Examples

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Tutorial 1: converting news items/ articles into encyclopaedia-style entries

 

Every example given below first shows the newspaper article as it originally appeared, ‘before’ any changes were made to it. However, all portions relevant for an encyclopaedia-style entry have been boldfaced. The rest may please be deleted.

            Then the same article is shown ‘after’ it has been converted into an encyclopaedia-style entry.      

 

             The examples listed have been chosen to represent different regions and different topics. (The first articles to be uploaded were all about Afghanistan and the Dhivehi language of the Maldives.)

Contents

Example I

Afghanistan: Economy/ before

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

A Dwindling Economy

by Masood Korosh.

Daily Outlook Afghanistan, August 11, 2012.

http://outlookafghanistan.net/topics.php?post_id=5143

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. See examples and a tutorial.    

 

Just stepping inside Kabul’s luxuries shopping malls, we can get the feeling that indeed costumers are not spending as they used to. Though there will be soon Eid celebration, in which Muslims generally spend too much for necessary as well as luxury goods, but this year it seems that Afghan people are trying to celebrate it with lesser expenses. Talking to shop owners, they are not happy with their revenue this year and complaining about lack of costumers and overall average sales rate. Many are saying that the average sales rate decreased to half over the same period last year.

Few days ago, I was standing by roadside waiting for taxi to go to bazaar. A private motorbike stopped nearby and told me if our direction was one. He told me that he run a private business, a foreign chocolate wholesales man. He told me that last year before the Eid festival [i.e. in 2011], he sold three truckloads of chocolate and his reservoirs finished and faced shortage for Eid days.

“I could not supply for many of costumers last year. The market was vibrant and demand too high. But this year, everything is a pathetic situation. I have imported two trucks of chocolate this year and still could not sell half of them. All my costumers also have similar situation and their reservoirs are full”. He was saying there was no hope that the ill market recovers soon. [Let us shift this gloomy assessment of the economy in 2012 to the bottom, because a) Why start on a gloomy note?, and ii) Historically 2012 comes after the previous years.]

He continued, “If the situation goes like this, there is no need of Taliban to destabilize the country. Warlords and influential people who kept their mouth shut merely for engulfing millions of dollars during past eleven years, will turn back their own tradition---kidnapping, stealing and grasping people’s goods and properties”.

Anyhow, it should be noticed that economy has recovered somehow from decades of conflict. Indeed it has improved significantly since the fall of the Taliban regime in 2001, largely because of the infusion of international assistance, the recovery of the agricultural sector, and service sector growth. No doubt, the Afghan economy is largely based on the agriculture, despite the fact that only 12% of its total land is arable and less than 6% is currently cultivated.

Meanwhile agriculture production is constrained by an almost total dependence on erratic winter snows and spring rains for water. Annually, the country’s fruits and nut exports become tens of millions of dollars. The country is also well known for producing some of the finest fruits, especially pomegranates, apricots, grapes, melons, and mulberry.

Several provinces in the north of the country are famous for pistachio cultivation but the area currently lacks proper marketing and processing plants. Wheat and cereal production is Afghanistan's traditional agricultural mainstay. The overall agricultural production dramatically declined following four years of drought as well as the sustained fighting and instability in rural areas.

Another economic mainstay is livestock. The availability of land suitable for grazing has traditionally made animal husbandry an important part of the economy. There are two main types of animal husbandry: sedentary, practiced by farmers who raise both animals and crops; and nomadic, practiced by animal herders known as Kuchis.

Oxen are the primary draft power and farmers often share animals for plowing. Much of Afghanistan's livestock was removed from the country by early waves of refugees who fled to neighboring Pakistan and Iran. In 2001, the livestock population in Afghanistan had declined by about 40% since 1998. In 2002, this figure was estimated to have declined further to 60%.

The great majority of Afghans traditionally raise sheep instead of goats because goat meat is not popular in Afghanistan. After the establishment of new government, the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture and livestock and USAID have been helping to re-grow the number of livestock throughout the country. This is done by providing Afghan villagers training and animals to start with.

But no doubt, considering the current state of the country and growing population rate along busting urbanization process, Agriculture and animal husbandry are not something Afghans set eyes as source for prosperity. Even those also depended largely on infusion of foreign financial assistance, which has already decreased tremendously.

Despite the progress of the past few years, Afghanistan is extremely poor, landlocked, and highly dependent on foreign aid. Much of the population continues to suffer from shortages of housing, clean water, electricity, medical care, and jobs. Criminality, insecurity, weak governance, and the Afghan Government's difficulty in extending rule of law to all parts of the country pose challenges to future economic growth. Afghanistan's living standards are among the lowest in the world. [Are they? If, yes, then we should give statistics from UNDP/ Human Development Report/ World Bank/ similar comparative source.]

During past years, cash downpour in the country pulled many out of poverty and the economy boomed as annual economic growth put by Afghan government more than 10 percent. The question is that growth sustainable? Looking to declining investment and a dwindling market, the answer is unfortunately negative. No matter, how the international community is trying to convey message of long-term commitment, but the level of foreign donations is declining and makes the economy stagnant.

The only hope is foreign investment in infrastructure and huge natural resources. That of course largely depends on political situation. People are seriously worried about post-2014. If the situation does not get better, then we should await for reversal of economy which will end to a start of self-fuelling disaster.

Masood Korosh is the permanent writer of Daily Outlook Afghanistan. He can be reached at outlookafghanistan@gmial.com

Afghanistan: Economy/after

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

A Dwindling Economy,

by Masood Korosh

Daily Outlook Afghanistan, August 11, 2012.

http://outlookafghanistan.net/topics.php?post_id=5143

 

An agrarian economy

The Afghan economy is largely based on the agriculture, despite the fact that only 12% of its total land is arable and less than 6% is currently [Newspaper articles are current and are read the same day; encyclopaedia articles might be read several years later] cultivated. Agriculture production is constrained by an almost total dependence on erratic winter snows and spring rains for water. Annually, the country’s fruit and nut exports earn tens of millions of dollars. The country is also well known for producing some of the finest fruits, especially pomegranates, apricots, grapes, melons, and mulberry.

Several provinces in the north of the country are famous for pistachio cultivation but the area currently lacks proper marketing and processing plants. Wheat and cereal production is Afghanistan's traditional agricultural mainstay. The overall agricultural production dramatically declined following Afghanistan four years of drought [1997-2001] [we estimated these years by going through old Google-generated articles] as well as the sustained fighting and instability in rural areas.

Another economic mainstay is livestock. The availability of land suitable for grazing has traditionally made animal husbandry an important part of the economy. There are two main types of animal husbandry: sedentary, practiced [US spelling] practised by farmers who raise both animals and crops; and nomadic, practiced by animal herders known as Kuchis.

Oxen are the primary draft power and farmers often share animals for plowing [US spelling] ploughing. Much of Afghanistan's livestock was removed from the country by early waves of refugees who fled to neighboring neighbouring Pakistan and Iran. In 2001, the livestock population in Afghanistan had declined by about 40% since 1998. In 2002, this figure was estimated to have declined further to by 60%.

The great majority of Afghans traditionally raise sheep instead of goats because goat meat is not popular in Afghanistan. After the establishment of the new Hamid Karzai government, the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture and livestock and USAID have been helping to re-grow the number of livestock throughout the country. This is done by providing Afghan villagers training and animals to start with.

The country’s population rate is growing and there is rapid urbanization. Agriculture and animal husbandry are not something Afghans set eyes see as sources of prosperity. Even those also these sectors are depended largely on the infusion of foreign financial assistance, which has already [since when? Do a Google search] decreased tremendously.

After 2001: rapid growth fuelled by foreign aid

The economy recovered from decades of conflict and improved significantly after the fall of the Taliban regime in 2001, largely because of the infusion of international assistance, the recovery of the agricultural sector, and service sector growth. xxx

Despite the post-2001progress of the past few years, Afghanistan is extremely poor, landlocked, and highly dependent on foreign aid. Much of the population continues to suffer from shortages of housing, clean water, electricity, medical care, and jobs [informal word, though appropriate for a newspaper] employment. During past years, Cash downpour in the country pulled many out of poverty and the economy boomed as annual economic growth was put estimated by the Afghan government at more than 10 per cent.

The question is is that growth sustainable? Looking to declining investment and a dwindling market, the answer is unfortunately negative. The level of foreign donations is declining and makes the economy stagnant.

2012: The economy falters

The luxurious shopping malls of Afghanistan saw a decline in consumer spending. Shop owners claimed that their Eid-ul-Fitr revenues in 2012 decreased by half compared to the same period last year in 2011. Importers of foreign chocolates reported an almost sixty-six per cent [not %; this is only a ‘house rule’] drop in sales. [I.e. half of two trucks of chocolate vs. three truckloads in 2011] reservoirs Warehouses weare full because of a lack of customers.

The only hope is foreign investment in infrastructure and huge natural resources. The people are seriously worried about the post-2014 scenario. If the situation does not get better, then we should await for the Afghans fear a reversal of the economy which will lead to a start of self-fuelling disaster.

 

Categories: Afghanistan/ economy

 

Example II

Amritsar (Ambarsar): 1935/ before

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Memoirs: Guru di nagri, Ambarsar

Dawn  | 5th June, 2011.

Author’s name not mentioned, but probably Mr. Poshni.  

http://dawn.com/archive/

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. See examples and a tutorial.    

 

Memoirs: Guru di nagri, Ambarsar

,Dawn  | 5th June, 2011

 

An undated picture from an old postcard shows the Golden Temple, Amritsar – Photo by the author.

I  was in born in 1926 in Amritsar (Ambarsar in Punjabi), but my father who was an engineer in the M.E.S. was posted in Bareilly (U.P.) and I spent the first nine years of my life there. In 1935, my father, who had risen from the ranks to be given the title of Khan Bahadur by the British for meritorious services, retired with a handsome pension. He immediately shifted to his home town, Amritsar.

Dad was an affluent man and purchased a large sized bungalow on Maqbool Road in the Civil Lines area. [This little fact will be combined with another towards the end] I was proud of the fact that we had a car — at that time I estimate there were probably no more than 50 cars in Amritsar. Many rich people preferred to maintain horse-driven vehicles like a phaeton, buggy or raeesi tonga rather than a car, even though the cost of feeding a horse would have been higher than the cost of petrol, which was dirt cheap then. Actually, everything was dirt cheap, but then salaries were pretty low too.

We used to pay five rupees a month to a man servant and three to a maid, plus food, of course. My father was really rich, even his pension was about Rs350 a month, but other relatives in our clan were just so so, and some were very poor.

I remember one cousin of my Dad’s who was considered to be doing relatively well. He was a clerk in a government office with a salary of Rs35 per month and his lifestyle seemed devoid of any discomfort. If you were earning between Rs30 and Rs50 per month in those days you were considered to be in the comfort zone.

I, a privileged child, was living in this big house in the Civil Lines, which had lights and ceiling fans in all the rooms (of course nobody had even heard of air-conditioning at the time). But when I used to go downtown to the congested areas to play with my various cousins I used to feel very depressed to see that in most of their houses there was no electricity at all and they were using lanterns or oil wick lamps (diya) at night.

During the long summer days the sun would heat up the rooms so much in these usually double (or at the most triple) storeyed houses that the extended families living in them had to sleep on the open roof tops (kotha in Punjabi). I can now well imagine the problems of privacy this must have entailed, especially for young married couples, but at that time I was just a kid and did not comprehend this aspect of the sleeping arrangements of multiple families living in the same house without electricity! At a rough guess I would say that nearly three-fourths of the city folk were living without electric lights or fans in Amritsar at that time.

But Amritsar was cosmopolitan. Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, even some Parsees, lived in this city. I recollect that one of the most attractive bungalows on Mall Road belonged to a certain Parsee gentleman, Dr Maneckshaw. His daughter, Celia used to teach English in the school where I studied. Dr. Maneckshaw’s son, Sam Maneckshaw, had joined the Army. Many decades later he planned the conquest of East Pakistan (1971) and was rewarded by the Indian government by promotion to the rank of Field Marshal, the first and the only Field Marshal to command the Indian Army since Independence.

While in Amritsar city itself Muslims were in a majority, in the Amritsar district as a whole they were a minority. The reason being that most of the villages in the district were populated by Sikhs and Hindus, though there were Muslims also living in these villages and there were even some villages which were overwhelmingly Muslim. But at the time of partition the Boundary Commission decided on the basis of the district as a whole, and so Amritsar was allocated to India because the non-Muslims were slightly greater in numbers.

By and large the various communities lived quite peacefully, even though there were Muslim areas and non-Muslim areas of residence, and there was the Muslim Anglo Oriental (MAO) College (where Professor M.D. Taseer and Faiz Ahmed Faiz taught), a Hindu Sabha College and a Khalsa College in Amritsar. During inter-college hockey and cricket matches tension would sometimes arise when the students cheered their respective teams and sometimes there were minor clashes; usually fisticuffs and at the most hockey sticks were used as weapons. [indpaedia.com: Let us leave the last part out: why revive divisive memories?]

Unlike today’s bloody happenings there were never any fatalities, and before the vicious partition riots broke out, I seldom heard of any clashes where firearms or even knives and swords were used. Prior to 1947, the British administration was effective and firm, impartial as between the ‘natives’, and there was definitely rule of law, something which has been almost totally annihilated by our ruling class over the years. Compared to the present day, frequency of crime was far lower. My younger sister used to ride a bicycle alone to her school and there was never any incident or mishap to discourage her.

Except for a very, very few emancipated families like mine where the girls did not observe purdah, almost all Muslim females in Amritsar wore the burqa — either the white shuttlecock burqa or the two piece ‘fashionable’ black burqa. The non-Muslim women were a bit more open, but even among them some would cover their faces with their head covering (ghunghat) when venturing into the street. There were very few cases of molesting, harassment or rape compared to our present horrendous and disgraceful state of affairs.

