Veteran political leader Rishang Keishing no more

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Imphal, August 22 2017: Veteran politician and the longest serving Chief Minister of Manipur, before O Ibobi broke his record, Rishang Keishing passed away today at 8.15 pm at RIMS.

He was 98, as per the death certificate issued by RIMS.

Rishang Keishing was admitted to RIMS on July 1 and the immediate cause of death has been officially given as multiple organ failure and sepsis.

As the condition of the veteran political leader became more critical, he was shifted to the ICU of RIMS on August 15.

A host of Congress leaders including former MPCC (I) president and former Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam, MPCC (I) president and MLA TN Haokip and Lok Sabha MP Thangso Baite, Francis Ngajokpa, DD Thaisii came rushing to RIMS on hearing the critical conditions of Rishang Keishing and stayed there till the time he breathed his last .

BJP MLA Dr Sapam Ranjan was also at RIMS to pay his last respect to the veteran political leader.

The body was later taken to his residence at Mantripukhri and the last rites will be performed tomorrow, said his son former Congress MLA Victor Keishing.

Briefing newsmen, RIMS Superintendent Dr Ch Arunkumar said the blood pressure of the late leader dropped drastically and the sugar level also depleted.

The pace maker which Rishang had also stopped working .

Gaikhangam said that in his passing away, Manipur has lost an eminent personality and a great leader.

The light has gone, he added.

All Government offices and educational institutions will remain closed tomorrow as a mark of respect to the former Chief Minister of Manipur.

Three days of State mourning will also be observed.

Born to Rungdi Keishing and Mungshingla Keishing on October 25, 1918 at Bungpa Khunou, Ukhrul district, Rishang Keishing married Khatingla Keishing on April 15, 1950.

The couple had two daughters and four sons.

He completed BA from St Paul’s Cathedral College, Kolkata.

He was a Member, First Lok Sabha 1952-57; Member, Manipur Territorial Council, 1957-61 and 1967-71; Member, Third Lok Sabha 1962-67; Member, Manipur Legislative Assembly 1972-2001; Cabinet Minister, Government of Manipur 1974-76 and Opposition leader, Manipur Legislative Assembly 1976-80.

Before O Ibobi beat his record as the longest serving Chief Minister with 15 years, Rishang Keishing held that record and he was Chief Minister from 1980 to 85, returned as the Chief Minister in February 1985 and held the post till Feb 1988 and then from March 1994 to and 1995 again from December 1995 to December 1998 .

He was elected to the Rajya Sabha in 2002 April was Member, Committee on Food, Civil Supplies and Public Distribution April 2002 – Feb 2004; Member, Committee on Commerce from January 2003 to February 2004; Member, Court of the North-Eastern Hill University from December 2003 to 2009; Member, Committee on Home Affairs from August 2004 to May 2009 and from August 2009 onwards;
He was also Member, Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Shipping, Road Transport and Highways from October 2004 to May 2009; Member, Committee on Public Undertakings from May 2006 to April 2007; Re-elected to Rajya Sabha (2nd Term) in April 2008; Member, Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Home Affairs from August 2009 onwards; Member, Committee of Privileges from September 2010 onwards; Member, Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes from May 2011 onwards; Member, Committee on Home Affairs Member, Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment Aug 2012 onwards .

During his student days, he actively participated in football and athletic events like javelin throw, shotput, high jump, long jump and race.

He was champion in the college for four consecutive years and represented Calcutta University in Inter Varsity Meet in 1948 and won first prize in javelin throw and second prize in high jump
He visited countries like the USA, UK, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Myanmar.

Rishang also participated in the freedom struggle and attended meetings, etc as a student during 1945-47.He was imprisoned during the Socialist party’s agitation for the merger of Manipur with the Union of India, 1949.

He was arrested and detained at Imphal jail for taking part in Aug 2012 onwards.

During his student days, he actively participated in football and athletic events like javelin throw, shotput, high jump, long jump and race.

He was champion in the college for four consecutive years and represented Calcutta University in Inter Varsity Meet in 1948 and won first prize in javelin throw and second prize in high jump
He visited countries like the USA, UK, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Myanmar .

Rishang also participated in the freedom struggle and attended meetings, etc as a student during 1945-47.He was imprisoned during the Socialist party’s agitation for the merger of Manipur with the Union of India, 1949 .

He was arrested and detained at Imphal jail for taking part in an agitation for the restoration of the dissolved Manipur Legislative Assembly, 1954; was detained at Imphal and Nowgong (Assam) jails for some months during an agitation launched by the Socialist party for the restoration of the Manipur Legislative Assembly, 1960.He was arrested and detained by the Janata Government, Manipur in 1978 .

Rishang was Member, Socialist Party of India, 1947-64; Indian delegation to Asian Socialist Conference held in Rangoon (Myanmar), January 1953; Indian National Congress since 1964; Indian delegation led by late YB Chavan to the 35th General Session of the UN held in USA in 1975; Indian delegation to attend the 51st Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference held at Sheraton, Fiji, 2005 and Tenth Finance Commission; Founder Head Master of the first High School in the district at Ukhrul, 1949-52 .

He was the founding Member and Honorary Head Master, Phungyar High School, 1959-61; Founding Member, High School, Kamjong, 1969 and High School at Kasom Khullen, 1970.He was also Chairman, Eastern Border Development Authority and Barak Development Board, 1995-97.He helped to set up Foundation for Management of Tribal Areas (MATA) in 1998; Fresh Ginger Oil Processing Pilot Project with technology developed by the RRL, Trivandrum in 1998 and Fruit Processing Unit with technology developed by the CFTRI, Mysore.

Source: The Sangai Express

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