Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Midnight Call of Spirits:The Strange Story of Pegu Siyeng of Arunachal Pradesh

 Lake of Spirits :The Pegu Siyeng near Yingkiong,Arunachal Pradesh Photo:Dinesh Pegu /TPOK
                  The Pegu Siyeng is consider as once an inhabited place of the Pegu clans of the present day Mising tribe,most of whom are living in to-day's Assam,India.Siyeng literally means lake in Tani language,so it got its name from Pegus who were once in the side of the lake.The beautiful lake of  Pegu Siyeng is located near Yingkiong,the head quarter town of Upper Siang district of present day Arunachal Pradesh.The Siyeng consisted of two lakes previously but it is said that one of the lake was developed for agricultural farming by an influential resident.When Omak Apang ,son of Gegong Apang,the former chief minister of Arunachal,once became an union minister in the centre,there was a bid to develop it a hotspot tourist destination.Elder Pegu clan members told this blogger that the minister efforts led to construction of houses to facilitate lodging for tourists near the lake.
          The surroundings of Pegu Siyeng was improvised from its bare natural state to replenish a better look.However,the houses were soon abandoned for some strange but serious reasons after few years.A caretaker,who was in charge of the newly constructed buildings and living in one the houses by the side of the Siyeng,woke up every midnight from his deep slumber.The reason:the caretaker was awakened by nightmare from none other than the spirits of the Pegu Siyeng.The horrible dreams of midnight due to the call of spirits led to abandoned of  the houses,since then. By teleological assumption,we must called it as a sacred place.May be a customary rites and rituals by Pegu clan will  make free the lake from spirits!Well ,it can be Amarnath or Haridwar for Pegu clan!

             The story about Pegu Siyeng find mentioned in one of Arunachal's former top bureaucrat's autobiography.Rajani Kanta Patir ,who rose to become the chief secretary of the young state of Arunachal during Gegong Apang's tenure,vividly describe in his memoir ''Dawn in the East" the existence of this abode of Pegu clan in this part of Siang belt.Patir hailed from Moukhuwa in Assam's Lakhimpur district and was a cousin of Kaziranga National Park's pioneer Mahi Chandra (Patir)Miri.Patir was a Mising tribe man,the largest group of Tani people.Patir also helped in running the Donyi Polo Vidya Bhawan schools of Arunachal Pradesh.

Note:Pegu is a surname of Mising>Mishing>Miching>Miri> Tani tribe of Northeast India.It is interesting to note that the Pegu surname holders have formed an association called Takam Pegu Opín Kébang(TPOK) few years back to  deal with the aspect of origin and history of the clan.In 2010,the TPOK even hold a mammoth meeting at Akajan near Silapathar in Upper Assam.I'd the opportunity to talk with one of the office bearer of the TPOK once while I was travelling to Pasighat in a night service bus.TPOK men told me that together with Megu,the blood brothers of Pegus on Arunachal side,are making efforts to develop the Pegu Siyeng as protected heritage site with the help of government as well as clan members.This blogger is grateful to Mg Dinesh Pegu and Mg Juwel Pegu for their valuable inputs on Pegu Siyeng.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

More on Pagro Clan origin story

    • From our further conversation on Pagro clan origin,Dr Riba said ,"I negate those theories about the origin of d term Pagro. Pagro was a name of a person. All Tani tribes inherit their clan from their forefathers. As per our oral history, Pagro clan might be the earliest clan of Miri people (no offence). Pagro might have been son of Ato Tapak (Tapak was again christened as Nyipak. Tapak(who left Ato Tame at Tibet) was earliest migrant from Tibet to enter Assam plain. So, our people mistakenly consider all plain people be Nyipak but actually, Mishings were/are the descendants of Ato Tapak/Nyipak. Now, the term Nyipak is exclusively used for non-tribal people. But it would be wrong to say-Mishings are non-tribal again). It would have been possible to find the origin of the term Pagro (we pronunce as 'Pagro) had you followed our system of genealogy counting".

