CM leads state in paying homage to `Manipuri women`

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IMPHAL, December 12: The state function of 22nd Nupee Lal Day – 2013 was observed at Nupee Lal Memorial complex today. During the function Chief Minister O Ibobi, deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam, ministers, MLAs and other dignitaries paid their homage at the memorial statue of the historical women agitation there.

The other highlights of the event were presentation of patriotic songs and drama based on Nupee Lal.

Addressing the gathering, Chief Minister Okram Ibobi recalled that in the first episode of Nupi Lal which took place in 1904, thousands of Manipuri women revolted against the suppressive policies of the mighty British imperialist. In the second Nupi Lal which took started on December 12, 1939, women confronted the establishment in opposition to the export of local rice after it caused acute shortage of the grain in the state that year, he stated.

The chief minister further admitted the reality that Manipuri womenfolk always played an important role in any issue confronting the state leading from the forefront, adding that their outlook is remarkable.

He exhorted that every person in the state needs to draw inspiration from those brave women who had sacrificed their lives for the state in order to spread its fame throughout the country.

He further appealed to all sections of the community to come forward and lend their support in bringing peace, prosperity and tranquility in the state.

Gaikhangam lauded the courageous womenfolk who made the supreme sacrifices for the welfare of the future generation of the state.  He bemoaned the sparse attendance by state officials and employees reminding that it was an important state observation. He compared the lackadaisical attitude of the government employees as a show of disrespect to the brave women, and suggested that action should be taken up against them.

As a part of the observation the eight episode of Imashingeedamak, a programme commemorating Nupi Lal,was held at Jawaharlal Nehru Manipur Dance Academy by the All Manipur Arts and Culture Students’ Union (AMACSU). Gifts were presented elderly women for their efforts in preservation of the local culture through working in different disciplines.

The 74th Nupi Lal Ningshing Numit was also held at THAU Ground today.

Addressing the observation, Dr. Dhanabir Laishram social activist said that the flame from the Ima Keithel was the ignition of the two historic Nupi Lal in the state, and as such today’s Ima must cover the Ima keithel in preparation of the Third Nupi Lal.

Recounting the events leading up to the first Nupi Lal, he said Maharaj Chandrakriti issued an order for recruitment of a crew for catching an elephant during the harvest season. The women objected as the males were busy in reaping the crops and the order was subsequently withdrawn.

In 1904, the colonial government made a similar decree for assembling of men for an expedition to Kabo Valley in order to bring woods for construction of the houses of two British officers which also ran into opposition from the women. Further, Manipur was ordered to pay Rs 2.5 lakhs after losing the war to British and 400 arms belonging to the state was subsequently surrendered to the British. The movement launched thereafter was a manifestation of the demands for political and ideological freedom as well as to fight the feudal society, he said.

He said the epicentre of the two Nupi Lal was Ima Keithel. But unfortunately the state government is playing divide and rule tactics among the women after the demolition and reconstruction of the market places.

Political parties involved have broken the unity of the Imas, he said and added that today’s observation is marked by the small participation of Ima Keithel vendors.

The women revolution was anti-colonial and as in the past the women from Ima Keithel have to provide the direction for the next Nupi Lal.

We must know that old colonist has gone but now a new face of colonist is still among us. Because still we are not getting the full rights as an Indian citizen, he added. A very simple example is Irom chanu Sharmila who is struggling against the the inhuman and draconian law AFSPA.

Dr Priyadashani M Gangte, associate professor of Damdei Christian College speech found special mention of the lack of collective movement.

Now in our society drug mafia, human traffickers, gun culture, are calling the shots, she said.

Women empowerment has existed from the very beginning so we are observing the 74th Nupi Lal today but their involvement in politics is very low, she added. Even though women who had won election are not working for their individual minds, she said.

And we need to be aware about the Articles 14 to 22 of the Indian Constituition which stressed on the safety of woman, she said while encouraging women to step into politics.

