Thursday, 28 February 2013

How To Get MTNL Telephone Connection In Delhi

How to 
Getting an MTNL Telephone connection with other facilities like Broadband / Internet might seem simple and an easy walk-through in Delhi. But it is not so, if you don’t take care of few things especially for those who are staying temporarily in Delhi or are very new to the city or they don’t have their own residence. However, the article will also help those who have their residence.

With ubiquitous mobile connectivity, still there are people who for personal and professional reason prefer an MTNL connection (telephone or internet), thus adding value to the communication channel.

Steps to get MTNL telephone  / internet / broadband connection in Delhi:

Step 1. In your home-search spree, enquire whether MTNL connection is available or not to your property dealer or the person known to you. It might happen that MTNL connection is not available in that particular area.

Step 2. Once you are confirmed that MTNL connection is available. Inform the property dealer AND also the owner of the house and emphasise them that:
(a)You need Rent agreement
(b) Photocopies of Paid Electricity Bill / Water Bill. Please note that you have to take photocopies of recent Bills (minimum 3 months) and that should be PAID.
(c)  Confirm, confirm to the fact that whether the name in the Rent Agreement AND the name in the Electricity Bill / Water Bill is same or not. Tell this fact to the Property Dealer and the owner whether the name in these two documents will be same or not. If it is not. Try another home.

Since many times, it has been seen that the present owner has not changed the name in these crucial documents from the previous owner from whom he or she has bought the property.

If you miss these points, you will be paying a heavy price since it wouldn’t be easy to change home once you get in.

(3) Once you are satisfied with the two necessary points given above, visit your nearby MTNL Sanchar Haat.

(4) Fill up the Forms that would be available for new connection (You can find the MTNL Application Forms online) by visiting your nearest Sanchar Haat. 

(5) Submit (a) Identity Proof (photocopy) that may include PAN, Driving License, Voter ID etc., with (b) photocopy of the Rent Agreement; and (c) Photocopy of the Paid Electricity or Water Bill.
And don’t forget to take the originals.

(6) After submission of the documents, wait for atleast a week to get the connection.  

Hurray! You are done with it.

Problem with many government offices is that they don’t display appropriately Citizen’s Charter which is visible enough to any walk-through customers.  If it is done with, half of the harassment could be mitigated.

Hope the article has helped you. 

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Reverse Migration: Delhi


By RK Rishikesh Sinha

You can frame this question in one of many news. What has gone wrong in a decade or so, faces know to you are leaving a city like Delhi and going back to their home? Those faces who were around once are no more in your vicinity. Some have left, and some are planning to go back. There are many reasons to their going back; one thing that is certain: Delhi cannot be a home.

The beginning of 21st century saw people from all across the country coming to Delhi, some for job and some for education. It saw one of the major internal migrations in India, those fat salary, carefree life has failed them to make foot in the capital city for long. If you are not thinking, you can be the next. Though sooner or later.

A case in point, a friend of mine who worked for half a decade in the major international call centres in Gurgaon and Noida; in 2010 decided to go back to Guwahati. Today, he has his own call centre in Guwahati. He visited this New Year in Delhi to take his leftover belongings.

Another friend of mine, who made a quick money in Delhi and was able to grab a piece of land, has to sell now to go back to his hometown in Manipur. While some try their hand to earn quick money by taking personal loan, and for permanently leaving the city. A big FRAUD!

In one corner of my mind, I do wonder, why they are leaving now, few years back they never thought that one day they would be leaving.

Is it because of home-sick tendency? Yes, there is high tendency among Northeasterners to feel home-sick in a new city, away from their near and dear ones.  You close your doors, you are in your own.

Future seems bleak! You came, you earned. Now what? Your earning fails to meet your expenses. Oh future! Your heart says, there is no future in Delhi. The way the salary is moving, it is like bottled oxygen to your life.

No demand of skill: Once upon a time, there was a huge demand for my skill, but there is no more. Blame the government policies, technological shift, or something went wrong, that I am no more saleable in market.

Urban culture? Is it because of the urban culture that disturbs them to their vein and they ultimately decide to go back.  Northeasterners who usually come from a cocooned, everybody-know-everyone  culture, find themselves alien to the newly adopted urban culture. You are seen and taken as a different bunch of people, neither rich nor smart like Biharis and UPites.  When you discover, you are nowhere in these extremes, you decide to leave forever.

In between, a landlord told me once, “Wealth created in Delhi has always remained in Delhi”. Well, he didn’t tell me to go through the history of Delhi. Indeed, the history of Delhi supports it.

What Delhi holds in your life: a sojourn or a destination?

