Say Goodbye to Blockade Phobia!

No matter which body imposes it, all of us suffer the brunt of economic blockade. So you have a grievance against the system- plan an economic blockade or a general strike. Oh! Protest rallies are not a bad idea as well. A year without any general strike, economic blockade or protest rally would not be ‘Oh So Manipur.’ The recent economic blockade which was as omchaaknaba as langbangi nungsha was finally suspended. But its phobia still persists.

Well, according to a (not so reliable) source from Manung-Mapaan ministry, a few awaangba thaaki measures have been taken up to fight the problems of any impending economic blockade in the future. There are in fact many master plans in the pipeline which will of course take an ample amount of time to execute. Perhaps, we may finally have a reason to say goodbye to blockade phobia eh?

As per one of the master plans from the concerned ministry, a sky bus service will soon be launched in the Imphal-Dimapur atiyagi route to ferry goods and passengers to Imphal. A body called All Manipur Maalang Transport Association has been formed to assist the ministry to execute its plans. For safety reasons, the sky bus will always be in invisible mode. Any passenger who has to hop on or off the bus has to press his/her code at the entry and exit door. Technologically equipped with many striking features, this sky bus service will finally help the people of Manipur to say goodbye to blockade or bandh phobia.

Mr. Waajao-ngaangba from Pao Faodok Faojin Department calls it a ‘stupendous idea’. He adds “I still can’t believe that such a project is going to be implemented in our state. The project sounds pretty promising. It will also ultimately discourage all the blockade mongers in the near future.”

“Over the last few years, bandh or blockade has become a necessary part of our lives. It would not be a wise decision to sternly act against any body or person who spearheads any type of bandh or blockade especially considering the various (impossible) demands of the so called bandh or blockade mongers. We had officially partied many nights discussing on the probable means and measures to tackle such a problem. I am very glad that our association has finally come up with such an innovative measure. I am sure we will easily tackle any problem during a bandh or blockade with the help of such a bus service. ” states Mr. Dhapparrmayum Dhapjao, President of the newly formed body- All Manipur Maalang Transport Association (AMMTA).

The newly appointed Chief Engineer of AMMTA, Mr. Techkishore Aheipasaaba-mayum also shares his valuable opinion, “This is the best ever solution for all of us to fight blockade. Due to the upcoming Sangai Festival, we will not be able to focus on the construction work of this Maalang Bus project on a current basis. However, the foundation stone will soon be thrown up. We are currently very busy sorting out the best rocks from Sekmai beach to throw up in the sky for a solid foundation. We are planning to start the construction works right after Sangai festival. We will hopefully complete by next major blockade.”

A tender has already been announced for interested contractors who want to work on this project. There will not be any commission for any Hongba, Chaoba or Tomba. It is also notable that every penny for the project will be funded by Bank of Soraren (BOS).

A press conference will be called in a day or two at the open air office of AMMTA to share the plans and strategies of this project. By and by, the concerned ministry expects full co-operation from the public to add wings to this dream project. Construction workers who have experience in handling awaangba-thaaki projects can submit their resume at AMMTA’s office as there will be various job openings that suit their profile.

                   Courtesy Naatrang Reporter from Sundrang News Services.

 This article was published on 14 Sep 2014

Laangban Diary — Of Blockade & Its Side-effects

A troop of laangbangi angaoba leichil had a disheartened retreat under the command of its leader Mr. Laangbanjao. As reported by Mr. Naatrang, “Mr. Laangbanjao, he wore such a dismayed look as we crisscrossed our ways. I had waved him ‘hi’ but he did not even bother to wish back.”

On introspection, it has been narrated that the sight of long queues at the petrol pumps, had discouraged Mr. Langbanjao and his troop of angaoba leichil high, very high up in the sky.

Prices of daily commodities also keep on rising like esing echao for the last few days. We are obediently bearing the burnt of economic blockade which is currently imposed on the Imphal-Dimapur highway, which is also the lifeline of Manipur. Blockade has always scared us like hell and khoiren-masha paiba has been a classic reaction among our people.

Economic blockade imposed on any of the highways always had and has its side-effects. Petrol pumps suddenly run out of stock and inflation finds its glorified meaning. Beat the laangbangi omchaaknaraba nungsha, every Manipuri queues up at the petrol pumps from early morning till late evening.

A few social scientists recently conducted a thorough research on social behaviour of Manipuris. They have finally come up with the discovery of a new disease called Blockade Phobia. The syndromes of this disease include:
- Inability to eat or sleep properly until and unless the petrol tank of one’s vehicles is filled up. The related syndrome includes waking up early in the morning and the urge to go and queue up at the nearest petrol pump from one’s leikai. Under certain cases, the patient may have a tendency to visit the same petrol pump in the evening to fill up gallons of petrol to stock up.

- Another serious syndrome often observed among patients of blockade phobia is the kick of petrolpeneurship. Petrolpeneurship is a newly coined termed, by the social leipoong scientist. It is defined as the sudden desire of becoming an entrepreneur by investing on gallons of petrol and selling the same at an inflated price.

Criticized as an unethical means of entrepreneurship, Mr. Achumba, the president of All Manipur Maram Mokpa Association spoke, “We should not waste even a single minute to cure all the patients of such a disease. These patients, if not treated in time, can become a threat to many innovative businesses that are gradually evolving across the state. We need support from the sensible citizens of this khunai for a permanent treatment of such a disease”.

