RPF Chief’s message on eve of PLA’s foundation day

Mail News Service Imphal, Sep 24 : RPF, President Irengbam Chaoren in a message to the people on the 35th Raising Day of the People’s Liberation Army said, “It is a historical fact that our forefathers fought valiantly with all their might against invading British forces in the Anglo-Manipuri War of 1891. They did fight […]

Mail News Service
Imphal, Sep 24 : RPF, President Irengbam Chaoren in a message to the people on the 35th Raising Day of the People’s Liberation Army said, “It is a historical fact that our forefathers fought valiantly with all their might against invading British forces in the Anglo-Manipuri War of 1891.
They did fight unto the last even though their defeat was a foregone conclusion. Yet, they fought to the last man to preserve Manipur’s sovereignty and protect the sanctity of its territorial boundary which was drawn and guarded by the blood of our ancestors. It is rather disappointing that the present generation seems nonchalant even as we have been colonised by India for the last 60 years as if we are destined to live under colonial rule for good.
Such complacent and passive nature of the present generation renders our sense of nationalism and patriotism questionable. “Do we have the moral right to pay tributes and sing about the glorious deeds of our forefathers?” It is one pertinent question we need to ask ourselves.
If we ponder for a possible answer to this question, then certainly one can see the true picture of the ongoing revolutionary movement and understand the indispensability of such a movement.
It is a great misfortune that some sections of people rather than studying who are the conspirators tend to blame the revolutionary groups for all social evils and untoward incidents which are genuinely or apparently connected with
the revolutionary movement. This tendency not only undermines the revolutionary movement but would also ultimately ruin the nation which by implication means insurmountable obstacles for future generations. It’s time for all our people to join or lend their support to the historically legitimate revolutionary movement instead of reducing ourselves to the status of pawns and create enemies within ourselves.
Changes and transformations seen in Manipuri society which are engineered and steered by imperialist India and their local agents are too harsh. Corruption, violent race for amassing personal wealth, killings, groupism, inter-communal and intra-communal conflicts has become the order of the day. Large numbers of our youth have given themselves to intoxicating drugs and many unimaginable things and events are happening right before our eyes as a result of adopting the narcissistic and malevolent way of thinking, generally identified with Indians. To correct these social evils and reverse degeneration in our people’s character and ethos would be impossible without a complete revolution.
Herein lies another major reason for the essentiality of the revolutionary movement and its success can only save the nation.