Of course, except for a few Anglo Indian and Christian nurses, there were hardly any working women in those days. Almost every woman was a housewife and cooking and serving the males was her primary duty. These ladies certainly believed that the way to a man’s heart was through his stomach!

In my community (Kashmiris) tea drinking was common, but in other communities the morning breakfast usually included Lassi. The Indian Tea Board in the 1930s was making a concerted effort to popularise the tea habit by putting up big framed posters at the railway stations which announced that “Garm chai garmion mein thandak pohnchati hai”. (Hot tea cools you down in summer). This campaign proved highly successful and one could see how in a few years more and more families switched over from lassi to tea, all over Punjab. It certainly happened before my eyes in Amritsar.

In February this year I got the chance to revisit Amritsar after more than 60 years. The city has grown many times larger, like Lahore or Karachi. The wide open spaces, plots and orchards in the Civil Lines have disappeared… a concrete jungle has encroached upon them. The big bungalow on Maqbool Road where I used to live was intact, a Sikh family was living in it. The pleasant thing was that the government had not changed the road’s name… it is still called Maqbool Road. This made me very happy.

I visited the old landmarks, the Golden Temple, the Jalianwala Bagh, the Hall Bazaar. An intense nostalgia overwhelmed me just for a while, but then I remembered the old saying: “The past is gone, never to return. The future is uncertain. The present moment is every thing”. And then another witty phrase assailed me: ‘Even nostalgia is not what it used to be’.

 

Amritsar (Ambarsar): 1935/ after

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Memoirs: Guru di nagri, Ambarsar;

Author’s name not mentioned, but probably Mr. Poshni.

 Dawn | 5th June, 2011.

http://dawn.com/archive/

The above-mentioned article(s) was/ were the starting point of this Indpaedia entry. You can help by adding details and bringing the entry up to date. 

 

The economy

There were probably no more than 50 cars in Amritsar. Many rich people preferred to maintain horse-driven vehicles like a phaeton, buggy or raeesi tonga rather than a car, even though the cost of feeding a horse would have been higher than the cost of petrol, which was dirt very cheap then.

People with a pension of Rs350 a month were considered rich. A clerk in a government office with a salary of Rs35 per month could lead a lifestyle devoid of any discomfort. Those who earned between Rs30 and Rs50 per month were considered to be in the comfort zone.

People would pay five rupees a month to a man servant and three to a maid, plus food.

Houses in the Civil Lines had lights and ceiling fans in all the rooms. However, in the congested areas of the downtown there was no electricity at all and the people were using used lanterns or oil wick lamps (diya) at night. Extended families living there had to sleep on the open roof tops (kotha in Punjabi). Nearly three-fourths of the cityfolk were living lived without electric lights or fans in Amritsar at that time.

 

Communal harmony

Amritsar was cosmopolitan. Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, even some Parsees, lived in this city. One of the most attractive bungalows on Mall Road belonged to Dr Maneckshaw, a Parsee gentleman,. His daughter, Celia used to teach English at a posh school. Dr. Maneckshaw’s son, Sam Maneckshaw, had joined the Army, in which he rose to become a Field Marshal (in 1971).

The Civil Lines area had roads with names like Maqbool Road, on which well-to-do people of all communities lived, and the names of which the government did not change after the partition of 1947.

In Amritsar city itself Muslims were in a majority, in the Amritsar district as a whole they were a minority. Most of the villages in the district were populated by Sikhs and Hindus, though there were Muslims also in those villages and there were even some villages which that were overwhelmingly Muslim. At the time of partition the Boundary Commission decided on the basis of the district as a whole, and so Amritsar was allocated to India because the non-Muslims were slightly greater in numbers.

By and large the various communities lived quite peacefully, even though there were Muslim areas and non-Muslim areas of residence, and there was the Muslim Anglo Oriental (MAO) College (where Professor M.D. Taseer and Faiz Ahmed Faiz taught), a Hindu Sabha College and a Khalsa College in Amritsar. During inter-college hockey and cricket matches tension would sometimes arise when the students cheered their respective teams.

 

Law and order

Prior to Before 1947, the British administration was effective and firm, impartial as between the ‘natives’, and there was definitely rule of law, something which has been almost totally annihilated by our ruling class over the years. Compared to the present day, say, 2011, frequency of crime was far lower.

 

Women

My younger sister Young girls from well-to-do families used to ride bicycles alone to her their schools and there was never any incident or mishap to discourage her them.

Except for a very, very few emancipated families like mine where the girls did not observe purdah, almost all Muslim females in Amritsar wore the burqa — either the white shuttlecock burqa or the two piece ‘fashionable’ black burqa. The non-Muslim women were a bit more open, but even among them some would cover their faces with their head covering (ghunghat) when venturing into the street. There were very few cases of molesting, harassment or rape

Except for a few Anglo Indian and Christian nurses, there were hardly any working women in those days. Almost every woman was a housewife.

 

Tea tries to nudge lassi out

Tea drinking was common in the Kashmiri community, but in other communities the morning breakfast usually included Lassi. The Indian Tea Board in the 1930s was making made a concerted effort to popularise the tea habit by putting up big framed posters at the railway stations which that announced that “Garm chai garmion mein thandak pohnchati hai”. (Hot tea cools you down in summer). This campaign proved highly successful and one could see how in a few years more and more families switched over from lassi to tea, all over Punjab.

 

Categories: Amritsar/ 1935/ cities/ Punjab/ Pre-partition India/ India  

 

This is an original article written on the basis of many sources. Therefore, the Before and After are exactly the same.

Example III

Buddhism in Bhutan/ before

 

The much-revered Guru Rimpoche brought Buddhism to Bhutan in AD 747. Today, almost seventy per cent of the people of Bhutan are Mahayan Buddhists. Most of them belong to the Drukpa sub sect of Kargyupa.

Guru Rimpoche is also known as Padma Sambhav, the Precious Teacher and the Second Buddha. He was a Buddhist monk and missionary from India. The Guru introduced Tantric Buddhism to Bhutan and miraculously vanquished the forces of evil—in Bhutan, as elsewhere. Other than Lord Buddha himself, Guru Rimpoche is the revered religious figure in Bhutan and much of the Himâlayas. The Bhutanese recount legends about him, honour him at festivals and venerate him in temples.

            Four hundred years later, while a monastery was being consecrated in Bhutan, the mountains resonated with thunder. Everyone thought that it was the growl of the dragon. The monastery came to be called Druk (dragon) and its sect of Buddhism was named Drukpa (‘of the dragon’). The Drukpas united the country by the 17th century and named it Druk Yul, the Dragon Land.

            Over the centuries, Bhutanese Buddhism has developed distinctive rituals. Its monastic organisation, too, is quite different from that in Tibet. The Je Khenpo is the highest-ranking monk. Four experts, who administer religious tradition, liturgy, lexicography and logic, help him in his work. Each is called a lonpon. Of the four, the Dorji Lonpon is seen as the heir apparent to the Je Khenpo. A number of religious officials of various ranks report to the four lonpon on matters related to religion as well as art and music.

Bhutan’s Buddhist establishment has a Central Monastic Body of around a thousand monks in Thimphu and Punakha. These could be novices of the lam or gelong stages. Another four thousand or so monks belong to district monastic bodies. (A gelong—called bhikshu in Sanskrit—is a novice who has taken all 253 vows required for a monk. His lady counterpart, the gelongma—bhikshuni in Sanskrit—would have sworn to 364 vows.)

The various monasteries of Bhutan have a total of around twelve thousand monks.

The Royal Government gives annual grants to monasteries, shrines, monks  and nuns. King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck got ten thousand gilded bronze images of Lord Buddha made, constructed many chortens and published elegant calligraphed editions of the Kanjur and Tenjur.

 

Categories: Bhutan/ Buddhism/ religion

Buddhism in Bhutan/ after

 

The much-revered Guru Rimpoche brought Buddhism to Bhutan in AD 747. Today, almost seventy per cent of the people of Bhutan are Mahayan Buddhists. Most of them belong to the Drukpa sub sect of Kargyupa.

Guru Rimpoche is also known as Padma Sambhav, the Precious Teacher and the Second Buddha. He was a Buddhist monk and missionary from India. The Guru introduced Tantric Buddhism to Bhutan and miraculously vanquished the forces of evil—in Bhutan, as elsewhere. Other than Lord Buddha himself, Guru Rimpoche is the revered religious figure in Bhutan and much of the Himâlayas. The Bhutanese recount legends about him, honour him at festivals and venerate him in temples.

            Four hundred years later, while a monastery was being consecrated in Bhutan, the mountains resonated with thunder. Everyone thought that it was the growl of the dragon. The monastery came to be called Druk (dragon) and its sect of Buddhism was named Drukpa (‘of the dragon’). The Drukpas united the country by the 17th century and named it Druk Yul, the Dragon Land.

            Over the centuries, Bhutanese Buddhism has developed distinctive rituals. Its monastic organisation, too, is quite different from that in Tibet. The Je Khenpo is the highest-ranking monk. Four experts, who administer religious tradition, liturgy, lexicography and logic, help him in his work. Each is called a lonpon. Of the four, the Dorji Lonpon is seen as the heir apparent to the Je Khenpo. A number of religious officials of various ranks report to the four lonpon on matters related to religion as well as art and music.

Bhutan’s Buddhist establishment has a Central Monastic Body of around a thousand monks in Thimphu and Punakha. These could be novices of the lam or gelong stages. Another four thousand or so monks belong to district monastic bodies. (A gelong—called bhikshu in Sanskrit—is a novice who has taken all 253 vows required for a monk. His lady counterpart, the gelongma—bhikshuni in Sanskrit—would have sworn to 364 vows.)

The various monasteries of Bhutan have a total of around twelve thousand monks.

The Royal Government gives annual grants to monasteries, shrines, monks  and nuns. King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck got ten thousand gilded bronze images of Lord Buddha made, constructed many chortens and published elegant calligraphed editions of the Kanjur and Tenjur.

 

Categories: Bhutan/ Buddhism/ religion

 

 

 

 

Example IV

Manipur history: Series of articles by Karunamay Sinha/ before

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Insurrectionism - the Kirtania Way

By Karunamay Sinha,

The Sentinel Assam.

http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_1.php?sec=8&subsec=0&id=130&dtP=2009-10-22&ppr=2#130<![if !vml]><img width=5 height=9 src="Tutorial%20Converting%20newspaper%20articles%20into%20entries_files/image001.gif" v:shapes="_x0000_i1025"><![endif]>

This article was published in a newspaper and selected for the excellence of its contents. However, it needs no editing because it is a tightly worded essay of long-term relevance. You can help convert it into an encyclopaedia-style entry by putting categories, headings and sub-headings, paragraph indents, and combining it with other articles in the same series. See examples and a tutorial.    


Unpredictable Northeasterners

In the year 1929, Tripuri King Bir Bikram imposed some socio-cultural sanctions on the Manipuri subjects of Bamutia pargana. The ‘Meitei Leipak Kendriya Parishad’, the brain behind the development, remained behind the curtain. Hell broke loose on the conservative, religious-minded Manipuris. The new rules touched sensitive subjects like rituals at birth and death. They reacted with greatest possible alarm, discussed the matter with the dignitaries of ‘Meitei Leipak Kendriya Parishad’, and realizing the Parishad was in no mood to help them, conveyed their sharp protest against the new rules. The Maharaja summoned some social leaders of Bamutia to the court and, pointing a gun at them, alerted them against any kind of mischief-making.
But the Kirtaniyas were in no mind to obey the King’s orders. They continued with their traditional practices. The King’s sepoys one day invaded the village and apprehended seven of the most vocal social leaders. But the leading light of the rebellion, Laxmikanta Sharma escaped arrest and fled to neighbouring Sylhet. He met some influential Manipuri personages like Naraddhwaj Singha Chowdhury (a Bishnupriya Manipuri zaminder of Bishgaon) and Baikuntha Sharma, the main ideologue of the Bhanubil farmars’ uprising. The leaders, after much discussion, decided that since the event was related to the socio-cultural and religious affairs of the Manipuris, the matter must be conveyed to the Manipur Brahmasabha. Meanwhile, they would work for a public uprising against the King’s unwanted interference in the community’s socio-cultural affairs. For this, they convened a meeting at Podrai (in present-day Bangladesh) where they drew out the future plan of action.
The communist-influenced ‘Krishak Sabha, a farmers’ organization, extended its help. On the suggestions of ‘Krishak Sabha’, a person was sent to the British Governor in Calcutta with a complaint letter against the King’s decision. Laxmikanta Sharma and another youth set off for Manipur to seek the Brahma Sabha’s opinion and help. Neither the King nor the Brahma Sabha there paid much attention to the plea of Laxmikanta and his companion. But luckily for them Dewan Hijam Irabat Singha was there in the capital. The great visionary understood the gravity of the problem and promised them that he would send a representation to the King of Tripura to enlighten the King on the matter.
At Bamutia, impatience was building up among the Manipuris. The Raja also was hell bent on teaching the Manipuris of Bamutia a lesson. He sent sepoys who wreaked havoc on Bamutia thrashing farmers, looting and even snatching away the livestock. When some agitated youths tried to resist, the sepoys apprehended them too and headed straight for the capital, victorious. But the Manipuri spirit isn’t the kind to give in so easily. On their way to Agartala, the sepoys had to take a route through a patch of forest. In the middle of the forest, Manipuri youths of Bamutia waylaid the returning soldiers and, launching a lightning attack, set free all their fellow villagers, trussed up the soldiers there and fled. The inevitable followed.
In 1930, hundreds of people gathered at the North gate of Ujjayanta Palace shouting slogans for the release of the seven Bamutia farmers. The King’s soldiers gored the picketers. But the people didn’t disperse. After the extremes were attained, however, the King called in the leaders and heard them out. He promised he wouldn’t impose socio-cultural rules on them. By that time, the Manipur envoys had also arrived. A few days later came the Govornor‘s decree condemning the steps taken by the King.

