By: Ngul Min Thang
Manipur, one of the seven North-Eastern states is home to three major communities , The Meiteis of the Valley and The Kukis and Nagas of the Hills. While Meiteis account for almost 50% of the State`s population they dominate a mere 10% of the States total geographical area. On the other hand The Kukis and Nagas constitute 40% of the State`s total population and dominate over 90% of the State`s total geographical area. While Meiteis, Pangals, Bishnupurians etc come under the Meitei fold, Rongmeis, Zeliangs, Inpuis, Tangkhuls, Kabuis,Poumais, Maos etc comes under The Naga fold and Thadous, Gangtes, Vaipheis, Simtes, Paites, Hmars, Zous, Koms, Chirus, Chothes etc comes under the Kuki fold. Manipuri/Meiteilon is the Official language of the State accorded a Sechdule Language status under the Indian Constitution. While the Nagas of Manipur donot have a Lingua Franca besides Meiteilon, the Kukis on the other hand have a developed Lincua Francua among themselves.
The State of Manipur had history of Full Scale Corruption and Failure in almost all fields of the Structure upon which the state was built. Most writers, intellectuals and philantrophist describes Manipur as a failed marriage partly due to the ineffectiveness of the Govt in handling issues and the Centrifugal Domination policy of the majorities. Manipur has over 30+ active Insurgent Groups each fighting for a cause Justifiable in their Individual views. The State has seen a Bloody History of Ethnic Conflicts ranging from the Meitei-Pangal, Kuki-Naga, Kuki-Tamil etc etc. Strange things occur in Manipur each and everyday. Strikes, Bandhs etc being called for the slightest reasons, Adulteration of Consumables at the cost of Consumers, Kidnappings, Ransoms, 10% Issues, Post of Tribal Development held by Non Tribal, Communalization upon the Slightest issues etc etc, all these Strange occurances and Happenings in Manipur makes it indeed the Land of Undesired Jewels. The State had so much to learn from its past doings and all these would have made the Govt to be more cautious while looking ahead. Yet, it didnot have the Slightest impact upon the structure and approach of the Govt. The most unchallengeable example would be the CM leaving for a Luxurious Foreign Tour in the midst of the Economic turmoil that has eaten the State and a simple issue of District Creation. All these headlines indeed proves the failure of Manipur in fulfilling the dreams of Manipurians to live and be treated as it should be in one of the largest democracy of the world.
On the other hand the state of Nagaland, the immediate neighbour of Manipur with a geographical area of 16,567, Sq Kms is a home to a diverse group of people much more diverse than Manipur. The State despite its diverseness managed to settle under Naga owing to the growing conciousness and oneness among its citizens. The State though blessed with a rough landscape has progressed far more than Manipur in terms of Gross National Happiness. The people of the State today are happy and satisifed with their present position and system of Govt. Corruption spares no one and this is true for Nagaland as well. Corruption in Nagaland is rampant yet, its level are lower than Manipur where, funds starts from 10% deduction from the CM`s hand, to the 2%, 5% etc etc from different groups. Ransoms and Rapes are a common occurences in Nagaland but all these occurences can be marked as occuring due to external influence. Stability and Normal livelihood in Nagaland too crumbles whenever there is a Crisis going on in Manipur. The impacts are neither Economical dependance, nor Political dominance. The impacts are purely Social. Social in the sense that the two major groups in Manipur other than the Meiteis share huge Social linkages with Nagaland. The Linkage which the two groups of Manipur have with Nagaland are far more than the Social linkage they have with their Root State. Therefore Nagaland gets adversely affected with happenings in Manipur. The Kuki-Naga conflict in Manipur of the 90`s affected Nagaland alot. The Conflict which could have ended in Manipur with effective Govt undertaking, spreaded towards Nagaland mostly affecting Peren and Dimapur districts where Kukis are found in huge numbers. The Naga cause of Manipur means nothing for the Nagas in Nagaland yet the strong social linkage couldnot keep the Nagas of Nagaland out of the picture , though they are aware of the baselessness and irrationality to mingle with an out of the box issue. The Kuki Genocide of the 92`s left some ugly marks in Nagaland too. While most of the
