TODAY -

As much as Keibul Lamjao is for Keibul/Thanga, Moirang Sendra is for Moirang

NS Hemam *

Fishing in trouble water
Fishing in trouble water



In a bizarre twist of events, solicited by misinformed and vested interest groups, we (people of Moirang AC) may have to endure and disprove the false claim of 'Moirang Sendra' being part of Thanga AC. It is like proving 'your own son' as 'your own son' in a court of law.

The unfortunate incident of encroachment by the Sendra Youth Club at Public Ground of Moirang Sendra, and subsequent erection of a stone engraving in the name of World Environment Day in the vicinity have created the unnecessary raucous.

The generous people of Moirang, just like they had always done in the past, allowed the encroachers from other constituencies to settle down near the foothills of Sendra in early seventies.

But, unfortunately, the very people whom you had given shelter are now trying to take away the land itself (i.e. Sendra) to their constituency of origin. If one goes by this logic, one day, our beloved state capital Imphal, which is the home of people from various constituencies, may cease to exist as Imphal in a few generations.

For the record, since time immemorial, Sendra has always been part and parcel of Moirang - the irrefutable facts are well reflected in Moirang Kangleiol. There are absolutely no two opinions on it. Anyone who is faintly familiar with Manipur culture/history would swear by it.

Moreover, administratively, the Sendra hillock falls under 'Village No 53- Moirang Sheet No 1' of Moirang Sub-division, and falls under the administrative jurisdiction of Moirang Sub Dicision. It was not long ago that the 'Sendra Tourist Home, Moirang,' for all timers' sake, stood as the most favorite tourist destination of every Manipuri. Likewise, it was only after the arrival of Assam Rifles at Sendra that the Moirang Fishery Office got shifted to another location.

The whole controversy of Sendra being claimed by Thanga as their own is based on a "fake" Dag Chitha issued by the then ASO of Moirang Block in 2012 for a piece of land inside the Takmu lake, without due diligence of administrative procedure.

What was more baffling was the issuance of a 'No Objection Certificate' by a Pradhan of Thanga AC constituency for a piece of land that belongs to another Assembly Constituency, Moirang.

The then ASO seemed to have committed the cardinal sin of ignoring the basic land mutation rule - any piece of land under an ongoing land mapping survey cannot be issued a Dag Chitha or a Patta. The village No 53 Moirang Sheet No 1 is under land mapping survey since 2006, and it remains incomplete till date. Therefore, the 'Dag Chitha' issued by the then ASO in favour of Sendra Youth Club stands null and void.

The issue of competing claims is a common phenomenon, but none so bizarre is never heard of it. It is time to introspect and take corrective steps before it reaches a point of no return. The unfortunate part is that inhabitants of Sendra is caught in the middle.

Just by locally renaming a place, say Sendra as Thanga Part-II, would not make any difference to the legal status of the place or the people. It was in 2006 that the inhabitants of Sendra foothills, mostly new settlers, were asked to vacate the present place of settlement by the government.

It was only the disagreement in settlement plan and the arrival of an election that stopped the eviction process. Today, the harmonious neighborhood relationship, built upon generations of mutual respect and peaceful co-existence, is at the verge of collapse.

It is for all theirs (inhabitants of Sendra) to lose - be it in economy, communication, connectivity or development. It is always a win for those who do not play a loose-loose game.


* NS Hemam wrote this article for e-pao.net
The writer can be contacted at hemamns(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was posted on June 13, 2017.


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