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Empower womenfolk; automatically community will come to line

By Santosh Kumar Singh, Manipal

Upliftment of Bishnupriya Manipuri community without women empowerment is like daydreaming which can never be fulfilled as no reality is involved. Eminent personalities viz. Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Swami Vivekananda understood women's importance in the development of a whole system. Westerners understood this mantra because of which they are far ahead.

There are many more problems Bishnupriya Manipuri women are facing, which decelerates the pace of its overall development. Some of the problems faced by Bishnupriya Manipuri community in its women upliftment are:

1.Girls are not motivated to have higher studies as people think the investment in their studies is useless as no return is involved. One can experience this problem mostly in villages.
Gaange manuye khalkortara, ningolore niyaam lerik taamkoruweiya kita kaana, maanur ghore jitaigaago, haante khaani maani taamkoruweiya toraakore biya denaai baala.

2. Girls and newly married women face lots of oppositions in doing job outside.
If we claim ourselves originated from Manipur, can we learn something from women empowerment in Manipur so that if we can implement some of their initiatives to change the position of our women in society.

1. Manipuri women's role in the socio-economic and cultural life of Manipur is significant. Manipuri women do not stay behind the veil. They also do all the buying and selling of goods in the market. Women dominate the markets in the rural and urban areas. Their unique role in the market will be known if one visits Khwairamband Bazar at the heart of Imphal. They are greatly involved in the agricultural related activities. They are artistic and creative which they prove in the field of handloom and handicrafts and dance. One significant observation that we find today in Manipur is the rise in the number of women entrepreneurs and women self help groups. The numbers of working women in different sectors are increasing.

Aami koti niyaam jeleire economically independent baaro entrepreneur oite paangkoriyaar?

2. Meira Paibi (torch bearer) movement is a new women's movement in Manipur. It exemplifies another collective women's power in Manipur. It began in the 1980s and is still gaining momentum. The womenfolk to save people from the clutches of liquor and drugs launched the movement. This movement has become a major struggle for human rights. The role of the Meira Paibi is gaining ground due to the rapid increased in the human rights violation and other social problems like HIV/AIDS. As one of the important social institutions, Meira Paibi group has got the potential to become a very significant instrument of progressive social transformation.

Aajikar dine praai haabbi Bishnupriya Manipuri gaangor maanu hinpeitara modor problemlo, gaangor unemployed munisou sondhya haan oilei modor aashorlo boitara, loge juwaa khelani haante aasei. Esade Bishnupriya Manipurir backbone (gaaorapei) aadharede gelega aami cheyaar hopon haan kungoi baro kisade puron oitoi.

So, can we have such women groups in villages to take care of these problems?

3. Marup or cooperative movement is another movement spearheaded by women for generating income. From the early days the Manipuri society has inbuilt system of socio-economic cooperation known as Marup which continues till now successfully throughout the state. Marup, a type of self help group, is a group or association of individual with common economic needs who undertake an economic activity by participating directly in decision making and sharing the benefits on an equitable basis. It strengthens the existing income generating activity of members and also helps the members to start a new activity of members. This not only makes them economically independent but also helps their families with their financial contributions. It also acts as the financial intermediaries.

The members are engaged in both service and production activities. Some of the main incomes generating activities of the groups are – Agarbati making, Papad making, Doll-making, Handloom/Handicrafts, preparation of different sweet items, fruit and vegetable preservation etc. The Marups (cooperatives) are the best vehicles for empowerment of women in Manipur. They are the major force for the economic development of the State.

Marup jodiyou aamar kotogo Bishnupriya Manipuri gaange kheleitara, kintu onek gaange ebakao ehaan ojana oya aashe.

Kotogo gaange SHG ( Self Help Group) honkoresi jetaai aamar beyapa, emai ghore honkortara jinis baaire bechiya aamar beyapa,ema gaashire aarthikbhabe chaangkhol kortara. Kintu ebakao SHG haabbi gaange naadehiyaar.

Bishnupriya Manipuri women can contribute immensely in the socio-economic transformation and upliftment of the society. The society is still in the womb of the patriarchal system. Women have no much say in the decision making process. Their representations both in the secondary and tertiary sectors are quite minimal. The preference of male child is still prevalent. There are certain rituals where women's involvements are considered profane and restricted their participation. Women produce children; they are mothers and wives; they do the cooking, mending, sewing and washing; they take care of men and are subordinate to male authority; they are largely excluded from high status occupations and from positions of power. In terms of the reward of prestige, wealth and power attached to gender role, women almost invariably come off worst.

