TODAY -

Editorial of the week

Policing Syndrome
Courtesy: The Sangai Express 07th November, 2007



The presence of a number of social vigilantes in the State ranging from anti-drugs and anti-alcohol organisations to moral policemen who stalk the numerous seedy restaurants across Imphal and who also decide what the people should watch on the big screen or the TV and what the youngsters should wear, invariably raises the question of whether the presence of these entities is a reflection of the society's defence mechanism against all that is morally degrading or is a reflection of the presence of some bigots whose only agenda is to impose their writs and diktats on the people.

On the other hand, we may also raise the question whether the large presence of such organisations is a result of the erosion of family values, where the family as a unit has failed in its obligation of moulding an individual, physically, mentally, socially, spiritually and emotionally.

There cannot be one hard bound answer to all these questions, but nevertheless the presence of so many such organisations will surely prove to be an interesting field of studies for any university students specialising in humanities and social sciences.

Historically, Manipur has been a cohesive society, with social organisations in one form or the other occupying an important place in the social make up of the society but the manner in which such organisations have mushroomed in recent times, is a phenomenon that just cannot be brushed aside that easily.

While many of these organisations have come up with the sincere objective of checking the various social ills dogging Manipur, there are some with dubious antecedents and whose agenda and objectives are not clear at all.

Moreover there have also been times when some lumpen elements have taken advantage of the presence of these organisations to pose as social vigilantes for their own personal agenda.

Apart from the stated objective to deal with social ills and moral degradation, the presence of so many organisations also means that the Government has failed to deliver the goods.

It is when the Government agencies fail to live up to its duties, that social organisations and other power players will pitch in with their beliefs and ideologies and this is what has been happening in Manipur for long. Keeping aside the failure of the Government agencies, we may also begin by asking whether, the Manipuri society as a whole has failed or not.

The presence of so many social vigilantes does not necessarily mean that social ills have been checked. On the other hand it can be taken to mean that such is the failure of society as a whole, that the presence of so many moral policemen has become necessary.

While the desire to do something good and constructive for society should not be discredited at ay cost, it would also help, if the people as a whole realise, that today so many people have come together to form a body or an association to combat what they perceive as social ills, because there is something wrong somewhere, very seriously.

If each and every family unit in the State were to discharge its duties of moulding their youngsters, then would there be any need for anyone to come out on the street to keep a watch against social nuisances ?

This is the time for a wake up call to all in Manipur.



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