Imphal Free Press - Imphal Free Press
Thursday, 15 June 2017 05:30

Embracing Dissent View

All of us look at the world through different sets of assumptions. Our observations and interpretations are bound to differ from one another. A political view or an opinion that one may have cannot enjoy absolute sacrosanctity. All our views and opinions are subject to conflict with other views with a different ideational base. Yet, it is also important to recognise that these differences are very much part of any social debate. This fundamental understanding has its primacy more so with those who are actively involved in social actions. The vanguards of social organisations who are leading any sort of movement should be able to live and grow with the debate. For this, one must be able to withstand the battle of ideas with convincing reasoning. The tendency of overruling a divergent view through intimidation, as the only weapon, is a brazen sign of intolerance germinating from the poverty of ideas. Any socio-political movement is premised on political beliefs of those leading the movement. It is also important to recognise that movement is a form of collective action in which the motivation to act springs largely from the common aspirations of different individuals, who are united by common beliefs. Their sense of commitment and activism must be guided by those beliefs. It is unfortunate that there have been tendencies to equate social movement with raw street hooliganism, or spontaneous upheaval of public sans any planned action in pursuit of a particular goal. Intolerance and intimidation has apparently become tactical weapons. We have seen this in many of the agitations that rocked the state in recent times.

In the context of Manipur, it is indeed unfortunate that those in the helms of a movement seem to have ignored the fact that not everyone sees the world with the same eyes. Looking at the current trend of organisational behavior, it is apparent that those in the movement have shut themselves off from any divergent views. Alone and isolated, without the support of the people, a movement is vulnerable to alienation and disillusionment. Besides, the conduct of the activist in many spheres demand a serious introspection on their part. The activists have failed to understand that their actions, their words and their efforts towards a goal are part of a larger organisational mechanism. There are also indications of sheer deficit in terms of inducting energetic individuals as activist into the organisational fold, who would selflessly commit to a cause. Perhaps the unguarded habit of the activist of breathing down on the people, which is in many ways similar to the conduct of the state security forces known for their arrogance, implies many things. One clear implication is their obvious lack of ideological moorings. With all due respect to their commitments and sacrifices, a true dialogue particularly on their conduct with the general masses is called for. If not, the historical task of democratic mobilisation of any movement will remain an impossible task. The beginning of action in that direction should be through self-introspection. That should be the core dimension of any organisation that wishes to build a better future. Having said this, ideological foundation should be the guiding light in every step of an organisation. And in this very aspect, a question may be posed, whether our social organisations have surrendered their ideology or not. We believe they have not; the need is to replenish it by accommodating dissent views for it to grow.


Leader Writer: Senate Kh.

Published in Editorial
Thursday, 15 June 2017 05:30

ZUF condoles Khaplang

The Zeliangrong United Front (ZUF) extended its deepest sympathy and condolence to the bereaved family of “Baba” SS Khaplang, chairman NSCN-K) and the NSCN-K revolutionaries, on the demise of the Naga rebel leader.
A statement issued by ZUF chairman, Jenchui Kamei, said that a tragic event has silenced a dynamic leader, “Baba” SS Khaplang and the vacuum he left behind will never be able to filled.
“The loss will be deeply mourned by all who knew you. But the example of your leadership and your accomplishments will remain as a lasting legacy for all your people for whom you worked so hard”, said Kamei.
The memory of your brilliant leadership will, however remain a source of inspiration and encouragement to all the revolutionaries, countrymen and fellow citizens, he said.
“Our thoughts are with the family members and the NSCN-K revolutionaries in this moment of grief. We pray God may give you the same strength and courage that earned Baba SS Khaplang the esteem of his countrymen,” added the ZUF chairman.

Published in Brief News
Thursday, 15 June 2017 05:30

Rims lab earns NABL accreditation

IMPHAL | June 15
HIV Laboratory (NRL & ICTC), department of microbiology, RIMS, Imphal which is one of the 12 National Reference Laboratories (NRL) in India has been granted NABL accreditation by the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories in the field of medical testing.
A release said its lab carries out HIV testing by rapid tests and western blot tests to detect antibodies against HIV. RIMS, Imphal is the only government medical institute to get such accreditation in Manipur.
NABL is a third party organisation which checks for quality of testing, competence of staff, proper infrastructure etc. for overall correctness of the test reports for the benefit of the patients as well as the treating doctors, it added.