      Dr Riba added that it would been easier if the Miri/Mising would have adopted the genealogy based name.The name of this begin with the last name of the father when it comes naming of new born babies.Unfortunately,the Mising people under the influenced of Hindu cultures has abandoned this unique genealogical naming pattern nevertheless that could have easily helped in tracing the origin of Pagro or any other clans.Dr Jatin Mipun in his book 'The Mishings(Miris);Development of New Style'' said that the Misings left their genealogical naming system in the early nineteenth century.It is noteworthy that the Galo Tanis still follow this naming pattern.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Return of the Donyi-Polo:25 years of Revivalism

Talom Rukbo,the ambassador of cultural renaissance

                     Does religion,faith and worship still hold importance to the people in this hyper liberal individualist world? Have you ever imagined people’s skyrocketing participation even in this age on socio-religious movement that was reawakened just two and half decades ago? The Donyi-Polo Yelam Kébang(DPYK),(but spelt as Do:nyi Po:lo as per dialectic tone of the Tanis,also in their religious book,in recent nomenclature too)the brainchild of late Talom Rukbo ,that kick started its reawakening movement at Pasighat back in 1986 has now gathered into eminence among the Tani peoples of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.A person from Along in West Siang district who happened to be Talom Rukbo's contemporary said in his deliberation that Rukbo initiated cultural renaissance in the Northeastern region among the indigenous peoples.The silver jubilee year celebration of Donyi Polo movement,considered as the indigenous faith since ancient times; commemorating Talom Rukbo,the socio-religious reformer,witnessed thousands of participation of delegates from as far as Tuting near China border in Arunachal Pradesh  to Tsangpo/Siang/Brahmaputra’s largest deltaic island Majuli in the plains of Assam.The Tani people are none other than Adi,Nyishi,Galo,Mising,Tagin,Hill Miri tribes,also well-known as the descendants of Abo Tani.The Tani people habitats are the plains and hills in the states of Assam,Arunachal Pradesh of  India and part of Tibet Autonomous Region(TAR) of China.
The Central Ganggiing ground,the venue where the event saw the large gathering
 Return of the 'traditions' against 'modernity'?
            The Donyi Polo as an indigenous faith has been gaining momentum that was clear from the large number of participation in the recently held 25 years of revival celebration at the place where it regained its movement from 01 to 03 December,2011.It  is equally important to think why the ancient faith that was limited only to communities and households practices has seen  increasing number of people’s participation.The modernization that comes to contact in the form of development in education,communication and exchange of ideas along with socio-economic and  political implications among the tribes previously untouched by modern civilizations have huge impact in the thinking and perception of the people.First it was Christian Missionaries who reached out to the Tani tribes followed by administration of the colonial government,and finally the national government after it India attained Independence.Whether  it may be the conscious  educated masses’ emotional bonding to one’s culture,language,faith,origin,race,ethnicity that were once educated by Christian or Hindu Missionaries or their deep attachment towards ‘traditional’ spirituality the Donyi Polo movement has thousand reasons to smile to-day,that too  in this market defined-destiny of the world.It is significant to mentioned the critical debates of the academic circles  here that the Marxists thought modernization would usher development of  inevitable class consciousness that would strike at the root of ethnicity.Again,Emile Durkheim,the eminent sociologist,said the growth of individualism will make the ethnic groupings more or less redundant;Max Weber emphasized that ‘rationality ‘ would strike the root of ‘traditional’ structures.Although they may not have used the term ‘ethnic’ but the groupings were more or less in reference to it.
 Delegates from Majuli Island to Tuting in China border
People thronging the prayer hall-Ganggiing
                     The spectacular event gathering the phases in case of Donyi Polo movement is noteworthy in reference to the social sciences debate.The event  at Pasighat saw younger generations’ active involvement .It was observed that there were number of cultural troupes particularly females from Tuting to Majuli dancing to the hymns of Angun Bédang,the sacred book of Donyi Polo believers.The devotion and dedication of young  volunteers in the entire three-day event of Donyi Polo Yelam Kébang in a rarely-seen discipline manner reflected  the younger generations’ interest,determination,responsibility,devotion and commitment to uphold and carry forward the values and morals what the forefathers has bestowed on them.The practices called ‘traditional’ has received widespread applause from the younger Tani generation even at the juncture of liberal individualism.These developments seriously called for a new research interest in the arena of social sciences.
A gadu onno sornam competition on progress
                  The venue of the DPYK’s celebration show thousands of people of all ages thronging the site for the entire three days.The event saw revival of dying cultural traits by organizing local sports such as gadu onno sornam(cotton blanket wool making;gadu is a hand woven blanket used by Tanis),dogdiig giinam(stand-bamboo walk),tug-of-war with bamboo,riidiin yaadnaam(the holy thread making),cultural competitions of Donyi Polo hymns ,traditional attire show in where large number of participants and spectators witnessed the events.Delegates  not only East Siang region were there but from Guwahati,Itanagar,Roing,Namsai,Tuting,Yingkiong,Majuli,Jonai,Dhemaji,North Lakhimpur attended the event.Religious discourses were cited by Miris/Priests and functionaries of DPYK in the programmes.
 The Sun Shines ,the Moon Lightens up!
           Isn’t the 25th year commemorative event a big return of Donyi-Polo?I meant the homecoming of indigenous faith with large number of Tani people’s participation and self-realization of the values and ideals of their indigenous belief.Let me conclude with a quote from the Donyi-Polo faith for the sake of  righteous path of human-being:

         "Do:nyi angun unnam kísa:pé apí angun un langka,
          Po:lo lolat latnam kísa:pé arang ansíngém pélangka”
          (Enlighten your mind as the Sun shine,soften your mind as the Moon light.)

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Origin of Pagro sub-group among present day Mising tribe

           There are basically two postulates on the origin of Pagro sub-group of Mising tribe.The debates revolves round the stalwarts of Mising historians and writers.There is also a moderate animosity among Mising tribe within the Mising Agom Kébang(MAK) so as to which dialects should be the "standard form" notwithstanding the fact that a language has many features with various dialects to usher a growth and development of literature.
The Subtle Sub-groups
          There are many sub-groups among present day Mising tribe where they are more or less differ in their dialects as well as variation in tones.The well-known sub-groups (sometime it is also referred as clans )Sa:yang(colon is used for high central vowel, a bit long sounding, according to  the Agom Kébang,hereafter),Mo:ying,Délu(diacritical mark on e is used according to Interntional Phonetics Association Model  as adopted by MAK to suit in Mising words,hereafter),Oyan,Pagro,Somuwa,Samuguria,Dambuk,Tamar and Bihiyas.Of these sub-groups,however,the Samuguria,Tamar and Bihiyas uses Assamese as their medium of expression with more or less mixture of Mising words in between,sometime not at all. The Somuwa sub-group ,of late,members have changed their  surnames to Adi sounding surnames from surnames which actually exists in Mising tribe and to-day identified themselves as Adi Somuwas, 6-7 years ago,a latest study says.I also heard this from two Mising people,whose village is next to the Somuwa of Lekang constituency of Lohit district of Arunachal Pradesh at Pasighat while I was attending a Do:nyi Po:lo Yelam Kébang(DPYK) silver jubilee year celebration from Dec 1 to Dec 3,2011.

Two Theories on Pagro
          The two theories on the meaning of Pagro sub-group which is highly debated in two intellectual camps are as follows.

One,Dr Nomal Chandra  Pegu,the author of ''The Mishings of the Brahmaputra Valley",the first post-independence writer of the tribe,said Pagro comes from two words Aro+Pag(to understand this second meaning we may refer to paggod,pagnam etc ) meaning Real+Root( loosely Blood). The amalgamation of two words formed Pagro or Real Root/Blood.

Two,Professor Nahendra Padun,the noted Mising linguist and writer and founder secretary of MAK,constructed "Pagro" in this manner ''Mipag+Aro" meaning "People other than Mising(Non-Mising,say)+ Real" that led to formed the  Real Non-Mising people.(Attributed this fact from Mg Juwel Pe:gu,executive member of MAK at Pasighat while interacting with this blogger). 

The Hite-Pagro and Miro Clans War
           As  my inquisitive mind command more from me since I'm not satisfied with either of the above postulated reconstructions of "Pagro" to which  sub-group I too belong, once I'd the luck of exchanging ideas on Pagro through Facebook chat with my Achi(Elder Brother) Dr Bomchak Riba of Rajiv Gandhi University of the department of Geography on this once hotly debated issue of the intellectual circles  of the Mising Tani tribe.Dr Riba belongs to present-day Galo Tani tribe of Arunachal Pradesh and  he clubbed his clan to Lare Galo.He hailed from Darw village in West Siang district of Arunachal Pradesh.It is interesting to note his account when the debate on Pagro took place among Mising circles  without much historical ingredients,oral or written.Excerpts from our conversation:

"Heard that Hite-Pagro fought with Miro clan. Still there is a cave called Miro-Pomar Aru ( means cave of Pomar Miro) in the hills of Perlek. But the cave is inaccessible or untraceable now. My father used to tell me the story. He even saw the cave. In the entry of the cave, 4-5 pieces of flat rocks could be seen. In the war Pomar Miro was chased by Hite-Pagro people. He hide himself inside the cave with stucked poisoned arrow in his calf muscle. Hite-Pagro people tried to hook him out with maamo (thorny flagella of canes) but failed as he went more inside the cave. Pomar Miro was too injured to move even an inch. He stayed in the cave for several days. While inside the cave, he killed one porcupine (hosi) with his only last weapon, Rokchik (knife). He ate all the meat and drank the blood. He would dry the meat in the sun near mouth of the cave (probably those flat rocks were his drying place for meat). On the other hand, his village performed Bume-runam(act of burying someone's belongings when the person is lost or deadbody is not found). On a fine morning, his ( Pomar's) son told his mother his father has returned. His wife was not at all astonished as she taught that-it could be orom/yaji-yalo (spirit of human) but it was real Pomar."

           Dr Riba also added an interesting note, '' Earlier there were neither Mising nor Galo;neither Adi nor Nyipak.Just they were known by clan name only".

             This new story could be the latest substance in understanding the Pagro  meaning and origin.The earlier two theories were void of much historical reasoning and evidence to believed except attempting to establish vocabulary rendition.It is also significant to mentioned that Dr N Lego,a noted Tani historian,had mentioned in his book "The History of the Mishings of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh" that Pegu and Doley clans didn't faced any war of clans  while moving to their present day habitat possibly for taking a different route.They peacefully come down from  a place called Karko.It is again notable to mentioned here that Pegu and Doley bearing surnames are  well-known composition of Pagro clan.This is another twist to the inquiry of origin and meaning Pagro sub-group.

N.B.Please do not take this writing otherwise especially those who are from different clans of Mising or Galo,whatever may be.This blogger take interest in writings about the oral history,myths and legends,origin,clan wars,folk songs,culture ,faith and religion,land and territory,mores,language,literature,development,politics ,life style and society relating to the Abo Tani descent tribes.This writing is not  for focusing Pagro clan or establishing supremacy among the others.This is just for the sake of  dissemination of information.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Agom Kebang conference from Jan 9,TU varsity campus likely to declare in Jonai

Come 2012,the first Mising organization formed in the post-independent era will organize its 30th Biennial Conference at the border town of Jonai from January 9.The venue for the grand literary meet will be the Jonai Higher Secondary School premises,which is located in the heart of the town.The meet will be continued till January 11,2012.The Mising Agom Kebang or the Mising Literary Association that spearheaded the Roman script movement with flying colours in 1985 after it was founded in 1968 at Disangmukh.Since then the day government of Assam declared the introduction Mising language in schools,annually 30th of October is observed as Mising Language Day.This year another milestone was bagged due to the restless efforts made by the MAK leadership,the country's premier literary body the Sahitya Akademi agreed to award the prestigious 'Bhasa Samman' even as the language dreams for Eight Schedule recognition.However,the rich oral history,folklores and mores were acknowledged by the Akademi ,considering which ground it was decided.The language of Tani people is getting momentum with leaps and bounds even as many urban middle classes Tani parents has left their wards bereft of their mother tongue.The Mising Agom Kebang(MAK) has brought about the culture of writing for those enthusiasts of the community who loves to put their thought into printed letters notwithstanding the literature of this Tani language is still in nascent stage which needs a renaissance among the people.However,this Tani language can still boasts of having more than 5 lakhs speakers across villages and towns in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.
Tezpur University to set up extended campus in Jonai
Sources in the central committee of the MAK told this blogger that a campus of Tezpur University is likely to be declared by the government of Assam in Jonai during the meet itself.The chief minister as well as the education minister are the top political invitees to the literary meet,the sources said.The Tezpur University is a central university established under the Assam Accord.This will be a historic new year gift for the people of entire upper north bank districts of Assam and Siang Valley of Arunachal Pradesh.The temple of learning is expected to boost the educational atmosphere and related economic activities of the backward north bank regions plagued by perennial floods from where hundreds of youths particularly from Dhemaji and Lakhimpur districts migrate to various metropolis of India often leaving their education mid-way to join petty odd jobs.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Any more Human Rights violation?64th year of Independence and the Mising tribe

India is stepping to a glorious years of its hard-earned independence which would celebrate the 64th year of liberation.Together with other developing nations,India wants to move forward and take up responsibility cautiously as an aspiring global power.But as the nation marches towards its prestigious red letter day,the abuse of human rights and illegal detentions by the powerful Indian Army reminds us that India needs to understand its own citizens,especially the indigenous peoples.A week ahead of India's Independence day an incident shook a community of nearly 1 million people belonging to the Mising tribe.Ethnic leaders belonging to a community who's following the ideals of Mahatma Gandhi for its emancipation have been subjected to human rights violations that deeply pained the tribe and questions the functioning of the world's biggest democracy.