“The patients of blockade phobia and their oddities can have a disastrous impact on the impressionable young minds”, said Mr. Angaangjao.

He continued, “We should appeal to the concerned authority to come up with preventive measures to check this sandokanba leina as soon as possible”.

Meanwhile, Mr. Heipaasingba, the president of Heipaa Saajage Haiduna Houdokchaba Organization remarks, “There is an easy remedy to cure such a phobia. We should start adding ‘Blockade’ to the nomenclature—at least one member of our family can have the name. This way, we will get familiarized with Blockade in a more intimate way. This will ultimately help in erasing the general phobia of blockade”.

Citing an example he added further, “The expression ‘blockade laaktoure’ could have a double meaning; for example, Blockade laaktoure could mean a child called Blockade is returning from school as much as it could mean the possibility of an economic blockade to be imposed on any of the National Highways.”

Mr. Laangbanjao has sternly condemned the disheartened retreat of his leichil troop. From rumours, he has reportedly told his band, “I need an answer from the Ministry of Seasonal Affairs for such an illogical act or else we will also call for a blockade in the sky of Manipur”. As per our Lei-Ngao Thi-Ngao reporter, AFSPA is likely to be imposed in the sky of Manipur in order to put the situation under control. Jet fighters may soon arrive from mainland India.

Postscript Dear Leibaakchasing, let’s try to sneeze out the insanity and insensibility for a change ‘haakthi’! Daylight robbery has become a sort of entrepreneurial skill. What else could be the reason for the scarcity of petrol just from the announcement of a highway blockade—mind it, not from the blockade but just from its announcement — regardless of its senselessness? And here’s my siki worth question of the day-When are the agitators in the hills ever going to understand that their blockades have never affected the government, but rather this kind of protest has been only torturing the general people?

This article was published on 7 Sep 2014

Flimsy Sides: The Demand for ILP System in Manipur

One of my previous columns, titled ‘Implement ILP System in Manipur’ interestingly caught the attention of many readers. I had no idea it would open a wide room as they poured in with encouraging feedbacks, suggestions and criticisms of all sorts.

I did not intend to flare up a spark of animosity between non-Manipuris and Manipuris through my article. However, it saddened me a little bit that some of the readers misconstrue and criticize the write-up in a manner as if I had deliberately attempted to churn a flaming inferno of racism through it.

Many pseudo-intellectuals with their fake identities even started attacking me personally with their vitriolic remarks. Their Moronic (with a capital ‘M’) comments did not bother me the least. However, I feet pity for them and their incapacitated understanding of my article and of the issue as a whole.

Internet has helped many of us to revel in free comments. I hope it will help people take educated and rational decisions and contribute healthily for our collective betterment. Hurling personal abuse does not help anyone.

Well, the demand of ILP system has so far gained its momentum. But it’s quite discouraging that there isn’t any progressive sign of its implementation from the government — neither there are informed discussions on the issue. I wonder if the matter is even considered for discussion, in the real sense, by those who are responsible.

Some flimsy sides of the agitations and protests have been putting us off for the past weeks. I have listed down a few observations:
1. Many people believe that the demand for ILP system is a one-sided affair. We should keep it in our mind that through ILP system, we are not demanding for an exodus of non-Manipuris from Manipur. Are we? On the other hand, it is so ridiculous to consider that those who are residing outside should come back to Manipur.

2. Using defamatory words, which may hurt the sentiment of a particular race, is again not a healthy sign of civilization for any community. It should neither be used as a tool in the pursuit of implementing the ILP system in Manipur.

Blunt remarks or usage of derogatory words against any race should be avoided as much as possible. If we belong to a civilized community, let’s think, act and speak in a civilized manner. This may sound preachy but I cannot help it, seeing the development ever since this latest round of protest commenced a few weeks ago.

3. Resorting to any type of violence should never be equated with amplifying our voice. We can have a unique milestone of our own good — we only have to resort to ‘leibaak-macha taaba’ ways and means of protests and agitations.

4. It is also the right time for us to acknowledge that the ILP system in Manipur will not save us from all the troubles. It is just a tiny part of the whole. We have a long list of aggravating issues to deal with. Insurgency, poor governance, erratic power supply, pathetic transport and communication network, the hill-valley divide, etc: all of these are our collective mess. Among these issues, the rising number of crime against women and children over the last few years is quite a matter of concern.
While the demand for ILP is gaining its momentum day by day, the number of crime against children and women unabatedly alarms our sanity. It’s quite an ironical situation. We are demanding for one such permit system that will control the influx of outsiders in our state. At the same time, we are equally threatened by our own folks who have not left any stone unturned to terrify us with their heinous crimes.

Such is the condition of our state. Such is the nature of our people. How many familiar demons do we have to deal with before we even try to figure out unfamiliar demons among us? The question is quite perturbing I know. But we must try to figure it out before the problem gets out of control, like it always does in Manipur.

The monsters and demons that reside among us are the perfect partner to the rising population of immigrants. When is the government coming out of its comfort zone and tell the people protesting on the street that it is working for the best solution? Do we need to call the leaders name like it happened recently so that they come together?

This article was published on 10 Aug 2014
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