The Cine Actors Guild and Film Forum Manipur have not made any commitment on the telephonic conversation between Kangleipak Kanba Lup (KKL) and the two bodies, about actor Soma Laishram participating in a beauty pageant in New Delhi on September 16. KKL did not send an official letter to the Cine Actors’ Guild or the Film Forum Manipur regarding the ban; instead, the ban was announced on social media platforms on September 18. However, a letter was subsequently sent to the two organizations the following day, urging them to take action against Soma Laishram. Gurumayum Bonny, General Secretary of the Cine Actors Guild, made these statements during a press conference held at the Manipur Press Club today.
Bonny strongly criticized the ban on Soma Laishram and stated, “People of all ages, as well as Civil Service Organizations and Meira Paibis, are contributing to the ongoing conflict to protect the territorial integrity of Manipur in their own ways. Every year, actors and singers from Manipur participate in the North East Festival organized by the NGO My Home India. Soma Laishram attended the festival representing Manipur. KKL’s statement about the fashion show clearly demonstrates their lack of understanding about the event. Soma attended the event as a showstopper, which is different from being a model walking the runway in terms of personality and other factors. The outfit she wore at the event was not of her own choosing but was designed by renowned Assamese designer Moushmi Borah and Pallavi Hajari, based on ethnic cultural attire. The attire she wore that day was a fusion of different attires from the Northeast states of India, promoting cultural integration and holding symbolic meaning. The allegations on social media about her wearing an inappropriate dress that day are unfortunate and tantamount to damaging her professional career.
Bonny Gurumayum also emphasized that the Cine Actors Guild and Film Forum Manipur have not imposed any form of ban on Soma Laishram.
The Chairperson of Film Forum Manipur, Surjakanta Laimayum, expressed strong disapproval of the ban on Soma Laishram by KKL, deeming it unfounded and inappropriate. Surjakanta also emphasized that Soma Laishram’s arrival in Manipur should be celebrated with a grand reception. Surjakanta further pointed out that the ongoing conflict has caused the production of many films by Soma Laishram to be halted, and if a ban is imposed, it would result in significant financial losses for the film producers. Surjakanta questioned whether KKL would be willing to take responsibility for these losses.
Surjakanta condemned the obstruction of Film Forum Manipur’s activities by organizations and urged them not to repeat such actions in the future. Surjakanta emphasized the importance of discussing any matter but stressed that no authority should be imposed over Film Forum Manipur, as it holds the highest authority.