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Tasmania -- a little slice of heaven on earth

Visiting a new place, when it is a country and a continent, Australia, it is always mesmerising and enchanting. Rebati Mohan Sinha unfurls his itinerary to this Gold rush country. 

Aussie Aussie oi oi oi – sounds familiar? You surely heard the stereo-typed stuff like that. But believe me if you haven't travelled to, in and around Australia you will not know that are not the real Australia.

I had been travelling there. To fantastic locations of Sydney, like Darling Harbour, Opera house, Climb of Harbour bridge, Tower Restaurant, Harbour Lunch Cruise and Blue Mountains. To Melbourne to have a go at its Victoria market, China Town, and river cruise. And this time to Tasmania to explore its rich treasures.

Tasmania is an island mountainous state of Australia. The population is about 5 lakhs, most of them are Britons. Hobart is its capital city with a population of approx 2.1 lakhs. Tasmania's main industries have been mining (copper, zinc, tin and iron), agriculture, forestry and tourism. The island state is surrounded by Indian and Pacific oceans and separated from mainland Australia by 240 km stretch of Bass strait, like Sri Lanka separated from mainland India by Palk Strait. Tasmania claims to have the world's cleanest air, the purest water along with its red fertile soil. Tourists are attracted to its world heritage listed regions, national parks, pristine coastal line, enchanting villages, bustling cities and convict's ruins. Tasmania is rugged, and offers a kaleidoscopic variety of brilliant colours and natural beauty.
Australia Tourism : Rebati Mohan Sinha with his wife
 Our itinerary began from Adelaide with the trip to Melbourne, and then to Hobart. We rented a car from the airport for driving along Tasmania. We reached the Hotel Mercure in the heart of Hobart city. In the evening, we headed off on a stroll through historic part of Hobart via Salamanca market place to constitution of dock for watching the seaplanes berthed at the jetty.

Hobart city is located on the south east coast of Tasmania, The city is situated around a deep harbour and has a stunning natural landscape sitting on the bank of the Derwent River while Mount Wellington towers above. Hobart is also close to a lot of other famous wilderness and historic destinations in Tasmania.

Next day, we visited Huon Valley and Tahune Forest Air walk which was about a ninety minutes drive from our hotel. We walked a bit further down to the Air walk through the forest, where there were different viewing platforms which gave a breath taking views of the dense forest, the canopy, and the tallest trees in the world. We took a stroll through the canopy of a tall eucalyptus forest, home to the tallest flowering plant on earth. The Tahune Airwalk of Huon valley is a fabulous walk- way suspended some 40 metre (120fts) in the air over the rain forest tree canopy. We, then went down the stair to the deep jungle to walk along the bank of Huon river up to the spine tingling swinging bridges across the Huon and Picton rivers, experienced the thrill of watching them rush right beneath our feet.

We had a leisurely drive back along the highway for Wellington Mountain to get a bird's eye view of this spectacular harbour city. On reaching the top, the view was amazing. With the sun setting on the back ground , the icy wind at the summit, we couldn't ask more. The weather was not with us though, and so our view of the harbour was sketchy at best. We never anticipated the wind and cold weather we encountered at the summit.

Our next destination was to drive down from Hobart in east coast to Strahan in west coast, covering about 300 km, visiting Cadbury's first built factory outside of UK, in the city of Hobart, in 1922 .Cadbury has a long history in Australia and is a brand that many generations grew up loving it. Every Aussie is familiar with the sweet creamy sensation of Cadbury's Dairy Milk. Every one of us at the visitor centre was well received by the staffs, offering chocolate as a gift to carry home.

En route to Mt. Field National Park from Cadbury, on the way, we had been to salmon (fish) pond, that had a huge variety of salmon fishes. Walking around the spectacular grounds and feeding the fish to see them jumping up closer was fun. From there, we headed for the next destination, Strahan about 200km off. We were heading inland, nearing Queens town where unique landscape reflected the history of the region. And we had continued along the high way, where we experienced a lot of flora and fauna that would be any photographers delight. .

The fishing port of Strahan is set on a quiet bay of Macquarie harbour on Tasmania's spectacular west coast. This waterfront village is the gateway to the magnificent Gordon River and Tasmania's wilderness world heritage area.

And yet, any visit to Tasmania is incomplete without a cruise on the world famous Gordon river. On the cruise we got to see the Hell gate, where the harbour meets the open sea, the world renowned salmon farms, where fish cages are placed in ocean to contain and protect fish until they can be harvested. We took a look at the most notorious Sara island, the feared penal colony, and walked among the ruins with the guide, bringing the past alive with astonishing stories of convicts, who built amazing ships of Australia out of precious Huon pine.

