Halloween party ideas 2015

[By DAVID BUHRIL, Journalist, Sept, 2008]

The discussions in misual.com and elsewhere that have been beating empty vessel after the two unwanted incidents - the killing of a Lusei-speaking Mizo in Manipur’s Churachandpur and the ambush - that involves the HPC(D) have stirred the Hmar-Mizo question to a disgusting extent. As a human being I loathed bloodshed and violence and if such behaviour could be transferred, one should as a human being exile oneself from such conduct. However, in the course of our discourse, a constructive inculcation of reason is the need of the hour when emotions blindly hit the alarm that are attached to the vessel. It could injure more when the tongue does not wag in accordance with reason. It makes much noise, the odd notes, which I am already tired of, from the very fact of me being a member of Hmar as well as Mizo. From the various comments that also reflect the ignorance of the collectivity, who are again proud members of Mizo, there arises a serious problem of one’s understanding of the Hmar identity and its relation and interrelation with the diverse Mizo identity. Out of these comments, I strongly sensed the omission of the historical construction of Mizo identity and Mizoram, where the significance of the Hmar people is seemingly shelved.

There are also visible unhealthy presumption of some, of Hmar as something outside the Mizo identity. This should end for good. We are suffering a Mizo blindness, which made us poor reactors where we allow ourselves to divorce our reason from all our other senses that eventually paralysed our ability to harmonise the being and identity within ourselves. As much as the need for no insistence to submit Hmar as Mizo, I find no meaning for any Mizo to outside Hmar from Mizo just because an armed group bearing Hmar happens to act within the State boundary of Mizoram. If, supposing, every member of Hmar is counted as member of HPC (D), then, majority of the Mizos in Mizoram would be a potential member of that group from the very fact of them being a Hmar, as the population of Hmar in Mizoram is the highest, if compared to the various other tribes - Ralte, Lai, Paite, Sailo, et al. My point is that collectivising Hmars for any deed of one group or party is a blunder, which should not be digested at any point of time. Moreover it itself is negating Mizo, which means negating oneself to include oneself. And if anyone thinks that exercising Mizo identity would go down well by poking and pricking Hmar, I could not think of any worse design that would fragment the house in shamble. Worst, it is ignorance seeking a sealed valve for an exit by employing the blurry headlight of emotion. The same headlight has been instrumented by the armed MNF in their glorious days, but to include only small sections of the Mizo nation within a boundary called Mizoram; and that resulted in people from Mizoram carrying Mizo tribe certificate, which belittle us as a people; for Mizo is not just a mere tribe.

As I went through the posted comments, I was reminded of Foucault’s mistake to acknowledge about the unequal complementarity of doer and done to in the homoerotic practices that once were occupied their discourse. There are too many amongst us who also committed the same mistake, which is, but, serious. One reason is because our faculties are not rooted to our history. Even if we look at the current history, it is evident that from the first tribal IAS officer, who is a Hmar Mizo to the first Cabinet Minister in undivided Assam (A Thanglura), to the martyrs and heroes of MNF cadres to who’s who in Mizoram today, who would dare to ignore the Hmars from Mizo? The Mizo Union movement that started in 1946 was led by Hmar Mizo like Pachhunga, HK Bawichhuaka, et al. The same movement spreaded to Manipur with the Hmars taking the lead and resulted in the first Manipur Mizo Union General Assembly in Pherzawl, a Hmar village. In the interest of the Mizo Union movement, it was the Hmars who boycotted the first election in Manipur in 1948. But when Mizoram was conceived, self serving Mizo leaders failed to even look beyond Tuivai and Tuiruong (Tipaimukh) rivers. History has a clean record of who the blunders were. Who the blunder would dare to be Brutus again? Forgetting the Hmars or even trying to do that in Mizoram would be as much as a vain attempt to rewrite the New Testament of the Bible without Jesus.

It would be easy to mistake the Hmar people as different or indifferent as they are divided by five state boundaries in the North East itself. Besides, their ability as a people, to preserve and still used Hmar as a spoken/written language seems to have marked them out as different from what is conceived as “Mizo” in Mizoram. Language has acted as a potent marker for identifying identities. This must be one reason why the use of Hmar language was not, to put it softly, encouraged for preaching, composing, teaching, singing, when Christianity was taking its roots in its early phase in the Lushai Hills. It is interesting to note that Hmar composers, pastors, and preachers, then, asserted about the need to worship and praise God in their own language. That was when , when Hmar dialect was finding its place, many of the equally rich Mizo dialects/languages met their early death. Again, it is interesting to know that Thiek/Thiak dialect is still popular and widely used in Assam’s NC Hills. So, to carve a Mizo identity out of the many languages and dialects that it has today, would only end up with othering our own selves. Or are we already witnessing the process of othering ourselves from what is visible with people from Mizoram. But Mizoram is not a village, or is it? I think the imagination of who a Mizo is from the clogged door and window of Mizoram did not leave any space for our diversity to sink in. When we could understand and accept the multiplying and equally diverse Christian denominations/cult in Mizoram, I wonder why we allow to failed our imagination to go beyond the limit that we have set for ourselves.

We ought to understand the existence of a people fragmented by more than four State boundaries and their quest for belongingness. Today those boundaries have come to dictate who an insider and outsider is. This itself tends to act against the Mizo identity, which is in the nation making process. Or should we say a notion in the making process. Whatever it is, reminding ourselves the process that we are inevitably into would enlighten us about the need to inculcate reason as we intervene with our free expression. With our firm attachment to these man-made boundaries, who a Mizo is should not be let too loose to get lost in definition or translation. The sanctity of these boundaries cannot be interpreted when it comes to identifying a Mizo; for a Mizo is not holed up in a village with narrow wall.

Today, it is unfortunate that State boundaries have acted to distance or border us. However strong that forces might be, they should not be given a space to pollute the identity that is undergoing its courses of change.

Did anyone remember that during the HPC movement in the early ’90s, it was the Government of Mizoram who stirred, funded and armed a band of innocent Hmar boys and sent them to Manipur’s Churachandpur district to play the eye for an eye game. The leader of the armed group himself was Lalchung Buhril from the Thiek/Thiak clan. I remember those were bloody days. Did anyone care that it was let loose by the State itself? Who, from Mizoram, at that time, raise a voice to condemn the State government from spreading the fire? Not even the Press or the reverred Church. Today as we celebrate the blame game, the same Leviathan has not yet shed its dirty linen. Everyone knows that it is the same old man at work, which is why we should never overlook the reality that we are already digressing from. While we are a witness to the return of the Frankenstein monster we must not be robbed of our faculties. Conceiving things indifferently from what they really are would not even serve the blown out emotions that we fervently nurse. We are all victims of the unholy design that was set against us.

[Editor's Note: This write-up on Hmar Mizo identity by Tv David Buhril was one of the most debated topic by Mizo bloggers in 2008. Clear and insighful in presentation this outlook continues to generate heated discussions even today]

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  1. I agree we must redefine the term Mizo. we are all Mizo and under mizo there are Lushai, Hmar and Lai

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