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Journey to the Land of Prince Charming,

By Karunamay Sinha,

The Sentinel Assam.

http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_3.php?sec=32&subsec=0&id=726&dtP=2011-03-29&ppr=2#726

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Mrs. Grimwood gives a vivid description of the journey they had taken to reach Manipur.  From Sylhet, it took them 16 days to reach the remote kingdom.  First, they started in a boat.  A nightlong boat journey it was with a romantic moon giving it a dreamy look.  Then came the second phase: a journey on horseback.  One interesting event she mentions was that of the reluctant coolies leaving their job and escaping.  The coolies had in one voice protested that the Memsahib's boxes were too big, awkward and unwieldy.  But they could not disobey an English officer's orders.  So, reluctantly though, they had started carrying the bundles employing as many as three for one particularly bulky box.  A few miles down the route, something lying by the road struck Mrs. Grimwood.  And she was right.  It was one of her boxes.  But bigger surprises were awaiting her.  A little distance from there, all their belongings were lying by roadside and there were no signs of the coolies.  They had left the job and made themselves scarce leaving the luggage there.  They would rather live incognito in different localities than carry the unmanageable loads.  Mr. Grimwood had to, with the help of the local thana, hire a new set of coolies from among the villagers there and make them carry the luggage without allowing them to stray beyond his eyes.  It took them a few days to reach Silchar where the European officers gave them a warm welcome.  They stayed there a day or two before finally starting for Manipur.  The coolies now were some Nagas and Kukis. While the Nagas had fascinating haircuts, the Kukis had worn long hairs in nape buns.  These people did not make a fuss about the unwieldiness of the boxes.

Mrs Grimwood gives an interesting insight into the condition of the defence personnel of the Manipur king.  While the military guard of the Manipur Army escorting them was supposed to have 30 men, Mrs Grimwood never saw more than 12 of them.  The clever Manipuris tried to befool the English officer by counting themselves twice over and making double appearances.  They 'fondly hoped' that the English officer would not be able to see through the stratagem.  Once while resting at a place, she espied another, not so clever artifice.  The Manipuri guard on sentry duty had to be relieved by another.  Mrs Grimwood saw that a man in dirty, civilian clothes came up to the sentry and saluted him in native style.  The on-duty liveried sentry rushed to a place a little distance away and divested himself of the service uniform and the rifle upon which the dirty-looking man rushed to the spot, clothed himself in the uniform just doffed by his colleague and in the same breath returned to the sahibs to snatch an elaborate English salute.

However, when after a 16-day long journey, Mrs Grimwood and her husband reached the plains of the Manipur valley, there awaited them a warm welcome from the king of Manipur.  Four Manipuri princes had come to welcome the guests and there, among them, Mrs. Grimwood saw a bright young man - a prince - who was very different from the common run of Indian nobility.  He was the only one among the princes and nobles of Manipur who could speak 'Hindustani'.  Not so striking looking though, his personality had something… something that struck a chord.  The name of the prince was Tikendrajit.  He was the general (senapati) of the state.  Mrs Grimwood describes her first meeting with Tikendrajit in the following words: 'He was not a very striking-looking personage.  I should think he was about five feet eight inches in height, with a lighter skin than most natives, and rather a pleasing type of countenance.  He had nice eyes and a pleasant smile, but his expression was rather spoilt by his front teeth, which were very much broken.  We liked what we saw of him on this occasion, and thought him very good-natured-looking.  The other brothers did not strike us at all, and there were so many people there, including important officers of state, that I became confused, and ended by shaking hands with a Sepoy, much to that warrior's astonishment.'

Later the British agent and the princes came closer and Mrs Grimwood discovered the born, natural hero that was Tikendrajit. Of all the princes, he was the closest, friendliest and most warm-hearted.  Her husband would play polo with the princes and she would frequently ride with them.  But Tikendrajit was always very, very different.  Mrs Grimwood observes: 'There was something about him that is not generally found in the character of a native.  He was manly and generous to a fault, a good friend and a bitter enemy.  We liked him because he was much more broad-minded than the rest.  If he promised a thing, that thing would be done, and he would take the trouble to see himself that it was done, and not be content with simply giving the order.  He was always doing little courteous acts to please us...  Another time I had been very ill, and when I was getting better, kind inquiries came every day from the Senapatti, accompanied by half a dozen small birds which he thought were eatable, as he had often seen my husband bring snipe home.  The birds were useless, of course, but I valued the kind thoughts which prompted him to send them.'

 But the lady's appreciation wasn't the standard the colonial rulers went by.  To them, the fiercely freedom loving, valiant prince was a potential threat.  Even before he posed a direct threat to British interests, they calculated the possible risks arising out of a valiant royal personage who was not likely to meekly submit to designs that were not exactly in the best interest of his motherland

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Behind Every Kurukshetra…,

By Karunamay Sinha,

The Sentinel Assam.

http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_3.php?sec=32&subsec=0&id=734&dtP=2011-04-05&ppr=2#734

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Trouble apparently began with Tikendrajit and another prince Pucca Sana falling for one and the same damsel.  Maipakpi, the damsel was said to be the most covetable young woman in the kingdom.  She didn't have royal lineage.  But her father was a wealthy goldsmith who was a member of the court.  On one occasion, Maipakpi was to perform a dance recital in a celebration.  Tikendrajit and Pucca Sana, the two agitated rivals sat in the audience flanking Mrs Grimwood.  While Tikendrajit was jolly enjoying every moment of the performance, Pucca Sana was grim with a dark face.  Soon afterwards, there was a quarrel between the two princes in which Surachandra, the king and the eldest of all brothers was on the side of Pucca Sana.  Tikendrajit and Pucca Sana stopped seeing each other's face.   

Of the ten sons of Chandrakirti from various queens, Surachandra, the first son of the first queen had become the king after Chandrakirti's death.  Kulachandra, the first son of the second queen had become the Jubaraj (heir-apparent) and Tikendrajit, the first son of the third queen had been made the Senapati (general).  Tikendtrajit was a gifted sportsman and an expert marksman.  His physical and mental attributes were such that all the people in the kingdom held him in great awe and respect.  There was jubilation when he was appointed the General.  Pucca Sana was made Samu Hanjaba, the officer-in-charge of the Elephant stables.  He had to be the elephant driver when the king rode one to visit a place.  Other princes were given other, less important offices.  Thanks partly to Tikendrajit and Pucca Sana's rival attitude, the princes were divided into two factions.  Surachandra, the regent, Pucca Sana and two others, all sons of the first queen were on one side and Kulachandra, the Jubaraj Tikendrajit, Angou Sana and Zilla Singh, all step brothers were on the other.  Zilla Singh disliked Pucca Sana intensely.  Now, with Tikendrajit on his side, he picked frequent quarrels with Pucca Sana on anything and everything.  Pucca Sana influenced the king who forbade Zilla Singh to sit in the Durbar.  He was also divested of the offices he was decorated with.  Angry Zilla Singh was now ready to do anything to see the end of Surachandra and his three brothers.  Things came to a head when on 21 september 1890, Pecca Sana reported to the king that there were large gatherings of people in the houses of the Senapati, Angou Sana and Zilla Singh which might have ominous motives behind them.  The jubaraj was asked to inquire into the matter who furnished a misleading report and hastened to a place called Burri Bazar where he would spend a night or two.  On the night of 22 September, Zilla Sing, together with some of his followers, climbed the walls of the palace and fired into the windows of the Maharaja's apartment.  Surachandra escaped through the back door and sought shelter in the British Residency.

Mr and Mrs Grimwood had to receive the Maharaja, his three other brothers and some faithful sepoys at an odd hour.  Mr. Grimwood tried to comfort the Maharaja.  But the king would not even take a rest.  He said he would go to Vrindavan.  He could not trust the people who were after his life.  He would not reconsider his decision and abdicate his claim to the throne, in black and white.  From two am, he stayed in the residency up to the evening of the following day.  Then he started for Vrindavan, followed by three brothers and a few other followers.  People in Manipur were happy that Pucca Sana was going away from their lives.  In fact they were ecstatic that Tikendrajit would be the one to decide everything about Manipur now.  Wearing an innocent face, Kulachandra, the jubaraj returned to the capital and 'with calm equanimity' acquired the title of regent.    

Tikendrajit became the Jubaraj and practically ruled the kingdom.  And what a rule it was!  Within a very short period of time -

'Roads that had been almost impassable in the ex-Maharajah's reign were repaired and made good enough to drive on. Bridges that had been badly needed were erected; some of them on first-class plans, which were calculated to last three times as long as the flimsy structures which existed previously.  The people seemed happier and more contented.'

Grimwood now found it easier to work with the Manipur Durbar.  Earlier, he had to consult eight opinions before coming to a decision.  Things were firm and solid now.  Manipur Durbar was now free from petty jealousies and quarrels.  Mrs Grimwood could invite any of the princes to any festivity with no fear of earning another's wrath.  Tikendrajit decided to add Maipakpi to his stable of wives - his tenth wife she was to be.  Everyone was happy.  Manipur seemed happier and more prosperous than ever.

But the festive mood came in for some surprise when on the evening of 21 February 1891, there came a telegram from no less a person than the Chief commissioner of Assam that read:  'I propose to visit Manipur shortly. Have roads and rest-houses put in order. Further directions and dates to follow.'

The Grimwoods were at a loss what could have prompted Mr Quinton, the Chief Commissioner to pay Manipur a visit.  Sometime back, when Mr. Quinton was at Kohima, they had invited him to visit Manipur.  But Quinton was too busy then.  Was it then a visit for wish fulfillment?  But the language of the wired message had a kind of somberness that did not encourage them to see Quinton in a partying mood.  The next and more serious purpose of his visit could be that of settling the row over the title of regent.  For once outside Manipur, Surachandra had begun to sing a different tune.  He was appealing to the British authorities for the restoration of his right to the throne.  And he was now implicating Mr. Grimwood too, who, he said compelled him to sign the papers.  The political officer, he claimed had disarmed his followers so the king should not be able to put up a fight.  In reality, when the king had reached the residency in hot haste, followed by some sepoys, Mr Grimwood had advised them to part with their firearms, fearing a single act of indiscretion on the part of a sepoy could turn things bad.  And the Maharaja also had seen the merit of the advice.  However, what worried the Grimwoods most was the ground reality prevailing in Manipur.  People were so happy with a king assisted by Tikendrajit, and were so disillusioned with Surachandra's rule, particularly Pucca Sana playing an important part in it, it would be disastrous if Mr. Quinton aspired to restore the previous set up. Poor Grimwoods!  They hadn't imagined anything more serious.  As it turned out, Quinton had in mind something more ominous than they could have imagined.

 

 

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

The Fatal Turn,

By Karunamay Sinha,

The Sentinel Assam.

http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_3.php?sec=32&subsec=0&id=758&dtP=2011-04-24&ppr=2#758

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Mrs Grimwood had a traumatic experience that day.  All the British soldiers and officials in the residency had woken up to take breakfast by around 3.30 am after which they had lost no time in marching to Tikendrajit's house.  The first victims of the attack on the Jubaraj's house were some innocent people who were enjoying a Raas Leela performance there.  The performance was originally arranged by the Jubaraj himself for entertaining the visiting dignitary.  Because of the mounting tension the performance had to be cancelled by Grimwood.  The artists who had come were then asked to perform in the Jubaraj's house instead.  Besides indiscriminate firing on innocent people, the British soldiers, it is said, desecrated the Krishna temple in the Jubaraj's courtyard.  The hue and cry raised there, attracted the sepoys of the palace and in no time the residence of the Jubaraj took the shape of a battleground.  As the news spread, Manipuris from all sides rushed towards the palace and the British found themselves in a tricky situation.

As the day wore on, the attackers began to realize they had not had proper estimation of the might they thought they would crush effortlessly.  By afternoon, British soldiers fell back in disarray and concentrated around the Residency.  Quinton, Grimwood, Simpson and other British officers sought shelter in the underground cellars of the Residency.  To add to the misery, parts of the Residency sustained severe damages from constant firing from mountain guns.  By seven in the evening, Quinton and Grimwood decided they would leave the Residency and proceed towards Cachar.  But the idea was abandoned a little later.  Leaving the Residency was more dangerous than staying in it.  At last the Chief Commissioner agreed he was left with no option other than begging peace from the king of a puny kingdom.  The buglers were ordered to sound cease fire.  The Manipuris took some time before paying heed to the peace overture.

Quinton then sent a message that read: 'On what condition will you cease firing on us, and give us time to communicate with the Viceroy, and repair the telegraph?'  

First came a reply from the Regent.  He said he wanted to talk over matters with Quinton.  Then came a letter in Bengali demanding the British would have to surrender arms if the Manipuris had to stop firing.  However Mr. Quinton, taking along with him Grimwood, Col Skene, Mr Cossins and Mr simpson proceeded to the palace to discuss matters with the king.  Mrs. Grimwood insisted that she too should accompany them.  But her husband calmed her saying she was safer where she was.  He advised her to keep a brave heart.  Firing had stopped and they were soon going to establish peace.  There was no cause for worry.  She had better take some rest.

He bade the inconsolable wife good bye, and that was the last Mrs Grimwood saw of her husband.

It was a fine, brightly moonlit evening.  The splendour of nature demanded Mrs Grimwood's attention even though she was beset with horrifying problems.  Taking advantage of the ceasefire, the British officers decided to shift the hospital to the underground chambers of the residency.  For it was increasingly becoming risky to leave the wounded at a place which the weakened force could not protect.  The monstrously swelling upsurge of patriotism was likely to take ugly turns any moment.

One after another, wounded soldiers poured in.  Mrs Grimwood, helped the doctor and played the role of the much-needed nurse.  She even managed to prepare a hasty dinner for all present in the Residency.

     The night wore on.  Her husband and others seemed to be taking an unusually long time in sorting matters out.  Mrs Grimwood paced in and out of the residency impatiently.  By about midnight she asked one Captain Boileau if he would mind going down to the gate and finding out whether he could hear or see anything of the Chief Commissioner's party, and if he came across any of them 'to say I wanted my husband.'  The officer went off at once, but she was too tired to await his return.  She fell into a doze in a chair on the veranda.  

