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Bishnupriya Manipuris welcome telecast of their programmes with a rider

From our Special Correspondent
SILCHAR, Aug 23: Nikhil Bishnupriya Manipuri Students’ Union (NBMSU) and Bishnupriya Manipuri Ganasangram Parishad (BMGP) have welcomed the Door Darshan’s decision to beam music and cultural programmes of the Bishnupriya Manipuri community along with programmes of other ethnic communities.

However, the telecast, as pointed out by deputy director of programme, Northeast, shall be occasional only. It has been clarified that after examining the demand for introduction of Bishnupriya Manipuri programmes in DDK and AIR, Guwahati and Silchar, the ministry of information and broadcasting has not found it possible to telecast spoken word programmes in 
Bishnupriya Manipuri language/dialect on a regular basis at this stage.

The officials clarified that in view of the relatively low population of Bishnupriya Manipuri language community in the primary coverage areas of the two kendras and the already tight programme slots, the decision for regular telecast can not be possible.

The ministry quoted census reports of 1971, 1981,1991 and 2001 that the population of Bishnupriya Manipuri community does not justify it. The community has a total population of 77, 545 only as per the census report of 2001. Against the total population of 2,66,55,528, Bishnupriya Manipuri community comprises 0.29 per cent only.

However, NBMSU and BMGP contested the figure of 2001. They pointed out that in 1975 the Government of India agreed in principle to introduce programmes in Bishnupriya Manipuri for 15 minutes in AIR Silchar and Guwahati without considering the population figure. In their meeting with the minister of State for information and broadcasting, C M Jatua, on September 29,2009, it was clearly stated by him that his ministry needed the clearance from the Government of Assam regarding their nomenclature and population figure to introduce programmes.

Both the organizations pointed out that the Government of Assam gave clearance about the nomenclature and consented to introduce Bishnupriya Manipuri programmes in AIR and DDK of Silchar and Guwahati.

In the meantime, a central consultative committee for conducting music and cultural programmes as well as two separate consultative cells for Silchar and Guwahati has been formed to decide the modalities for selection of programmes and their smooth conduct in respect of the telecast of programmes.

Courtesy: The Sentinel

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