Kukis of Nagaland were peacefully living with their neighbours the Kacha Naga intervention in Nagaland through the NSCN-M left some doubts within the minds of the Nagas of Nagaland. The Kacha Naga intervention in Nagaland let to the deterioration of age old friendship and cordial relation between Naga tribes like Zeliang-Sema, Sema-Angami, etc . The Kukis of Nagaland too were not spared from what was going on. The Manipur Nagas under the excuse of NSCN-IM carried out elimination of Kuki officers in Nagaland. They burned down Kuki Villages in Nagaland using local Nagas as mere buffers. While the Tangkhuls who paid royalty to the Chassad Chiefs in Manipur opposed Kukis under the name Naga, the Kukis of Nagaland never ever had any history of strained relationship with their Co-Inhabiting tribes in Nagaland particularly the Angamis, Semas and Zeliangs. The territorial dominance of Kukis and their neighbours like Angamis, Semas and Zeliangs are mutually respected by each other unlike Manipur where the Servants rebels against the Master and Vice-Versa. While tribes like the Zeliangs who are mostly migrant from Manipur and Angamis favoured the false propaganda of NSCN-IM in Nagaland for some time, the other Sister tribes like the Aos, Semas, Konyaks, etc never ever had any ill conscience towards the Kukis particularly of Nagaland. For them the Kukis were much more important than those Kacha-Nagas, since Kukis are an intergral part of the society in Nagaland, the stability of Kukis and the progress of Kukis meant alot to them, which the Manipuri Nagas are yet to learn.
Due to the mutual bond between Manipur and Nagaland under the name Naga and Kacha Naga, the stability in Nagaland gets affected. The particular nature of Nagas to peek into the issues outside of the State created lots of Social divisions and political diversion in the state. Tribes like Aos, Semas, Konyaks, Sangtams, Yimchungers, Chankhesangs, Phoms, Rengmas etc were opposed to the idea of Non State issue intervention but the brainwashed tribes like Zeliangs, Angamis , etc etc favoured interventioned to the fullest extent possible. This particular difference in opinion leaves gaps between two mutually co-existing neighbour where one is dependant on the other for existence. A minor example would be The intervention of Govt. Of Nagaland into the education issues of Kacha Nagas in Manipur under an Angami Chief Minister. The Govt conducted board examinations for Manipuri Nagas in Nagaland which was boycotted by all section of Nagas since it was a non state issue. This boycott led the Govt to provide full security for the Manipuri Naga Students which led to a huge Govt spending. Those spendings, had the Govt directed towards a more reasonable cause it would have benefitted alot. What did the people of Nagaland gain from the Manipuri Nagas appearing board exams in Nagaland.?? Did their appereance raised the status of NBSE.?? And most disheartening to learn is that out of the 200(not very sure) candidates who apperead only 17 of them got through. The hard earned peace and stability of Nagaland gets adversely affected with maximal intervention of Manipuri Nagas through the NSCN-IM. All these short lasting hussles of Manipuri intervention could have been avoided had the citizens of Nagaland choosen a different path.
Well, all has been said and has been repeated again and again with the passage of time and thoughts. Today in Nagaland most of the Citizens have gained the Knowledge of Stability. The importance of Peeking into non negotiable and negotiable issues too have been known through out. The issue of Manipur has nothing to do with the issue in Nagaland. The Nagas have realised the unchallengable importance of cordial existence within their own diameter rather than peeking into a stranger`s affair. This realisation within the Nagas of Nagaland led to the dawn of some Anti-Manipuri Naga campaigns in Nagaland. With positive hope that such nonsense actions wont be repeated again in future by the citizens of Nagaland, i feel that the ever awaited peace and stability will finally give its due share to the people of Nagaland.