Place:Manipur, India

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NameManipur
TypeState
Coordinates25.0°N 94.0°E
Located inIndia     (1972 - )
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Manipur is a state in northeastern India, with the city of Imphal as its capital. It is bounded by Nagaland to the north, Mizoram to the south, and Assam to the west; Burma (Myanmar) lies to its east. The state covers an area of and has a population of almost 3 million, including the Meitei, who are the majority group in the state, Kuki, and Naga peoples, who speak a variety of Sino-Tibetan languages. Manipur has been at the crossroads of Asian economic and cultural exchange for more than 2,500 years. It has long connected the Indian subcontinent to Southeast Asia, China (or East Asia), Siberia, Micronesia and Polynesia, enabling migration of people, cultures, and religions.

During the Raj, the Kingdom of Manipur was one of the princely states. Between 1917 and 1939, the people of Manipur pressed for their rights against British rule. By the late 1930s, the princely state of Manipur negotiated with the British administration its preference to be part of India, rather than Burma. These negotiations were cut short with the outbreak of World War II. On 11 August 1947, Maharaja Budhachandra signed the Instrument of Accession, joining India. Later on 21 September 1949, he signed a Merger Agreement, merging the kingdom into India. This merger has been disputed by groups in Manipur as having been completed without consensus and under duress. The dispute and differing visions for the future has resulted in a 50-year insurgency in the state for independence from India, as well as in repeated episodes of violence among ethnic groups in the state.[1] From 2009 through 2018, the conflict was responsible for the violent deaths of over 1000 people.[2]

The Meitei ethnic group represents 53% of the population of Manipur state. The main language of the state is Meitei (also known as Manipuri) followed closely by Thadou language of the Kuki tribe and other various dialects of the Kuki tribes, followed by Naga tribes various dialects. Tribes constituting about 40% of the state population are distinguished by dialects and cultures that are often village-based. Manipur's ethnic groups practice a variety of religions.[3] According to 2011 census, Hinduism is the major religion in the state, closely followed by Christianity. Other religions include Islam, Sanamahism, Judaism etc.[3]

Manipur has primarily an agrarian economy, with significant hydroelectric power generation potential. It is connected to other areas by daily flights through Imphal airport, the second largest in northeastern India.[4] Manipur is home to many sports and the origin of Manipuri dance, and is credited with introducing polo to Europeans.[5]

Contents

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

The history of Manipur Meities is chronicled in Puyas or Puwaris (stories about our forefathers), namely, the Ninghthou Kangbalon, Cheitharol Kumbaba, Ningthourol Lambuba, Poireiton Khunthokpa, Panthoibi Khongkul, etc. in the archaic Meitei script, which is comparable to the Thai script. The historical accounts presented here were recordings from the eyes and the judgment of the Meitei Kings and Maichous (Meitei scholars).  Hill tribes have their own folk tales, myths and legends. Manipur was known by different names at various periods in its history, such as, Tilli-Koktong, Poirei-Lam, Sanna-Leipak, Mitei-Leipak, Meitrabak or Manipur (present day). Its capital was Kangla, Yumphal or Imphal (present day).  Its people were known by various names, such as Mi-tei, Poirei-Mitei, Meetei, Maitei or Meitei.  The Puwaris, Ninghthou Kangbalon, Ningthourol Lambuba, Cheitharol Kumbaba, Poireiton Khunthokpa, recorded the events  of each King who ruled Manipur in a span of more than 3500 years until 1955 AD (a total of more than 108 kings). Ningthou Kangba (15th century BC) is regarded the first and foremost king of Manipur. There were times when the country was in turmoil without rulers and long historical gaps in between 1129 BC - 44 BC. In 1891 AD, after the defeat of the Meiteis by the British in the Anglo-Manipuri war of Khongjom, the sovereignty of Manipur which it had maintained for more than three millenniums, was lost. In 1926,it became a part of Pakokku Hill Tracts Districts of British Burma until 1948,January 4.It regained its freedom on 28 August 1947 AD. On 15 October 1949, Manipur was unified with India.

Medieval

By the medieval period, marriage alliances between royal families of the Manipur kingdom, Ahom (Assam) and Burma had become common.[6] Medieval era Manipur manuscripts discovered in the 20th century, particularly the Puya, provide evidence that Hindus from the Indian subcontinent were married to Manipur royalty at least by the 14th century. In centuries thereafter, royal spouses came also from what is now modern Assam, Bengal, Uttar Pradesh along with ancient Dravidian kingdoms, and other regions. Another manuscript suggests that Muslims arrived in Manipur in the 17th century, from what is now Bangladesh, during the reign of Meidingu Khagemba.[7] The socio-political turmoil and wars, particularly the persistent and devastating Manipur-Burma wars, affected the cultural and religious demography of Manipur.

Colonial period

In the late 19th century, the British Empire in the Indian subcontinent annexed Manipur, with its status maintained as a princely state. During World War II, Manipur was the scene of many fierce battles between Japanese invaders and British Indian forces. The Japanese were beaten back before they could enter Imphal, which was one of the turning points of the overall war.

Modern history

After the war, the princely states and India moved toward independence. The Manipur Constitution Act of 1947 established a democratic form of government, with the Maharaja as the executive head. Faced with Burma's ambitions to take over the state, in 1949, Maharaja Bodhchandra went to Shillong, where he signed the instrument of accession to merge the kingdom into India instead. Thereafter the legislative assembly was dissolved, and Manipur became part of the Republic of India in October 1949. It was made a Union Territory in 1956. and a fully-fledged State in 1972.


Manipur has had a long record of insurgency and inter-ethnic violence. The first armed opposition group in Manipur, the United National Liberation Front (UNLF), was founded in 1964, which declared that it wanted to gain independence from India and form Manipur as a new country. Over time, many more groups formed in Manipur, each with different goals, and deriving support from diverse ethnic groups in Manipur. For example, in 1977 the People's Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak (PREPAK) was formed, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) was formed in 1978 which Human Rights Watch states as having received arms and training from China. In 1980, the Kangleipak Communist Party (KCP) was formed. These groups began a spree of bank robberies and attacks on police officers and government buildings. The state government appealed to the central government in New Delhi for support in combating this violence.

From 1980–2004, the Indian government referred to Manipur as a disturbed area. This term (designated by the Ministry of Home Affairs or a state governor) refers to a territory where extraordinary laws under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act can be used. The laws allow the military to treat private and public spaces in the same manner, detain individuals up to 24 hours with unlimited renewals, to perform warrantless searches, and to shoot and kill individuals that break laws, carry weapons, or gather in groups larger than four as well as giving legal immunity to the military. Since 1980, the application of AFSPA has been at the heart of concerns about human rights violations in the region, such as arbitrary killings, torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and forced disappearances. Its continued application has led to numerous protests, notably the longstanding hunger strike by Irom Sharmila Chanu..

In 2004, the government lifted the disturbed status after a violent attack on a local woman. The rape of a manipuri woman, Thangjam Manorama Devi, by members of the Assam Rifles paramilitary had led to wide protests including a nude protest by the Meira Paibis women association.

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