TODAY -

The Soul Of Manipur And Yangmasho Shaiza

Dr Homen Thangjam *

Yangmaso Shaiza  : Chief Ministers of Manipur
Yangmaso Shaiza : Chief Ministers of Manipur



Yangmasho Shaiza was a product of a time, a time in which the troubled generation of Manipur- Indian educated or Indianised since Manipur was annexed to India in 1949 - earnestly started on a quest to find the soul of Manipur. It was a quest characterized by shedding the Indian cocoon, an illusion-like-cover, promising an eternity of prosperity and freedom, blinding the sons and daughters of the soil.

The quest in all its sheds and endeavors was ultimately a one to unearth the cultural core of the ancient civilization, of its sense of aesthetics, truth, beauty and justice, which is inescapably in total contradiction with the Brahminicai Aryan civilization that one calls India.

Unlike the days of the kings, the new form of political system injected to each and every kindred individual or tribe a political aspiration and future, unknown before, in the name of democracy and freedom, thereby shattering the old ties of the yore and the ethnic brotherhood one shared since time immemorial.

Ostensibly, although such “injections” were administered, clothed in the language of democracy, the real agenda was to divide the people of Manipur or similar ancient civilizations, so as to complete the absolute control of the people and most notably as a part of the project of nation building of India. Thus, divisive voices started to emerge on ethnic lines such as a separate Nagaland for the Nagas of Manipur, or Mizoland or Kukiland.

These desparate voices and movements unquestionably acted as a challenge to Manipur’s quest for its soul but contrary to popular imagination, such a trend also solidified the belief of many prophetic individuals who asserted that the quest should be one and that the organic relationship between the hills and valley can never be compromised.

Yangmasho Shaiza was one such son of soil of Manipur who stood for a united Manipur and contributed towards understanding the irreversible relationship between the two geographical entities, which together make a whole, and that one calls Manipur. When Manipur Nationalist Party demanded the revocation of Manipur Merger Agreement, a Christian Tangkhul, Yangmasho Shaiza also took part. As early as the 1960s, Shaiza rejected the call for a separate administrative unit for the Hills of Manipur, and was in a way responsible for bringing the Manipur Hills Union within the fold of electoral politics in Manipur. It is known today that such a movement imperiled his life and ultimately met his death at the hands of NSCN-IM in 1984.

Looked from a different perspective, these were the formative years of Manipur as a full-fledged state of India (Manipur attained statehood on Jan 21,1972) and numerous problems affected the tiny state. On the electoral political front, politics of defection marked the day, as a result of which there was political instability, corruption in the affairs of the state was a regular feature, winning party at the Centre decided the fate of the State.

Overall, there was a sense of gap between the promise thrown up by India and what people really got. Poverty and economic backwardness were obviously issues that pricked the existential moorings of the people of Manipur. In short, Manipur was caught in the cauldron of instability, indecisiveness, political turmoil and underdevelopment. What added flavor to the existential crisis was the every growing division between the hills and finally, the armed opposition movement which was earnestly in search of the soul of Manipur.

It is one’s personal choice to plunge in any mode of creative outlet to fulfill one’s destiny if you agree that electoral politics can be counted as one in the sense that one’s aggrieved sense of injustice can be uplifted using this medium or even change the system from within just as many social democrats throughout the world believes and endorses. Perhaps, Shaiza placed his faith in the resolving capacity of the State without giving up his sense of truth and justice to find a solution for many of the problems of the day. From a very humble beginning, he was the Chief Minister of Manipur (10 July 1974 - 5 December 1974) winning from the Manipur Hills Union. Then again, he became the Chief Minister in 1977 (29 June 1977 -13 November 1979) having won from a Congress ticket but defected to Janata Party. Overall he ruled for 1166 days.

Yangmasho Shaiza remains accused on many fronts. For example in 1978 R.K. Dorendro Singh accused that as a Chief Minister, Shaiza did not introduce Manipuri as the state language, that the Chief Minister (Shaiza) played one community against another and had increased corruption in the Council of Ministers. In the same year, the Communist Party of India had demanded the resignation of Shaiza from the ministry for declaring Manipur valley as disturbed area. Then, Rishang Keishing accused that law and order was deteriorating in the state, an authoritarian trend in the administration was set in motion by Shaiza, there was concentration of portfolios in the hands of the Chief Minister and there were numerous irregular appointments on adhoc basis were made, etc.

