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Items filtered by date: Tuesday, 04 June 2019 - Imphal Times

Unfriendly wind blows in N. Biren Singh government; major reshuffle likely soon

IT News

Imphal, June 4,

Political theatre of the N. Biren Singh led Manipur Government saw unfriendly wind blowing post 17th Lok Sabha Election as some important cabinet ministers abstain from attending the Cabinet Meeting held today at Ukhrul District head quarter.

There are no appropriate reasons known on why some Cabinet Ministers holding important portfolio refrained from the important Cabinet Meeting held at Ukhrul district head quarter for the first time after the 17th Lok Sabha Election. However, source said today’s picture show something messy which has been talking around within the political circle of the ruling government for quite some time.

Source said that some top profile Cabinet Ministers of the BJP are not attending the meeting as a mark of protest in the N. Biren Singh politics to the pressure for reshuffling of the Cabinet Ministers.  A Cabinet Minister has been lobbying for the Deputy Chief Minister post but for reason best known to the Chief Minister, he seems helpless to convert the demand into action as he cannot take any decision without getting a “yes’ from the high command.

As for the NPP Cabinet Ministers, their absence from the Cabinet Meeting is a kind protest or threat to the much talk about dropping out of some Ministers.

Why Nemcha Kipgen, the only woman Cabinet Minister who is holding the Social Welfare portfolio were absent is a matter that needs to be pondered upon.

With today’s development, the much talk about cabinet reshuffle in the N. Biren Singh government seems to be just not a mere talk but soon to be happening. It is likely that the post of Deputy Chief Minister is likely to be pulled out from the NPP and handed over to a BJP top profile minister. At least two from among the BJP MLAs are also likely to be inducted in the Cabinet Ministry, the source affirmed.

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Workshop on - ‘Making Phayeng a model carbon positive eco- village’

IT News
Imphal, June 4,

A one day outreach workshop on climate change- making Phayeng a model carbon positive eco- village was held today at Institute of Cooperative Management, Lamphelpat.
Speaking in the inaugural function of the workshop Guest of Honour Deputy Director Directorate of Environment Brajakumar said that Under the initiative of Environment Department along with various line Department built a model project on how to adapt the changing climate. An integrated project was adopted at Phayeng village as a model project where it was composed of 21 components out of which it includes projects of forest conservation, water resources management, livelihood and many more.
He added that self help groups were also introduced to enhance the economy of the people of the area making an alternative livelihood.
He also said that Various training programs will also done for the women. And ICM will be the resource centre for the training programs. The training will include mushroom cultivation, food processing and various others were the people can easily sustain their life.

With the changing climatic condition he said that the people cannot fully depend on agriculture products. People faced many problem in doing agriculture nowadays with the variable change in the climate.
Brajakumar added that they have focused primarily on women because with the changing climate women sector were mostly affected as men can migrate and work to other places. He added that folk women stay in their village and search for their livelihood. He concluded that the training program will focus on the ways to sustain a livelihood for the women of Phayeng.
 Addressing the function as Chief Guest Economist Prof Mohendro said that the people have been focusing more on day to day activities and forget the long run. He added that doing something to decrease the drastic climate change will not only benefitted the present generation but will also benefit the next one. It will surely make a comfortable environment for the child which doesn’t see the world till now.
Mohendro said that if Human doesn’t disturb the nature than the earth will not face such drastic change in the climate.
He also said that women plays a very important role and added that there needs a revolution in making livelihood.
The workshop was organised by Institute of Cooperative Management under the sponsorship of Directorate of Environment Government of Manipur.
Director of ICM N. Ranjana was also present as the President of the function.

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Zeliangrong body denounces insult of their culture

IT News

Imphal, June 4,

A performance by a group of people, who are well known to some of the people of the state for their appearance at some of the Manipuri video film, at the traditional Manipuri ritual festival “Lai Haraoba” has angered the Zeliangrong Arts and Culture organization Manipur, saying that those group of people is leading the cultural sanctity of the Zeliangrong Community, which is the only tribal ethnic community which follow the indigenous religion.

