A Depiction Of North East States And Its Agony

Irom Sharmila Chanu

Never ending issues going on in North-Eastern states of India like Manipur, Assam, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh provoke our younger generation to stand up and do something about the same. Youths are choosing different mediums to express their thoughts.

Samata Vichar Prasarak Sanstha offers a platform to youths and encourages them to express their views. This week Samata Vichar Manch and Samartha Sevak Mandal jointly organized a mono play Le Mashale’ that was presented by Ojas S V, a young social worker from Pune.

In this mono act, Ojas presented Manipur’s problems like development, souring prices, electricity, human rights and cultural problems. Many sensitive incidents were staged that shattered the audience. It showed the Indian soldiers atrocities on women.

Irom Sharmila, a popular activist in Manipur, went on an indefinite hunger strike for the injustice and our Indian government arrested her for an attempt of suicide and has still not released her after 10 years. In this period, Sharmila has not eaten a grain of food but the government is making attempts for her survival but not giving her justice. She began her protest after the Assam Rifles personnel opened fire and killed 10 villagers in Imphal town.

The Indian freedom fighting movement started with Naga people‘s fight with the English who were ruling India at that time. But their names are absent in the history of Indian freedom. Even in our national anthem we don’t find the reference of these North-East states.

Ojas, who personified herself as the people of Manipur raised fundamental problems of the state. The play insisted that without realizing Manipur people’s language, religion, culture, patriotism, our government is doing annihilation of human rights in that region. It also raised questions about the concepts of nationalism, politics, Indian armed forces and civilization. Ojas impressed the audience with her intensity, spirit and sensuous acting.

Expressing her views to Thane Plus, Ojas said, “Irom Sharmila represents the young generation of India. When her movement against the injustice of Manipur completed 10 years ago, youths from 20 Indian states who believe in non-violent movements expressed their views in symbolic ways. Many of them preferred to use the internet and wrote their personal expressions on their blogs. Some of them have different views. But now the debate has started and youths are thinking and writing about their concepts about nationalism, citizen’s rights and democracy.

We glorify our country as the biggest democratic country in the world but in fact our government is subduing our own people. I believe that theater is an effective medium to bring awareness about sensitive issues. I have not taken any formal training in acting but my instinct leads me to present my thoughts,” Ojas concluded.

*The article is written by Dr Asha Mandpe

(Courtesy: TNN)

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  1. Recently I attended a women’s conference in Mumbai, where I could meet activists from Manipur, Nagaland and Assam. It was a golden opportunity for me to meet people from North east , listen to their experiences directly. I sincerely wish to share their struggles and i would like to support them as possible i can. I consider their struggle as a struggle of our country and i wish these problems should be solved by the Government of India, at the earliest, the government should provide justice to the struggling people of north east at the earliest.