Published in Brief News
Thursday, 15 June 2017 05:30

Nemcha hears out grievances

IMPHAL | June 15 (DIPR)
Social welfare and cooperation minister, Nemcha Kipgen today met and ardently heard the grievances of the public on the occasion of Meeyamgi Numit at her office chamber at New Secretariat, Imphal.
Most of the issues highlighted before the minister were related to non-payment of old age pension, schemes and job opportunities for differently-abled people, construction of anganwadi centres and some of the concern related to her departments.
The minister expressed deep gratitude in directly reaching out and interacting to the people on this day specially dedicated for the people. She aspires to fulfil all the wishes and desires of the people as a leader and assured for necessary actions.
More than 100 visitors came to meet the minister and all the visitors were given the opportunity to directly interact with her. Officials from the departments concerned also interacted with the minister.

Published in Brief News

After the success of the first “Meeyamgi Numit”, hundreds of people turned up to highlight their grievances to chief minister N. Biren Singh at the second “Meeyamgi Numit” held at CM’s Secretariat today.
Since early morning, scores of people gathered outside the CM secretariat complex to get their coupon having serial numbers. Elaborate arrangements were made for the convenience of the general public.
A medical team along with an ambulance was also kept on stand-by for any medical emergency at the complex.
The chief minister attended over 420 complaints personally and met nearly 3000 people from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm.
Among different issues, demands like inauguration of MAASI tourist complex, Keirao, issues regarding Prime Minister Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP), electrification of Thiwa village, Senapti district, non-distribution of PDS items under National Food Security Aact (NFSA) and introduction of biometric attendance system in remote areas of the state etc.
Biren Singh said that among several grievances, he is deeply concerned with the problems, especially faced by differently-abled persons, widows, victims of terrorism and old-aged people. A humane approach is needed to console these people, he added.
He further said that infrastructural developments programmes such as development in terms of providing drinking water facility, blacktopping of roads and uninterrupted power supply to the people etc. can’t reinforce the idea of inclusive development in the State.
To deliver inclusive growth and development in the State, the government would take up many concrete steps to uplift the socio-economic status of all sections of society that can transform people’s lives in the State, he added.
Highlighting the responsibilities of the deputy commissioners, he stated that the function of a DC does not end with ensuring good administration.
They have to look into the nature of implementing welfare schemes and developmental projects, and also to assess the progress of these works, he observed.
He asked the DCs to conduct field visits and periodically review the schemes in their respective districts rather than relying on the assessment report submitted by the subordinate staffs.
The chief minister also appealed to the DCs to look into people’s woes and solve these problems at the micro level in their respective districts.
Education, labour and employment minister Th. Radheshyam also met the public as part of the ‘Meeyamgi Numit’ at his residence at Canchipur. Hearing the grievances of around 300 people he said, he could not give any commitment but can assure that he will do his best to lessen the matters that are being brought to his knowledge.
Officials and faculties from his concern departments and people from other places came to meet the minister. Besides, people from his constituency and other places also came to meet him.

