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What is the future of our community?

This question has become a big issue. What is the future of the Bishnupriya Manipuri community?

This was the opening sentence of Litton Sinha from Bangalore. Here is what he wrote in the Contact Us page of this blog on 10 October 2011:

What is the future of our community? I see it ending smoke! I am always eager to give a helping hand for the upliftment and growth of our community but I see low nodes of interest in many youngsters especially those who believe in “Jiyo aur jino do”. Please help…

We all empathy his cry “Help”! It is something that we all are concerned with.

Long back, on 26 May 2009, here in this blog, readers’ concerns were collected to a somewhat similar question: Is Imaar Thar in Danger? 

Here is a quick preview of the readers’ take on this issue (please read all the comments):

The more I think about it, the more I feel myself unfit to write about it. … our Imar Thar is in danger unless we take measures to ensure that our future generations are acquainted with the Bishnupriya Manipuri language… taking a political perspective of our struggle is paramount.

I have a strong feeling that our people are becoming more & more conscious about their identity/culture/language. The participation of many young people shows that.

Language cannot be extinct… even if I live in Delhi, yes I am more comfortable in Hindi or English but mom starts of in Imaar thar and I follow it, can’t that happen in every house hold. Am I correct (I don’t know), but this seems to be a logical and feasible answer.

Our youngsters understand the Bishnupriya Manipuri language. If we make more and more awareness amongst youngster then this will not happen.

The current limitations in the use of our language is that, even though almost every family speaks the language as of today, the children and teenagers aren't fluent in it and often use terms from other languages to complete the message. So, the language is losing it's resources exponentially.

(It is immaterial) You marry other caste or not nowadays parents sentiment is to teach (their sons and daughters) English before Imaar thar.

Bishnupriya Manipuri language is of much antiquity. Historical evidences indicate its existence even prior to the 15th century A.D. The language has not vanished or disappeared even against so many adversaries, constraints, hurdles and ethnic outrage....I'm confident the language may languish but will not perish.

I feel there should be a will to learn. So, we should give our children the education which will culture them, so that they can inculcate the facts of life ahead.

[Imaar Thar] …is in danger among some of the handful Bishnupriya Manipuris living in towns and cities. The number is very small for this moment, but we have to be aware of it, otherwise the number may increase in coming years. We have to motivate these people to respect our mother tongue and speak among themselves including family.

I would say our Imaar Thar is safe in villages but not in cities and metro cities because majority influence is always there and we are minority in cities and metros so we start conversing in the language which the majority people speak. So even at home our people start conversing in the local language of the place where they stay. If every Bishnupriya Manipuri teaches Imaar Thar to their children and at least converse with them, I think, it should be safe.

Because as we know today we are used to the habit of using English, Hindi or Bengali words in place of our own native words. Even I’m used to it. I can’t help it. If today I try to say to some body, "HAICHA THAIL", 34 out of 100 will understand me. So, it is in danger. It is a really a good step towards awakening our eyes. Even I from today will try to use as much as less English or Hindi or Bengali words.

[Yes, Imaar Thar is in danger…]…Coz, our Bishnupriya (Manipuri) people didn't faith each other…to fully co-operate each other.

[Yes, Imaar Thar is in Danger. The reasons are too numerous but am jotting down a few to start off. (1) Lack of pride in our mother tongue & culture except for a concerned few. …(2) …many of us do not take pride in identifying ourselves as manipuris/bangals …we lag far behind other communities in education, money & political power. The only thing left to us, the only thing we can cling to is our identity. Take that away and we become either Bengalis or Biharis( Because of our surname)…(3) …Our Venerable elders ( ahal laman ) fighting amongst themselves in the name of Dola -Doli . This is this is the legacy they will be leaving behind for future generations.

[Yes, Imaar Thar is in danger… Many Bishnupriya Manipuris who are getting highly educated are getting married mostly to Bengalis. It’s a matter of shame instead of marrying within the community we are going outside it. …It’s my advice to all the Bishnupriya Manipuris, keep up the good work and make the community proud with your achievements.

Language dies day by day for two causes (I think). (1). Internal; (2). External
(1). The problem in our society is that we feel "shame" and "fear" to express our religion, thoughts, beliefs, ideas etc. to others and adopts other's thoughts, ideas, beliefs etc. to show up how smart we are!!! …(2). The external problem is the influence of the other culture or the dominating force what we see in Manipur. They have already killed our Ima and Imar Thar. We have to fight like Sudeshna to save the outside influence and the same time be concious in ourselves.

Yes, Imaar Thar is in danger…I have read many Manipuri magazines wrote by different author and have always wondered whether someone came forward to create beautiful images on a blank mirror. But I could not convince myself that this manifesto could be helpful to bring forward our community. According to my lack of understanding, it is better, before we create an image we have to choose a perfect Frame...Find out the actual Leader to come over in this Trap. Coz without perfect leader no one can achieve their goal in the match…I would ever be grateful that I’m Bishnupriya Manipuri.

No. Imaar Thar is not in danger…IMAAR THAR IS ALWAYS AHEAD. SO WE SHOULD LOVE IMAAR THAR. I like it.

The survey held that our language indeed is in danger (63 %).

…to be concluded.


  1. When was it safe,our Imaar thaar? Is it correct to say that Imaar thaar is in dager because handful of people are not talking with their children at home?

    About 50 yrs back BM people never wrote letters in Imaar thaar, today we are writing in our thaar.Those days in Silchar,BM people used to talk in Bengali, today they are talking in our thaar.

    There are books and newspapers available today,
    present generation sould make a habit of reading


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