Political and Economic Ramifications of Manipur’s Merger with India in 1949

Diana Maimom *

The independence and sovereignty of Manipur remained uninterrupted until the Burmese invaded and occupied it for seven year in the first quarter of the 19th century (1819 - 1825). On 21st September 1949, the maharaja was coerced to sign a Merger Agreement with the union of India and take effect on 15 October 1949. Manipur was merged in the India Union as a part C state on 15 October 1949.

After its merger with India, India govt started supervising and examining historical material / records relating to the illegal annexation and colonisation of Manipur and terminating the foreign and colonial regime of India over Manipur and started international appraisal of the illegal and unjustified annexation of the nation state of Manipur in 1949 AD.

The people of Manipur faced repression , suppression and torture etc. from the then Indian force - extra judicial murder and subjugation of the people of Manipur under permanent colonial process and colonisation in different forms were what the people have been faced.

The historical materials and the records, documents and treaties which are enclosed here with, the sovereign and independent political status of Manipur which had been continuing for at least 2000 years has been dislocated by the Indian colonial administration and by physical occupation of the Indian colonial army. No referendum or plebiscite of the people of Manipur had ever been held concerning the annexation or merger of Manipur to a foreign country, the republic of India.

The economy of Manipur has pushed down 68 % of Manipur people were below the poverty line centre for monitoring India economy in 1992-1993 indicated that whereas Indian state of Punjab has reached an index of 205 Manipur’s index is 71. As per the Asian development bank report, 11 May 1997, Manipur rice production in kg/ hectare is 1400 (against Indian average of 1740).

Road in sq km in Manipur is 32.64 km (against Indian average of 62.82 km). Banking credit in Manipur is Rs 44 (Indian is Rs 1722 11) p/c of Manipur is 5,326/-(against Indian average of 6,929). Annual budget is Rs 400 + crore is literally for the maintenance of 90,000 colonial Indian army” innumerable mercenaries, police, espionage, supporting pre-colonial formalise and half the budget allocation is not available due to colonial fiscal policy.

Overall the captive market is at the hands of Hindustanis no industry had been set up for attaining industrial growth, all the resources have been exploited by the colonial regime. Manipur survives and subsistence economy not a single electronic industry has been set up in Manipur let alone the major and heavy industries.

The people of Manipur had not deputed a genuine representative, duly elected by the people of Manipur to the then constituent assembly of India. Although from the Indian colonial perspective, a foreign nation was considered as representative, a foreign national was considered as representative to the constituent assembly of India, who helped the illegal annexation.

Any representative of Manipur people by a person of the colonial country professing to represent the people of Manipur is absolutely null and void. As the foreign national lacked the capacity and jurisdiction. There has been no lawful representative of genuine representative of Manipur people in the constitutional assembly of India.

Proxy elections are conducted by spending crores of India rupees in order to perpetuate colonialism through quislings. Puppet regimes and fifth columnists under the proxy elections process by way of misleading the illiterate electorate. The Indian regime can in no way of justify the electoral process whatsoever.

Since the people of Manipur cannot exercise their “ Independent political will” and resolve their destiny at the gun point of the massive ,racist Indian army and several thousands of mercenaries, subversives and spies. Since 1949 onwards till today not a single day has ever passed in Manipur without the repressive measures taken by the Indian colonial army by torturing, insulting or extra judicially murdering the indigenous people of Manipur.

Under section 4 of the Armed Forces Special Power Act 1958 the Armed forces of the union of India have been empowered to kill anybody on suspicion or out of hatred without any judicial process. Beside this has enormously encouraged the Indian armed forces to precipitate and heighten their extra judicial torture and execution of the Mongolian race in Manipur.

The people of Manipur have been deprived of their inalienable birth right to determine their political and socio economic status on their own due to Indian colonial process, subjugation, alien and racist national oppression. They have been deprived of their right inalienable right to exploit their natural resources as per there. The people of Manipur especially the meiteis had a lot of grievance against the Indian government after the integration.

They were unhappy that the Manipur land and revenue regulation banned the Meiteis from buying land in the hills. Whereas hill people and outsiders could freely buy the land in Imphal valley. They were also unhappy that educated Meiteis were given the status of other backward class (OBC) while the hill tribes were given the status of scheduled tribe (ST) and enjoyed education and job reservation increase in corruption and unemployment problem of the educated youth in the state further aggressed the situation.