Published in News

IMPHAL June 15
Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan inaugurated the16th North East Regional Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Conference (NERCPA-2017) in the premises of the Manipur Legislative Assembly, today.
In her inaugural address, Mahajan said that North East is a window in the national efforts to connect with the East and South East Asia which is playing a vital role in the emergence of a resurgent Asia.
As such, the government is having an ambitious plan to build roads and ports connectivity with the South-East Asian countries through Myanmar for promotion of trade, commerce and tourism, she said.
Mahajan observed that North East India has an extraordinarily important strategic dimension and is a vital part of nation’s defence architecture. She further said that the strategic location and natural resources make the region a potential power house of India for development and progress. As such, the ‘Act East Policy’ for all round development of North East is the top most priority for the entire nation.
Observing that today policy making has become a highly complex process and there is greater emphasis now on good governance based on transparency and accountability, Mahajan emphasized that in order to perform legislative duties effectively, it is essential for legislators to seek the guidance of domain experts in areas which are specialized and technical in nature.
As a member and now a Speaker, she noticed the problems faced by members in understanding several key issues that confront the nation and come up for the consideration of Parliament. In order to address this issue, it was decided to bring in domain experts to orient members by creating a perspective on various important issues. It was thus the Speakers’ Research Initiative (SRI) was institutionalized in the Lok Sabha Secretariat in July 2015, she mentioned.
Lok Sabha Speaker informed the delegates that SRI focuses on identifying core areas/issues of long term and strategic policy, generate high quality research  inputs and devise appropriate mechanisms for interaction with members of both the Houses of Parliament for the purpose of information dissemination and capacity building.
She hoped that a similar mechanism for the North Eastern States would be of great help to the legislators. She encouraged the legislators to be proactive and said that ‘until you spread your wings, you don’t know how far you can fly’.
Deputy chief minister Y. Joykumar Singh said that the Look East Policy initiated in the early 1990s, is largely founded upon the growing necessity for multi-dimensional connectivity. It is a composite policy aimed at accomplishing greater economic and political ties with South East Asian countries.
Welcoming the delegates, Manipur Speaker Yumnam Khemchand Singh said that Manipur is a land of peace and tranquility. He pointed out that the Act East Policy calls upon all to get prepared and be ready to engage with the rest of the world. The task, he said, is not simple and easy and what we need is collective, comprehensive and coordinated move with strong political will to meet the challenges of the region.
Khemchand said further said that the strategic location of Manipur between India and South East Asian countries underlines the additional expectations of the state to act as ‘land bridge’.
In his keynote address, Meghalaya Speaker and chairperson, NERCPA A. T. Mondal said that CPA has played a major role in promoting the spirit of mutual cooperation and harmony between member countries. Referring to connectivity-related challenges in the region, he said that transportation and communication are the two important areas where special emphasis is required.
Mondal also underlined that the acute problem of education and unemployment need serious attention and alternative job market with the help of private sector should be created to solve the existing imbalance.
Later in the day, the conference took up discussion on the first item on the agenda ‘North East and Look East Policy’. The discussion remained inconclusive and will be taken up tomorrow.

Atul Kaushik, additional secretary, Lok Sabha secretariat, made a presentation on Speaker’s Research Initiative (SRI) which has been institutionalized in Lok Sabha in July 2015. He also responded to queries of the delegates.

The Conference adopted a resolution, resolving to request the Speaker Lok Sabha to consider setting up of a chapter of SRI in the North East Region so that the benefits of Speaker’s Research Initiative activities are made available to the legislatures and legislators of the region regularly and at an easily accessible place.

Published in News

Chief minister N Biren Singh today launched a mobile phone App named “Redmine App” with the objective to facilitate mobile SMS correspondence to the people whose grievances have been recorded at the chief minister’s secretariat on Meeyamgi Numit and Hill people’s Day (People’s Day).
The CM’s secretariat will communicate with the people through the SMS by using the App on the action taken status/progress of their complaints, registered during the “People’s Day.
The App was launched infront of hundreds of people who have gathered at the chief minister’s bungalow to attend the second Meeyamgi Numit (People’s Day).
Addressing the gathering during the launching ceremony, N Biren disclosed that he received altogether 115 complaints on the last Meeyamgi Numit on May 15.
Of the total complaints, he revealed that 15 cases had been solved and 25 cases closed while necessary official communications are underway for the remaining 65 cases.
He said with the launch of the new App the people need not come again to his secretariat to enquire about the progress of their complaints and added that it would be sent to their mobile numbers with the help of the App.
Stating that people’s woes are so numerous, the chief minister contended that the government would do whatever is possible to resolve all the problems.

Published in News
Thursday, 15 June 2017 05:30

Police confiscate tobacco items

By A Staff Reporter
A team of Imphal East police today confiscated tobacco products worth over Rs 15 lakhs from separate places in Imphal East district and arrested two individuals.
A press conference was convened in this regards at the office of the superintendent of police, Imphal East, wherein the confiscated items along with the arrested individual were displayed before the media.
Briefing media persons, the Imphal East SP, Kabib K said that the tobacco products were seized during its continued drive against smokeless tobacco products.
He revealed that under his guidance the drive was supervised by Wungpam Kasar, additional SP (L&O) and Robinsun Khamnam, deputy SP (CDO Imphal East) and under the command of inspector B Lunthang, officer-in-charge of commando Imphal East.
The items were confiscated during raids conducted at a godown at about 7.30 am at Hatta Telepati and search operation at 12.10 pm at Mantripukhri area, he said.
He continued that during the first raid the team recovered tobacco products (Zarda) worth Rs. 11,81,110 and Khaini Golden (chewing tobacco) worth Rs. 3,45,600.
The SP further said that two individuals have also been arrested from Mantripukhri near NRL oil pump in connection with the case.
They have been identified as Md Riyajuddin (23), son of Md Jahuruddin of Urup Awang Leikai and Md Muhit Khan (32), son of Md Ibotombi of Sora Makha Leikai.
The confiscated items have been handed over to officials of food safety department.