These were short-term political accusations which do not stand the test of time, Yangmasho Shaiza is popularly remembered today as the Tangkhul Chief Minister who resurrected the Meitei Mayek from obscurity. Then from the personal account given by his family members, it is learnt that Shaiza always welcomed with open arms anyone, Meitei Pangal, Meitei or anyone else, who came to him for help. This is a trend we do not find in the traits of the politicians of these days.

If Shaiza had played one community against another just like the NSCN (IM) supremo Th. Muivah does, then it is completely wrong. The very reason for Shaiza to join electoral politics or distance himself away from narrow ethnic aspirations of the Naga is evident from his actions, as a result of which he was assassinated. As mentioned above he stood for a united Manipur. This is also equally related with his stand on Meitei Mayek.

Declaring Manipur as a disturbed area is different from the invitation to impose the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, which ultimately R.K. Dorendra Singh did during his stint as Chief Ministership, and the consequent brunt we are going through today. Never before, Manipur had witnessed such a draconian act playing with the lives of the denizens. And it is everybody’s knowledge today that the deterioration of law and order situation is a creation by the Indian State approved by its cronies in Manipur. If Shaiza stands accused for being responsible of the deterioration of not only law and order but also for every crisis in the state, then all the former Ministers and politicians of Manipur are equally responsible.

Not much has changed since India annexed Manipur. Reproduction of compradors who support the ruling regime or the Indian State continues to be in motion. Manipur is still caught in the cauldron of mistrust, uncertainty and turmoil. In all these midsts, unfortunately Manipur has not been able to throw up a politician with a vision. All we have encountered are the parasites, the leeches and shopkeepers who can sell Manipur at the snap of fingers.

This brings us to the conclusion that the politicians of today do not have the moral fiber as Shaiza did. He was someone who was a product of a time that earnestly set themselves with the task of uncovering the soul of Manipur. It is still an incomplete task; the onus of finding it is equally on the shoulders of the present generation. Read it subjectively, too, it is akin to finding the goal of life itself.

As Alejandro Jodorowsky states in “Jodorowsky’s Dune”, “What is the goal of the life” It’s to create yourself a soul.” Yangmasho Shaiza was one such visionary who believed in soul of Manipur which is marked by beauty, truth and justice and that Manipur is unique in this sense.


( ** Book release, 'Yangmaso Shaiza And His Manipur' on October 12 2014 by the United All Communities Social Uplifters Kangleipak (UNACSU), in its Third Foundation Day at Amity Hall, Adimjati Siksha Ashram, Imphal )


* This is taken from a Book - 'Yangmaso Shaiza and his Manipur' published by United all communities social uplifters (UNACSU), Kangleipak
Dr Homen Thangjam wrote this article ; The write is Assistant Professor, Deptt. of Political Sc., M B. College, Imphal
This article was posted on December 18, 2014.


* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Kwatha Festival #2 : Gallery
  • ChingTam Ningol Chakouba @Goa: Gallery
  • Thoudam Kaoba :: Profile of Polo Player
  • The festival of the Inpui Nagas
  • IGAR (s) celebrates Ningol Chakkouba
  • Muslim Org met with Union Minority Minister
  • Thadou Students' condemns Assam Rifles
  • AR condemns the claims of TSA
  • Maintaining traffic regulation is important ..
  • Pony preservation still remains a far cry
  • Hazari/Tombi Polo Tournament : Gallery
  • X-Jam 2018 (Sports) #1 : Gallery
  • Ashok Veilou (Purul) award in Kolkata fest
  • Sanamahism was threat to Hinduism
  • Digital Impact on HR Practice : Review
  • Biodiversity for economic development #1
  • The Visitor :: Poem
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Mysore #2 : Gallery
  • Yoilumba, Chiranglen, Chingjaroi :: eMing
  • Pukning Pothasang: Women Mental Health
  • Scaramouche, Fandango, Galileo, Figaro..
  • A cry for survival: an appeal for unity
  • Who will answer our questions ?
  • Seminar : Challenges in Local Self Govt
  • Tourism and Sangai Festival
  • New leader at MSCW
  • Laija (Film Scenes) #1 :: eRang
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Dubai #2 : Gallery
  • Countdown to Manipur Polo International
  • Education for 21st century jobs
  • The corrupt tiger
  • Can you stop falling rain :: Poem
  • Scholars translate celebrated Nepali..
  • Of harassment at Imphal-Moreh Route
  • Need for a strong Opposition
  • Lamklai Kummoi Maring Fest #2: Gallery
  • National School Games- Fencing: Gallery
  • We want the ring...
  • The Queen's Heart :: Poem
  • Education of heart: Heart of Education
  • Mao - The Revolutionary
  • Discussion on India-Vietnam Relation
  • Sangai of the Sangai festival
  • Jarnail in his element
  • Tough road awaits Sarita in World Boxing
  • ACAUT says NNPGs unable to rein..
  • State has no say in ILP - Conrad
  • Ningol Chakouba @ MBC #2 : Gallery
  • Ningol Chakouba Nga Mela #2 : Gallery
  • Rajkumar Jhaljit : Sahityaratna 2017
  • Gaudiya Vaishnavism in Meitei Nation #2
  • Ningol Chakouba :: Poem
  • World Diabetes Day 2018
  • Bartending as a career option
  • The unintended windfall
  • Issues before the Parliamentary polls
  • Mera Kongchat Mass Rally #3: Gallery
  • Rock Show at X-Jam 2018 : Gallery
  • Bloody Phanek wins at Signs Festival
  • Gender Equality & Development :: Book
  • I am friend of India for life- Japanese PM
  • 2019 Commonwealth Scholarship in UK
  • 55th Nagas' Meet at New Delhi
  • Black money and the dream-merchants
  • What steps to address traffic chaos ?
  • Govt extends ban on seven Meitei groups
  • It won't be easy for Mary Kom - Nieva
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Mysore #1 : Gallery
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Dubai #1 : Gallery
  • Cry of a Dying River - 54 :: Poem
  • Religious education- Part of our life
  • Free Heart Camp at Kakching Bazar
  • Jobs at Gyan Jyoti Foundation
  • Nothing seems change; everything remains
  • Predatory instinct of man: Targeting 'Manipur'
  • Lihaaz- Classical Music at IIT Guwahati
  • Mera Wayungba #1 : Gallery
  • L Modhuchandra : Young Scientist Award
  • Chavang Kut celebrated in Delhi
  • Temple runs for a pilgrim's journey
  • First day of All India Young Writers' Festival
  • Ningol Chakkouba in era of materials
  • Constitutional breakdown in governance
  • Attacked on Environment Defenders
  • Kut festival @ Chandel : Gallery
  • Mega Marathon Manipur #2 : Gallery
  • Karen people's pursuit for survival..
  • Glamorous Maniac & their new single
  • City bus for high end of society- Why not?
  • Youth Leadership Camp at Yairipok
  • Course in Political Science at NEHU
  • Of Indian Constitution
  • Ningol Chakouba @ MBC #1 : Gallery
  • Ningol Chakouba Nga Mela #1 : Gallery
  • NH7 Weekender @Meghalaya #2 : Gallery
  • Gaudiya Vaishnavism in Meitei Nation #1
  • Old Man in the Winter :: Poem
  • Drawing inspiration from Dave Mustaine
  • Condemns attack on Agnes Kharshiing
  • NEUFC Fan Park celebrates
  • Achievement lists of PDA is 'Boring'
  • MPP : Down but not out
  • Ningol - mapam lamdam : Gallery
  • Kwatha Festival #1 : Gallery
  • Ningol Chakkouba: Biggest fest of Manipuri
  • Mizoram Under the British Rule :: Book