Cruising onboard six hours on the Lady Franklin II' was an amazing experience of the most scenic on earth. Saying bye to Tasmania was tough—the little heaven on earth left an indelible imprint in our hearts.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Bishnupriya Manipuri Business Club

A community which is scattered around the globe when it comes to business is a strength. And Bishnupriya Manipuri community with footprints all over India primarily in major cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Guwahati, and Silchar is a strength if tapped by entrepreneurs of the community.

And Bishnupriya Manipuri Business Club (BMBC) will be one step in this direction. The Club would work as one-stop web directory of business establishments, in extension it could work as a resource pool in terms of knowledge and information, understanding of the market gaps, market entry-exit, and mentoring and a lot many. 

Flinders University appoints Dr Romi Sinha as Associate Lecturer

Romi Sinha
Dr. Romi Sinha, appointed Associate Lecturer at Flinders University, Australia
Adding one more story of Indian diaspora by individuals who by dint of their single-minded dedication and hard work achieve success, Dr Romi Sinha, an alumna of Silchar Medical College, Assam, is one among them. Daughter of Rebati Mohan Sinha, she has been awarded the post of Associate Lecturer in the School of Medicine at Flinders University, Australia. 

Since its inception in 1966, the Australian university has built a strong reputation for quality and innovation in its courses and in its teaching. It is the first university in the world to have a bachelor course in nanotechnology, and the first in Australia to offer a graduate entry medical course. Throughout its history, Flinders University has had a focus and an emphasis on research

Her achievement is an inspiration for students and parents to lay emphasis on quality education. 

Saturday, 9 February 2013

UPSC: Not a distant dream

By RK Rishikesh Sinha

The recent 61st Annual Report of Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), one of the custodian of all-India level competitive exams in India, in its report said only 2 candidates from Gauhati University appeared for Mains Exam of Civil Service.  (the fact and figure might be wrong, and it cannot be checked, the web link of the report has gone dead). However, it is certain that the figure was not rosy.

In the contour of participation of candidates for the UPSC-held examination like Civil services and the like many exams, it is understandable the affair of students in the state of Assam.  UPSC do have relaxation for SC/ ST/OBC, but how many take up the challenge to crack the exam. If 2 students are the sample data, nothing could be said about the marginalized community.

What are the reasons that our students surrender without taking up the cudgel?

#Classical view: First and foremost, the immediate and the first-contact person of a student that includes parents, friends, teachers, they hold a classical view about the exam with a fuzzy, Vidyasagar-type stories about the students who have cracked this coveted exam.

They forget that, this is 21st century. A student has to meet the objective of UPSC. And exam is an exam, nothing more or less. Any good student can crack this exam.

#Lack of Guidance: Another reason is the lack of guidance in the preparation. Any graduate knows how to pass the graduation exam. It is something like, clear the concept, practice hard, practice previous years question papers, and you have scored in the bracket of 40-50 in that subject very easily.

The same funda applies to the UPSC exams. There are techniques in terms of what to read, how to read etc. etc. Master the techniques, if any, work hard, and leave it to the God. Even if, a student fails, he or she becomes a good resource person. And what exacerbates the morale of the student community is that we don’t have resource persons to guide.

Let 1000 students participate in the exam. Let all of them fail. It is sure, 1001th will clear the exam.  At least we will have 1000+1 resource person who can give appropriate guidance. 

#Parents’ support: At the end, it doesn’t need explanation much; it is the economic and moral support of the parents, the first stepping stone for any success. 

Friday, 8 February 2013

Chirua Milan — 2013

Topo Singha 

Is it necessary, in this cyber age, for one to guard against any qualitative fall of one’s‘impressive pedigree’ going back to centuries? This question, if put up for a debate, is juicy enough to make a hot topic for a never-ending discussion. On certain counts, some people believe, one has every right reason to be jealous of one’s own pedigree, if that is an impressive one. But to keep a status up or to scale even fresh heights, one needs to work hard in all humanely possible ways as that helps a clan, a community and the nation as a whole stay aloft. This is nothing but striving for the best, the maxim of all success. This, as I assessed during a brief chat, is what the striving mind of Professor KM Sinha is impregnated with for the development of his clan and the community as a whole. Success, according to him, never comes from nowhere, and that one has to do his best to make that happen. 

Prof. Sinha, while spelling out the objectives of holding the Chirua Milan - 2013 in Guwahati on January 27, 2013, said that development of children to the fullest of their innate potentialities is a must for scaling new heights. He, however, is of the firm view that the quality of gene pool has much to do in this area, and one has to strive for developing ones genetic traits. This, according to him, is not at all impossible. There are, according to him, many ways to develop ones genetic traits through conscious physical and mental activities like conscious breathing and various types of pranayam. Throwing light on the power of pranayams in making ones brain sharper as the activity opens maximum cells in the brain, he says that one can give a desired direction to his/her progeny by making reproduction an outcome of a conscious activity instead of making it the result of satisfying his/her sheer carnal appetite. 