According to Ramesh Bhattacharji , when Manipur merged with India after the departure of the British no concern was shown by the Indian government towards the economic development of Manipur . There was not enough water supply, no markets to sell their crops and very limited medical aid. In order to increase their income some of the people started cultivating cannabis illegally and traders from north Indian plains would purchase it. Many young men also took drugs in order to escape their miserable future discontentment among the people further escalated where the economic activity was centered in the hands of the non local people.

The people of Manipur reacted to all these grievances by deciding to go back and revive the per Hindu sanamahi religion old names like kangleipak for Manipur old festivals old calendar and old script. They demand for the evacuation of Assam rifles from kangla palace in Imphal as it symbolized their indigenous glory.

After the merger the people of Manipur especially the meiteis were not at all happy with the kind of treatment they received from the Indian government. They felt that they should be treated well and given special status instead of it, they were given the status of part-C state which they considered as third class. The people of Manipur compared themselves with Kashmir and were quite unhappy with the kind of treatment they got from the Indian government while the Kashmir was given a special status, Manipur was given no such rights.

The people of Manipur especially the Meitei prided themselves as a part of former princely states and could not accept the way that they were treated by the Indian government. The failure of the Indian government to address to the need of the people was also one of the reasons that led to the inception and rise of the insurgency movement in the state.

The people of Manipur have strongly endorsed the view that Manipur has socio economically and politically been exploited by the Indian regime beside the political and military subjugation of the people of the Manipur since 1949 till today majority of the Manipures have to learn hindu and baptised in colonial regime.

The elected held in the mighty presence of occupation army mercenaries and pouring crores of rupees for bribery have debarred the people of Manipur to exercise their free will and no plebiscite on the colonisation had ever been held Alcoholics , drugs, heroin, brown sugar and narcotics are freely distributed to the voters in the election which effect the young Manipuri. The unity and territorial integrity as well as sovereignty of independent Manipur state has been impaired and terminated by the illegal Indian annexation of Manipur on the 15 October 1949.

Manipur’s economy is in the doldrums and with no industry, unemployment is very high. The official unemployment figure was nearly eight lakh, which is a scandalous 30 % of the population. Manipur has seen negligible investment over the years and government jobs remain the only source of the employment. But with corruption rife and every job bowing a half price tag, most do not get job and join the ranks of the UGs.

Meanwhile the election were held in November an d December 1951, in the elections around 30 people were elected to guide Manipur into an era of peace and prosperity. But that was never to be. The main architects of democracy had betrayed Manipur and led the state to a half century of bloodshed part of Manipur shut down on Tuesday against the merger of the state with Indian union. The state down ranging from 12 - 18 hours affected six districts in the plains of Manipur dominated in the hills although life was affected because of disruption of communication with state capital Imphal.

With merger to India, the people of Manipur feel very bad not a single industry much less an important establishment major has ever been established in Manipur whereas several hundred of crores of rupees have been spent apparently on paper maintained for the record in order to refuel and recycle their colonial apparatus quite a few families in Manipur were also used as a colonial subsidiaries .

The economic condition of the average people of Manipur specially those in the hill area has not improud even up to the level of subsistence people service on grass root in the Manipur hill area because of colonial economic process. The Manipur hill men and plain men are divided by the presidential approval to a decisive law. The Manipur land and revenue act 1960 which dabar the plainsmen to seek access to Manipur hill. The apartheid has been created.

There were waves of political and economic change in Manipur. The people were happy that the colonial rule had come to an end. Different political parties come forward and put forward their demand their demands for responsible government. But seen they had to come to terms with the foots that their state was going to merge with the Indian union. Some of the political parties welcomed the idea of integration while some raised voice against it.

Their apprehensive to join the Indian union was due to the following reasons, (A) fear of exploitation at the hands of the mainland india and (B) social exclusion exclusion faced by some of the Meiteis who lived in Cachar.

The Meiteis Hindu population who lived in Cachar had to face social religions disapproval at the hand of the Bengal Hindus and was even excluded from the society. This made the Meiteis rejection of Hinduism and made them go back and embrace their farmer indigenous religion called Sanamahei. The Meiteis thus having an image of indisa having a hostile culture, economic and political system.

(This write-up is one among the two 3rd prize winner of the on line essay competition organized by Imphal Times)

* Diana Maimom wrote this article for Imphal Times
This article was webcasted on December 10 2020.

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