Hand that rocks the cradle Saluting mothers the world over


Hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. A short sentence but which is pregnant with meaning. Obviously this is the ultimate tribute to all mothers over the world and no one can deny the profound impact that mothers have on the young children. Like in the years past, Manipur too witnessed Mother’s Day observation on May 8, the second Sunday of the month and it would be wrong to assume that the day is exclusively associated with Christianity. Cutting across religious divide, mankind should come together as one to observe the day. Setting aside a day in a calendar year to pay respect to the most important woman in a person’s life and this is what mothers all over the world are. It should also be clear to all that this day has a special significance in the life of all Manipuris. The Meira Paibi movement, which is unique to Manipur cannot be understood sans the understanding of mothers and there is a reason why Manipur has an Ima Keithel, a market place exclusively run and managed by womenfolk. If there is Ima Keithel, then Manipur is also the place which witnessed two Nupi Lans and the importance of this occasion is understood in the manner in which the State religiously observes this day every year. And it goes without saying that observing Nupi Lan cannot be understood without understanding Motherhood.
So even as the world came together as one to pay respect to mothers all over the world on Mother’s Day, it is also time for all to seriously introspect where women today stand in society. Are the women of Manipur accorded the respect that befits setting aside a day as Mother’s Day ? No easy answer here, for while Manipur gave the Meira Paibi movement to the world and the two Nupi Lans, it also stands that women continue to be a subdued lot. Rapes, molestation and eve teasing continue and this is where everyone need to seriously study whether women are given their rightful place in society or not. Observing Mother’s Day will fall flat on its face if women continue to be a battered lot. To really make the observation that the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world, meaningful, society as a whole need to give women their due and treat them with the respect they deserve. May 8 was Mother’s Day but let this day be a reminder to all to see if Manipur has really understood the intrinsic meaning of Ima. A point which cannot be understood unless one respects womanhood.


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