He, however, is liberal enough when he says that even if that is not possible for certain reasons, one can strive for the best by providing an environment conducive for education. “We need to provide the requisite environment for the education to our wards so as to make them able to compete in competitive examinations like IAS, IPS, IFS and the like. This is the surest route for the development of a family, a clan, a community and the nation as a whole,” he said. What he meant to say is that success is the outcome of right efforts, and that there’s no short-cut to success. 

Is there any reason behind holding get-togethers of clans at an age when people have to race against the clock? The response to this question from professor Sinha is in the affirmative. He is even in favour of holding such get-togethers by inviting people from other clans of the community so that they all can share their experience and knowledge in achieving their common goal for social development. “This is why we have invited prominent people of other clans residing in Guwahati. As a community, we have some common goals to score,” he said, and added that all Bishnupriya Manipuri clans should have held such meets. Development of all clans, he said, is development of the community. 

While former deputy secretary, Government of Assam, Sri Birendra Sinha gave a detailed account of the bravery of the likes of Golapgiri, Chandrakirti and other Chiruas with his mesmerising story-telling art, Bishnupriya Manipuri Writers’ Forum (BMWF) president Dils Lakshmindra Sinha made a fervent appeal to the community as a whole not to forget the contribution of historian Mohendra Sinha, late Falguni Sinha, Martyr Raja Babu Sinha and others. Along with Gokulananda Gitiswami, they should get their equitable recognition from the community. 

Late Falguni Sinha was a Chirua hailing from Berabak in Katakhal. He had risked his life and visited Manipur incognito for gleaning information and historical facts relating to the Bishnupriya Manipuris. He was a gleaner (hijalokorekura), and this writer would like to ask his two sons – Sri Birendra Sinha, now staying at Kalinjar at Silchar, and Sri Harendra Sinha, now staying at Baromuni – about the fate of the heap of information (hijar fosol) gleaned by the gleaner. If there is any still left with them, they should publish them or give them to reliable organisations of the community dealing with such matters. Rajkumar Chandra Dhvaja Sinha, a person belonging to the Lempa clan, a cousin clan of the Chiruas, also spoke on the occasion. Chirua development body president Angshuman Singha, vice-president Krishnadhan Singha, general secretary Ananda Singha and adviser Dhabalgiri Singha were the men behind holding the function.

In his presidential address, Col (retd) Bijay Sinha identified language as the only variable for the identity of a community. He said that it was only for their respective mother tongues that the two Manipuri communities parted their ways, and as such it was our prime duty to develop the language and literature. 

Thursday, 7 February 2013

The sacrosanct nature of text (V)


Naishabdar Buke Mi Chetan Satta by Champalal Sinha
Translated and annotated by Ramlal Sinha

Late Surachandra Sinha, father of poet Champalal Sinha, did give his own explanations to around nine to 10 poems of his son. The explanations of some of the poems have been retrieved so far. ‘In the pull of Eternity’(Anadi anantar akarshane) is one of the poems that had been explained by late Sinha. Champalal Sinha and his father were complementary even when the son was just a child insofar as intellectual skill and quality are concerned. It was through his son, with a gifted power of conception, that late Sinha studied the religious scriptures meant for sadhaks that he had inherited from his preceptor, Guru (Late) Vidyapati Sinha of Bangladesh. In the process, the poet acquired knowledge that was generally not expected of a teenager. Theirs was a cottage redolent of spiritualism with their round-the-clock conscious breathing (the ajapa japa). The poet has won accolades from various quarters for the depth of his poems and his way of presenting them, words chosen to convey the message he wants to give to his readers and his unique art of keeping the central idea concealed in a web of words by leaving only one or two keys for readers to grasp. As stated by the poet in one of his poems in this series – Chhabihan (The Imago) his numerous experiences and thoughts are reflected in his poems which have been left unpublished for years on, making them victims of the voracious rudiments of panchabhut — air, water, fire, land and the sky — that are strong enough to reduce his manuscripts to their constituent elements of paper and ink. In that verse, the poet describes the fate of his numerous unpublished poems that could otherwise add to his oeuvre had they been published on time. The unpublished works of the poet seem to keep staring at him for their release or mukti as they are under the evil influence of the panchabhut. Such phrases, when compared with the ground reality, throw light on the fact that his nine books of poetry are not even 1/30th of the volume of his literary works. The penury-ridden poet, who has been writing since the era of Fagu (a defunct Bishnupriya Manipuri literary magazine), has a large body of unpublished works. His are manuscripts that get destroyed right before his eyes. 

