AGARTALA, March 17: Even after the Tripura government had announced earlier that it will introduce Manipuri medium upto Primary level I schools, it is yet to be translated into action.
Manipuri students settled in the state will benefit a lot if the assurance is transferred into action, informed a school teacher of the Dharamnagar Higher Secondary School, Tripura.
The teacher who identified himself as Yumnam Satyabratta was speaking to a group of media persons from Manipur.
He said that as of now, students of Manipur origin are still attending Bangla medium schools in Tripura.
Due to this factor, the Manipuri students fail to get good marks as they go onwards to higher classes.
He lamented that the assurance of the Tripura government is yet to see the light of the day as the Government has failed to appoint any Manipuri teachers.
He continued that if the government introduces Manipuri medium schools in the state than it will greatly improve the condition of the Manipuri students in the state.
He stressed that the presence of a high rate of school drop-outs amongst the Manipuri community in the state is due to the financial constraints of the families and the Bangla medium schools.
Even though the Manipuris in the state are considered a minority community, the community is yet to receive any opportunities of being a minority group as there is no reservation for government jobs and since the Manipuri community is also included in the general category, he added.
He also expressed that the Manipuri community who are settled in the state are considering the formation of a Manipuri Development Council.
The existence of such a council will certainly help the members of the community to safeguard their interest, he said and added that once the association is formed, then it will appeal for reservation for the community in government jobs and for political representation in the state.
He further continued that in the past, the Manipuris had enjoyed several royal favours, since the community had been there since long.
He identified the Meitei villages in Dharamnagar area as Ganganagar, Kameshor (Khagri), Rajbari, Ichai (Govindapur), Dewan pasa, Raji with around 4000 villagers.
There are not many high rank government officials amongst the Meitei villagers, though there are some teachers in colleges, high schools.
The number of government employees is low though there are some clerical staffs, he said.
There is a Junior Engineer from the community in the Tripura PWD and an elected representative from Kailasahar a/c identified as Birjit, he continued.
He further continued that instead of the population of the Manipuris increasing in Tripura, it has been decreasing for some time now.
He said the main reason for this decrease in population is due to the unavailability of any livelihood as people have started shifting to other places outside of Tripura.
There are certain villages now where there is not a single Meitei family even though the villages used to be Meitei villages in the past, he said.
Meitei women in Tripura have started forming Self Help Groups and established Embroidery centres to earn their livelihood, he continued before adding that the number of educated women and office goers is low at present.
He continued that the Manipuris use their parent state of Manipur as a mirror to reflect themselves and said the Manipuris in Tripura feel the pain when Manipur is in pain and happy when the parent state is happy.
He also expressed his desire for the Manipur state government to consider the condition of the Manipuri community in Tripura.
Manipuris in Tripura celebrates Yaoshang, Cheirraoba, Kang while some still celebrate the Ningol Chakkouba, he said.
The total number of Manipuri population in Tripura is increased as per the Hon’ble Minister Jiten Choudhry, Tripura (As broadcast in Manipuri morning Radio News Imphal on 19/03/2013 0f total number around 38,000). But the fact is that there are increased in numbers of Bishnupriya Manipuri (more than 20,000) not the Meitei Manipuri (less then 15,000). There is so many officers are from Bishnupriya Manipuri but not from Meitei Manipuri. One or other day there will be no Meitei Manipuri in Tripura.- Dr. Bireswar Sinha