Tuesday, 12 December 2017


Khongjom Battle Debate

Controversy over Khongjom battle has resurfaced with the coming of the month of April. The contestation is on the date of the battle. April 23 or April 25? Some historians as well as independent researchers, including a few social activists have contended that April 25 is the correct date. This debate has been doing the rounds over the last few years. But what we have witnessed is fading away of the debate from public space too fast and too soon. A few minutes of television studio discussions on the subject, two or three pieces of articles in the newspaper – and the debate is over. This lack of consistency clouds the direction of the debate. For the sake of posterity a consensual date must be arrived at. In this regard, the state government along with its departments concerned must take the initiatives. An expert review committee, as suggested by some commentators, instituted under the patronage of the state government will be one of the best ways forward. Let the committee invite and engage with different stakeholders. Let it come out with recommendations for the government to put a final stamp on the exact date of the battle.

Hegel, the German philosopher has been one thinker who has made extensive contribution in the approach to historical enquiry. He attempted to discover meaning or direction in history. He understood history as an intelligible process moving towards a specific condition – the realisation of human freedom. According to him “history is the unfolding of spirit in time, as nature is the unfolding of the idea in space”. RG Collingwood’s idea on history also hinges on the Hegelian view to a large extent. He viewed history as not believing someone when he says that he remembers something. The believer is not the authority. His conception of modern history begins with the rejection of scissor-and-paste view of history. A historical enquiry does not end when someone has possession of evidential material to support the date of an event. The historian must be the interpreter of the evidence.

In the light of these propositions, what could be further elicited from the debate that is centered on the accuracy of the date of Khongjom battle? Yes, accuracy of the date of the event has its primacy. But what about the meaning or direction of history, as Hegel had construed? Those who have engaged in the Khongjom battle debate are respectable scholars in their own right. Our submission is that debate should not be about scoring brownie points. On the other hand a healthy debate is always welcome. It is a good sign of people’s participation towards meaningful social dialogue. It helps in enriching democratic values of a society and nation. By public debate, we mean an informed dialogue among the citizens, with enough room to accommodate dissenting voices as well. Unfortunately, these days there is a dwindling of debating culture in the public domain. Debate competitions organised routinely at educational institutions lack vitality. Learning spaces like college and university, in absence of debating rigour, will produce citizens bereft of a critical eye. Yet, what is even more appalling is the debate which is lost to the informed citizens as well. What could be the factors that have stifled the growth of debating culture? One apparent factor among many is the lack of respect for dissent. Intolerance to divergent views needs to be shunned to find direction to the future by learning from the past.  

Leader Writer: Senate Kh.

22-Apr-2017 / IFP Editorials / 0 Comments


No comments found for this entry!

Random Items 

Foundation Day observed

IMPHAL | Apr 21 The 48th Foundation Day of Manipuri Chanura Leisham Marup (Macha Leima) was observed today at its office today at Palace Compund, Imphal. A release said that the observance function was attended by its founder members, life members and m.....

22-Apr-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Biren nod to adopt 7th pay

IMPHAL | Apr 21 A 15 member delegation comprising of Core Committee and Executive Committee members of Joint Administrative Council (JAC) of All Manipur Trade Unions’ Council (AMTUC) and All Manipur Govt. Employees’ Organisation (AMGEO) led by its presid.....

22-Apr-2017 | Our Staff Reporter | 0 Comments

Shija cleft week

IMPHAL| Apr 21 As part of the ongoing ‘Shija Cleft week’ which began from last April 17, an awareness rally on free cleft lip and palate surgery was organised today. The rally took place from Western Kangla gate to Indian Medical Association (IMA) hall,.....

22-Apr-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Cases filed against six MLAs in High Court

?IMPHAL | Apr 21 Altogether, six separate cases have been filed against six sitting MLAs mostly from Congress with the High Court of Manipur. The cases were filed by different individuals alleging that the MLAs have used false affidavits while filing th.....

22-Apr-2017 | Our Staff Reporter | 0 Comments

Five books released

IMPHAL| Apr Five books titled It’s ‘My Baby’, ‘Commando’ (both Manipuri and English version), ‘Private’ by Dr L Sashikumar and ‘Modern Manipuri Seirenggi Khongchat’ of Dr Saratchandra Longhamba was released today at Manipur Press Club. The books were re.....

22-Apr-2017 | Our Staff Reporter | 0 Comments

HSE answer scripts evaluation from tomorrow

IMPHAL | Apr 21 The Council of Higher Secondary Education, Manipur has informed that the evaluation work of answer scripts of the Higher Secondary Examination (HSE), 201 7 will be started from tomorrow. A release said a group discussion session of the a.....

22-Apr-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Tamenglong MGNREGS wages released

TAMENGLONG | Apr 21 With the release of wages of five days on March 31, Tamenglong district has achieved 24 day wages under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) for the year 2016-17. At village level, job card holders invo.....

22-Apr-2017 | Correspondent | 0 Comments

Photography fellowship

IMPHAL | Apr 21 The senior photojournalist, Jinendra Maibam, son of Maibam Jiten and Maibam Memtombi Devi of Lalambung Takhellambam Leikai was selected for Fellowship of School of Fototechnik (FSoF) in the annual day function held yesterday at South Pate.....

22-Apr-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Results of health officials to be announced

IMPHAL | Apr 21 Appointment letters of selected candidates of medical health department, 2016 which includes ANM, GNM, multitasking and pharmacist would be announced soon by the BJP government. The statement was said by Marching, vice president of JAC f.....

22-Apr-2017 | Press Release | 0 Comments

Let us help Mr Muivah sign an Agreement

By Sh. Ajit This is the Framework Agreement as revealed bythe Week, 23 April Edition. The content may be right or wrong. The Week may violate the game rules of politics in Naga world; the Government of India may or may not be happy as a party cannot kee.....

22-Apr-2017 | IFP Articles | 0 Comments

More decry gang rape of teenage girls

KANGPOKPI | Apr 21 Many more condemnation poured in over the incident of the shocking gang rape of teenage girls on April 14 demanding swift action so as to delivered justice to the victims and a befitting lesson to such criminal in the state. Kuki Wome.....

22-Apr-2017 | Correspondent | 0 Comments

EMRS students achieve gold in English Olympiad

KANGPOKPI | Apr 21 Four students of Eklavya Model Residential School (EMRS), Gamnom Sapormeina, Kangpokpi district achieved another gold medal from Science Olympiad Foundation (SOF), India. Tinpilhing Haokip, Class X, daughter of (Late) Tongkholun Haoki.....

22-Apr-2017 | Correspondent | 0 Comments

Latest Comments