Rewben Mashangva : From folk artist to pradhan candidate

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Manipur, IMPHAL, September 3: Wearing a white kurta with a traditionally enriched Naga waistcoat, seldom seen in such attire, Guru Rewben Mashangva hoisted his flag as prologue to contesting the Pradhan seat for the upcoming Panchayat elections scheduled on September 13.

He brought out his Roland ampli- speaker usually used for his guitar and song composition and used it as a loudspeaker for the flag hoisting ceremony held at his Nagaram residence today.

The renowned Naga folk artist is presently contesting for the reserved Scheduled Tribe seat for 6/16 Laifam Khunou Gram Panchayat. There are about 5,936 voters in the gram panchayat area, out of which 5,000 voters belong to the Meitei community.

The voting area comprise of Khongsai Veng, Nagaram, Tangkhul Avenue, Fairyland, Laifam Khunou, Ahallup and Keirang.

Rewben has to encounter two contestants for the seat, female contestant and former pradhan ,Chingboi Khongsai and former member Banjamin Hungyo namely.

Rewben is native of Ukhrul but presently put up at his wife residence at Nagaram.

Chatting with IFP on the sideline post the flag hoisting program, Rewben mentioned that his musical career began full swing from 1990 onwards. Asked on his new political aspiration, he stated that the elders and other friends of the locality approached him to run for the election.

“ Many of my Meitei friends approached me to contest, they feel that artists are honest and committed and most importantly other candidates have been tested. They want someone new”, he said.

Drawing inspiration from Abraham Lincoln, the artist turned politician mentioned with adherence to the famous American President’s quote , “A man though educated and capable who has roamed different parts of the World when return home to his underdeveloped community cannot be termed as a truly civilized person. I want to bring change and development for my locality”, he stated.

It was witnessed at the flag hoisting ceremony at his residence and later formal function at Nagaram Community Hall, many from the Meitei community attended along with his Naga supporters.

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