The spiritual poems of Champalal Sinha and the depth of their import make it very difficult for one topigeonhole him under one bracket, along with his contemporary poets, though his poetry has many themes common with theirs. His diction and technique make the task of the translator truly Herculean in the real sense of the term. When a poem or any other literary work is translated into another language, the translator has to see that the essence of the original is not lost. He/she should challenge the cliché that a book or a literary work loses 
something in translation, no matter how successful he/she is. 
In the pull of Eternity
(Anadi anantar akarshane)

Hand in hand
We inch towards
A new world
Kindling idée fixe
Starlit galaxy is brilliant
We’ve shaped our destiny;
Waiting we’re with
Floral tributes
For the destined
Made for each other we’re
Timeless and impeccable is
Our bond as sought by us
And hope springs eternal;
Our hopes and aspirations
Thirst and appetite
Are all oblation
To the shapeless Imago
The Eternity will be
A god incarnate a day
By hypnotising us
With his radiation
That very moment of the world
Will be the travel expenses
For the timeless and endless
Route to – boundless love.
Hints by late Sinha:

Though the diction of this poem is simpler than that of the rest of poems in this series, yet making out the meaning waded in the woodwork of the verse is not that easy. In the line ‘oblation/ To the shapeless Imago’ (amurta pratichhabit nibedita korechhi ami), the word ‘shapeless’ (amurta) takes us to a mysterious world redolent of light and dark. (Amurta means without shape i.e. shapeless. What is even more mysterious is: how could there be the imago of an entity that has no shape? How can one devote one’s hopes and aspirations, appetite and thirst, et al to the imago of the shapeless entity? What does the word amurta actually 
Here is what great men say –
Arupete eto rup/keba janere,/Ankhi je polok na mane/Pran kande re 
Tears keep trickling down his sunken cheeks –
“Our hopes and aspirations/Thirst and appetite/Are all oblation/To the shapeless Imago/The 
Eternity will be/A god incarnate a day”.
“Radhe! Radhe!(Well done!) Will incarnate a day? Nay, Mastor, it has already incarnated (late Sinha fondly called his poet son as Mastor). Purnang karati putra (One who makes one’s parents complete individuals is their real son. I don’t know what my Gurudev’s will is. At the fag end of my life I have been suffering the worst, being deprived of sadhan-bhajan. Your poems, full of elixir, have compensated for what I’ve been deprived of over the years.)
Let’s appreciate the poem.
“Hand in hand/We inch towards/A new world”
“Towards a new world” (Yugantoror bede salochhi ami ate at dhoria — yug+antor = yugantor/yug means convergence (milan), antor means afterwards. Going by this derivation, yugantor means something like change of a yug (an era)or in a changed era, but what does the poet exactly want to convey with these phrases? The next line says ‘Kindling idée fixe’ (bhabona chintare koria uddipto. Uddipto – very bright (ingal-ngal)(ut i.e. urdho (up), urdholuk i.e. anandaluk or Heaven). Deep means splendour or radiance i.e. pure pleasure or happiness or delight. Ta means tai i.e. elixir (amrit), thus uddipto means the elixir of anandaluk or Heaven. ‘Hand in hand/We inch towards/A new world/ Kindling idée fixe’ thus makes it crystal clear that we i.e. the devotees are always thirsty for the elixir of Heaven (anandaluk). With the strength of his/her devotion and untiring sadhan-bhajan, a devotee inches towards the anandaluk certainly, step by step. This is the reason why the poet has used the word uddipto 
instead of prodipto in his original vernacular verse.
In the sentence ‘Starlit galaxy is brilliant’ (hagnahat tera ingal-ngal)the poet terms the great men (mohajon) stars. He means to say that one who follows with devotion and sadhan-bhajan the right path shown by the great men can reach amritdham (Heaven) and can quench his thirst for the elixir of Heaven. Taking a firm stand on his line of thinking and practice, the poet says that one can ascertain while staying in this world itself if he/she can reach the poroluk (the other world that is referred to as anandaluk or amritluk or Heaven in this poem).

The sentence ‘We’ve shaped our destiny’ (bhobitabyare ami korechhi nirman) speaks volumes about the determination of the poet or any other sadhak who sticks to his belief, practice and power. The devotion-deliquesced, full of love, modest yet proud revelation of a determined sadhak (devotee) is the ajapa-japa —sohong. The power of this conscious breathing, according to the great sages, is limitless. Explanation by the translator: In the sentence ‘oblation/To the shapeless Imago’ (amurta pratichhabit nibedita korechhi ami), the word ‘shapeless’ (amurta) really takes us to a mysterious world redolent of light and dark. How could there be images of shapeless objects. Such remarks make one go back to the sakar-nirakar tattva. Since guru and the Parambrahma are shapeless they take the shape of their respective placeholders (containers), and this is 
possible only for a true devotee who gets his/her third eye (inner eye) activated through sadhana. 