Illegal Detention and Human Rights Violation
It was a mixture of shocked,nightmare and anger for the Mising tribe youths when they heard that Raju Medok was brutally tortured in a closed dark room in an Indian Army camp in Jonai .Medok was picked up in Rangkop Tiniali on August 7,2011 during the night along with Minesh Pegu where Indian Army stands regularly for routine check to ensure peace and security of the people.Without rhyme or reason,they were given the most barbaric treatment by the mighty Indian Army personnel and later in the same night they were handed over to Jonai police station.Jonai is an small town which has largest concentration of  the Mising tribe's population located in the Assam-Arunachal border in northern part of Assam. He was returning on his two-wheelers from a funeral of a former fellow leader who died in Chennai hospital recently.Both Raju Medok and Minesh Pegu works for Mising Mimag Kebang(MMK),a political organization fighting for autonomy and political rights of the indigenous Mising tribe that  has nearly 10 lakhs souls inhabiting the two northeastern Indian states of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.Medok is a very active leader who made a name for himself as a leader of the tribe's student body named Takam Mising Porin Kebang(TMPK) who held the post of general secretary.While Minesh is serving as president- in-charge of the MMK of Jonai District Committee.The TMPK is one of the most respected student body among the Mising indigenous tribe which has  penetration across almost all Mising villages in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.Few days back one of my classmate whose internship project was based in flood affected Matmara in Lakhimpur district of Assam expressed before me that he was immensely assisted by TMPK workers while executing his project.The TMPK as a student body has major psychic influence among the Mising educated youths especially those hailing from rural and town areas across far and wide of the country.Ironically only 2 per cent of the Mising tribe inhabits in urban areas as per a 2001 census of India,so we can well-gauged the organizational influence.Whether one may be directly involved or not,many among the tribes olds and youngs keep an eye on the activities of the TMPK.The MMK is just a sister organization where often former student leaders keep involving themselves in the interest of the community.Both Medok and Pegu  has been admitted to hospitals for better treatment in Dibrugarh,a south bank city across the mighty Brahmaputra river.

There were hue and cry,anger and condemnation over the inhuman treatment  of the tribe's leaders across the Mising lands,voices were echoed not just in Silapathar and Majuli island but in the virtual space too where hundreds of Mising youths uses social media for discussing public issues relating to the tribe.On August 9,2011,the Misings held a protest demonstration in the premises of Murkongselek Kristi Bhavan,another glorious cultural site of the tribe with a record of more than 50 years of the national festival known as Ali-aye-ligang,significantly the premises bear a testimony of cultural assault of a mid-night bomb blast in 2008.The relentless struggle for real autonomy,voices against mega hydro power projects,protection from flood and erosion struggle all are being carried through non-violence and satyagraha.The recent Jonai incident have become another insult to the adorable movement that has ignited a second thought for the future of the tribe  among many .

The illegal manner of detention of the two ethnic leaders questions the conduct and responsibility  of the Indian Army.The fundamental rights that are inherent in every human-being have been crushed.It was nontheless a gross violations of human rights from the people who were meant to engender peace and security to its citizens.

Apologized and it's okay!Manufacturing militancy?

It was fortunate on the part of the mighty Indian Army in a rare kind of it's conduct,the Army officer who was in charge of the regiment of the Jonai Army camp acknowledged the wrong done to the ethnic leaders.The officer came to the protest demonstration site and apologized the Mising ethnic organizations publicly.However,it is always a tradition for the Mising tribe either commute or forgive the people who rightly  acknowledge for misconduct.For thousands years, the Kebang or meeting has been the platform for resolving contentious issues not only among it's tribesmen but to settle misunderstanding with others.In many cases,Kebang always comes out with amicable and honorable resolutions.So it was natural that the tribe gave 'chalte hai' attribute to the Indian Army when it came up with such gesture.It is Mising people's nature to be friendly even with someone construed as enemy,when it comes to Army officer who directly reached out to the people,the usual gesture of 'aiye'(it's okay!) was shown.

