Every state, religion and culture has their own good and bad phases. Greatness lies in the ability to accept those and striving for better human values which are worth to live on this earth.
Ignorance is lack of knowledge about a thing. Since no one has a monopoly on knowledge we are all ignorant in many respects. We may harbour exaggerated prejudices about each other initially but through dialogue I hope we can dispel our ignorance on what we are missing for a long time.
Unfortunately, it was this ignorance about its own fraternity from hills that the majority valley populations look down and do not care them, just on a mere rumour. A rumour that was spread like some forest fire!
The media plays it; the Indian official will never succeed to educate its mainland people where is Manipur and who are Meiteis, Naga, Kuki and Pangal. Lack of imparting education has caused the identity issue now. More serious matter is they are focussing on the internal misunderstanding within us through ugly media.
One of my business associates from Singapore asked me unknowingly, "Have you taken the land from Nagas? Why are they demanding land from your state?" What a surprised query! If that was asked by someone else, the reply would be a tight slap on his face. But the fault is with our media. I don't want to point out who these media guys are- Indians, Meities or Nagas?
Everyday killings, tortures, inhuman custodian death and human rights violation are a far cry to normal world. No one is informed of our daily struggles, but Nagalim issue is like a hot cake.
For decades, these media neglected the true struggle from a small part of the world. Surprisingly, the issue is known by a chai-wala in the capital too. They don't know where the state is, but they talk of Nagalim as their cup of tea. Whose fault, our barking media!
It would be more encouraging, instead of highlighting sentimental issues, if our media try to spread message of our poverty, financial crunch, untapped potential and our futures. Simply writing about Nagalim and the struggles is not the solution.
Don't focus too much on such issues; keep on ignoring as has been done to our struggles since past 40 years. It will be our fault if we invite fox into our backyard, only to find all hens missing. Who knows we suffer more than we are now, due to invading armies in the name of peacekeeping our region.
Today the tension between India and Pakistan is widening. The reason being media keeps people from these two nations in ignorance and dark. People must keep gathering the information these media feed them.
When the genocide came in Rwanda, the erratic media coverage largely conveyed the false notion of two 'tribes' of African 'savages' mindlessly slaughtering each other as they had done from time immemorial.
As a result, there was little public pressure in the West for governments to intervene. Earlier, Rwanda was totally ignored by the international media.
Our unheard voice needs to be carried by media, but not our internal, baseless and sentiments. Once media intervene, it will pull longer without a resolution. They might get their circulation rises with lots of stories, but at our costs.
Producing ethnicity and separatist kind of stories with burning leads could not educate anything the readers except producing disharmony and disunity in our multicultural society.
In the West, print media can publish whatever it likes. The 9/11 and post-9/11, on-going human tragedies in US, Europe and other parts of the world have been covered by some mainstream media in such a fashion that it directly hit the sentiments of the local communities.
The commercialised media, today, can entertain masses and simultaneously gain remarkable profits on their products, which may attract majority in the first place. However, whether these stories would promote harmony and solidarity in the multicultural Manipur state is the most important question of the day, for every Manipuris.
I hate seeing the footage or any news on Manipur and its internal issue. There was an article in the HT-Delhi edition on certain rally by some Naga organisations in Delhi.
For me it is a disturbing, burning and agitating material, which I believe would have agitated unaccountable Meities readers against Nagas and equally feared many liberal Nagas who love peace like good Christian!
The media must play an important role in understanding complex issues on national and international politics. It is also a responsibility of the media to consider the implication of every story published on people's mind not just the selling parameters.
Media has its own strength of creating public opinion and to change public perception on critical issues. This is the time where our media should feel more responsibility and promote peace, harmony and unity in our society. This is the time when media, following the basic rules of journalism, can play a vital role to maintain unity, integrity and harmony in our society and guide the people on the issues of sensitive nature.
This is the time when writers, intellectuals and journalists should be extra careful while documenting their stories to avoid curiosity and uncertainty in the society. Media has the capacity to shape public opinion and perceptions, and this devolves a great responsibility on the media professionals.