Showing posts from January, 2017

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A Reflection on Election

You waste the attention of your eyes,
the glittering labour of your hands,
and knead the dough enough for dozens of loaves
of which you’ll taste not a morsel;
you are free to slave for others–
you are free to make the rich richer.

From Nazim Hikmet’s A Sad State of Freedom
Translated by Taner Baybars 

Democracy and electoral politics are two different things; or in other words, all the electoral politics is democracy but all the democracy is not electoral politics. However, these have coalesced into a single entity in Manipur, thanks to the militarisation policies of India and to our amazing sense of political consciousness.

If we go by the ideals, utilitarianism—the ethical philosophy that the greatest good is in the happiness of the greatest number of people—would have been a reality. Likewise, no matter how much the US would sell democracy for oil, or closer home, no matter how much the Indian nation-state believes in its military prowess, there is something hideous about …

12 Ways to Approach Design Scientifically

Design, as one of the creative disciplines, ought to have no fixed rules but from common sense and the ‘art rituals’ that have been followed for centuries irrespective of any medium, there are certain theories and principles that can be generalised without a compromise. In common sense, for instance, we cannot simply pair a serif font with any sans serif; and generally, a simple feature like kerning or leading can make or break a design. Likewise in colour combination we have certain palettes; and at the cost of repeating a cliché, one has to know the rules to break them.  So, here is a collection: the selected 12 ways to approach design in a rational way.


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Post-Truth in the Neighbourhood

At one time we had truth and lies. Now we have truth, lies, and statements that may not be true but we consider too benign to call false.
—Ralph Keyes, The Post-Truth Era: Dishonesty and Deception in Contemporary Life

So a few politically motivated Nagas want everybody in Manipur to turn their ire against the state government instead of simply resisting against the economic blockade without even asking why it is there in the first place. It sounds convincing these days when purportedly post-truth—the triumph of sentiments over senses, with its origin attributed to the global financial crisis of 2008—is the ‘in’ thing amidst the invention of unique histories, gross manipulation of facts and half-hearted claims for fraternity.

But in this age, when even rumours on social media can triumph over facts and figures there can be such a disaster as NSCN IM passing the buck to state force for killing civilians and failing miserably. Disinformation, a filthy chunk that makes up post-truth, ca…


one i’d declare i’m no phantom
albeit two, what i got today are phantoms
all the phantoms, in fact, in different spirits:
phantom: the delusion of peace and happiness
phantom: the illusion of you and i in sweet madness
phantom: the hallucination of mad prophets,
we never know phantoms can be so over-explicit

it’s like we can see but which also cannot be seen
as in our faces if not in reflection or an image,
as in peace we can imagine
in spring while our lives are stuck
in those heavy showers of june, ceaselessly
but we can see in other people the spring
while we surrender lifelessly to our bloody destiny

as if it has been etched on stone
we don’t live but survive
we don’t celebrate but mourn
we don’t reach but arrive
in this corner of the world, in nothingness
in this society of animals so listless,
the horizon is consumed in darkness

Fanon 101

Frantz Fanon, in full Frantz Omar Fanon, is a West Indian psychoanalyst and social philosopher known for his theory that some neuroses are socially generated and for his writings on behalf of the national liberation of colonial peoples.

Fanon’s Peau noire, masques blancs (1952; Black Skin, White Masks) is a multidisciplinary analysis of the effect of colonialism on racial consciousness. Integrating psychoanalysis, phenomenology, existentialism, and Negritude theory, Fanon articulated an expansive view of the psychosocial repercussions of colonialism on colonized people. The publication shortly before his death of his book Les Damnés de la terre (1961; The Wretched of the Earth) established Fanon as a leading intellectual in the international decolonization movement; the preface to his book was written by Jean-Paul Sartre.


A Contemporary Vocabulary of Mutiny

An abstract of a research problem on how new terms and expressions have now become crucial while articulating about people, power and social revolution in Manipur

We have letters to make words to express our ideas to communicate our thoughts, and so on. In a larger context, these have broader purposes. Briefly, vocabulary can help create new societal behaviours for collective benefits—or create such a ground that we can build the foundation of a desirable future in the most effective ways. But why is it so essential?

There are several reasons but one of the most prominent is our condemned life in the hinterland called Manipur. An old Asiatic kingdom, it was annexed to the Union of India in 1949—and incidentally, it is quite essential to note that this issue of annexation or merger is an important area where the new vocabulary is most needed so as to deal with it. In the existing political reality it was annexation per se while the resistance has been described as an internal law an…

full-bath blues

or the lost art of staying neat in a mess

as dry skins crawl out of nowhere
i can’t find my brain anywhere
never i know if it’s gone with autumn
this thing has now become so bothersome

the season has heralded the arrival
sixty headless men straight out of a brothel
they are coming, wearing innocent-looking disguise
they call this charade a people-friendly exercise

and now i got no place to go
and i got only all the scratches and sweat to show
and every chagrin that only a warm bathe will clean
even this bloody full bath is too much for hygiene

Sonia Bags the 2017 Young Achiever’s Award

GUWAHATI, Jan 12: Independent filmmaker Sonia Nepram from Imphal has won the prestigious Young Achiever’s Award, which is sponsored by the Dalmia Bharat Group at a grand function held this evening at the Radisson Blu Hotel. This annual award is given to emerging stars from Northeast India in the field of dance, journalism, football, music, arts, acting and documentary film direction.

In recognition of her exceptional achievement in the field of documentary film direction, Sonia received the award from the group’s senior executive director and head, corporate brands & marketing, Mr BK Singh. The Dalmia Bharat Group, established in 1939, is a leading multi-spectrum cement company with a double digit market share and a pioneer in super specialty cements used for oil wells, railway sleepers and air strips across India.

A post-graduate in mass communication from the AJK MCRC, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, Sonia Nepram has been working on various media and audio-visual projects and…

The Others

Then it was the green
And the yellow and all the colour bright
Now it has been the gloomiest sight
When the night eats into the last candlelight
When i do know what legs i have
But when i know not what legs i don’t have
And when i know not what legs i do have
And when i know what legs i don’t have
And that it’s the others’ hands that walk
Walk for themselves, and walk for me at times
Now i will say the green is the saffron
The burgundy is the blueberry
If only, if only i’m told, i’m made aware
—only tell me the universe is an illusion
i’ll be an outcast to the bloody Nation
i’ll be anything, if only, if only i’m told
But my masters have sold my soul.

Out on the Town

To be home at least once a year has been a luxury ever since I decided to leave my hometown in the hope of connecting reasonable dots as much as I can, in this puzzle of nothingness called life. I count this year’s has been one of the most memorable, particularly from the personal front—personal because otherwise, living is more complicated than the very puzzle of existence. Without further going meaninglessly into the experience I have some amateurish photographs here.

Symbols are essential for people; the more we have the better it seems to be, because human beings are fucking afraid to be alone and need to be in groups identified by entities like shared identities and political aspirations

A shot from the final match of the 60th CC Meet Football Tournament; NEROCA, Imphal defeated Assam Regimental Centre, Shillong to lift the title

An alternative way of saying enough is enough: A shot from the corner of a commercial complex in Thangmeiband

 Briefly, life in the valley

A nice typog…


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