Talking to media persons , President of the Zeliangrong Arts and Culture organization Manipur said that performing a Zeliangrong cultural dance without understanding the culture of Zeliangrong is not only an insult to the Zeliangrong Community but also is an attempt to mislead the culture and identity of the Zeliangrong Community.

“Those boys and girls who are told to be known to some people for their appearance at video film wear dresses which are not of the Zeliangrong community while performing the dance at the Lai Haraoba ritual festival at Moirang Thangjing”, the President said.

He added that those dress which are meant for the girls were being wore by boys and that some dress which are not at all connected with the Zeliangrong tradition are being wore by the girls.

“This is an insult to the Zeliangrong culture and tradition”, He said.

He further added that if anybody wants to perform the traditional or cultural dance they have to first understand the sanctity of the culture of that community. There is nothing wrong to perform some other community’s cultural dance but if that sabotage and mislead the sanctity of the culture then it could not be tolerated.

He further said that Zeliangrong religion though is Polytheism, it follow its own indigenous religion.

He said that  Zeliangrong community have different dress code for religion and social purpose , there are dress code on when to wear at the time harvesting crop , there are dress code on when to wear during ritual ceremony  and so and so. If this dress code is made confused then it is an attack to the identity.

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“Air pollution” Focal theme of World Environment Day 2019