Published in News
Thursday, 15 June 2017 05:30

Flood victims demand compensation

By A Staff Reporter
IMPHAL | June 15
The Flood Effected Victims Welfare Association, Borayang G.P, (FEVWAGP) 2015 appealed to the state government the release the compensation equally to all the 2190 houses under Borayang G.P.
Addressing a press meet today at Manipur Press Club, Imphal the convenor Chungkham Tomba said that around fourteen villages under Borayang GP were affected by the flood that took place in the year 2015 but till now compensation which was announced by the government has not been given.
Taking the chance some of the people were trying to take out the compensation from the deputy commissioner claiming that only 100 houses were affected during the flood, which is totally false, he added.
He asked the state government to investigate the matter and take up action against those people who are trying to take the compensation of the needy people.
Tomba further asked the state government and the authority concern to release the compensation considering the suffering of the 2190 families.
Md. Nasir Khan, organisation secretary of United Development Organisation Borayangbi gram panchayat demanded compensation to victims as approved by the District Disaster Management Authority, Bishnupur at the earliest.
Speaking to the media today at Manipur Press Club, Nasir said in 2015 due to flood in Borayangbi area many houses were submerged and properties destroyed. District Disaster Management Authority, Bishnupur approved to sanction a sum of Rs. 28,86,000 for payment of relief to 555 persons whose houses were partly damaged by the flood occurred between July 29 to august 8, 2015. The order also mentioned that the consolidated sum should be distributed as Rs. 5,200 to each houses.
Nasir further appealed to the branch officer (account), DC office, Bishnupur to make the payment to the victims by account payee on their respective accounts weather in instalment basis or fully.

Published in News

IMPHAL | June 15
Frequent flash floods in Manipur is ‘man made’, due to the blockage of the natural drainage system. One of the main reasons for this disaster is the closure of the flood gates of Ithai dam, charged the banned Maoist Communist Party of Manipur.
A release by the outfit said the additional reasons are deforestation, systematic and continuous destruction of wetlands due to various projects and contract works, unplanned developmental activities that have destroyed traditional man made drainage systems, illegal encroachments, etc.
The imperialist corporate has only profit motive and does not care for the welfare of the people, it said adding the people of Manipur needs to be informed that any of the dams being built in Manipur does not benefit the people in any way.
It said Mapithel dam has benefitted private companies, contractors, bureaucrats and politicians who have collusively looted the construction cost and compensation money. The beneficiaries of these dams are the private corporate and local bourgeoisie who get to steal some portions of the construction and compensation money, it added.
The release continued the promise that Mapithel dam will provide drinking water is a lie only to legitimize the illegal project, and it does not make sense why water should be impounded at this dangerous level only for providing drinking water to the people.
Further it said the Loktak project has submerged and destroyed over 80,000 hectares of the most fertile cultivable land. The people of Manipur need about 517,00,000 tonnes of rice annually but the present annual production stands at about 420,00,000 tonnes only, it said, adding if the 80,000 hectares of agricultural land destroyed by Loktak multipurpose project were available, we would not have needed to import additional quantity of rice today.
The dependent economy could have been provided a breather. But, this being against the interest of an expansionist imperialist India, the Loktak project has served corporate India while destroying a huge portion of our traditional economy, displacing thousands of lives and destroying the Ramsar site, it added.
The so called developmental projects and activities of the state are mere cosmetic terminologies to advance the interests of the few against the collective interests of the people of Manipur, it maintained.
The release appealed to the people of Manipur to stand up against the construction of dams and destructive projects collectively in future.

Published in News
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About IFP

Imphal Free Press is a widely circulated English daily published in Manipur, North-East India. Started in 1996, it has relocated its head office from Sega Road, Imphal to Palace Gate, Imphal.

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