As stated by Late Sinha Arupete eto rup/keba janere,/Ankhi je polok na mane/Pran kande re the beauty of the shapeless can keep a devotee mesmerised. Shaped or shapeless makes no difference to a devotee who has got his/her inner eye activated, and thus he/she can see the Imago of even a shapeless entity. He/she can even communicate with such entities, going much ahead of what our sensory organs can respond to. Thus it is possible for such a devotee to offer everything that apparently seems to be his/hers, such as hopes and aspirations, thirst and appetite as oblation to the ‘shapeless Imago’i.e. God.While the poet says ‘The Eternity will be/A god incarnate a day’, a confident late Sinha said:” Nay, Mastor, it has already incarnated.” A devotee making such a claim is scripting a success story. Late Sinha had to suffer from an itchy skin disease that engulfed his entire body, and that deprived him of his sadhan-bhajan for a long time. It’s in this context that late Sinha said: “Purnang karati putra (One who makes one’s parents complete individuals is their real son. I don’t know what my Gurudev’s will is. At the fag end of my life I have been suffering the worst, being deprived of sadhan-bhajan. Your poems, full of elixir, have compensated for what I’ve been deprived of over the years.”

The poet, a determined sadhak himself, says when a sadhak continues his spiritual sojourn under the guidance of his guru in accordance with the path shown by the great men (great sadhaks) he/she can achieve God. With confidence he says that God is bound to shower His blessings on such a devotee, and that very moment remains as the travel expenses of the devotee for his timeless and endless route to boundless love. 

Courtesy: Seven Sisters Post 

Gokulananda goes national

Topo Singha

SHILPGRAM (Guwahati), Feb 2

Rajya Sabha MP Biswajit Daimary has proved once again that a plain-spoken speech can do with precision what a highly eloquent speech, often, cannot. He could spell the right mantra for the survival of the Bishnupriya Manipuris who are characterised by their sparse distribution on the globe.

Delivering his inaugural speech at the seminar on ‘Ideology of Gitiswami Gokulananda and its Impact on Bishnupriya Manipuri Society’ at Shilpgram in Guwahati on February 2, the MP said that given the population distribution of the Bishnupriya Manipuris ‘their political future is bleak. They, however, can make their importance largely felt in this highly competitive world by developing their human resources.’ Citing the condition of the Chakmas in Arunachal Pradesh as an example, he said: “The Chakmas are even denied citizenship by most of the states in the Northeast. However, if one goes to offices in Arunachal Pradesh, he/she will get mostly Chakmas as officials at the top level. This is because they bank mainly on education so as to eke out their living since their political prospect is bleak.” 

The MP made an announcement with applause from the crowd that he would ensure the release of Rs 5 lakh to the Gitiswami Gokulananda Trust (GGT) by June/July this year from his MPLAD Fund for welfare activities.

In his speech, Prof SC Roy of the UGC invited the Bishnupriya Manipuri scholars to approach the UGC with pragmatic research proposals so as to develop their language, literature and culture. 

Dr Ramananda Sinha, principal, Kokrajhar Science College, delivered an eloquent welcome address. He is the man behind giving the GGT such an opportunity to extend its service for the development of the Bishnupriya Manipuri language, literature and culture. 

The inaugural session concluded with a very short but juicy speech by Bishnupriya Manipuri Sahitya Sabha president Mani Kanta Sinha. Maintaining the economy of time strictly, he could say enough on what Gokulananda was. 

The technical session of the seminar was chaired by Dr Sushil Kumar Sinha of GU. He was flanked by Dr Prabhat Sinha, Dr Smriti Kumar Sinha and TCS Brajamohan Sinha as resource persons. 

While Dr Prabhat Sinha successfully drew an analogy among Gitiswami Gokulananda, Bishnu Rabha and Mukunda Das with an analytical approach, Dr Smriti Kumar Sinha delivered a thought-provoking speech on the life and philosophy of the bard. He, however, made it a point that in the name of highlighting the life and contribution of Gokulananda, the society should see that the contributions of the likes of Mohendra Sinha, Falguni Sinha, Rajababu Sinha and others were not ignored. Top bureaucrat Brajamohan Sinha, on the other hand, had a detailed discussion on the Manipuri ragas and their inherent meaning. 