A booming sound of gunfire woke her up.  For a moment, she could not tell what was what.  Then, slowly she remembered things.  Clearly, the ceasefire was over.  But where was her husband?  She almost went mad as her eyes searched him in the melee.  But it was the same residency filled with some junior officers, a doctor and scores of mortally wounded soldiers in the cellars.  Now there was no hope of peace.  The officers must have been arrested.  Oh, how terrible it would be for her husband to be languishing in a prison cell, listening to the booms of gunfire, worrying about the safety of his wife!  It must be killing him.  

There was a big commotion outside.  Soldiers, servants and others all were scrambling to run to safety.  Perhaps, she felt, they were running away.  For a moment she thought she would not move.  She had been asked by her husband to remain where she was.  The wounded were being taken out of the cellar.  One fatally wounded English officer died when he was taken out of the cellar and laid on the grass outside.  Mr. Brackenbury, she recognized and remembered what a jolly lad the dead soldier was.  On hearing the cancellation of a Manipuri dance performance arranged in honour of the Chief Commissioner's visit, this Brackenbury had taken it up on himself to entertain others in the Residency by playing on his banjo.  And it all happened about 28 hours ago.  

Suddenly, a fear took hold of her.  Was she being left behind?  Had the fleeing lot forgotten her?  Precisely at that moment came someone to tell her that they were to make a move.  The next moment, she was part of a surging mass of people escaping through the backyard of the British Residency, past a thorny fence, past a chilly river towards Cachar.  While crossing the river, she lost one of her shoes and got her skirt thoroughly drenched.  Shivering in the cold the lady made herself part of the fleeing lot with no one particularly mindful of her presence and yet someone turning up to help her every time she was faced with trouble.  

After a few miles' march, the fleeing lot gathered enough courage to stop for a moment and look back.  Thankfully, the Manipuris were not chasing them.  They had been firing from the palace only.  Or, maybe they had not known that the people in and around the Residency had fled.  However, they resumed their march.  Towards daybreak, Mrs. Grimwood turned her head to have a last look of the Residency.  It was up on fire.  Beneath the billowing clouds leapt red flames of the fire that was tearing down her world.  All her precious collections, family photographs, all were turning into ashes.  She felt a sharp pain in the heart.

Now at daybreak, the group of which Mrs Grimwood was a part (for the fleeing lot had broken into several desultory groups), decided to cut across the rice fields to avoid a police outpost which they knew they would bump into if they marched along the road.  They would skirt the outpost, climb the hill and then would strive to strike the road again somewhere in the hills.  As they reached the steep hills and began to climb, some peole - must be Nagas - made wild, pranky gestures at them.  They maintained a distance, never coming too close.  The British officers accompanying Mrs. Grimwood, however, had no intention to open fire on them fearing that would reach harm to any other fleeing group of their own people.  When after climbing 6000 feet on an empty stomach, Mrs Grimwood reached the top of the hill, a Naga boy who once used to be a syce at the Residency came to meet her there and handed her three eggs.  She tried to swallow one raw egg and offered others to share the foodstuff, the gallant officers, one and all, refused to share it.  For it was the lady, they considered, who needed the foodstuff most.

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Breathtaking!,

By Karunamay Sinha,

The Sentinel Assam.

http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_2.php?sec=31&subsec=0&id=765&dtP=2011-05-03&ppr=2#765

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Mrs Grimwood's escape to Cachar down a route - the prototype of present-day Silchar-Imphal road - is a spine-tingling account of an adventurous undertaking that gives one the feel of Robin Hood stories, or the ambience of Bankim Chandra's Anandamath.  One can gauge the awesomeness of the venture when one considers that the Silchar-Imphal road is, even today, not a fully functional road for all kinds of vehicles.  The topography of the region is such that even 21-century engineers have not been able to give it the requisite features of a highway.  When Mrs Grimwood reached Zhiri and took off her clothes, first time in ten days, she found her body covered with leech-bites.  A few of them were still on her body - had been there a few days.

     After climbing 6000 feet and reaching the top of the Leimatak hill, they halted there until little before sunset.  They had not taken anything after the hasty dinner they had the previous night.  But they had to move on.  One hope that kept them going was that of meeting Captain Cowley, who they knew, had started from Cachar commanding a detachment of 200 soldiers.  He was supposed to reinforce Quinton in a few days and going by his movement plan, he was supposed to arrive at a place called Leimatak by 25 March where he would camp for a day.  He was not supposed to know what had happened in Manipur.  For he had started before the outbreak of the mutinous rebellion in Manipur.  The place Leimatak should not be too far away and they must proceed to meet him.  If they failed to meet him, lives of both the parties would be in danger.  It was almost darkening.  One of the officers took a few men with him and proceeded to check the surroundings of the locality.  And lo!  Not too far from them was a Manipuri outpost.  The officer at the outpost spotted the British officer, called him and said they had received orders to 'pass the memsahib and the sepoys,' but the officers must return to Manipur.  The party refused to split up.  The Manipuri officer ordered his men to open fire on them. The escaping party scrambled down the hill, went up the other side of the ravine and moved on until they reached the ridge of the other hill and were out of the Manipuri riflemen's range.  They continued their march until 1 a.m and then decided to take a rest in a groove of trees.  Mrs Grimwood felt almost envious of her husband who, though imprisoned, was having food and sleep.  But he must also be miserable by now, worrying himself to death about what must have happened to his wife - she pitied him the next moment.

     At daybreak they resumed their journey and luckily came upon the Manipur-Cachar road.  Luck seemed to favour them now.  As they marched down the road, they came upon three Manipuri soldiers sitting by the roadside, cooking their morning meal and gossiping.  The Gorkha soldiers of Mrs Grimwood's party sneaked up on the three and took them by surprise.  Two of the soldiers managed to flee but the third was held captive.  The poor fellow fell on his knees before Mrs Grimwood, called her 'Ranee, Ranee' and begged her to spare his life.  Mrs Grimwood comforted him in broken Manipuri.  The rice cooked by the soldiers was the most valued thing at that moment.  They swooped on the cooking pot first and shared among themselves the meager amount of rice.  It left them longing for more.  Then they extracted bits of information from the frightened soldier.  Yes, he confirmed, Mr. Cowley had arrived at Leimatak on 25th and had not passed the spot where they were on guard duty.  His camp was about eight miles down the road.  Cheer spread among the members of the party.  The man also informed that there were Manipuri soldiers waiting in ambush for Mrs Grimwood's party.  He offered to take them through the jungle to Cowley's camp.  If they went down the road, Manipuri soldiers lying in ambush would surely attack them.  But the astute officers brushed aside his proposal and proceeded down the road.  Half a mile from there, they came upon a stockade blocking their road.  Obviously, it was there to stop the advancing detachment of Captain Cowley.  Before they could wonder at this unusual erection, came there way volleys of gunfire from the hillside above them.  Mrs. Grimwood dived into the bushes on the other side of the road.  But her plucky companions got past the stockade - scrambled up the wooden poles and jumped to the ground on the other side.  Mrs. Grimwood, with her womanly clothes, couldn't do that.  So she tried getting past it by going down the slope.  But she lost footing and slithered down the steep hillside.  

       A battle ensued there.  The well-trained British soldiers killed one or two of the enemies, despite their disadvantageous position.  As the battle went on, someone spotted a line of soldiers moving up the hill from the Cachar side.  'Are these Cowley's soldiers!' they gasped.  But Gorkhas and Manipuris are difficult to tell apart.  There remained an element of uncertainty and hence a mixed feeling of hope and insecurity.  Mrs. Grimwood's party decided to sound their bugle.  The advancing party responded.  Again it was no help.  The Manipuri bugle too had similar sound.  They fished out one handkerchief, tied it to a bamboo pole and waved but could not know whether it was seen by the advancing soldiers.  They had disappeared again.  After what seemed an eternity, the appeared again round a bend.  They were now marching in a trot.  Gorkhas, Gorkhas!  Some shouted excitedly.  Mrs. Grimwood shut her eyes fearing seeing something other than Gorkhas.  Then someone sighted a white man and all doubts were removed.  They were indeed Captain Cowleys men.

          For removing any kind of doubt from Cowley's men someone proposed that Mrs Grimwood should by summoning up all her strength and run down the road.  She agreed and helped along by two officers on either side broke out in a frenzied run.  While running, she put her foot on a stone that rolled away giving her a sprained ankle.  But she did not stop until she reached Captain Cowley.  She could barely remember meeting Cowely who perhaps had barely time to say his 'hello' as his men ran past without stopping to see what had happened to an English lady.  For the enemy's gun had not fallen sile

 

 

Manipur: History/ after

 

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

i) Insurrectionism - the Kirtania Way; ii) Journey to the Land of Prince Charming; iii)  Behind Every Kurukshetra…; iv)  The Fatal Turn; v)  Breathtaking!

All by Karunamay Sinha,

The Sentinel Assam.<![if !vml]><img width=5 height=9 src="Tutorial%20Converting%20newspaper%20articles%20into%20entries_files/image001.gif" v:shapes="_x0000_i1028"><![endif]>

i)http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_1.php?sec=8&subsec=0&id=130&dtP=2009-10-22&ppr=2#130; ii)  http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_3.php?sec=32&subsec=0&id=726&dtP=2011-03-29&ppr=2#726, iii)  http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_3.php?sec=32&subsec=0&id=734&dtP=2011-04-05&ppr=2#734, iv)  http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_3.php?sec=32&subsec=0&id=758&dtP=2011-04-24&ppr=2#758, v)  http://www.sentinelassam.com/sunday/melange_feature_2.php?sec=31&subsec=0&id=765&dtP=2011-05-03&ppr=2#765,

The above-mentioned article(s) was/ were the starting point of this Indpaedia entry. You can help by adding details and bringing the entry up to date. 


Unpredictable Northeasterners


1929: Manipuri sentiments are hurt
In the year 1929, Tripuri King Bir Bikram imposed some socio-cultural sanctions on the Manipuri subjects of Bamutia pargana. The ‘Meitei Leipak Kendriya Parishad’, the brain behind the development, remained behind the curtain. Hell broke loose on the conservative, religious-minded Manipuris. The new rules touched sensitive subjects like rituals at birth and death. They reacted with greatest possible alarm, discussed the matter with the dignitaries of ‘Meitei Leipak Kendriya Parishad’, and realizing the Parishad was in no mood to help them, conveyed their sharp protest against the new rules. The Maharaja summoned some social leaders of Bamutia to the court and, pointing a gun at them, alerted them against any kind of mischief-making.

But the Kirtaniyas were in no mind to obey the King’s orders. They continued with their traditional practices. The King’s sepoys one day invaded the village and apprehended seven of the most vocal social leaders. But the leading light of the rebellion, Laxmikanta Sharma escaped arrest and fled to neighbouring Sylhet. He met some influential Manipuri personages like Naraddhwaj Singha Chowdhury (a Bishnupriya Manipuri zaminder of Bishgaon) and Baikuntha Sharma, the main ideologue of the Bhanubil farmars’ uprising. The leaders, after much discussion, decided that since the event was related to the socio-cultural and religious affairs of the Manipuris, the matter must be conveyed to the Manipur Brahmasabha. Meanwhile, they would work for a public uprising against the King’s unwanted interference in the community’s socio-cultural affairs. For this, they convened a meeting at Podrai (in present-day Bangladesh) where they drew out the future plan of action.

 

The role of the communists
The communist-influenced ‘Krishak Sabha, a farmers’ organization, extended its help. On the suggestions of ‘Krishak Sabha’, a person was sent to the British Governor in Calcutta with a complaint letter against the King’s decision. Laxmikanta Sharma and another youth set off for Manipur to seek the Brahma Sabha’s opinion and help. Neither the King nor the Brahma Sabha there paid much attention to the plea of Laxmikanta and his companion. But luckily for them Dewan Hijam Irabat Singha was there in the capital.

            The great visionary understood the gravity of the problem and promised them that he would send a representation to the King of Tripura to enlighten the King on the matter.
At Bamutia, impatience was building up among the Manipuris. The Raja also was hell bent on teaching the Manipuris of Bamutia a lesson. He sent sepoys who wreaked havoc on Bamutia thrashing farmers, looting and even snatching away the livestock. When some agitated youths tried to resist, the sepoys apprehended them too and headed straight for the capital, victorious. But the Manipuri spirit isn’t the kind to give in so easily. On their way to Agartala, the sepoys had to take a route through a patch of forest. In the middle of the forest, Manipuri youths of Bamutia waylaid the returning soldiers and, launching a lightning attack, set free all their fellow villagers, trussed up the soldiers there and fled. The inevitable followed.

 

1930: Socio-cultural rules revoked

In 1930, hundreds of people gathered at the North gate of Ujjayanta Palace shouting slogans for the release of the seven Bamutia farmers. The King’s soldiers gored the picketers. But the people didn’t disperse. After the extremes were attained, however, the King called in the leaders and heard them out. He promised he wouldn’t impose socio-cultural rules on them. By that time, the Manipur envoys had also arrived. A few days later came the Govornor‘s decree condemning the steps taken by the King.

Mrs. Grimwood: From Sylhet to Manipur

Mrs. Grimwood gives a vivid description of the journey they had taken to reach Manipur.  From Sylhet, it took them 16 days to reach the remote kingdom.  First, they started in a boat.  A nightlong boat journey it was with a romantic moon giving it a dreamy look.  Then came the second phase: a journey on horseback.  One interesting event she mentions was that of the reluctant coolies leaving their job and escaping.  The coolies had in one voice protested that the Memsahib's boxes were too big, awkward and unwieldy.  But they could not disobey an English officer's orders.  So, reluctantly though, they had started carrying the bundles employing as many as three for one particularly bulky box. 

