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Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Manipur Mayhem

The police bash up striking union workers in Gurgaon and there is a tremor in the corridors of Sir Edwin Landseer Luytens' Delhi. Grandmothers strip in protest, the state assembly is burnt down, students get killed, there is complete chaos on the streets - and only a few throat clearing noises by the mantris and the media. Why wouldn't Manipur incessantly burn? It has no other alternative, no one seems to take notice.

Anthony is taking forward the cause of his home state through the medium of the blog. Amidst all my mindless musings I feel that once in a while I should atleast strive to do my bit. This is no path breaking analysis, nor is it a magic solution to the decades old issue. These are the visuals from the 2004 protests against the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act of 1958. Visuals that most of us never remember seeing. Someone had handed me the footage long ago and I too had forgotten about it. Had to edit it a lot to make it viewable on a general interest blog. The state perpetuated violence is disturbing and the extent that it makes people go in protest - nightmarish.

Initially thought of editing it prim and proper with a background score et al. (like what we have on our 'news' channels), but the incidents demanded rawness. But raw truth often becomes too difficult to handle, hence a much toned down form.

The following video contains images of graphic violence. Surfer's discretion is advised.

Runtime 03:49

Can't view video? Download Flash Player


thalassa_mikra said...

Soumyadip, I'm just stunned. Today my friend was telling me about the excesses of the Iranian government. I can never think of the Indian government as equally repressive, but obviously, there are large chunks of Indian citizens who've seen a very vicious side of the state. How it is possible for us to be so inhumane, I cannot fathom.

Sometimes I wonder if the Manipuris and many other parts of the North-east wouldn't be better off independant, free from the clutches of such repressive central control.

dwaipayan said...

How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man?
Yes, 'n' how many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
Yes, 'n' how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they're forever banned?
The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind,
The answer is blowin' in the wind.

How many times must a man look up
Before he can see the sky?
Yes, 'n' how many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry?
Yes, 'n' how many deaths will it take till he knows
That too many people have died?
The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind,
The answer is blowin' in the wind.

How many years can a mountain exist
Before it's washed to the sea?
Yes, 'n' how many years can some people exist
Before they're allowed to be free?
Yes, 'n' how many times can a man turn his head,
Pretending he just doesn't see?
The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind,
The answer is blowin' in the wind.

Nothingman said...

hi i ve been in touch with manipuri people since a long time.Classmates, friends and all ...the only reason hy manipur's cause isnt reflected in media is mostly the media's fault but the youth dont deserve any less of the blame, most of them refuse to be called as indians, the lack of people like anthony is whats leading to growth of all the manipur mess...the people there are not willing to take a stand against the terrorists and they support them monetarily and same time shun the armed forces.

life is tough there but then its all up to the people...

i might be wrong in saying all this but its just what i feel..

Pallavi said...

reminds me of Shillong in the 1990s.. :(

tony_siib said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
anthony said...

Hi Soumyadip, Been experiencing an extremely reduced blog visiting time, so I ve not been clicking the links on my feeds at bloglines, so my sudden drop in comments. Maybe I will compensate this sunday.
And its a very nice effort and gesture from ur side, this post.

@Nothingham, please do the read my post on RAP. Media is not allowed much freedom inside the NE, and foreign agency not even allowed entry. the people there don't take a stand against the terrorist because they are afraid, and there is not a single person who are paying them willingly except maybe politicians and other thieves who pay protection money like they do in bollywood and mafia.
Nobody supports them monetarily. Please understand that.
What did you mean by shunning the army.
the army should protect the civilains but if they think the civilians are their enemy, we are justy wary of them. we don't shun them.
DId you know that the the atrocities that the army have meted out againts the civilians just because we look as CHINKY as the militants. i say this because in the 1995 massacre of Civilians in manipur, only non chinky looking were let go and the rest of the manipuis including a doctor from arunachal who had the msifortune of looking chinkee also got shot.. in cold blood, in broad daylight. OK.

Please Don't talk about shunning or supporting Millitants.Nobody does that. We only turn againts the Army because they are suppose to n the right side of the law unlike the militants

@ Soumya: Please delete the earlier comment

Anonymous said...

the problem with state repression is that one gets videographic evidence at times. but in the name of opposing such repression we also need to see what the other side (the so called 'insurgents') do. they can be more brutal for the simple fact that they are not answerable to anybody. in case of state repression, civil society can protest, but when non-state actors indulge in repression no one dares protest. so while playing the blame game one cannot rest all of it on the state and its instruments.

Accidental Fame Junkie said...

I am shocked. And I'm sorry I couldn't finish seeing the footage. It's too gruesome. Human beings are the cruellest animals on earth.

Hiren Shah said...

The problem in India is that there is too much talk, very little action and then public memory being short, everything is forgotten. The main problem is that the media only highlights the issue instead of also taking it to its logical solution. Talk shows are organized , issues are sensationalized and thereafter what happens, nothing.