One of the success points of this session was that there were a number of women who presented their papers with much success and applause from the crowd. Good grip of the chair over the entire process during the technical session was yet another success point of the programme. Able chairmanship by Dr Sinha could make the seminar live up to the UGC standard. 

The valedictory session, ably chaired by social activist Shanti Kumar Sinha, was addressed by writer Haridas Sinha (biographer of Gokulananda), Prof. Kamini Mohan Sinha, Divas Phukan and poet Darin Hazarika. GGT chairman Col (retd) Bijay Sinha delivered the vote of thanks.

Monday, 4 February 2013

The sacrosanct nature of text (IV)


Naishabdar Buke Mi Chetan Satta by Champalal Sinha
Translated and annotated by Ramlal Sinha

LATE Surachandra Sinha, father of poet Champalal Sinha, did give his own explanations to around nine to 10 poems of his son. The explanations of some of the poems have been retrieved so far. “The Imago” (Chhabihan) is one of the poems that had been explained by Late Sinha. 

Poet Champalal Sinha and his father were complementary even when the son was just a child insofar as intellectual skill and quality are concerned. It was through his son, with a gifted power of conception, that Late Sinha studied the religious scriptures meant for sadhaks that he had inherited from his preceptor, Guru (Late) Vidyapati Sinha of Bangladesh. In the process, the poet acquired knowledge that was generally not expected of a teenager. Theirs was a cottage redolent of spiritualism with their round-the-clock conscious breathing (the ajapa japa). The poet has won accolades from various quarters for the depth of his poems and his way of presenting them, words chosen to convey the message he wants to give to his readers and his unique art of keeping the central idea concealed in a web of words by leaving only one or two keys for readers to grasp. The spiritual poems of Champalal Sinha and their depth make it very difficult for one to pigeonhole him under one bracket, along with his contemporary poets, though his poetry has many themes common with theirs. His diction and technique make the task of the translator truly Herculean in the real sense of the term. When a poem or any other literary work is translated into another language, the translator has to see that the import of the original is not lost. He/she should challenge the cliché that a book or a literary work loses something in translation, no matter how successful he/she is.

The Imago 
Aglow you’re
In the fantasy of the universal poet!
I know not where the Styx is,
Wending my way into the solar orbit
Illusive feelings ripe with 
Challenge the Three Powers
For horizontal dancing.
Where’s the Styx?
Amid pleasure and pain
The mixed feelings of life herald a new era,
That’s what my head’s imbued with
Like that of an omniscient oldster,
And het up about their D-day
The manuscripts of my poems, a Cinderella,
Keep staring at me with its sheets torn
Like that of an old almanac,
‘Where’s the Styx?’
Why this query keeps me boring!
Aglow you’re in the fantasy of God!
Lifeless yet so lively you’re
I do feel your heartbeat — lub-dub
In the core of my bosom,
I had a whale of a time with God
Over a thousand nights,
That the universe moves on the wheels of
God’s chariot is hackneyed yet ageless. 

Hints given by Late Sinha: 
The cloak of mystery of God keeps the universe wrapped under it. The paradox of hedonism is what a person in the pursuit of pleasure has to undergo. Under the influence of the Panchabhut — air, water, fire, land and the sky — a person either becomes wise (jnani) or unwise or ignorant (ajnani).
A self-conscious person, however, is always engrossed in the thought of the Supreme Power. He is full of consciousness and felicity. To him, the Styx is just a curiosity. No hurdle like the Styx is a hurdle for him, in each sense of the term. To him, living and non-living things are alike. Even a non-living thing can feel the touch of a living thing, and which is why his mind is blissful forever. 

Explanation by the translator: 
By the phrase ‘The Imago’, the poet means the ‘image of his guru’ with ‘whom’ he can talk, touch, pay his obeisance directly and whatnot. When viewed from the standpoint of science, an image is essentially an inanimate phenomenon that cannot talk, feel and do all sorts of work that an animate object like a man, an animal et al can. If what Late Sinha says— to a conscious man, all living and non-living things are alike, and even a non-living thing can feel the touch of a living thing, and which is why his mind is blissful forever — is anything to go by, talking and exchanging feelings with an image is very much possible.

The Styx (Tiropunir ghat or Boitarani): This, according to the Hindu mythology, is a barrier or an obstacle or a river that is very difficult to cross over for a person while breathing his or her last. It is believed that the souls of the dead are ferried over this river. 

Breaking the barrier of Styx is very difficult. The kanthavera (the last phlegm) that troubles a person and prevents him/her from having the last glimpse of his guru or God at the anjachakra while breathing his/her last is not a problem for a successful sadhak. Kanthavera and the Styx are no barriers worth the term for him/her.

