Caught in Crossfire
The prevailing issues in this salad bowl of a state, have been more or less desensitised to the population as the absence of law and order, crime and violence have benumbed their senses. Though the public has learn to accept the fact that these existing problems tend to drag on throughout the year, it has been of a general routine, as observed by the public, that with the arrival of summer in Manipur, its many issues suddenly intensifies or come alive to haunt the masses until the festival of Ningol Chakouba or Christmas arrives at their doorsteps to let the exhausted public take a moment’s break.
Summer has returned and so have the nightmares too. The worst affected and the usual victims of the conflicts plaguing Manipur are its school going students. And In a matter of days, reports will be flashed in newspapers in which little boys and girls whose sensitive young minds are still unable to make right
choices or decisions, are herded out in the summer heat and paraded in their school uniforms by the so-called student leaders, making them ‘hold’ protests against anything or anybody.
After the warm up is over, they will be battling against tear-gas, mock bombs, wrestling police personnel in the highways. Curfews will be imposed and classes will remain empty for a number of weeks and months. Our school going students have become pawns in a game of chess. No wonder, parents are doing whatever necessary means to send them outside the State for the sake of their career or to simply pursue a normal life. This has led to an exodus of young students seeking education outside the State and its results in the long run have been good as well as bad.
Students here are also caught in the middle of conflict between authoritative bodies and insurgents. T.E Lawrence, better known in popular culture as the Lawrence of Arabia, laid down the basics of insurgency in an article ‘Guerrilla warfare’ published in 1929, stating that a ‘passively sympathetic’ population is one of the keys to a successful rebellion or a revolution. It is said that his essay based on his personal experience of the Arab Revolt against the Turks, was studied by Chairman Mao who further advocated that insurgency ‘cannot exist if it separates from the sympathies and cooperation of the people.’ He pointed out that the goal should be to ‘attract the largest number of supporters and repel the minimum number of opponents.’ The Chairman is most probably turning in his grave now seeing that student community, which is supposed to be the most important section of the population, has been caught in the crossfire. They have no other choice except to run away outside
Manipur, carrying little affection of their home state in their very hearts. The rest of the students hailing from poor families, which consists of the larger population, are fated to go through all the trauma and pain. Some will find a way out from this nightmare though sports, by breaking their bodies in sweat and blood through hours of practice to achieve a medal and secure a job but irony is that not all of them are sportspersons.
They will be put under extreme pressure to study 24/7 by the well intending parents without ever considering the need for recreational activities to tackle the burden and the accompanying stress. Drugs and alcohol become a major temptation in such a situation and countless numbers of students have already fallen victims of substance abuse. Other than the few struggling, working class heroes who achieve success in the end through extreme hard work, as presented in Manipuri films, the students have no positive role models which they can relate to in real life. They will be left to find their role models in local goondas, corrupt politicians, and filthy rich contractors with no morals. A wallet full of cash gotten through easy means, drinking foreign liquor senseless at a gathering and returning home inebriated driving a four wheeler after a night of debauchery, have become the ideal lifestyle to be pursued in their minds.
Leader writer - Arambam Luther
IMPHAL | Oct 12 The State Cabinet today approved the ‘Stand Up Manipur’ scheme under the existing Start Up Manipur Scheme. The scheme will provide subsidy and soft loans to Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, OBC, Women and Minorities of the State for se.....
IMPHAL I Oct 12 The Government of India representative and interlocutor for the Naga peace talks, RN Ravi, who is also the Governor of Nagaland will hold a consultative meeting with the “primary stakeholders, Church leaders and civil societies” at 2.30.....
IMPHAL | Oct 12 “Every community in the State should be consulted by the state government before placing any political aspiration and demand to the Centre. We are all prepared to resist if the NSCN (IM) peace talks outcome compromises state’s territori.....
IMPHAL | Oct 12 More than 150 passengers were left stranded for nearly 24 hours at Bir Tikendrajit International Airport (BTIA) after one of the rear tyres of a Delhi bound Air Asia flight deflated before taking off yesterday. When IFP went to enqui.....