World Environment Day (WED) is celebrated on the 5th June every year and is the United Nations’ Principle vehicle for encouraging awareness and action for the protection of our Environment. First held in 1974, it has been a flagship campaign for raising awareness on emerging Environmental issues from marine pollution, human over pollution and global warming, to sustainable consumption and wild life crime. WED has grown to become a global platform for public outreach with participation from over 143 countries annually. Each year WED has a new theme that major corporations, NGOs, Communities, government and celebrities worldwide adopt to advocate environmental causes. World Environment Day (WED) was established by UN General Assembly in 1972, on the first day of Stockholm conference on Human Environment, resulting from discussion on the integration of human interactions and the environment. Two years later, in 1974 the first WED was held with the theme “Only One Earth”. Even though WED celebration have been held annually, since 1974, in 1987 the idea of rotating the Center of these activities through selecting different host countries. This year’s focal theme of WED is “AirPollution” and the host country is the China.
       Air pollution is a global public health crisis causing unnecessary early mortality and ill health at a huge economic cost to society. It also impacts on our natural Environment altering habitats. World Environment Day 2019 is a great opportunity to increase awareness of this, the world’s most pressing environmental issue of the 21st century. Air pollution, refers to the release of pollutants into the air that are detrimental to human health and planets as a whole. Most air pollution comes from energy use and production. Burning fossil fuels releases gases and chemicals into the air. And in an especially destructive feedback loop, air pollution not only contribute to climate change but is also exacerbated by it. Air pollution in the form of carbon dioxide and Methane arises the Earth’s temperature. Another type of air pollution is then worsened by that increased heat: smog forms when the weather is warmer and there is more ultraviolet radiation. Climate change also increase the production of allergenic air pollutants including mold (thanks to damps conditions caused by extreme weather and increased flooding) and pollen (due to longer pollen season and more pollen production).
          Smog and soot are the most prevalent types of air pollution. Smog or greenhouse-level Ozone as it is more wonkily called; occurs when emissions from combusting fossil fuels react with sunlight. Soot or particulate matters made up of tiny particles of chemicals, soil, smoke, dust or allergens in the form of gas or solids, that are carried in the air. The source of smog and soot are similar, both come from cars and trucks, factories, power plants, incinerators, engine-anything that combusts fossil fuel such as coal, gas or natural gas. The tiniest airborne particles in soot whether they are in the form of gas or solids, an especially dangerous because they can penetrate the lungs and blood streams and worsen bronchitis, lead to heart attacks and even hasten death. Smog can irritate eyes and throat and also damage the lungs –especially people who work or exercise outside, children and senior citizens. It’s even worse for people who has asthma or allergies- these extra pollutants only intensify their symptoms and can trigger asthma attacks. Some of the most common hazardous air pollutants are Mercury, Lead, dioxins and benzene. These are also most often emitted during gas or coal combusting, incinerating or in the case of benzene, found in gasoline. Benzene classified as a carcinogen can cause eye, skin and lungs irritation in the short term and blood disorders in the long term. Dioxins more typically found in food but also present in small amounts in the air, can affect the liver in short term and harm the immune, nervous and endocrine system as well as reproductive functions, says JhonWalke, Director of the Clean Air Project, part of the Climate and Clean Air Program at NRDC. Lead, in large amounts can damage children’s brains and kidneys and even in small amount, it can affect children’s IQ and ability to learn. Mercury affects the central nervous system. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons or PAHs, are toxic components of traffic exhaust and wildfire smoke. In large amounts, they have been linked to eye and lungs irritation, blood and liver issue and even cancer. In one recent study, the children of mothers who’d had higher PAH exposure during pregnancy had slower brain processing speeds and worse symptoms of Attention Defect Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
     By trapping the Earth’s heat in the atmosphere, greenhouse gases lead to warmer temperatures and all the hallmarks of climate change: rising sea level, more extreme weather, heat related deaths and increasing transmission of infectious diseases like LYME. According to a 2014 EPA study, carbon dioxide was responsible for 81% of country’s total greenhouse gas emissions and methane made up 11%.Carbon dioxide comes from combusting fossil fuels and methane comes from natural and industrial sources including the large amounts that are released during oil and gas drilling. We emit far larger amounts of carbon dioxide but methane is significantly more potent, so it’s also very destructive. Another class of greenhouse gases are hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) are thousands of times more powerful than carbon dioxide in their ability to trap heat. In October 2016, more than 140 countries reached an agreement to reduce the use of these chemicals which are used in air conditioners and refrigerators – and find greener alternative over time. Mold and allergens from trees, weeds and grass also carried in the air, are exacerbated by climate change and can be hazardous to health. They are not regulated by government and are less directly connected to human actions but they can be considered Air Pollution: when homes, schools or business get water damage, mold can grow and produce allergenic airborne pollutants. Mold exposure can precipitate asthma attacks or an allergic response and some molds can even produce toxins that would be dangerous for anyone to inhale. Pollen allergies are worsening because of climate change. Lab and field studies are showing that the more carbon dioxide pollen-producing plants especially ragweed are grown, in the bigger they grow and more pollen they produce worse is the condition. Climate change also extends the pollen production seasons and some studies are beginning to suggest that ragweed pollen itself might be becoming a more potent allergen.  That means, more people will suffer hay fever, runny nose, itchy eyes and other symptoms.
      Selecting “Air Pollution” as the focal theme of this year’s (2019) World Environment Day is highly significant in present day dreaded condition of air pollution all over the world and consequences we are facing. This is, we people who are responsible for all these, may be air pollution may be climate change and global warming and its effects. According to local dailies report, 65,000 tree sapling will be planted within one hour (9am to 10 am) on 5th June in the Schools and Colleges of Manipur in connection with World Environment Day 2019 under theinitiative of Education Minister Shri Th.RadheshyamSingh. In fact it’s a great step forward and highly appreciated. An Earth’s Anthem penned by poet Abhay K is sung to celebrate World Environment Day. The anthem is:
Our Cosmic oasis, cosmic blue pearl,
The most beautiful planet in Universe,
All the continents and oceans,

United we stand as flora & fauna,
United we stand as species of one earth,
Different culture, belief and ways,
We are humans, the earth is our home,
All the people and nations of the world,
All for one and one for all,
United we unfurl the blue flag.
 Let’s all sing together this anthem and join the hands together to prevent the dare consequences of all types of pollutions not only air pollution, for a better and greener mother planet Earth.