There is a need to change the attitude of the society in general and men in particular. It is high time that we respect and reflect on the contributions of women not only in the socio-economic sphere but also in the fields of cultural, political and sports. Women of Bishnupriya Manipuri deserve a higher status. For the development of any society the status of women is a key factor determining progress.

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  1. Dear santosh ur idea is great but we have to increase the awareness amongst our BM manipuri people. The idea of marup and meira paibi (pls check spellings) is really great.Today in manipur women power is very prominent. Women's are well protected in any area of manipur cause not only meira paibi but naharol (in state terrorist group helping the general people and working for the development of the state) also help them. So in short the idea is very good but we have to think how to increase awareness.
    Gautam Sinha

  2. The author of the article is filling the old wine in new bottle.I would be happy had he given some solutions along with the
    problems he has projected.anyway he might not have seen his grand mother or any other woman of that time doing entire house hold work herself then go to the field for work twice a day.In other word women of that time worked 16 hrs a
    day including spinning of cloths.
    She shared the work with her husband in the field and at home she drew water for entire house hold,including pounding rice,cooking,teaching children etc.
    How can we say womenfolk were not
    empowered.Writer`s mother might be
    definitely literate,then how can he
    say that present generations(girls)
    are not going for higher education.
    Compare to others, our communities
    are quite aware as far as the education is concerned,only the problem is poverty.

  3. As far Rebati Sinha's comment "how can he say that present generations(girls)are not going for higher education.Compare to others, our communities are quite aware as far as the education is concerned,only the problem is poverty", probably i would rather like to counter comment that he has forgotten the lives in villages being in city for long time. Taking his own village Baromuni is concerned,one can count in fingers the number of educated women who can be independent financially. The situation is almost same in other villages.Mr. Rebati would have probably made this comment without reading the article properly and with anger of my last comment made on his self declaring article and taking revenge as beacuse i have not mentioned anywhere that our girls are not going for higher education. I just communicated that our women are not empowered as it should be and thus keeping half of the population suppressed, we can not go ahead. I would rather request him to have a tour to his village and other villages and see the situations with open eyes. People who have just come out from villages would better understood it, but not a person far away from real scenerio. Here, i would rather appreciate somebody's comment who has just come out from villages, not from a town or a city.Very less percentage of our population do stay in towns or in cities,but majority do stay in villages and one can understand the real scenerio who has been brought up there and has just come out.People who left villages years ago and not in close contact can not make a right comment.Some members of a family if get educated do not represent the whole community. In one point,i do agree with him that one of the reasons is poverty.But as far as his point on higher education of girls is concerned, i would request him to have a visit to villages, probably it has been a long time that he has not visited his native village.

  4. Utah nagoi Santosh, tiou tar deki tor photo ahan laagiya, tor nijor yaari dileis te tau harou oilois.

    Gaurapa Sou agoi article ahan lekhese uhaanat hoba uhaan encourage korani uhaan nagoi, uhaanat khut bisarani haan.

    Aapne poila nije nua wine borani hikik. Pisede manure maatik.

    Nice article Santosh. Give solutions too.

  5. Guys who wanna slug it out to a personal level, I suggest you to maintain the Samurai Code of Honor. Though not necessarily it would help you but it kinda helps me at times.

    Else(for alias profile users), it is best to attack the argument and not the person.

    By the way Santosh, a nice article. The idea of Marup is really interesting. Honestly I never knew such concept exists in our society. It reminds me of Nobel Prize winner Prof.Yunus revolutionary micro credit system. Prof. Yunus loaned $27 at reasonable interest rate to 42 women who were able to break away from the cycle of poverty, and they repaid the loan in due course of time. Thus was born the revolutionary concept which has helped several families (50 million people in Bangladesh alone) to break the cycle of poverty in several countries. Now this is not charity; the bank that Prof. Yunus founded, Grameen Bank, is profitable.

  6. Very good article Santosh. Keep it going. I completely agree our women need to be empowered. Nice post.

  7. Dear Santosh

    Its a very well thought and highly commendable article...


  8. mr santosh,
    i really appreciate your article over woman empowerment.
    i studied and two year stay due to my job i come across all those things but the way you motivate with your words is totally great.
    but pls others like obai itao keep commenting on others so that they boost up but people on the group should not take personal like santosh.

    he came up with a new motive.