A few miles down the route, something lying by the road struck Mrs. Grimwood.  And she was right.  It was one of her boxes.  But bigger surprises were awaiting her.  A little distance from there, all their belongings were lying by roadside and there were no signs of the coolies.  They had left the job and made themselves scarce leaving the luggage there.  They would rather live incognito in different localities than carry the unmanageable loads.  Mr. Grimwood had to, with the help of the local thana, hire a new set of coolies from among the villagers there and make them carry the luggage without allowing them to stray beyond his eyes. 

It took them a few days to reach Silchar where the European officers gave them a warm welcome.  They stayed there a day or two before finally starting for Manipur.  The coolies now were some Nagas and Kukis. While the Nagas had fascinating haircuts, the Kukis had worn long hairs in nape buns.  These people did not make a fuss about the unwieldiness of the boxes.

 

The soldiers of the Manipur Army

Mrs Grimwood gives an interesting insight into the condition of the defence personnel of the Manipur king.  While the military guard of the Manipur Army escorting them was supposed to have 30 men, Mrs Grimwood never saw more than 12 of them.  The clever Manipuris tried to befool the English officer by counting themselves twice over and making double appearances.  They 'fondly hoped' that the English officer would not be able to see through the stratagem. 

Once while resting at a place, she espied another, not so clever artifice.  The Manipuri guard on sentry duty had to be relieved by another.  Mrs Grimwood saw that a man in dirty, civilian clothes came up to the sentry and saluted him in native style.  The on-duty liveried sentry rushed to a place a little distance away and divested himself of the service uniform and the rifle upon which the dirty-looking man rushed to the spot, clothed himself in the uniform just doffed by his colleague and in the same breath returned to the sahibs to snatch an elaborate English salute.

 

Prince Tikendrajit

However, when after a 16-day long journey, Mrs Grimwood and her husband reached the plains of the Manipur valley, there awaited them a warm welcome from the king of Manipur.  Four Manipuri princes had come to welcome the guests and there, among them, Mrs. Grimwood saw a bright young man - a prince - who was very different from the common run of Indian nobility.  He was the only one among the princes and nobles of Manipur who could speak 'Hindustani'.  Not so striking looking though, his personality had something… something that struck a chord. 

The name of the prince was Tikendrajit.  He was the general (senapati) of the state.  Mrs Grimwood describes her first meeting with Tikendrajit in the following words: 'He was not a very striking-looking personage.  I should think he was about five feet eight inches in height, with a lighter skin than most natives, and rather a pleasing type of countenance.  He had nice eyes and a pleasant smile, but his expression was rather spoilt by his front teeth, which were very much broken.  We liked what we saw of him on this occasion, and thought him very good-natured-looking.  The other brothers did not strike us at all, and there were so many people there, including important officers of state, that I became confused, and ended by shaking hands with a Sepoy, much to that warrior's astonishment.'

Later the British agent and the princes came closer and Mrs Grimwood discovered the born, natural hero that was Tikendrajit. Of all the princes, he was the closest, friendliest and most warm-hearted.  Her husband would play polo with the princes and she would frequently ride with them.  But Tikendrajit was always very, very different.

Mrs Grimwood observes: 'There was something about him that is not generally found in the character of a native.  He was manly and generous to a fault, a good friend and a bitter enemy.  We liked him because he was much more broad-minded than the rest.  If he promised a thing, that thing would be done, and he would take the trouble to see himself that it was done, and not be content with simply giving the order.  He was always doing little courteous acts to please us...  Another time I had been very ill, and when I was getting better, kind inquiries came every day from the Senapatti, accompanied by half a dozen small birds which he thought were eatable, as he had often seen my husband bring snipe home.  The birds were useless, of course, but I valued the kind thoughts which prompted him to send them.'

But the lady's appreciation wasn't the standard the colonial rulers went by.  To them, the fiercely freedom loving, valiant prince was a potential threat.  Even before he posed a direct threat to British interests, they calculated the possible risks arising out of a valiant royal personage who was not likely to meekly submit to designs that were not exactly in the best interest of his motherland

 

Prince Tikendrajit vs. Prince Pucca Sana

Trouble apparently began with Tikendrajit and another prince Pucca Sana falling for one and the same damsel.  Maipakpi, the damsel was said to be the most covetable young woman in the kingdom.  She didn't have royal lineage.  But her father was a wealthy goldsmith who was a member of the court.  On one occasion, Maipakpi was to perform a dance recital in a celebration.  Tikendrajit and Pucca Sana, the two agitated rivals sat in the audience flanking Mrs Grimwood.  While Tikendrajit was jolly enjoying every moment of the performance, Pucca Sana was grim with a dark face.  Soon afterwards, there was a quarrel between the two princes in which Surachandra, the king and the eldest of all brothers was on the side of Pucca Sana.  Tikendrajit and Pucca Sana stopped seeing each other's face.   

            Of the ten sons of Chandrakirti from various queens, Surachandra, the first son of the first queen had become the king after Chandrakirti's death.  Kulachandra, the first son of the second queen had become the Jubaraj (heir-apparent) and Tikendrajit, the first son of the third queen had been made the Senapati (general).  Tikendtrajit was a gifted sportsman and an expert marksman.  His physical and mental attributes were such that all the people in the kingdom held him in great awe and respect.  There was jubilation when he was appointed the General.  Pucca Sana was made Samu Hanjaba, the officer-in-charge of the Elephant stables.  He had to be the elephant driver when the king rode one to visit a place.  Other princes were given other, less important offices. 

Thanks partly to Tikendrajit and Pucca Sana's rival attitude, the princes were divided into two factions.  Surachandra, the regent, Pucca Sana and two others, all sons of the first queen were on one side and Kulachandra, the Jubaraj Tikendrajit, Angou Sana and Zilla Singh, all step brothers were on the other.  Zilla Singh disliked Pucca Sana intensely.  Now, with Tikendrajit on his side, he picked frequent quarrels with Pucca Sana on anything and everything.  Pucca Sana influenced the king who forbade Zilla Singh to sit in the Durbar.  He was also divested of the offices he was decorated with.  Angry Zilla Singh was now ready to do anything to see the end of Surachandra and his three brothers. 

Things came to a head when on 21 september 1890, Pecca Sana reported to the king that there were large gatherings of people in the houses of the Senapati, Angou Sana and Zilla Singh which might have ominous motives behind them.  The jubaraj was asked to inquire into the matter who furnished a misleading report and hastened to a place called Burri Bazar where he would spend a night or two.  On the night of 22 September, Zilla Sing, together with some of his followers, climbed the walls of the palace and fired into the windows of the Maharaja's apartment.  Surachandra escaped through the back door and sought shelter in the British Residency.

            Mr and Mrs Grimwood had to receive the Maharaja, his three other brothers and some faithful sepoys at an odd hour.  Mr. Grimwood tried to comfort the Maharaja.  But the king would not even take a rest.  He said he would go to Vrindavan.  He could not trust the people who were after his life.  He would not reconsider his decision and abdicate his claim to the throne, in black and white.  From two am, he stayed in the residency up to the evening of the following day.  Then he started for Vrindavan, followed by three brothers and a few other followers. 

 

Tikendrajit becomes the Jubaraj

People in Manipur were happy that Pucca Sana was going away from their lives.  In fact they were ecstatic that Tikendrajit would be the one to decide everything about Manipur now.  Wearing an innocent face, Kulachandra, the jubaraj returned to the capital and 'with calm equanimity' acquired the title of regent.    

Tikendrajit became the Jubaraj and practically ruled the kingdom.  And what a rule it was!  Within a very short period of time - 'Roads that had been almost impassable in the ex-Maharajah's reign were repaired and made good enough to drive on. Bridges that had been badly needed were erected; some of them on first-class plans, which were calculated to last three times as long as the flimsy structures which existed previously.  The people seemed happier and more contented.'

Grimwood now found it easier to work with the Manipur Durbar.  Earlier, he had to consult eight opinions before coming to a decision.  Things were firm and solid now.  Manipur Durbar was now free from petty jealousies and quarrels.  Mrs Grimwood could invite any of the princes to any festivity with no fear of earning another's wrath. 

Tikendrajit decided to add Maipakpi to his stable of wives - his tenth wife she was to be.  Everyone was happy. Manipur seemed happier and more prosperous than ever.

 

The Chief Commissioner of Assam announces his visit

But the festive mood came in for some surprise when on the evening of 21 February 1891, there came a telegram from no less a person than the Chief commissioner of Assam that read:  'I propose to visit Manipur shortly. Have roads and rest-houses put in order. Further directions and dates to follow.'

The Grimwoods were at a loss what could have prompted Mr Quinton, the Chief Commissioner to pay Manipur a visit.  Sometime back, when Mr. Quinton was at Kohima, they had invited him to visit Manipur.  But Quinton was too busy then.  Was it then a visit for wish fulfillment?  But the language of the wired message had a kind of somberness that did not encourage them to see Quinton in a partying mood. 

The next and more serious purpose of his visit could be that of settling the row over the title of regent.  For once outside Manipur, Surachandra had begun to sing a different tune.  He was appealing to the British authorities for the restoration of his right to the throne.  And he was now implicating Mr. Grimwood too, who, he said compelled him to sign the papers.  The political officer, he claimed had disarmed his followers so the king should not be able to put up a fight. 

In reality, when the king had reached the residency in hot haste, followed by some sepoys, Mr Grimwood had advised them to part with their firearms, fearing a single act of indiscretion on the part of a sepoy could turn things bad.  And the Maharaja also had seen the merit of the advice.  However, what worried the Grimwoods most was the ground reality prevailing in Manipur.  People were so happy with a king assisted by Tikendrajit, and were so disillusioned with Surachandra's rule, particularly Pucca Sana playing an important part in it, it would be disastrous if Mr. Quinton aspired to restore the previous set up. Poor Grimwoods!  They hadn't imagined anything more serious.  As it turned out, Quinton had in mind something more ominous than they could have imagined.

 

British soldiers attack Tikendrajit's house

Mrs Grimwood had a traumatic experience that day.  All the British soldiers and officials in the residency had woken up to take breakfast by around 3.30 am after which they had lost no time in marching to Tikendrajit's house.  The first victims of the attack on the Jubaraj's house were some innocent people who were enjoying a Raas Leela performance there.  The performance was originally arranged by the Jubaraj himself for entertaining the visiting dignitary.  Because of the mounting tension the performance had to be cancelled by Grimwood.  The artists who had come were then asked to perform in the Jubaraj's house instead. 

Besides indiscriminate firing on innocent people, the British soldiers, it is said, desecrated the Krishna temple in the Jubaraj's courtyard.  The hue and cry raised there, attracted the sepoys of the palace and in no time the residence of the Jubaraj took the shape of a battleground.  As the news spread, Manipuris from all sides rushed towards the palace and the British found themselves in a tricky situation.

As the day wore on, the attackers began to realize they had not had proper estimation of the might they thought they would crush effortlessly.  By afternoon, British soldiers fell back in disarray and concentrated around the Residency.  Quinton, Grimwood, Simpson and other British officers sought shelter in the underground cellars of the Residency.  To add to the misery, parts of the Residency sustained severe damages from constant firing from mountain guns.  By seven in the evening, Quinton and Grimwood decided they would leave the Residency and proceed towards Cachar.  But the idea was abandoned a little later.  Leaving the Residency was more dangerous than staying in it. 

 

A cease-fire

At last the Chief Commissioner agreed he was left with no option other than begging peace from the king of a puny kingdom.  The buglers were ordered to sound cease fire.  The Manipuris took some time before paying heed to the peace overture.

Quinton then sent a message that read: 'On what condition will you cease firing on us, and give us time to communicate with the Viceroy, and repair the telegraph?'  

            First came a reply from the Regent.  He said he wanted to talk over matters with Quinton.  Then came a letter in Bengali demanding the British would have to surrender arms if the Manipuris had to stop firing.  However Mr. Quinton, taking along with him Grimwood, Col Skene, Mr Cossins and Mr simpson proceeded to the palace to discuss matters with the king.  Mrs. Grimwood insisted that she too should accompany them.  But her husband calmed her saying she was safer where she was.  He advised her to keep a brave heart.  Firing had stopped and they were soon going to establish peace.  There was no cause for worry.  She had better take some rest.

He bade the inconsolable wife good bye, and that was the last Mrs Grimwood saw of her husband.

It was a fine, brightly moonlit evening.  The splendour of nature demanded Mrs Grimwood's attention even though she was beset with horrifying problems.  Taking advantage of the ceasefire, the British officers decided to shift the hospital to the underground chambers of the residency.  For it was increasingly becoming risky to leave the wounded at a place which the weakened force could not protect.  The monstrously swelling upsurge of patriotism was likely to take ugly turns any moment.

One after another, wounded soldiers poured in.  Mrs Grimwood, helped the doctor and played the role of the much-needed nurse.  She even managed to prepare a hasty dinner for all present in the Residency.

The night wore on.  Her husband and others seemed to be taking an unusually long time in sorting matters out.  Mrs Grimwood paced in and out of the residency impatiently.  By about midnight she asked one Captain Boileau if he would mind going down to the gate and finding out whether he could hear or see anything of the Chief Commissioner's party, and if he came across any of them 'to say I wanted my husband.'  The officer went off at once, but she was too tired to await his return.  She fell into a doze in a chair on the veranda.  

 

The battle resumes

A booming sound of gunfire woke her up.  For a moment, she could not tell what was what.  Then, slowly she remembered things.  Clearly, the ceasefire was over.  But where was her husband?  She almost went mad as her eyes searched him in the melee.  But it was the same residency filled with some junior officers, a doctor and scores of mortally wounded soldiers in the cellars.  Now there was no hope of peace.  The officers must have been arrested.  Oh, how terrible it would be for her husband to be languishing in a prison cell, listening to the booms of gunfire, worrying about the safety of his wife!  It must be killing him.  

There was a big commotion outside.  Soldiers, servants and others all were scrambling to run to safety.  Perhaps, she felt, they were running away.  For a moment she thought she would not move.  She had been asked by her husband to remain where she was.  The wounded were being taken out of the cellar.  One fatally wounded English officer died when he was taken out of the cellar and laid on the grass outside.  Mr. Brackenbury, she recognized and remembered what a jolly lad the dead soldier was.  On hearing the cancellation of a Manipuri dance performance arranged in honour of the Chief Commissioner's visit, this Brackenbury had taken it up on himself to entertain others in the Residency by playing on his banjo.  And it all happened about 28 hours ago.

