Friday, 20 April 2012

Firaal: a 21st century BM magazine

RK Rishikesh Sinha

Front cover of Firaal magazine
À magazine could be brought out without an office, without a dedicated team of writers and copyeditors, and even without a body; hitherto without any whereabouts of fund. A team of faceless persons connected by World Wide Web participate, contribute and collaborate and they come out with a magazine. All the planning and strategy has taken place over Internet and the release of the magazine is simultaneously held in Guwahati and Silchar. Firaal, the publication of Facebook group Bishnupriya Manipuri Discussion Forum (BMDF), is a classic example of crowdsourcing.

Firaal has the composition of 21st century elements: Speed and Mass. Speed at which the magazine has been processed and made public, and the mass of people involved makes Firaal a truly 21st century magazine. Any reader would find in it the continuity of the past, but at the same time would find a tinge of experiments done for the future. The contents of the magazine would surely content any Bishnupriya Manipuri world over.

Release of Firaal at Guwahati

Why the name Firaal? (Firaal)… “is the symbol of peace that represents the inner characteristics of the people belonging to the (Bishnupriya Manipuri) society” writes Mihir Lal Singha from Bangladesh. Mihir has rightly defined the perspective following which the name of the magazine Firaal has been coined. Firaal, the flag, expresses many thoughts and messages of the Bishnupriya Manipuri mass.

The 100-page magazine is truly a manifestation of the Bishnupriya Manipuri mass. With its stark rawness, it brings forth the wishes and aspirations of common Bishnupriya Manipuri men and women. Firaal emphasizes that the period of rawness has come. It articulates rawness and should be the hallmark of a 21st century literary creation.

New Script
Many writers have jotted down imar thar in Roman script. Henceforth, Firaal has enunciated a new era where Roman script in Bishnupriya Manipuri language has been corroborated. In its inaugural magazine, it gives an impression that the thought has been given due advantage than getting into trouble spot of scripts.

International magazine
Keeping the diversity of the Bishnupriya Manipuris in context, Firaal is more encompassing and inclusive in its approach. The topics chosen are of wide range from general interest stories to Bishnupriya Manipuri-centric issues, to faagi yaari (humour), to travelogue, to soul-searching feature articles, to interviews. Tastes and preferences of the readers has been given due priority. 

image courtesy: BMBooksGallery
Pratibha Sinha
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