Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Editorials 


Sharing homeland

These are bad times for Manipur. Though the danger has still not been put to rest, the state can take some solace in the fact that in the past, even after reaching the edge of hell, and everything seemed lost, the hills and valley have not actually gone to war with each other. This cannot be all about the much hyped fraternal bondage forged over aeons of sharing, but the intuitive understanding of the inherent inextricable geographical and existential common destiny. Sometimes people forget this destiny and rush to the brink of mutual destruction, but realise soon enough certain things are beyond humans to change, and return a little beaten but wiser and humbler to where destiny meant everybody to be. The state is at one of these periodic spells of madness and is now staring at the frightful depthless abyss that can annihilate every fibre of humanity that ever constituted the shared ground on which everybody stood on. As so many times in the past, this time too we are confident good sense will prevail, and like it or not, come to reconcile with the reality that there are little or no option but co-existence. And if co-existence is what it must have to be, why not think of it as a peaceful one as well.

Nobody should need a reminder that for peaceful co-existence to be possible there will have to be plenty of give and take and wherever possible, sharing and accommodation. This would be so even within a family with each member tasked to accommodate each other’s idiosyncrasies. Failure to do this has been the recipe for broken families as all of us also probably know. It would be a disaster to wish for a perfect family or society where none is called upon to make sacrifices. One is reminded of the words of British philosopher Isaiah Berlin in his celebrated collection of essays “The Crooked Timber of Humanity” where he reminds everybody that imperfection is life’s essential predicament, and to insist on perfection alone can only be an invitation to disaster. In attempting to make a perfect omelette, many thousand eggs probably would have to be broken, and after all this damage has been done, in all likelihood the perfect omelette would still be elusive. Peace making therefore will necessarily have to be about starting to accept each other’s failings and imperfections as nature’s precondition and nothing to turn away from.  If and when the current problem gets over, it would therefore be very much to the purpose for all who believes in peace and co-existence to begin on this platform of humility and mutual understanding.

What then is the foremost thing that must be shared? Let us have no doubt about this too, that it is our homeland. Let us also have no doubt that the current potentially disastrous problem we are facing is because of the intransigence of certain groups on the reality of a shared homeland, and would much rather insist on exclusive ones. For a far reaching and lasting peace to become possible, this approach will have to change. We cannot live in the past when this was once the reality. We will have to be prepared for the modern times where so much has changed, including the paradigms that define homeland. Take for example the lofty notion of “shared sovereignty” and “shared competencies” that the Government of India and the NSCN(IM) are negotiating. These ideas are beautiful, but on this multi-stake question, there cannot be any bi-lateral answer arrived at between these two parties only. It is rather ironic that the two parties who now pursue a model for this “shared sovereignty” are so averse to any suggestion of “shared homeland” as well. In this inability to see the wider canvas of multiple stakeholders may be the biggest flaw and hurdle before these negotiations. We do hope there is room and willingness for course correction and the peace initiative underway is able to broaden the scope of “shared sovereignty” to cover this larger canvas too, so that what is thus far seen as a bi-lateral matter comes to be treated as a multi-lateral one. Maybe, as we have written before too, this canvas can be bigger than just a state or two. It may be recalled, the British prior to their departure came up with plans for leaving the hills states of the Northeast and Northwest Burma as a Crown Colony, seeing their commonality. This Crown Colony roughly corresponds roughly with James Scott’s famous Zomia. And it is interesting that if the British plan had materialised, Imphal would have become the capital of Zomia. However, seeing the multiple deadly frictions in Manipur today, probably it is our good fortune that this Zomia was still born.

21-Dec-2016 / IFP Editorials / 0 Comments

Comments


No comments found for this entry!


Random Items 

Rs 50 cr in old notes deposited in UBI Tamenglong

By Daniel Kamei TAMENGLONG | Jan 17 After demonetization of Rs. 1000 and Rs. 500 notes in India people of Tamenglong has deposited more than Rs. 50 crores in the lone United Bank of India Tamenglong Branch. Revealing this to IFP, manager of UBI Tamenglo.....

18-Jan-2017 | Correspondent | 0 Comments

Poll painting

IMPHAL | Jan 17 A painting competition will be jointly organised by Editor Guild Manipur, NCO- Gene, Contemporary Artist and Manipur and Office of the Chief Electoral Officer, Manipur on January 22 at Kangla Park, Imphal under the theme “Free Fair and Pe.....

18-Jan-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

State-level radio quiz

IMPHAL | Jan 17 All India Radio, Imphal will conduct the first state-level Radio Quiz final on January 18, 2017 at Dave Literature Centre, DM College Campus, Imphal At 11 am, said a release signed by the head of programme Dilip Mayengbam. It further said.....

18-Jan-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Maoist slams state govt for partiality

IMPHAL | Jan 17 Maoist Communist Party-Manipur (MCPM) accused the Congress government led by O Ibobi Singh of harassing people in the valley while giving a “free hand” to NSCN (IM) in the hills. The party also blamed the state home minister for state go.....

18-Jan-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Alleged militant arrested

IMPHAL | Jan 17 Security forces have arrested an alleged cadre of Kanglei Yawol Kunna Lup (KYKL) during a counter insurgency operation conducted on January 15, 2017, said a statement issued by the PRO Manipur police. A team of Imphal West district polic.....

18-Jan-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Judgement on Tulihal drug case deferred

IMPHAL | Jan 17 The NDPS special court has once again deferred the announcement of judgment in the infamous Tulihal Airport drug case allegedly involving the state Chief Minister’ nephew Okram Henry. The judgment has been kept on reserve by the court si.....

18-Jan-2017 | Our Staff Reporter | 0 Comments

ATDUM condemns loot

IMPHAL | Jan 17 All Tribal Disables’ Union Manipur (ATDUM) has strongly condemned the physical assault, loot and inhuman treatment committed by unidentified goons claiming to be underground cadres towards the District Social Welfare Officers (DSWOs) of d.....

18-Jan-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Election punditry

Just two and a half months away from the March elections to the Manipur Legislative Assembly, pundits are busy interpreting how the sorry state of affairs prevailing in Manipur at the moment following the UNC indefinite blockade along Manipur’s two lifeli.....

18-Jan-2017 | IFP Editorials | 0 Comments

Singju festival

IMPHAL | Jan 17 The Singju Festival Committee under the supervision of Singju Yokhatpa Lup (SYOL) will organise Singju Festival 2017 along with other cultural programmes for 12 days from January 28 to February 8 at MMRC and Unity Park, Khangabok, Thoubal.....

18-Jan-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

CHQ told to take specific steps

IMPHAL | Jan 17 High Court of Manipur has directed government authorities to convene immediately a meeting of combined headquarters (CHQ), which is chaired by the chief minister O Ibobi Singh to take decisions to get the blockade lifted. A full bench of.....

18-Jan-2017 | Our Staff Reporter | 0 Comments

Gaidon, Stephen remanded     to further police custody

IMPHAL | Jan 17 The United Naga Council (UNC) president, Gaidon Kamei and publicity and information secretary, Shangkhil Stephen were remanded to police custody for five more days by Chief Judicial Magistrate, Imphal East, A Noutuneshori Devi. They were.....

18-Jan-2017 | Our Staff Reporter | 0 Comments

Attempts on to restore peace  at Nungei area

IMPHAL | Jan 17 The Khwai Nungseng Sintha Lup (KHNSI) is organising a peace convention on January 19 with the aim of bringing normalcy and communal harmony in Nungei area of Lilong, as villagers who fled their village are still lodged in the relief camp .....

18-Jan-2017 | Our Staff Reporter | 0 Comments

Latest Comments