The eminence of Manipur in games and sports is remarkable. This State, known for having the largest militant groups in the Northeast, has shown the way a militancy-hit region can also excel in a field in which the country in general has not fared well in international circles. Female Manipuri boxers are an excellent example of what tribal women can do if they are groomed well and given the necessary scope. The Manipur government has done well to promote games and sports in a big way in the State. More should follow.
In fact all the States of Northeast India need to take a leaf out of the sports book of Manipur. By this what I mean is that the State governments of the region should encourage games and sports in schools in a big way by way of investment and infrastructure build-up. This is quite possible if the political intention is right. When crores of rupees are swindled in the name of development, money can easily flow into games and sports. Next step is the identification or location of talents, who then have to be groomed in the right manner, if necessary by hiring the best coaches in the country and even abroad.
A Tradition Thought
The recent Bihu festivity in Assam has yet again pointed to the gradual erosion of values and what defined such festivals in the past. Even rural areas are not spared. I am talking of the westernization of Bihu and the ethos it had held once upon a time. Even urban areas had a rural touch, with people going to each other’s homes, greeting each other with love and affection, and enjoying the typical Bihu delicacies to their heart’s pleasure. But nowadays even rural areas seem to have lost this beautiful tradition of ours. There is rampant materialism and westernization. What has been lost is ethnic touch. This is very unfortunate.
We must remember that we shall lose our soul if we do not stick to our basic cultural ethos and traditions. This is a must even if we enjoy the glories and comforts of science.