Wending my way into the solar orbit /Illusive feelings ripe with hedonism/challenge the Three Powers/ For horizontal dancing: With these phrases, the poet describes one’s sexual urges that seek satisfaction or gratification.

Such powerful urges do challenge the Three Powers — rom, shom and dom — as stated in Vaishnavite codes. While rom means sex meant for creation, shom means love meant for protection and dom means destruction. Late Sinha rightly says that under the influence of the environment comprising Panchabhut — air, water, fire, land and sky — a person either becomes wise (jnani) or unwise or ignorant (ajnani). For one who deviates from the right course under the influence of the Panchabhut, getting ferried across the Tiropuni (Styx) can never be a cakewalk. 

Amid pleasure and pain/The mixed feelings of life herald a new era...Like that of an old almanac: Pleasure and pain give us a mixed experience of life, and the poet is no different from having such an experience. Unlike an ordinary man, such experiences do keep the poet thinking and his thoughts get reflected in his poems only to be left unpublished for years and on, making them victims of the voracious rudiments of Panchabhut air, water, fire, land and the sky —— that are strong enough to reduce his manuscripts into the constituent elements of paper and ink. Keeping his feelings behind the cloak of phrases like ‘het up about their D-day/The manuscripts of my poems, a Cinderella,/Keep staring at me with its sheets torn/Like that of an old almanac (chhirabira panjir patahanirsade, the poet describes the fate of his numerous unpublished poems that could otherwise make a large oeuvre had they been published on time. The works of the poet keep staring at him for their D-day (release or mukti) as they are under the evil influence of the Panchabhut that is powerful enough to break them down into smaller and smaller pieces and convert them into basic elements. Such phrases, when compared with the ground reality, throw enough light on the fact that the oeuvre of nine anthologies of poetry under the credit of the poet is not even 1/30th of the volume of his literary works. 
The penury-driven poet who has been writing right from the era of Fagu (a Bishnupriya Manipuri literary magazine no longer being published now) has an abysmally large number of literary works that have not been published as yet. His are manuscripts that get assimilated with the Panchabhut under his very nose.

Aglow you’re in the fantasy 
of God!
Lifeless yet so lively you’re
I do feel your heartbeat — lub-dub
In the core of my bosom,
I had a whale of a time with God
Over a thousand nights,
That the universe moves on the wheels of
God’s chariot is hackneyed yet ageless.

This stanza lays bare the realisation of the poet on Guru and God. He sees his Guru no different from God. In the phrase ‘lifeless yet so lively’, the poet draws a line between science and theology. What science says is: the image of anybody’s guru is indeed lifeless. What is beyond science is: one’s gurubhakti (devotion to a preceptor) can enliven the image of a guru and make the exchange of views and all forms of communication between a guru and a shishya (a teacher and a taught) possible, no matter if the guru is dead. According to the Hindu scriptures, guru is shapeless (nirakar). In conformity with the properties of the material world, a shapeless object like water takes the shape of its container. When water is kept in a glass, it takes the shape of the glass and if it is kept in a cup, it takes the shape of the cup. Since guru is shapeless (nirakar), it takes the shape of his container (bhando as called in the philosophy of Baul). If a devotee takes Sri Sri Bhubaneswar Sadhuthakur as his guru, the guru takes the known shape (image) of Sri Sri Bhubaneswar Sadhuthakur. Likewise, if somebody takes Sathya Sai Baba as his guru, the guru takes the known shape (image) of Sathya Sai Baba. A Vaishnav (devotee) who can impose life on a lifeless object like his guru with the strength of his sadhan-bhajan is great. Apart from God, it’s a Vaishnav or a sadhak who can enliven all non-living things around him through the power of his devotion to God, albeit with the help of gurubhakti. Maybe, this is one of the reasons why it is stated in Hindu scriptures that the Guru, Krishna and Vaishnav are all one playing three different roles for the wellbeing of jivas (living organisms). As stated by Late Sinha, a devotee who experiences all non-living things around him as living things is ever blissful, and he is immune to all earthly woes.

Aglow you’re/In the fantasy of the universal poet!, the very first sentence of the poem, 
perhaps, has become a self-explanatory sentence now.
Om akhanda mandalakaram byaptam jena characharam
Tatpadam darshitam jena tasmai shree gurabe namoh
(He whose presence occupies the infinite universe Salutations to my guru for revealing this 
Agyana timirandhashya gyananjana shalakaya
Chakshurunmilitam jena tasmai shri gurabe namoh
(He removes the dark blindness of ignorance, with the light of knowledge, Salutation to the 
Guru who has opened my eyes.) To be concluded

Courtesy: Seven Sisters Post
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