  • Dr. Udit Raj: a Crusader
  • Undisclosed #MeToo campaign in Manipur?
  • Drought :: Poem
  • When Money matters, sincerity is out..
  • Detaining two more at Jiribam
  • Ningol Chakkouba : Flash Presentation
  • Ningol Chakkouba Shopping #1: Gallery
  • The Killing Fields 2013-18 : News Timeline
  • Those Sparks and Sounds
  • Manipur from Independence to Merger #2
  • Understanding RSS :: Book Review
  • Cry of a Dying River - 53 :: Poem
  • A take on Freedom of Media
  • Pay of private school teachers
  • Mera Kongchat Mass Rally #2: Gallery
  • Art Festival @ Imphal : Gallery
  • 26 month left to meet AIDS 90-90-90 target
  • Tengnoumanbi- Essential food item ..
  • Dr Abdul Kalam vision of transforming India
  • A Wintry Landscape :: Poem
  • 'Say no to Lead Paints'
  • Completing bigger task
  • Biomedical wastes: Health, ecology at stake
  • NIA files chargesheet against 5 NSCN (K)
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Kolkata : Gallery
  • Mera Houchongba @Konung #3: Gallery
  • Irony of idea of communal harmony
  • Blood Donation at RGU, Arunachal Pradesh
  • Career opportunities in Ecology #2
  • Down the Country Road :: Poem
  • Change of season: Prepare for winter
  • Govt forgotten promises to improve traffic
  • ATC demand: Setback to pluralistic Manipur
  • Mega Marathon Manipur #1 : Gallery
  • Descent & inheritance among Zeliangrong
  • Constituent Assembly Of India & NEFA #3
  • Seminar : Reforming Teaching-Learning
  • Attitude :: Poem
  • Tourism: A key sector in the world
  • NH7 Weekender Meghalaya : Day 2 Report
  • Early solution in Manipur difficult : Army
  • Fabrics of Bangladeshi Manipuri: Download
  • NH7 Weekender @Meghalaya #1 : Gallery
  • Pukning Pothasang: Suicide prevention
  • Where have all the flowers gone? Khurkhul
  • Engaging Failed State :: Book Review
  • eNorth East Award 2018
  • Song of a Tree :: Poem
  • NH7 Weekender 2018 Kicks Off
  • Unsolved case of Pravish Chanam
  • Imphal Jamboree : Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Manipur from Independence to Merger #1
  • A beacon of hope
  • Mishing tribe of Assam
  • Ransomware that made the world cry
  • State Level Painting Competition
  • A suggestion for a strong democracy
  • Issues before Parliamentary polls
  • Kut Festival @ Kangpokpi : Gallery
  • HIV : Gap between research & impact
  • My Tryst With Manipur : A Memoir :: Review
  • Cultural heritage (Kut fete)
  • Bleeding inside Brain treated at SKY
  • Indo-Myanmar Regional Border Meet
  • In Her Arms Of Death :: Poem
  • Pravish Chanam : No Action by CBI
  • Assam Don Bosco : University of the Year
  • NH7 Weekender 2018 in Meghalaya
  • Media that criticize are not your enemy, CM
  • MU limping back to normalcy
  • Mera Kongchat Mass Rally #1: Gallery
  • Happy Kut Wishes :: Flash Presentation
  • November Calendar for Year 2018 :: Tools
  • Weavers training for Mamit , Mizoram
  • Diwali Lagao : Mapugidi Munda
  • Career opportunities in Ecology
  • Jobs at Trueblue, Taxi Service, Imphal
  • CM should not let this opportunity out..
  • Where will Oct 31, 2018 stand ?
  • Mera Houchongba @Konung #2: Gallery
  • Kut Festival :: Series of Articles
  • Comedian Huirem Manglem passed away
  • Constituent Assembly Of India & NEFA #2
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • Chalwa Village in Kangpokpi #3 : Gallery
  • NEROCA Vs East Bengal : Gallery
  • Fashion Show: Lamklai Kummoi: Gallery
  • Mera Houchongba @Konung #1: Gallery
  • Sanjenbam Bhanumati Devi : Kavyabhusan
  • Eepan Thaba #1: Gallery
  • A Road Trip to Myanmar #3
  • Narmada Sougaijam - Natl Konkan Award
  • Bor khoiramba @Hiyangthang #2 : Gallery
  • Mera Houchongba : Unity - hill & valley
  • Khong: significance in Zeliangrong culture-1
  • Manipuri Calendar for 2018 : Download
  • Lamyanba Irabot- Floral Tribute #2: Gallery
  • Mera Chaorel Houba #2 : Gallery
  • Pari Imom (Film Scenes) #1 :: eRang
  • Death Anniv - Bhagyachandra #3 : Gallery
  • Heikru Hidongba #3 : Gallery
  • AMAND Pune: Cultural evening : Gallery
  • Tarpon Sonba : Gallery
  • mtM :: Seireng
  • Front Page Photo 2018 #4: Gallery
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • Manglandasu Nang - OST :: e-pao Radio
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic
  • SPONSORED ADS