    1)i think people who stay in village they should first leave all kind of 'doladoli' and 'unnecessary chit-chat on other' .
    2)SENIORPERSON who does not think of his livelihood should himself aware of this things and work without thinking of profit with the advise of people staying out side which can support mentally ,technically and economically may be some time.

    hope there may be some more points.

    bipul sarma

  9. " but pls others like obai itao keep commenting on others so that they boost up but people on the group should not take personal like santosh."

    Priyo Bipul, baba eita tumi ki likhecho? Ke shikhiyeche tomaake airokom likha lekhi? Na tumi deliberately likcho?

    Bipul girok, tore te fake id aago laager. Baro tore te manue hikaiya totorar go para osot. Aami personal nau osi. Kintu jebakai apei ba kunopei niloijor kaam oitoi ubaka aami ugore laas ditangai. Jesade Rebati Giroke ere article ehanat comment korese uhaan oiltai maha lajor yaari haan. Santosh amaar Gaurapa sou agoi, Myang culture haan te na promote korese nai. Haante taare encourage bujon ugoi kya nakorlota? Taar laab oitoi jaaga utaat compliment kortoi. Utau aada kaasa.

    Haante Bipul baba mi nua NGO ago khulesu - LDLNM buliya. Full form LAAS DEI LAAS NEI MAANURE.

    Tumiou join korte paro. Kintu shekhane Myang thar cholbe na. Shudhu amar thar. Imar thar.

  10. I just cudnt resist my laugh... on the last line of Obai's comment.... LDLNM....and Mayang Thar cholbe na..... Hilarious comments...

    Obai..non..itao...or obai-impossible -Itao...
    Plz pardon me... my laugh was not intentional,non directional and does not add to criticize any...i just enjoyed the lighter note...

    Spices of life....

  11. Obai Itao is a Billionaire for nothing and his value in the sensex is only rising up to astronomical heights.

    Too bad he deals in a currency called Stupidity.

  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

  13. Pink Floyd, alias Gulab Sena,heyoke bakuridenar pisse chikari ditara jela uta para osot ema.

    Blog ehanat ningol aagote laager nai. Ningol ugor vacancy haan ti fill up korle.Gangor jelaago para oiya dua khusi koror uhan nungei laager.

    Teinta teinta...

    Pinkire aangaluri deita

    Teinta Teinta

    Pinkire haajei ta....

  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

  16. very nice article santosh.
    though the pace is slow the process of women empowerment is catching up in rural BM society. may be we donnt have much progress
    in traditional sector like handloom but non trditional activities like, service, profession(beauty clinic), resale of handloom and beauty products are in. When we tell about women empowerment of rural BM we have to see the infrastructures available there and also to compare it with the rural women of others society surrounding BM.
    a personal request. when you react on comments, use more soft vocabulary (pls refer yr reaction on RM sinha's comments). its a virtue, you have nothing to lose, rather it boosts your presentation.


  17. Whoa


    Women hater detected....

    Women hater detected....

    Women hater detected....

    Women hater detected....

    Women hater detected....

    Women hater detected....

  18. Hentok osot jelago para oiya 'Whoa Whoa' matourita ebaka Pinki Iche?

    Mi women hater nagoi. Dua khusi kortara jelei utare aali paurita.

    Ijjum oiya thak. shoman peitei. Nailete ima harpauri nai currency haan nikalaitou

    Teinta teinta....

  19. Tulsidas wrote in his Ramcharit Manas,"Drums, illiterates, dalits, animals and women are fit only to be BEATEN." It's one of the most revered treatise of ANCIENT INDIAN WISDOM. For dumb people, the statement would sound racist and anti women but it actually was a a metaphorical statement to unveil ignorance from Stupid masses and classes.

    Gulab Babu, Gulab Sena, Pinkie... what else. Jeez, you are as confused as a kid is in a topless bar. First make up your mind about my Gender and then speak STUPID. Don't speak through your ass.

    Now,lemme paraphrase Tulsidas, "Drums, donkeys and dumb clowns like Obai Itao need a dose of ANCIENT INDIAN WISDOM." I think Iam being a little too hard on the donkeys. They are at least useful to carry heavy loads and are quite cute animals. So,lemme cancel donkeys and that leaves.................

  20. This comment has been removed by the author.

  21. Pinky Iche peto ose.......

    Pinky ichere baat khouyeik.

    Myang tharlo kotha akchuti maating

    "Tumar beboharei, tumar genderer porichoy"


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