 

Mrs. Grimwood flees towards Cachar

Suddenly, a fear took hold of her.  Was she being left behind?  Had the fleeing lot forgotten her?  Precisely at that moment came someone to tell her that they were to make a move.  The next moment, she was part of a surging mass of people escaping through the backyard of the British Residency, past a thorny fence, past a chilly river towards Cachar.  While crossing the river, she lost one of her shoes and got her skirt thoroughly drenched.  Shivering in the cold the lady made herself part of the fleeing lot with no one particularly mindful of her presence and yet someone turning up to help her every time she was faced with trouble.  

After a few miles' march, the fleeing lot gathered enough courage to stop for a moment and look back.  Thankfully, the Manipuris were not chasing them.  They had been firing from the palace only.  Or, maybe they had not known that the people in and around the Residency had fled.  However, they resumed their march.  Towards daybreak, Mrs. Grimwood turned her head to have a last look of the Residency.  It was up on fire.  Beneath the billowing clouds leapt red flames of the fire that was tearing down her world.  All her precious collections, family photographs, all were turning into ashes.  She felt a sharp pain in the heart.

Now at daybreak, the group of which Mrs Grimwood was a part (for the fleeing lot had broken into several desultory groups), decided to cut across the rice fields to avoid a police outpost which they knew they would bump into if they marched along the road.  They would skirt the outpost, climb the hill and then would strive to strike the road again somewhere in the hills. 

As they reached the steep hills and began to climb, some peole - must be Nagas - made wild, pranky gestures at them.  They maintained a distance, never coming too close.  The British officers accompanying Mrs. Grimwood, however, had no intention to open fire on them fearing that would reach harm to any other fleeing group of their own people.  When after climbing 6000 feet on an empty stomach, Mrs Grimwood reached the top of the hill, a Naga boy who once used to be a syce at the Residency came to meet her there and handed her three eggs.  She tried to swallow one raw egg and offered others to share the foodstuff, the gallant officers, one and all, refused to share it.  For it was the lady, they considered, who needed the foodstuff most.

 

The journey to Cachar

Mrs Grimwood's escape to Cachar down a route - the prototype of present-day Silchar-Imphal road - is a spine-tingling account of an adventurous undertaking that gives one the feel of Robin Hood stories, or the ambience of Bankim Chandra's Anandamath.  One can gauge the awesomeness of the venture when one considers that the Silchar-Imphal road is, even today, not a fully functional road for all kinds of vehicles.  The topography of the region is such that even 21-century engineers have not been able to give it the requisite features of a highway.  When Mrs Grimwood reached Zhiri and took off her clothes, first time in ten days, she found her body covered with leech-bites.  A few of them were still on her body - had been there a few days.

After climbing 6000 feet and reaching the top of the Leimatak hill, they halted there until little before sunset.  They had not taken anything after the hasty dinner they had the previous night.  But they had to move on.  One hope that kept them going was that of meeting Captain Cowley, who they knew, had started from Cachar commanding a detachment of 200 soldiers.  He was supposed to reinforce Quinton in a few days and going by his movement plan, he was supposed to arrive at a place called Leimatak by 25 March where he would camp for a day.  He was not supposed to know what had happened in Manipur.  For he had started before the outbreak of the mutinous rebellion in Manipur. 

The place Leimatak should not be too far away and they must proceed to meet him.  If they failed to meet him, lives of both the parties would be in danger.  It was almost darkening.  One of the officers took a few men with him and proceeded to check the surroundings of the locality.  And lo!  Not too far from them was a Manipuri outpost.  The officer at the outpost spotted the British officer, called him and said they had received orders to 'pass the memsahib and the sepoys,' but the officers must return to Manipur.  The party refused to split up. 

The Manipuri officer ordered his men to open fire on them. The escaping party scrambled down the hill, went up the other side of the ravine and moved on until they reached the ridge of the other hill and were out of the Manipuri riflemen's range.  They continued their march until 1 a.m and then decided to take a rest in a groove of trees.  Mrs Grimwood felt almost envious of her husband who, though imprisoned, was having food and sleep.  But he must also be miserable by now, worrying himself to death about what must have happened to his wife - she pitied him the next moment.

At daybreak they resumed their journey and luckily came upon the Manipur-Cachar road.  Luck seemed to favour them now.  As they marched down the road, they came upon three Manipuri soldiers sitting by the roadside, cooking their morning meal and gossiping.  The Gorkha soldiers of Mrs Grimwood's party sneaked up on the three and took them by surprise.  Two of the soldiers managed to flee but the third was held captive.  The poor fellow fell on his knees before Mrs Grimwood, called her 'Ranee, Ranee' and begged her to spare his life. 

Mrs Grimwood comforted him in broken Manipuri.  The rice cooked by the soldiers was the most valued thing at that moment.  They swooped on the cooking pot first and shared among themselves the meager amount of rice.  It left them longing for more.  Then they extracted bits of information from the frightened soldier.  Yes, he confirmed, Mr. Cowley had arrived at Leimatak on 25th and had not passed the spot where they were on guard duty.  His camp was about eight miles down the road.  Cheer spread among the members of the party. 

 

Manipuri soldiers ambush the British

The man also informed that there were Manipuri soldiers waiting in ambush for Mrs Grimwood's party.  He offered to take them through the jungle to Cowley's camp.  If they went down the road, Manipuri soldiers lying in ambush would surely attack them.  But the astute officers brushed aside his proposal and proceeded down the road.  Half a mile from there, they came upon a stockade blocking their road.  Obviously, it was there to stop the advancing detachment of Captain Cowley.  Before they could wonder at this unusual erection, came there way volleys of gunfire from the hillside above them. 

Mrs. Grimwood dived into the bushes on the other side of the road.  But her plucky companions got past the stockade - scrambled up the wooden poles and jumped to the ground on the other side.  Mrs. Grimwood, with her womanly clothes, couldn't do that.  So she tried getting past it by going down the slope.  But she lost footing and slithered down the steep hillside.  

A battle ensued there.  The well-trained British soldiers killed one or two of the enemies, despite their disadvantageous position.  As the battle went on, someone spotted a line of soldiers moving up the hill from the Cachar side.  'Are these Cowley's soldiers!' they gasped.  But Gorkhas and Manipuris are difficult to tell apart.  There remained an element of uncertainty and hence a mixed feeling of hope and insecurity. 

Mrs. Grimwood's party decided to sound their bugle.  The advancing party responded.  Again it was no help.  The Manipuri bugle too had similar sound.  They fished out one handkerchief, tied it to a bamboo pole and waved but could not know whether it was seen by the advancing soldiers.  They had disappeared again.  After what seemed an eternity, the appeared again round a bend.  They were now marching in a trot.  Gorkhas, Gorkhas!  Some shouted excitedly.  Mrs. Grimwood shut her eyes fearing seeing something other than Gorkhas.  Then someone sighted a white man and all doubts were removed.  They were indeed Captain Cowleys men.

          For removing any kind of doubt from Cowley's men someone proposed that Mrs Grimwood should by summoning up all her strength and run down the road.  She agreed and helped along by two officers on either side broke out in a frenzied run.  While running, she put her foot on a stone that rolled away giving her a sprained ankle.  But she did not stop until she reached Captain Cowley.  She could barely remember meeting Cowely who perhaps had barely time to say his 'hello' as his men ran past without stopping to see what had happened to an English lady.  For the enemy's gun had not fallen silent.

Categories: Manipur/ History/ British Raj/ Tripura/ Grimwood/ Tikendrajit/ India

 

Example V

Manjushree Thapa/ before

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Manjushree Thapa: Striking a delicate balance

By Zubeida Mustafa,

Dawn, April 08, 2007.

http://dawn.com/archive/

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. See examples and a tutorial.    


WITH Nepal in turmoil and political changes coming in quick succession, a sensitive writer addressing current issues faces numerous challenges. One of these is to keep pace with the developments that are taking place in the country. The other is coping with the contradictions that mark Nepal’s political scene.

Hence life for Manjushree Thapa, a Nepali author whose passion for writing has led her to the realm of fiction as well as non-fiction, has followed a rocky path. While in New Delhi to attend the South Asian women writers colloquium in February, Thapa was equally focused on events taking place back home. That is because she is also a political activist who has struggled for human rights and democracy and, not strangely, her writings have emerged as a tool for her in her fight for the fundamental rights of the Nepali people.

But she insists that she is a writer first. “Most of what I do is writing and I think I am like any writer. But there are so many issues in my country in which one can get involved — in the fast changing times in Nepal it is very hard to stay out of what is happening — so I have also been quite politically active. My activism is through my writing,” Manjushree Thapa observes.

Explaining the link between her writing and her activism, Thapa says, “In the last few years my concern has been the mass insurgency in Nepal which started in 1996. Around 2003, I began to be very disturbed when I realised that it was the insurgency in the Nepali countryside that was driving developments in Kathmandu and we did not know exactly what was going on. There were stories of human rights violations doing the rounds. So what I did then was to go out and report what I saw. The role of women in Nepal, both as victims and also as Maoist rebels, was remarkable. Thirty per cent of the Maoists are women,” she says.

So she got involved in the war through her writings. With so much happening in Kathmandu, there were political choices to be made. Human rights and women emerged as her major areas of concern as she took to advocating the cause of the victims. Her book, Forget Kathmandu, was a part of that activism. It is also an attempt to understand what was happening in Nepal and explain it to the world, which had failed to grasp the significance of events taking place in the small Himalayan kingdom.

Nepal was regarded as being contented with its monarchy. Thapa says that Kathmandu is too absorbed in itself. During the course of the war, the struggle focussed on happenings outside Kathmandu. “My thesis in the book is that we need to start paying attention to what is happening outside Kathmandu. In April 2006, the movement was based in the countryside which took control and declared that it did not want the monarchy. Forget Kathmandu’s message is that Nepal is bigger than Kathmandu,” she remarks.

When a writer is also an activist and is reporting for the media, s/he may be required to strike a delicate balance between the various roles. Thapa is involved with political activism, creative writing and is a media person as well. She refuses to describe herself as a journalist — “I have too much respect for journalists to call myself one” — but says that she does “reportage”. She feels that the three roles complement each other. Reporting events compels her to pull herself out of her inner self and pay attention to the world around her, which writing fiction does not. She describes fiction writing as being “too internal” a matter. Her activism has helped her connect with her people.

She has emerged as a keen and insightful observer of the Nepali political scene. According to her, the mass movement in Nepal has gained in strength — especially since 1990 — because the state and the mainstream political parties have remained so non-responsive to popular demands for gender equality, social justice, elimination of poverty and removal of caste divides. The Maoists raised these issues and created the platform for a public debate on them which won them popular support.

The shrewd analyst in her speaks, when Thapa says, “The problem with the Maoists is that their commitment to democracy and pluralism is a bit doubtful. At the moment they are acting correctly because their interest is in entering office. But no one can be sure that they really believe in democracy. [repetition] The way they have been running the villages under their occupation in the war is extremely dictatorial. There is a lot of extortion and forced taxes. They have seized a lot of land and not returned any. One does not know how they will act in a democratic peace process.”

Manjushree Thapa encounters many paradoxes that place her in a “strange position”. Her family comes from the elite class. “A very close uncle of mine was the head of the army under the king. Another uncle was the home minister and was responsible for a lot of human rights violations,” she informs me. She has written critically about the army and the government and “embarrassed” them in the process. Her immediate family has been good to her and very supportive, though distant relatives have expressed their “disappointment” asking what has gone wrong with her and why she is chasing social issues that do not seem so important to them. But Nepal is changing so fast that the barriers are coming down.

Another paradox for Thapa is the language she writes in. Having been educated in her childhood mostly in the United States, English became her first language. She returned to Nepal in 1989 when she was 21. She had to relearn Nepali which she had forgotten. “I made a real effort because our entire intellectual life takes place in Nepali and if you are not reading Nepali and you are not writing in Nepali then your presence means nothing,” she remarks with profound wisdom. Hence she uses Nepali to “engage with Nepali literature” and to write essays occasionally. She has never written fiction in Nepali.

Thapa is translating a lot of what she writes in English into Nepali for the benefit of her own people at home. “This is a technical challenge I have taken on myself. I want my books to read as though they are books written in Nepali. I do not try to simplify the subject matter which I am tempted to do because it is too complicated to write in English. But I make it as complex as the Nepali society is, with each person having many layers of identity,” she explains.

As a discerning observer of the Nepali literary scene, she feels that the writers face many constraints. No one can make a living as a writer in Nepal, she says. Hence not many novels are being written. One sees more short stories and a lot of poetry. In prose writing Thapa identifies two streams of writings: the personal and emotional stories; and the progressive taking up social, traditional themes and issues relating to realism. Book publishing has not really developed in Nepal as it should have. The media has, on the other hand, grown and expanded.

But in another respect, the authors enjoy a big advantage. They have more freedom to write what they want to because the government is not organised enough to censor books or control them. There is no censor board or a regulatory mechanism. But Thapa points to a strange paradox that exists. She recalls the publication of her own book Forget Kathmandu. “It is very critical of the monarchy and was published just one month before the king took over in February 2005. The book was never officially banned because the government never knows who has written what. But the booksellers became very nervous because they knew what was in the book. They began to treat it as contraband and were selling it under the counter,” she laughs.

As one who is writing fiction as well as non-fiction, what does she enjoy more? “I like both. When there is a real crisis going on and I want to engage with it I find that non-fiction is the way to do it for I can do it immediately. Thus I have seen a lot of human rights violations and I have reported a lot on them. But I have written only one short story. I give my reportage a human face by meeting the people who have been affected. That makes non-fiction very powerful.”