Does the story ends here?The ripples were seen in the social media such as Facebook especially among the youths.Many Mising Facebook users asked whether it was the reward for the Mising tribe for being law-abiding and staying peaceful.Others questioned  the leadership of their own organizations and curiously wanted to know the reasons behind the 'compromise' with the Army.Some were suggesting 'kaje,apne-pane ko la:lenlaboi,ngolum me:tid dung amme".(Let's open a shooting-cutting group,others are looking down us.) which made us clear that youths think that due to non-lifting of guns such and such are happening. Someone on the same news post of the tortured incident even called out on Facebook to ''broke all administrative building''.Many youths felt the honour and self-esteem as a Mising community has been relegated to the margins and suggested to ''take all possible steps'' to protect the self-respect.Others opined for punishment under due process of law of the land.These might be just a well of echoes seen on the networking site but one must agree to the fact that it also spoke of the state of notions and psychological effects  among the Mising youths after they heard of the detention and torture of it's innocent leaders.If similar kind of case happened against AASU,ABSU leaders other than Mising tribe many wondered how could it have been the consequences and scenario in the aftermath in Assam.The incident is just adding fuel to anger and deprivation of the tribe.The incident may explains the gradual manufacturing of militancy in Northeast India.

Non-violence and the Mising tribe

If Gandhiji,whom we dearly called the Father of Nation , gave India and the world the new tactic of political struggle i.e.ahimsa or non-violence against the mighty and powerful,the Mising tribe is the one who are vigorously resorting to the principle for social justice and overall uplift.Despite Northeast India being the land of hundreds mutinies and armed revolutions, the Mising tribe have been taking utmost cautiousness to follow the law of the land.The Army's detention of ethnic leaders who represents the "Father of Nation" principles in their struggle for community emancipation without rhythm and reason speaks volumes of Army's operation and conduct.It is alleged that the Indian Army was 'used' to avenge matters relating to collections of donations in connivance with administrative officers,North Indian businessmen and petty politicians in the helm of affairs.If the Army has done so,we must say that our soldiers are not on the  right track.If it was the matter,the state police could have acted strongly if there was such complaints against the organizations and persons concerned.However,for any major events the Mising organizations collect 'donations' not just from the people outside the community but within the community members too.The respected Indian Army in where hundreds of Mising tribe  youths dream to join has sent a wrong signal to the entire community.The Army has planted wrong impression to the public that will alienate them from its own people.

The  Mising have been deeply hurt to the insult done to its ethnic leaders.The Mising tribe never expected such misconduct in a country which is going to celebrate six decades and four years of independence.The fundamental rights and duties enshrined by the founding fathers of the country have been grossly violated against an ethnic minority by the powerful Indian Army.Indigenous peoples in Maoist affected area in other parts of India must have better explanation relating to such matters.

Celebrating Independence with Qualms in Mind

India's 64th years of Independence is a matter of pomp and gaiety for billions of Indians across nook and corner of the country.The indigenous Mising tribe's social,political and economic emancipation is still a distant dream.Thousands of the people belonging to the indigenous tribe has been running for two square meals a day.Children begins their tender  life in the sands of Matmara,on the embankment of Bonkowal.Unabated erosions and recurrence of floods led many  people helpless without food and shelter ,they look for new settlements in the  forests of Arunachal Pradesh,Guwahati ,Doyang Tengani,Karbi-Anglong.....where people have to live their life in constant fear of being evicted by government in where people are branded as encroachers in  the country.The ''sons of soil'' have been frantically searching for the soil to refuge and livelihood within the boundary of the country.Youths in Boginadi villages have to work for migrant settlers by plucking chillies from orchard to eke out a living  in the land which was once  owned by their forefathers.There's no one to explain how migrant settlers got land allotment while tribes remained deprived.Youths serving as security guards in as far as Pune and Mumbai  have to live a life amidst fear during their night duty hours of being 'taxed' by high-class Indians moving in luxurious cars.In Assam where the government has made a policy of recruiting new teachers to boost quality education,there's no provision for reservation for the deprived and the backwards.The children of the indigenous tribes have no right to learn their first lesson in life in their mother tongue which contradicts the real meaning of much-trumpeted ''right to education.'' Men and women in Dikhowmukh and Sisiborgaon have been tortured for practicing withcraft which speaks of the tribe's underdevelopment.The indigenous peoples in India have not been able get out the of the yoke of social evils.Leaders leading political ,social and economic rights movements have to live a fearful life of being detained by the Army.People in the down streams and upstreams where large mega dams have been under consideration are not sure whether their land and livelihood are safe down their generations.The 64th year of India's Independence day reminds us of these challenges ,fear and exploitation of the indigenous peoples.The Mising tribe joins the  celebrations of 'prestigious' 64th years of the country's Independence day with open heart but with loads of qualms in mind.Jai Hind!