It is a matter of serious concern that there are around 30 revolutionary groups in Manipur at present. If one studies how such a large number of groups came into being and who bred them, one cannot help implicate the Government of India. Birth of so many revolutionary groups through promotion of communal divide among the indigenous people of Manipur, nurturing pseudo revolutionary groups and then vitiating relationship among revolutionary groups to create rivalry and conflict are all parts of the Government of India’s policy aimed at de-escalating the liberation movement of Manipur. Countering such malignant policy demands certain roles from the ruling class of Manipur. The Government of Manipur, in the interest of the people, need to work sincerely to neutralise all pseudo revolutionary groups set up at the behest of Indian agents, and control their activities aimed at projecting genuine revolutionary groups in bad light. The Government of Manipur also need to work towards eliminating all sense of communalism deliberately cultivated and encouraged by the Government of India. At the same time, there is an urgent need for leaders of well established revolutionary groups to work relentlessly towards organising and mobilising all revolutionary groups having same goals and objectives so that all these groups which now appear scattered and drifting can struggle together under one common leadership. CorCom need to accept this momentous responsibility and strive to translate it into action.
Denial of freedom, rampant violation of rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the resultant misery being endured by the people of Manipur are consequences of entrusting political power to a select group of people who would readily dance to the tune of New Delhi and the situation is quite similar to the British period where the king nominated by them was put on the throne as nominal head of state. In addition to these miserable colonial situations, our people have started facing newer but equally grave threats under the Indian colonial rule. In another word, our people are now confronted with an all pervasive, risky situation associated with neo-imperialism.
Killings, arbitrary detention, harassment and all kinds of repressive measures unleashed upon the people of Manipur by the Indian military in the name of counter insurgency operations are classic characteristics of colonialism. These are threatening realities of colonialism and the scourge of neo-imperialism is equally grave. Rendering a nation or country economically dependent, dilution and assimilation of indigenous culture and traditions, abolition of indigenous religious practices and languages, posing challenges to indigenous identity are all not so vocal instruments of neo-imperialism but they are potent enough to eliminate an entire nation. We have heard many stories about extinction of several nations or some nations struggling on the verge of extinction on account of neo- imperialism’s merciless onslaught.
Here arises one pertinent and crucial question. How would we fight back the onslaught of neo-imperialism? It’s high time our civil society, scholars, intellectuals, media and students take up the issue vigorously. Perhaps, because of the series of fake encounters, unaccounted killings, rape and murder cases, bandhs and blockades, multiple challenges to national integrity, imminent loss of Manipur’s territory due to border fencing and numerous cases of human rights violation, our people can spare little attention to the devastating forces of neo-imperialism. The ever rising numbers of immigrants who originated from India are mostly workers. But their mode of exodus can be seen as an element of neo-imperialism. Perhaps, the immigrants themselves may not understand that they are acting as agents of neo-imperialism. Yet, it is easily discernible Government of India encourages continuous exodus of their people to Western South East Asia (WESEA). By using their poverty-stricken people as a tool, Government of India has been plotting to obliterate and ultimately vanish the indigenous culture, religious practices, languages and identity of the people of WESEA. The current of permanent exodus from India to WESEA including Manipur is not a recent phenomenon. It has been going on since many decades back and there is no sign of cessation until all the indigenous peoples of WESEA are assimilated or gobbled up completely. This is, in fact, India’s demographic invasion on WESEA, one of the many potent instruments of neo-imperialism.
India’s Look East Policy, Indo-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement, proposed India- European Union Free Trade Agreement and Asian Highway-I (which would pass through Manipur) are all elements of neo-imperialism. The recent offer of Asian Development Bank to invest substantial amount of money for construction of roads in Manipur should not beguile our people. It does not mean ADB intends to build roads in Manipur for the people of Manipur. The truth is, ADB is interested to build standard highways on behalf of big companies in view of Manipur’s strategic location to facilitate trans-national trade and business activities. Given such a scenario, India would no longer be the sole agent of neo- imperialism vis-a-vis WESEA. Apart from India, many multinational companies, global financial institutions and other capitalist guilds would soon start exercising their influence over the region. Exploration of petroleum in Churachandpur, Tamenglong and Jiribam is an obvious move to exploit and loot Manipur’s natural resources by MNCs in connivance with the Government of India. There is nothing our people would gain from this intrusion by MNCs and India. Since the time of British colonialism, petroleum drilling has been going on in Assam, one of our immediate neighbours but it has benefited the people of Assam very little. Assam’s tea is known all over the world. Many landlords and capitalists turned extensive areas into tea farms. But it does not provide any significant benefit to the people of Assam. Rather, large numbers of Adivasis were imported from India and they were engaged in tea plantations. Now the population of Adivasis in Assam has swelled to such an extent that they have become a cause of communal conflict. For all these reasons, our people, by keeping all these imminent challenges in view, need to prepare ourselves so that we can overcome these challenges and save the nation from the unavoidable onslaught of neo- imperialism.
Last but not the least, one natural instinct of mankind is the desire to live freely. Even if imperialist India strives most cleverly with all its might and resources, it will never succeed to extinguish our people’s instinct for freedom. With imperialist countries unable to suppress freedom movements of indigenous peoples, many colonised nations have achieved independence. For instance, in 1945 one-third of the world’s population (750 million) were living in dependent territories. This figure came down to around 60 million in 1960. More than 60 per cent of today’s United Nations member countries were either colonies or Trust territories in the past. Unfortunately, the puppet government of Manipur has been rather welcoming the elements and policies of colonization and neo-colonization devised by India.
Divergent perspectives and concepts harboured by different communities in Manipur and the rising level of distrust is one bitter reality that came into being only after Manipur was annexed by India. Even today the colonial regime, taking advantage of a few faulty events recorded in history, has been consistently working to divide the people of Manipur on ethnic lines. People who are seeking alternative arrangement and those demanding Kuki state are all indigenous people of the land who lived and grew together. Divergent and contradictory political movements based on parochial ethnic interest and aspirations witnessed in Manipur at present are all aimed at achieving some material benefits from India. But these community based movements can never redress the common problems and sufferings being endured by all the indigenous communities. The misery of suppression and deprivation can be redressed only when all the indigenous people of Manipur are freed from the yoke of Indian imperialism. To defeat India’s policy of fragmentation on ethnic lines, all the indigenous communities need to join hands and build up our collective strength.
No community of Manipur can live happily in isolation. A plural society is the only way which can deliver a dignified life to all our indigenous people. There was/is no nation in the world comprising of a single ethnic group or community throughout its history for it is impossible. Our people need to abandon the wild theory of “one community, one nation”. At the same time, the concept of nation building based on the aspirations of majority community is now obsolete in a plural society. Given all these facts and realities, I would like to call upon all our people to reinforce our sense of unity and fight India, our common enemy collectively, and make Manipur, our common homeland, a pluralistic, progressive and egalitarian society.”

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