As a woman writer, Thapa faces the same challenges as in other South Asian societies. “There are very few women writers in Nepal. And they are not taken seriously. It is very hard not to be trivialised if you are a woman. I think part of my subconscious motivation for writing political works is that I want to be taken seriously. You enter the arena that men usually enter because you know you don’t want to be writing about the moon, the flowers or whatever. A lot of women writers are vulnerable, especially when they write about sexuality. People wonder what is wrong with you. Women writers face a very hostile environment in Nepal.”


 

PROFILE



Born in Kathmandu in 1968.

Education: St Mary’s School, Kathmandu, National Cathedral School, Washington DC, Rhode Island School of Design (studied photography), University of Washington (masters in creative writing).

Professional experience: Writes for Himal magazine, Nepali Times and other publications. Has worked for the NGO sector, especially in environment, and has been coordinator of the Martin Chautari Centre in Kathmandu, an organisation for public interest and advocacy.

Publications: Mustang Bhot in Fragments (1992); The Tutor of History (2001); co-edited Secret Places: New Writings in Nepal; Forget Kathmandu: An Elegy for Democracy (2006) and Tilled Earth (to be published in May, 2007).

 

 

 

Manjushree Thapa/ after

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Manjushree Thapa: Striking a delicate balance

By Zubeida Mustafa,

Dawn, April 08, 2007.

http://dawn.com/archive/

The above-mentioned article(s) was/ were the starting point of this Indpaedia entry. You can help by adding details and bringing the entry up to date. 

 

 

Manjushree Thapa, a Nepali author, is also a political activist who has struggled for human rights and democracy and, not strangely, her writings have emerged as a tool for her in her fight for the fundamental rights of the Nepali people.

 

Political activism

My Her activism is through my her writing. My Her concern has been the mass insurgency in Nepal which that started in 1996. Around 2003, I she began to be very disturbed when she realised that it was the insurgency in the Nepali countryside that was driving developments in Kathmandu and the people in the capital did not know exactly what was going on. There were stories of human rights violations doing the rounds. So she went out and reported what she saw. She found the role of women in Nepal remarkable, both as victims and also as Maoist rebels; she reported that thirty per cent of the Maoists were women.

‘Forget Kathmandu,’ was a part of that activism. It was also an attempt to understand what was happening in Nepal and explain it to the world, which had failed to grasp the significance of events taking place in the small Himalayan kingdom.
During the course of the war, the struggle focussed on happenings outside Kathmandu.

“My Her thesis in the book wais that we the city elites need to start paying attention to what is happening outside Kathmandu. In April 2006, the movement was based in the countryside which took control and declared that it did not want the monarchy. Forget Kathmandu’s message is was that Nepal is was bigger than Kathmandu.

According to her, the mass movement in Nepal has gained in strength — especially since 1990 — because the state and the mainstream political parties have had remained non-responsive to popular demands for gender equality, social justice, elimination of poverty and removal of caste divides. The Maoists raised these issues and created the platform for a public debate on them which won them popular support.

However, for Thapa says, “The the problem with the Maoists was that their commitment to democracy and pluralism is a bit was doubtful. At the moment Initially they acted correctly because their interest was in entering office. The way they ran the villages under their occupation in the war was extremely dictatorial. There was a lot of extortion and forced taxes. They have seized a lot of land and did not returned any. One does not know how they will It was not clear how they would act in a democratic peace process.

 

Family reaction

Thapa’s family comes from the elite class. A very close uncle of hers was the head of the army under the king. Another uncle was the home minister and was responsible for a lot of human rights violations, she told journalist Zubeida Mustafa. She has written critically about the army and the government and “embarrassed” them in the process. Her immediate family was good to her and very supportive, though distant relatives have expressed their “disappointment” asking what hasd gone wrong with her and why she iwas chasing social issues that did not seem so important to them.

 

In English and Nepali

Having been educated in her childhood mostly in the United States, English became her Thapa’s first language. She returned to Nepal in 1989 when she was 21. She had to relearn Nepali which she had forgotten. “I made a real effort because our She realised that Nepal’s entire intellectual life takes took place in Nepali and if you weare not reading Nepali and you weare not writing in Nepali then your presence meanst nothing. Thapa uses Nepali to “engage with Nepali literature” and to write essays occasionally. She has never written fiction in Nepali.

Thapa is translating has translated a lot of what she writes has written in English into Nepali for the benefit of her own people at home.

 

Creative freedom in Nepal

Nepali authors enjoy a big advantage. They have more the freedom to write what they want to because the government does not organised enough to censor books or control them. There is no censor board or a regulatory mechanism. Her own book Forget Kathmandu. “It is very critical of the monarchy and was published just one month before the king took over in February 2005. The book was never officially banned but the booksellers became very nervous because they knew what was in the book. They began to treat it as contraband and were selling it under the counter,

 

PROFILE



Born in Kathmandu in 1968.

Education: St Mary’s School, Kathmandu, National Cathedral School, Washington DC, Rhode Island School of Design (studied photography), University of Washington (masters in creative writing).

Professional experience: Writes for Himal magazine, Nepali Times and other publications. Has worked for the NGO sector, especially in environment, and has been coordinator of the Martin Chautari Centre in Kathmandu, an organisation for public interest and advocacy.

Publications: Mustang Bhot in Fragments (1992); The Tutor of History (2001); co-edited Secret Places: New Writings in Nepal; Forget Kathmandu: An Elegy for Democracy (2006) and Tilled Earth (to be published in May, 2007).

 

Categories: Manjushree Thapa/ literature/ Maoists/ Nepal/ women writers/ censorship

 

 

Example VI

Paternity, determination of/ before

 

Almost all of the below news report will remain relevant for a long time; therefore, very little has been deleted. This will hold good for most news reports of court judgements.

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Mother’s claim enough to determine parentage

By the Dawn Reporter, 2006.

http://dawn.com/archive/

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. See examples and a tutorial.    

 

LAHORE, Sept 1: Justice Ali Akbar Qureshi of the Lahore High Court has ruled a mother’s claim is sufficient to determine the parentage of a child. The judge decided this while dismissing a petition by Muhammad Bakhsh, who sought order for DNA test of his wife and her three alleged paramours.

“According to section 146 of 149 of Majmooa-e-Qawaneen-e-Islam edited by Dr Tanzeelur Rahman, evidence of woman would be sufficient to prove the parentage of a child,” the judge said.

The judge in his order also quoted a reported case of Supreme Court, Mst Hamida Begum vs Mst Murad Begum, wherein the court had held that to establish the legitimacy of the child evidence of mother and the child was sufficient.

Petitioner Muhammad Bakhsh of Muzaffargarh said according to a medical report, his semen was not fertile.

He said his wife, owing to a dispute left his house and remained with her parents for a while and came back after nine months. Later, through medical report he came to know that his wife was pregnant of about eight and half months whereas for nine months she was not with him.

He alleged that during her stay at her parents’ house, the woman developed illicit relations with Irshad, Pir Bakhsh and Allah Wasaya. He also got registered a case against these three persons with Jatoi police, Muzaffargarh

 

Paternity, determination of/ after

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Mother’s claim enough to determine parentage,

By the Dawn Reporter, 2006.

http://dawn.com/archive/

The above-mentioned article(s) was/ were the starting point of this Indpaedia entry. You can help by adding details and bringing the entry up to date. 

 

Justice Ali Akbar Qureshi of the Lahore High Court has ruled a mother’s claim is sufficient to determine the parentage of a child. The judge decided this while dismissing a petition by Muhammad Bakhsh, who sought order for DNA test of his wife and her three alleged paramours.

“According to section 146 of 149 of Majmooa-e-Qawaneen-e-Islam edited by Dr Tanzeelur Rahman, evidence of woman would be sufficient to prove the parentage of a child,” the judge said.

The judge in his order also quoted a reported case of Supreme Court, Mst Hamida Begum vs Mst Murad Begum, wherein the court had held that to establish the legitimacy of the child evidence of mother and the child was sufficient.

Petitioner Muhammad Bakhsh of Muzaffargarh said according to a medical report, his semen was not fertile. He said his wife, owing to a dispute left his house and remained with her parents for a while and came back after nine months. Later, through medical report he came to know that his wife was pregnant of about eight and half months whereas for nine months she was not with him.

 

Categories: Law/ Pakistan/ Islamic law/ Lahore High Court/ paternity

 

 

 

 

Example VII

Rudrapur School/ before
<![if !supportLineBreakNewLine]>
<![endif]>

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Rudrapur School: An inspiring school

By Dr Noman Ahmed

Dawn, 2008

http://dawn.com/archive/

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. See examples and a tutorial.    

 

<![if !vml]><img width=202 height=144 src="Tutorial%20Converting%20newspaper%20articles%20into%20entries_files/image002.jpg" align=left alt="http://www.dawn.com/weekly/education/images/education03.jpg" v:shapes="Picture_x0020_2"><![endif]>The Aga Khan Award for Architecture (AKAA), which is based in Paris, presented one of the awards to a simple but elegantly built school in the village of Rudrapur, Bangladesh, in November 2007. Designed and supervised by German Architects Anna Heringer and Eike Rosewag, the school provides an extraordinary combination of simplicity coupled with innovation and intelligent use of craftsmanship and material. The total construction period was not over four months which further establishes the uncomplicated process of raising the facility.

The Rudrapur School offers many lessons to learn. It is located in a low-income rural habitat of Bangladesh where social and economic indicators of the population are in need of improvement. Education for children obviously makes an important requirement. Educational experts in the region were convinced that informal education methods normally make the appropriate approach. Thus many NGOs took upon themselves to develop competence in this approach and promoted it to a wider outreach. Rudrapur School made one such example.

Dipshikha, the NGO that manages and runs this facility, based the principles of pedagogy on “learning with joy”. That is to say conventional education here is coupled with creative pursuits simply by increasing the stretch of the daily timetable. Pupils are taught science, social studies and other subjects during the pre-lunch phase while they spend two hours in the afternoon participating in sketching, music, sports, dancing, meditation and other useful activities. The possibility of exploring the strengths and inclinations of young minds become feasible due to this approach.

The high aesthetics of this otherwise simple school makes it a happy experience for children to attend. Elsewhere it is found that mundane and depressed surroundings discourage an otherwise avid learner to be regular. The Rudrapur School is made up of mud, bamboo and other rudimentary local materials that have been cobbled together by a novel design sense and skill. Architects Anna Heringer and Eike Rosewag spent considerable time to study the local built environment, community life, its potential and constraints. They also experimented with the locally-available skills that not only helped reduce the cost but also instilled a feeling of ownership and pride amongst the local community.

In times where basic construction costs run into exponential figures, it is no less a miracle to erect a fully functional space in less than US$23,000. As the interior spaces are kept very simple, the operation and maintenance cost does not rise beyond the affordability limits. The school was built by involving the villagers with the design and construction team. It led to an enhancement of skill levels pertinent to different trades involved in the work as well as potential sustainability of the structure. And competence does not spring up without corresponding training. A very competent but humble team of experts trained and supervised the whole affair. The trainers ranged from design architect to bamboo/metal workers, basket weavers and mud construction advisors. People felt confident to maintain the space all by themselves. Few of them also acquired an ability to apply training and experience to earn an extra income.

For the Pakistani situation, Rudrapur School breaks many myths. It may be understood that conventional approach of tendering, bidding and constructing is an inappropriate method of developing school facilities for rural areas. Thousands of schools built on this system have been rendered unfit for use due to progressive destruction. The poor quality of construction eventually led to a high cost of maintenance that school managements could not bear. And the local communities stay aloof since they consider the exercise as the business of government departments. It is therefore high time that our policy makers make use of success examples by drawing useful feedback into policy-making. Nothing succeeds like success.

The writer is professor and chairman, Department of Architecture and Planning, NED University, Karachi [shift to title box]

 

In this next example we have moved some paragraphs up.

Rudrapur School/ after

 

 

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Rudrapur School: An inspiring school

By Dr Noman Ahmed, professor and chairman, Department of Architecture and Planning, NED University, Karachi

Dawn, 2008

http://dawn.com/archive/

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. See examples and a tutorial.    

 

 

<![if !vml]><img width=202 height=144 src="Tutorial%20Converting%20newspaper%20articles%20into%20entries_files/image002.jpg" align=left alt="http://www.dawn.com/weekly/education/images/education03.jpg" v:shapes="_x0000_s1026"><![endif]>The Paris-based Aga Khan Award for Architecture (AKAA) was presented in 2007 to a simple but elegantly built school in the village of Rudrapur, Bangladesh. Designed and supervised by German Architects Anna Heringer and Eike Rosewag, the school provides an extraordinary combination of simplicity coupled with innovation and intelligent use of craftsmanship and material. The total construction period was less than four months.

            The Rudrapur School is located in a low-income rural habitat of Bangladesh where social and economic indicators of the population are in need of improvement.

 

Informal education methods

Educational experts in the region were convinced that informal education methods normally make the appropriate approach. Dipshikha, the NGO that manages and runs this facility, based the principles of pedagogy on “learning with joy”. 

Conventional education here is coupled with creative pursuits simply by increasing the stretch of the daily timetable. Pupils are taught science, social studies and other subjects during the pre-lunch phase while they spend two hours in the afternoon participating in sketching, music, sports, dancing, meditation and other useful activities.

 

Architecture and design

The high aesthetics of this otherwise simple school makes it a happy experience for children to attend. The Rudrapur School is made up of mud, bamboo and other rudimentary local materials that have been cobbled together by a novel design sense and skill. Architects Anna Heringer and Eike Rosewag spent considerable time to study the local built environment, community life, its potential and constraints. They also experimented with the locally-available skills that not only helped reduce the cost but also instilled a feeling of ownership and pride amongst the local community.

They managed to erect a fully functional space in less than US$23,000, which is an extremely low cost. As the interior spaces are kept very simple, the operation and maintenance cost does not rise beyond the affordability limits.

 

Community involvement

The school was built by involving the villagers with the design and construction team. It This led to an enhancement of skill levels pertinent to different trades involved in the work as well as potential sustainability of the structure.