Religious Fanatics: A Gift of BJP to India

By : Inamul Haq

Finally, India’s election is over, and BJP led by Narender Nath Modi, has made a clean sweep of majority seats. Celebrations were held across the country till midnight. The other parties like the Indian National Congress and UP Gathbandan did not win the favour of people even on gandhigiri or caste politics and identity. On what manifesto, was the 2019 election fought in India? According to sources, unemployment rate increased during the first regime of Modi and, it is noteworthy that the figures show such an increase after 45 years. The worsening conditions of farmers across India was also a big issue which surfaced throughout the campaigning of the 2019 election. Education, demonetization, GST, water, roads, electricity and people friendly schemes were some of other issues raised as well. While the manifesto of Congress denoted all these issues, BJP’s was only based on national security and the repeal of Article 370.

This time the Indian election 2019 was the signal of division. Supporters and advocates of BJP believe that the alternative of winning the election is to divide the people on the name of religion, rather than caste and identity. In the darker depths, this election was at ease with a particularly virulent brand of nationalism. In different rallies, BJP leaders spoke against Muslims, by calling them outsiders, traitors, anti-nationals. They made it openly known that only BJP can sweep ‘the Muslim menace’ away from the country. On WhatsApp university, videos were made under the theme of Hindu-Muslim and this theme remained a part of the conversation in the circle of friends, either in school or playground. Religion-based bullying is rampant all over India.  BJP did not remain confined on the division, but they have started to hiken ultra-nationalism among the people. Ultra-nationalism seems to reach its heights when Kashmir issue is discussed, and BJP seized the opportunity to bank on the conflict in Kashmir, reaping a huge success among its supporters and even their non-supporters. Militarization took the upper hand. According to political analyst, Tanveer Alam, the rhetoric espoused by Modi and BJP has also intensified violence in Kashmir and post - Pulwama attack on 14th February, changed the election discourse. Pakistan involuntarily was dragged into it. Soon after government responded with threats against Pakistan followed by an air strike in Balakote region. In retaliation, Pakistan shot down two Indian aircrafts from which a wing commander namely, Abhinandhan, was taken into custody. Later, PM Imran Khan made the decision to release him as a peace gesture. This issue was politicised by the Modi government and even crossed the limits by called Indian army as Modiji ki Sena. The air strike on Pakistan and banning of Jammat-e-Islami and JKLF, detention of Yasin Malik and other separatists evoked a ultra-nationalism euphoria among the people, that only BJP can save the country. On the other hand, parties like Congress and communist parties of India were known collectively and derisively as the Lutyens club and pseudo-seculars raised the spectre of Hindu terrorism, when BJP gave ticket to the Malegaon accused Pragya Singh Thakur from Bhopal, who cursed Hemant Karkare and later announced the man who assassinated Gandhi, Nathuram Godse, a ‘patriot’ (Deshbhakt).  Whatever drawbacks and shortcomings obvious during the 5 years BJP ruled the nation, left no impact on the voters. Instead they felt incarnations of God in Modi, whom they believe can give them Kashmir and destroy Pakistan, a sentiment Modi successfully instilled in the people and which influenced them to come in large droves to re-elect him.
In recent times other countries have seen a significant shift politically with secularism getting the centre stage. The trend being; people rejecting religious fanatics and voting for secular forces. The best example is Pakistan, where a global terrorist Hafiz Sayed also contested in the elections. However, he was defeated as the rest of people know that he will spread venom against the minorities and these forces can further weaken the economy of the country. In Malaysia, for instance, the multi-racial population united to end the 61 years of ruling by BarisanNasionalparty mainly due to racial politics being used as a weapon to divide the people and for the former prime minister being involved in the 1MDB scandal which points at a high level of corruption. It is interesting to note that 70 % of the population of Malaysia is made up of Malay Muslims, same as the former PM. Yet, they decided to reject him. The people both majority and minorities united and voted against him to save the country from further destruction. Similarly, during the recent presidentialelections held in Indonesia, president Joko Widodo was re-elected.