The 74th Nupi Lal Ningsing Numit was organised by AMKIL, POIREILEIMAROL, KANGLAMEI, WACAK, CHITUWA, AMOWOVA, MEPWAK, NUPI SAMAJ, MEEKHOL, KWWA, KIL and AKSHIL. Yumnam Memma Vice president AMKIL, Maibam Purnimashi President CHITUWA, RK Tamphasana Vice President KANGLAMEI, Shoraisam Memcha Vice-President POREI LEIMAROL and Soibam Ibetombi President WACAK were present as presidium members at the function.

The All Assam Manipuri Women Meira Paibee Coordination Committee (AAMWMPCC), Cachar, Assam also observed the Nupi Lan Memorial Day at the Poilapool Community Hall, Cachar.

S Jayenti Devi, president, AAMWMPCC; Horeshore Dovy; Karam Sunil, president NIPCO; Sinam Prakash , president NESO; gen Haobam Gouri Hari, senior citizen; M Surjokumar Sharma, VP, Manipuri Sahitya Parishad Assam; Hembati Devi, retired BDO, Cachar Assam; Dr M Shantikumar, Manipuri Diaspora Assam and retd Prof Gulapjat Singh attended the function as chief guest, president and guests of honour respectively.

The day was also observed at Joypur Cachar Assam and Kaboganj, Sonai.

The 74th Nupi Lan day was also observed at Jiribam today, organized by the Nupi Lan Ningsing Numit Observation Committee, 2013 at Town Hall, Jiribam.

The function began with lighting up candle and also paid tribute to the womenfolk who valiantly fought against the British.

The function was attended by distinguished luminaries and resource persons including Y Iboyaima Singh, ADC Jiribam; Sagapam (o) Sushila Devi, president AJMP; Naorem (o) Nivarani Devi, president WACAK; H (o) Mema Devi, president JIMPAL; Thangjam (o) Geeni Devi, president JIMWAK as chief guest, president and presidium members respectively.

Speaking on the occasion different resource persons delivered brief speeches on the Nupi Lan of 1904 and 1939.

All resource persons echoed that the British has left but more evil powers continue to oppress and torture the common people and violating the self-respect of the locals of Manipur.

They also appealed to all to be united and root out the evil power dominating over the society.

The nupilal observation was today held at Ima Kondong Lairembi Haraobung, Moreh, jointly organized by Kha Nongpok Apunba Nupi Lup (KNANL) Moreh, Nupi Khunai Chaokhat Lamjing Lup (NKCLL) Moreh, Muslim Woman Development Association (MWDA) Moreh and Minority Women Development Society (MWDS) Moreh respectively.

Th Ibemhal Leima president of KNANL, Th Jamuna Devi president of NKCLL, Jubeda Begum president of MWDA and Meharani Begum president of MWDS were presidium members of the function.

During the function, M Thoiba Singh president of Meitei Council Moreh (MCM), O Lukhoi Singh vice-president of ACODOM, Md Salim Khan president of MMCM, Dr Kammini Kumar and K Shyamo Singh head maser of Eastern Shine School Moreh attended as special invitees.

Paying homage to the women martyr, floral tributes were offered by the presidium members, the special invitees and the gathering of the function. After the offering of floral tribute, the special invitees delivered lectures in connection with the function.

As a part of the program, a race for the womenfolk, blind hit and musical chair were organized in the morning.

Meanwhile, the day was also held at the premises of Lamlong Diamond Club of Tangsa Leikai in Khangabok part III. Kh Surnalata Devi, Adakshya of Thoubal ZP and Dr Kh Akoisana attended the function as chief guest and president respectively.

The keynote address of the function was made by the secretary of the club M Babutombi which mentioning the importance of observing the Nupilal and the courage of the martyr women of the state. The secretary further mentioned to learn lesions from spirit of the mothers of the Nupilal.

As a part of the program, a race completion was also held for women under 35 year and S Lata Devi, Kh Sunita Devi and L Ranjana Devi finishing first, second and third respectively.

The All Manipur Democratic Women Association also observed the 74th Nupilal at its office in Paona Bazaar and the function was presided by L Tarunibala Devi.

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