If the American band “Guns N Roses” were formed in Manipur, they would have named it as a “Guns N Mobiles”. If you don’t have a gun and a mobile in hand, you are no longer a Manipuri. Only thing which is left to see in Manipur is Commandos with their fancy Guns and Mobiles. Nothing else is left in home. People are crying and dying everyday, except those people who have a gun in hand legally or illegally can survive in today's Manipur. Common people have no guarantee for their lives. You are risk to kill anytime and anywhere. You have no identity in your own home.
After a year, I landed in my home town for a week to see my ailing grandma. My friend was waiting for to see me in the airport as we are not sure of meeting afterwards. Yeah, it was happened as we thought. We could not catch up again. The whole week was occupied by general strike,agitation and protest because of the fake encounter killing of Rabina and Sanjit in the busy market of Imphal. The scene of blood diamond flashed back in front of my eyes as soon as I saw the well dressed Commandos lined up in the airport to guard a daughter of an MLA who was boarded in the same flight. I was just praying to God to save me and my love ones from any encounter whether it is fake or real. Two days of general strike paralyzed the state like anything. Shops were shut down and the price of every item was sky high. The most affected ones were the women vegetable vendors in the market and those people who are depending on the day to day petty works in the market. They are almost in tears, thinking about what they would eat and feed their children. They are no more concerned about the killings, human rights, bandhs, JAC and any other agitations but worried for their day to day struggle to survive. Somewhere their thoughts are justified. They were talking each other what else we are going to get from the general strike, bandh, protest? It is only poor people who got affected, not the one who are involved in the killing, MLA, Officers, Doctors, Engineers, Contractors, rich people etc. After all, do we remember getting any kind of justice from this govt because of all these agitations, bandhs and general strikes?
After the general strike like a twin brother unlimited Curfew was announced in the state by our curfew government. It was really like a pain in the ash. Neither you can sit in peace nor can you stand on your feet. On the night time Meira paibis were gathered in the local club to join the mass Meira rally organized by Apunba Lup. I also went out to get a glimpse of their plan on the road. After 15 minutes 2-3 vehicles of Commandos were parked near our gate and all the meiras were burnt on the spot and they were shouting and warning to the Meira paibi’s if they dare to break the curfew. Then, it was followed by unlimited firing in the sky. Whole night I was sitting in my room and counting the gunshots and noise of the rubber bullets as I was so terrified and panic. Their tone and language was more terrific than the gunshots to me. I was asking to myself. Are they really humane? I still doubt they are!! I blamed the parents who gave birth to such animals who have no human character. Newspapers are filled with the photographs of beating the civilians coming on the road by the Cammandos. I was blessed to catch the real civil war this time. I woke up my mom saying that why there is so much of firing. My mom told me you go to sleep, everything is fine. It happens everyday and not new to us. Nothing will happen. I was surprised with her reaction; so, I woke her up again saying the same with an intense tone. But she gave me the same answer. Whole night I was haunted with my own imaginations and I kept on watching my brothers. Kept on thinking what will happen to them? Only advised I have given to them is that study hard so that you can leave the state as soon as you finish your twelve class. I know this is not the solution but I don’t have the courage to see them struggling to survive in such a place where there is no guarantee for life. I spent the week like a nightmare sitting in my room and counting the gunshots. I was choked with pain and anguish on seeing my brothers arguing to each other what might be the noise was? My brother told his friends that I’m very much aware of the sound; first one was a rubber bullet, it almost shook the ground; 2nd was a tear gas, then riffles and pistols. He continued with his best argument but I was almost sunk in a haunted imagination. I’m still terrified by the empty roads, smoke filled sky and the tears & pains in the eyes of every Manipuri. I don’t know whom to blame but I just pray to God to erase the noise of the gunshots from the memories of my little brothers and many like them.