Minister announces coronary unit in Ccpur at War tribute event

CCPUR, 17th oct: Kuki freedom fighters, who stood valiantly against the British Empire, were remembered as the community observed the centenary commemoration of the historic Anglo-Kuki War 1917-1919 at Tuibong ground in Churachandpur district HQ on Wednesday.

Anglo-Kuki War Centenary Commemoration Committee (AKWCCC) organised the observance under the theme ‘In defence of our ancestral land and freedom’ with health minister L Jayantakumar as chief guest. Speaking on the occasion, Jayantakumar announced that the government will open a coronary unit in the Churachandpur district hospital in November. He also said that Churachandpur will be the first district hospital in the state to have the facility for treatment of heart diseases. Besides, a seven-bedded dialysis unit and a 10-bedded cancer unit will be opened at the hospital in order to improve healthcare facilities in the district, which he said is one of the best performing district hospitals in the state, he said.

He observed that the commemoration is an important day with great historical significance for not only the Kuki community but also for Meeteis, Nagas and all other communities residing in the state. "It is the duty of the present generation to remember the history of our forefathers and follow their footsteps to continue the legacy," he stressed. Despite knowing that they will lose the battle, the forefathers of Manipur fought valiantly against the British Empire as they valued their sovereignty. The present generation should never forget the sacrifices made by their forefathers during the Anglo-Manipuri war of 1891 and Anglo-Kuki war of 1917-1919, Jayantakumar said.

Recalling his stint as a judicial officer posted in the district nearly two decades back, the minister said that he felt bond of unity and oneness among the different communities. However, some smaller communities seem to be interested in separation from the Kuki conglomeration. Similarly, among the Meeteis, a new trend of unity among similar surnames is emerging, which is not good for the society, he cautioned.

Pointing out that such individual interest often become hurdles in bringing development, the minister said, “We should not fight for small matters but avoid such parochial mindsets and not behave like a fool and act foolishly. If there are so many such vested interests among the different communities, chances are less for survival and developmental aspiration will consequently suffer.” Jayantakumar then assured to propose to the chief minister to declare October 17 as a state holiday in recognition of the Anglo-Kuki War commemoration. He also assured to send a proposal to the Centre for construction of a Kuki War Memorial Complex at Songpi village.

Earlier, the minister unveiled a monolith erected in memory of the Kuki War heroes at General Tintong Haokip Complex located at Songpi village. He also released a souvenir on ‘Anglo-Kuki War 1917-1919’ during the function. The unveiling of monolith was marked by floral tributes and gun salute by members of Kuki Chiefs Association (KCA).

Meanwhile, a statement issued by the Centenary Commemoration Committee said the Anglo Kuki War referred to as Kuki Rebellion by the British writers is one of the fiercest resistance movements put up against the British rule over India though it has been given little recognition in the dominant historical narratives of the Indian freedom struggle. Kuki people in India have been denied their right to self-determination in their land despite their huge contribution in the resistance against British colonialism.

It further said Kuki people have also supported Subhas Chandra Bose's INA and joined in great numbers. Nevertheless, the Indian political establishment turned a blind eye to the Kuki’s contribution in the freedom struggle. Kuki Chiefs, church leaders, leaders of students union, civil society organisation, CSO, relatives of Kuki War heroes were among others who attended the commemoration. A moment of silence was also observed in honour of the war heroes.

© 2016 - 2019 The People's Chronicle. All rights reserved.