Rudrapur School breaks many myths. It may be understood that conventional approach of tendering, bidding and constructing is an inappropriate method of developing school facilities for rural areas. And the local communities stay aloof since they consider the exercise as the business of government departments.

 

Categories: Rudrapur/    Bangladesh/    Education/     Aga Khan Award for Architecture/ Alternative education/  Low-cost construction/    Dipshikha/    2007

 

 

 

 

 

 

The next example came with the awful title, ‘Overview till 2005.’

But, overview of what?

‘Of cinema.’

But which cinema? Nepali? Bangladeshi?

‘No, Sri Lankan.’

Then say so. The correct title of this indpaedia.com entry should have been something like ‘Sinhala Cinema: an overview.’

            If you come across such headings, which convey nothing, please change them,

<a name=What>Example VIII</a>

Overview till 2005/ before

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

What happened to Sinhala Cinema?

By Shezna Shums,

The Sunday Leader

http://www.thesundayleader.lk/archive/20050724/review.htm

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. See examples and a tutorial.    

 

Sinhala movies today are not that popular among the younger generation, although there are a number of  good films which were  released such as Death On A Full Moon Day and Flying With One Wing.  Youngsters do not embrace Sinhala cinema  the way they do with English or Hindi movies.

"There are only a handful of good Sinhala movies which are made, and they are brilliant, but most of the Sinhala films which are made are just senseless movies," said a movie fan.

She like many of her friends, admit that they are quite keen to watch the Hindi movies that are being shown in the local cinemas. However they are not always that keen to watch the Sinhala movies.

Meanwhile another fan speaking to The Sunday Leader said that they appreciate that some producers make a huge effort and make a film that is both touching and moving.

"Many of our local films which have won acclaim abroad are not the standard love stories but actually realistic stories which show what life is like in Sri Lanka," said this movie fan.

She also added the few good Sinhala movies which are released, deal with the present issues of the country, the people's problems and even taboo issues.

But she also added that the industry as a whole needs some rejuvenation, because even if there is a very good Sinhala movie, she does not have a longing to watch it, even if she knows that the story is very good. "With Hindi movies there is such an atmosphere that I will make an extra effort and watch the movie, but this is not the case with an equally good Sinhala movie."

Sinhala cinema captivated local audiences after independence in 1948 till around the 1970's.  It was sometime after 1977 with the introduction of the open economic policies and lifting the ban on Indian and Western films  people started moving their attention from Sinhala to English and Hindi movies.

Another fan, Nalini says that she is very keen to watch the Hindi movie Black.  However she added that if a similar movie was made in Sinhala she may not like it because they do not promote the movies that well and the theatrical excitement around Sinhala movies is not as much as it is among the bigger foreign productions.

Nevertheless  one person who  is well  known  both  locally and abroad, is Lester James Peiris.  His first release was Rekawa  - 'The Line of Destiny.'

Two of Lester James Peiris' more famous movies are Gamperaliya  - 'Changing Village' and Nidhanaya - 'Treasure.'

Other well known directors are Titus Totawatte, G.D.L Perera, Gamini Fonseka, Dharmasena Pathiraja, Vasantha Obeysekera, Sumithra Peiris, Tissa Obeysekere and Prasanna Vithanage.

 Some of the country's popular directors and their movies:

Lester James Peiris

Gamperaliya  - 'The Changing Village - 1963' 
Nidhanaya  - 'The Treasure - 1970'
Kaliyugaya  - 'The Age of Kali  - 1983'
Yuganthaya  - 'The End of an Era - 1985'. 

Dharmasena Pathiraja 

Ahas Gauvwa - 1974,
Eya Dan Loku Lamayek  - 'Coming of Age' - 1977
Bambaru Avith -  'The Wasps Are Here' - 1978
Ponmani  - 'Younger Sister' - 1978
Para Dige  - 'Along the Road' - 1980 
Soldadu Unnahe  - 'Mr. Soldier' - 1981.

Vasantha Obeysekera

Ves Gaththo -  'Masquerade' - 1970
Palangetiyo -  'Grasshoppers' - 1979
Dadayama  - 'The Hunt' - 1984
Kedapathaka Chayava  -  'Reflections in a Mirror' - 1989
Maruthaya -  'The Wind' -1995
Dorakada Marawa  -  'Death at the Doorstep' - 1998
Theertha Yaathra -  'Journey' - 1999. 

Sumithra Peiris

Gahanu Lamayi  - 'Girls' -1978
Ganga Addara  - 'By the Riverside '- 1980
Sagara Jalaya  - 'Letter Written on the Sand' - 1988
Loku Duwa -  'Eldest Daughter' - 1996
Duvata Mawaka Misa -  'A Mother Alone' - 1997.

Tissa Abeysekera

Viragaya  - 1987
Prasanna Vithanage 
Anantha Rathriya -  'Dark Night of the Soul '- 1995
Pawuru Walalu -  'Walls Within' - 1997 
Purahanda Kaluwara -  'Death on a Full Moon Day'-1997

 

Sinhala Cinema: an overview/ after

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

What happened to Sinhala Cinema?

By Shezna Shums,

The Sunday Leader, 2005

http://www.thesundayleader.lk/archive/20050724/review.htm

This is a newspaper article selected for the excellence of its content. You can help by converting it into an encyclopaedia-style entry, deleting portions of the kind normally not used in encyclopaedia entries. Please also put categories, paragraph indents, headings and sub-headings, and combine this with other articles on exactly the same subject. You can also update the entry. See examples and a tutorial.    

 

Sinhala movies [US English] cinema today are is not that  very popular among the younger generation, although there are a number of  very good films which were  released such as Death On A Full Moon Day and Flying With One Wing. Youngsters do not embrace Sinhala cinema the way they do with English or Hindi cinema films movies. The few good Sinhala movies which are released, deal with the present issues of the country, the people's problems and even taboo issues.

 

1948-1977

Sinhala cinema captivated local audiences after independence in 1948 till around the 1970's.  Lester James Peiris is well known both locally and abroad.  His first release was Rekawa  - 'The Line of Destiny.' Two of Lester James Peiris' more famous movies are Gamperaliya  - 'Changing Village' and Nidhanaya - 'Treasure.'  Other well known directors are Titus Totawatte, G.D.L Perera, Gamini Fonseka, Dharmasena Pathiraja, Vasantha Obeysekera, Sumithra Peiris, Tissa Obeysekere and Prasanna Vithanage.

It was sometime after 1977 with the introduction of the open economic policies and lifting the ban on Indian and Western films people started moving their attention from Sinhala to English and Hindi movies. movies Films made in Sinhala are not promoted the movies that well as professionally as the bigger foreign productions, therefore, the theatrical excitement around Sinhala movies is not as great.

 

Sri Lanka’s popular directors and their movies:

Lester James Peiris

Gamperaliya  - 'The Changing Village - 1963' 
Nidhanaya  - 'The Treasure - 1970'
Kaliyugaya  - 'The Age of Kali  - 1983'
Yuganthaya  - 'The End of an Era - 1985'. 

 

Dharmasena Pathiraja 

Ahas Gauvwa - 1974,
Eya Dan Loku Lamayek  - 'Coming of Age' - 1977
Bambaru Avith -  'The Wasps Are Here' - 1978
Ponmani  - 'Younger Sister' - 1978
Para Dige  - 'Along the Road' - 1980 
Soldadu Unnahe  - 'Mr. Soldier' - 1981.

 

Vasantha Obeysekera

Ves Gaththo -  'Masquerade' - 1970
Palangetiyo -  'Grasshoppers' - 1979
Dadayama  - 'The Hunt' - 1984
Kedapathaka Chayava  -  'Reflections in a Mirror' - 1989
Maruthaya -  'The Wind' -1995
Dorakada Marawa  -  'Death at the Doorstep' - 1998
Theertha Yaathra -  'Journey' - 1999. 

 

Sumithra Peiris

Gahanu Lamayi  - 'Girls' -1978
Ganga Addara  - 'By the Riverside '- 1980
Sagara Jalaya  - 'Letter Written on the Sand' - 1988
Loku Duwa -  'Eldest Daughter' - 1996
Duvata Mawaka Misa -  'A Mother Alone' - 1997.

 

Tissa Abeysekera

Viragaya  - 1987
Prasanna Vithanage 
Anantha Rathriya -  'Dark Night of the Soul '- 1995
Pawuru Walalu -  'Walls Within' - 1997 
Purahanda Kaluwara -  'Death on a Full Moon Day'-1997

 

 

Categories: Sri Lanka/ cinema/ Sinhala cinema

 

 

Example IX

Vidyakar The Mother Teresa of Chennai's NSK Nagar/ before

This being a news agency story there is no author’s name or newspaper name.

CHENNAI, July 6: Nearly quarter of a century of selfless service for destitutes and diseased, he is called the Mother Teresa of NSK Nagar here.

54-year-old Vidyakar, a post-graduate in social work, had run away from his home in Mysore and ended up setting up a non-profit social service organisation and founder of 'Udavum Karangal' (Helping Hands) which takes care of 1,000 people, mostly women and children, orphans and mentally challenged.

"Right from the beginning, I was interested in social work," he says.

On reaching Chennai, Vidyakar came under the care of a good samaritan who provided for his education and inculcated in him values like caring for the needy. This was what instilled in him a desire for starting an organisation to take care of destitutes.

"Udavum Karangal was set up in 1983 at NSK Nagar here. Today, we have five centres in Chennai and two in Coimbatore," he says.

The organisation had outstation units in Mumbai, Pondicherry and Tirupur. "But we wound these up owing to practical and technical difficulties," he says.

They did not have a proper centre in Mumbai. "We were basically engaged in community programmes in the Red light area of Kamathipura, working among the HIV positive people," he says.

The Government offered land for setting up a centre at a place on the way to Pune. "But I did not want to segregate or isolate HIV positive people (from society). So, inmates there were shifted to the centres in Chennai."

There are 1,820 inmates, including children, in all the centres. Dedicated volunteers network the activities, he says.

The inmates range from orphaned children some as young as one-month old, mentally challenged, differently-abled children and the aged.

The registered non-governmental, non-religious and non-profit social service organisation has centres in Tiruverkadu, Maduravoyal, Velappanchavadi, Adyar and T Nagar (in Chennai) and two centres at Coimbatore.

Says Shuba, a residential volunteer at the Tiruverkadu centre. "This is the biggest centre in Chennai. We take care of about 1000 inmates, mostly women and children and the metally challenged."

Shubha and her parents stay at the centre overseeing the activities. She was a BPO employee before joining 'Udavaum Karangal' in 2004.

"I happened to visit the centre and from then on, I wanted to do something for the underprivileged. What better way than serving them here?" she says.

Vidyakar makes it a point to visit each and every centre frequently. To the inmates, he is 'Pappa' Vidyakar.

"I'm aware of the pangs of growing up, especially when one is abandoned to his/her fate. I come from a difficult background. So, I give them all the love and affection", he says.

"We take care of the education of the children," says Murali, another volunteer who has been working for the organisation for eight years and is in charge of the Velappanchavadi centre where there are about 110 inmates, mostly aged people and mentally retarded children.

The organisation provides psychiatric treatment for the mentally challenged. Doctors also visit the centre.

Local people support the organisation's activities.

"Be it a case of an abandoned baby or a mentally challenged woman wandering in the streets, just a phone call to the Udavum Karangal will bring immediate response," says a shop-keeper near NSK Nagar.

"We do not seek Government aid. We survive only on private donations," says Vidyakar.

Asked if he planned to expand the activities, he said as of now they do not have such plans. "We are concentrating on the centres here and improving amenities further."

So with his band of dedicated volunteers, Vidyakar strives to make life meaningful for the abandoned. (PTI)

 

Vidyakar/ after

Title and authorship of the original article(s)

Vidyakar: The Mother Teresa of Chennai's NSK Nagar,

By Press Trust of India, 2006.

The above-mentioned article(s) was/ were the starting point of this Indpaedia entry. You can help by adding details and bringing the entry up to date. 

 

Vidyakar (born c.1952), [calculated from the year of the article minus his age mentioned] a post-graduate in social work, is called the Mother Teresa of Chennai’s NSK Nagar. To the inmates of 'Udavum Karangal,' he is 'Pappa' Vidyakar.

 

Early life

Vidyakar ran away from his home in Mysore. On reaching Chennai, Vidyakar came under the care of a good samaritan who provided for his education and inculcated in him values like caring for the needy. This was what instilled in him a desire for starting an organisation to take care of destitutes.

 

Career and social work

Vidyakar ended up setting up a non-profit social service organization. In 1983 he founded 'Udavum Karangal' (Helping Hands) at NSK Nagar, Chennai. Today, we have it has five centres in Chennai and two in Coimbatore, which together take care of 1,820 inmates, mostly women and children, some as young as one-month old, orphans, mentally challenged, differently-abled children and the aged.

The registered non-governmental, non-religious and non-profit social service organisation has centres in Tiruverkadu (1000 inmates), Maduravoyal, Velappanchavadi, Adyar and T Nagar (in Chennai) and two centres at Coimbatore. At the Velappanchavadi centre there are about 110 inmates, mostly aged people and mentally retarded children

The organisation provides psychiatric treatment for the mentally challenged. It does not seek Government aid and survives on private donations alone. Doctors also visit the centre. Local people support the organisation's activities.

The organisation had outstation units in Mumbai, Pondicherry and Tirupur. "But we wound these up It had to wind those units up owing to practical and technical difficulties. They did not have a proper centre in Mumbai. "We They were basically engaged in community programmes in the red light area of Kamathipura, working among the HIV positive people.

The Government offered land for setting up a centre at a place on the way highway to Pune. "But I However, Vidyakar did not want to segregate or isolate HIV positive people (from society). So, inmates there were shifted to the centres in Chennai.

 

Categories: Vidyakar/ Chennai/ Biography/ Tamil Nadu/ Karnataka/ NGOs/ Social workers/ Coimbatore/ India

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