all living beings.
Keithelmanbi Battalion celebrated the Earth Day with the students of Lilong Higher Secondary Madrasa. An attempt was made by Lilong Company Operating Base (COB) of the Battalion to create awareness and motivate the young minds to contribute significantly towards nature preservation. As part of the awareness capsule, the COB organised an interactive lecture for the students to highlight the significance of “World Earth Day” and importance of pollution control and environment friendly measures. Subsequently a cleanliness drive was undertaken in the area of Lilong by the students of the Madrasa along with locals of the area. Over 300 locals including the students from the Madrasa as well as Police personnel from Lilong Police Station avidly  participated in the event.
Mantripukhri Battalion celebrated the World Earth day at Sawombung High School wherein over 60 students and teachers of the school enthusiastically participated in the event. An interactive lecture was delivered by teachers and personnel from Assam Rifles on “Environment Upkeep, Maintenance and Upgradation”. The lecture was a progressive step towards spreading awareness and an initiative to educate the future generation of the State. The event concluded with tea and refreshments for all.
The series of activities by the units of the Sector received an overwhelming response from the local populace. The staff of both the schools expressed profound gratitude and further appreciated the righteous gesture of the Assam Rifles in putting the environmental issues in spotlight and recurrently taking initiatives to foster the environment friendly measures in the state.

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Popular Front of India joins the grief of Sri Lanka

IT News
Imphal, April 23,

Popular Front of India has strongly condemned the serial blasts on  Easter day in Sri Lanka which took away more than 200 lives and left about 500 people injured. Popular Front chairman E Abubacker in statement issued here today expressed solidarity with the people of our neighbouring nation and joined their grief at this hour of mourning.
The details of the serial explosions carried out in churches and hotels are not known. It is hoped that Sri Lankan Government agencies would be able to find out those forces that acted behind these terrorist attacks without any time lapse. Whomsoever be   the terrorists master minded the Colombo mass murders, whatsoever be their motives in acting so heinously, the whole incident is undoubtedly a crime against humanity. E Abubacker hoped that as we have witnessed in the case of recent New Zealand mass firings, the victims of Sri Lankan blasts would receive both domestic and international support by all means.

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