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Bishnupriya Manipuri body recalls contribution of Rajmohan Nath



Special Correspondent

SILCHAR, Jan 17: Glowing tributes were paid by eminent personalities to the great scholar and prolific writer of Barak Valley Rajmohan Nath at a memorial discussion organized by the Bishnupriya Manipuri Kristi Sanskriti Vikash Kendra today under the presidentship of Manoranjan Sinha held at Shingari near this town. It was the occasion of 111th birth anniversary of distinguished historian whose contributions towards culture, literature, creative and constructive works were sharply brought into limelight by the speakers.

Those who participated in the discussion included MP Kabindra Purkayastha, MLAs Dr Rumi Nath, Parimal Shuklabaidya, eminent journalist and poet Atin Das and Trailakya Bhushan Nath. All of them in their own way described Rajmohan Nath as a prolific writer who penned 41 books and authored about 200 research papers on archeology, history and Indian culture in various languages. His magnum opus “The Background of Assamese Culture” was published in 1948.

Bishnupriya Manipuris have special regard and respect for him who wrote that they were the first ruling race of Manipur. His observation on page 83 of the book was specifically quoted by Chandra Kanta Sinha which said the Manipuris are divided into two main tribes – the Khalachais who call themselves Bishnupriyas and the Meiteis who call themselves real Manipuris who are supposed to have been the next immigrants.

He also pointed out that the Khalachai language is more akin to Kamrupi tongue; the Meitei language is more akin to the Bodo-Chinese group.

The Bishnupriya Manipuris got recognition of their language on the strength of the observations of Rajmohan Nath pointed out Manoranjan Sinha. In the legal battle fought by the Bishnupriya Manipuris before the Assam Backward Classes Commission, Gauhati High Court and Supreme Court, his observations were deciding factor in favour of Bishnupriya Manipuris.

The cultural body took the opportunity to extend their profound homage to the great soul for his invaluable service to this linguistic minority group. A souvenir on the life and achievements of Rajmohan Nath was also released at the meet by Kabindra Purkayastha.

Courtesy: The Sentinel (January 18, 2009)

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