Notes and References:
1.Conversations with Kishore Doley,Iran Narah;Ruad Dolung,Khanapara,Guwahati,Miri related files on its website of 2001 census
3.Gupid,Bhaskar;Blogs on
4.Mising Students Union,
5.Pangging ,Arindam; "Premik Bondhu",Sadin,July 22,2011
6.Pratidin,Asomiya; August 9,10;2011

Monday, August 1, 2011

TMPK is a political organization:Ranoj Pegu

Ranoj Pegu's comment on Facebook
Noted Mising leader Ranoj Pegu have recently claimed that TMPK is a political organization and it has the right  to participate in political activities.This statement of Ranoj Pegu slipped into as comment on the social networking site Facebook in one of his replies to the members of networking group called Mising Students Union(MSU) on July 30,2011.The Takam Mising Porin Kebang,literally All Mising Students' Union, is one of the oldest community organization in the Mising tribe that inhabits  in two northeastern Indian states of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.The tribe belongs to Tani group of people who are known as descendants of Abotani.

Ranoj Pegu,a Marxist-Leninist,has been playing a significant role  in matters relating to the community as a leader since the last three decades.He is considered as the man behind the current Mising autonomy movement among the community circle.The Misings are demanding autonomy under Sixth Schedule of the Indian Constitution.The debate into the virtual world sparked off after a thread post by one Achyut Kumar Doley when he asked '' dear guys plainly speaking how much people frm our 28 lacs population loves Dr Ronuj pegu as our torch is purely non-political''(sic).Ranoj Pegu ,who later joined the thread on the Facebook group,said that TMPK,MMK and TMMK are political organizations and they have the right to participate in political activities.
After all our main demand for autonomy is a political demand. It is not simply social or cultural demand. Difference is that these are not 'political party'. These organisations are fighting for a cause and using parliamentary struggle as a tactical means. Once the cause is achieved the organasations will withdraw from active politics and leave it only to political parties."
The thread that sparked the debate by Achyut Kumar Doley

Ranoj Pegu's post after he claimed TMPK as political organization
Pegu also adds, "After all our main demand for autonomy is a political demand.It is not simply social or cultural demand.Difference is that these are not 'political party'.Putting  points of justification in his Facebook comment he says '''these organizations are fighting for a cause and using parliamentary struggle as a tactical means.Once the cause is achieved the organizations will withdraw from active politics and leave it only to the political parties."

Ranoj Pegu's comment  sparked off a lengthy thread discussion on Facebook with as many as 221 comments which could be longest ever discussions on internet relating to the Mising community till date.Meanwhile the statement have invited mixed reactions among the student community especially who are members of the MSU group on Facebook across the virtual world.With volleys of reactions pouring in from the student community Ranoj Pegu have posted a document entitled ''why TMPK is a political organization ''on the same site the previous night.By claiming  the TMPK , which is basically a student organization as political organization,the debate is likely to be heated one in the coming days among the Mising student community at large.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Bhubon Pegu's latest public appearance

Bhubon Pegu delivering speech in an anti-big dam rally  in Guwahati
Former Jonai legislator Bhubon Pegu's first public appearance after his defeat in the last assembly election on Saturday's satyagraha organised by TMPK and AASU against mega dams and the turbines movement towards Subansiri hydro power project proved he is a real time leader indeed irrespective of his political position.His voice was loud and clear against the mega dams that have been decided to be built in the northeast as like before,stubborn and determined . He criticized the central government of maintaining dual standards approach on power projects. He asked why there was objection on Tsangpo hydro power project from India against China but why not the government was concerned about the 168 hydro projects in Arunachal alone.