The episode of physical assault and bullying on the Manipuri actress Momoko and her other compatriots on the 18th of December, 2012 by Livingston Anal, an NSCN-IM cadre, was unpardonable and regretful. This episode of ghastly physical assault and bullying people has evoked a sense anxiety and anger. This also has provoked communal feelings on both the sides. In this moment of anger and festival, Hyderabad Manipuri Society (HYMS) appeals to the entire law abiding citizen and other stake holders of Manipur not to divert the issue from its main demand: book the culprit. Let us not forget that the communal undertone of the protest and counter-protest would only lead to creating a bigger social chasm and division along community lines. This is the time we all look forward for a future of equality, of better understanding of another and to strive for a peaceful co-existence.
HYMS also strongly appeals to the Congress government both in state and centre to address the issue honestly. HYMS strongly condemns the use of live bullets in order to disperse the angry protestor and eventually killing a media person. This act vindicates the militarization of the state and lawlessness.
There is a near total absent of a space for redressal. Momoko’s case is not the first; there have been plenty, which have rooted out peoples’ sense of reliableness from the government cutting across community. It is the government that has created fear and the feeling of helplessness and disillusionment with its own machineries: judiciary, executive and legislature. The central and state governments, instead of working together to bring together such divides along community in such a sensitive and complex state like Manipur, have been orchestrating division of the state along community for its own vested political and electoral advantage.
Therefore, HYMS appeals to all the people of Manipur to stay calm and look forward for a possible co-existence. HYMS also strongly urges and demands that Livingstone Anal should be booked and justice brought for Momoko. Let us pray that there are no repetitions of such episode in the future, for this we need to teach ourselves that women are not object for shaming an another community; we should respect and give equal opportunity and dignity to them, if not more, on par with men. The root cause of objectification of female body: patriarchy should be abolished and we need to change and reorient our own understanding of women and humanity.
(Chief coordinator HYMS)
Hyderabad Manipuri Society (HYMS)