2ND DISPLACEMENT OF THE INHABITANTS OF MANIPUR DURING THE WORLD WAR II

2ND DISPLACEMENT OF THE INHABITANTS OF MANIPUR DURING THE WORLD WAR II

Singh Wahengbam Jyotirmoy

Abstract


This paper is extracted from a project that records the memories of men and women in Manipur, who witnessed the Nupi Lan (1939) and Second World War (1942 – 1945). The project is funded by University Grants Commission (UGC), New Delhi, India Title : The Oral History of  Manipur of the Early  20th Centuary

The Second World War reached India with the Japanese bombing of Imphal, the capital of Manipur on 10th May 1942. This changed the life of the denizens of Imphal and also that of the people living in the far flung region of Manipur. The people of Imphal immediately fled their home after the bombing. After some months, some of them returned to their home and start settling down. In their locality they saw many soldiers. Some even find the soldiers staying in their house. As the Japanese invasion of Manipur becomes a possibility day by day, more and more soldiers were sent into Imphal and other parts where the Japanese are likely to pass through. To enable the soldier to stay, in those strategic places and also for the safety of the local populaces they were once again left their homes. This time, they were asked by the government to vacate their house. Hence, this paper is name as the 2nd Displacement of the Inhabitants of Manipur.

Unlike the traditional sources, the primary sources for this paper are collected from Manipuri who are above 75 years and who witnessed the incidents related to the Second World War (by visually recording their statements). All interviews have been video recorded. The interviewees include persons from all walks of life – from the member of the royal family of Manipur (Maharaj Kumari Mangisana Devi, the then king’s sister – in – law) to the daughter – in – law of the Durbar member of Manipur to the common masses. As such, most of the sources in this paper are based on the records of the interview of those who experienced the Second World War.


Keywords


Nupi Lan (1939); Second World War (1942 – 1945); Displacement of the inhabitants of Manipur during the world war - 2;

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Mr Gimson, the Political Agent recalls that when the siren from 4 Assam Rifles sounded around 9.30 am on May 10th, he said to his assistant: 'I must remember to tell Hurell (CO 4 AR) to stop these silly signals.' An hour later the Siren wailed again. 'Damn!' exclaimed Gimson on his verandah. 'I forgot to tell Hurell.' These were almost famous last words). Lt Col(Retd) M Ranjit Singh

There were for the British in Imphal

No A-A guns airfield nor aircraft men

Jap reconnaissance planes came in April

Almost daily with loud and shrill

S. Gourahari Singh’s “Manipur and World War II,” Self, Imphal, 1983, 1374, p.81

S. Ibemhal.

W.Ibemhal Devi,

R.K.Tamphasana Devi

A second raid on May 16 did take place

One bomb demolished main gate of jail

And criminal slipped away in its trail

And indulged in many a bad dacoity case.

Manipur and World War II, 1384, p.82

Twenty five bombs fell in Residency garden

Manipur and World War II, 1385, p.82

Singh. L. Ibungohal and Singh N Khelchandra, Cheitharol Kumbaba, Imphal, 1989, p. 641.

The bomb set ablaze at Keishampat side

A number of houses at that noon-tide;

On the Nambul river near Keishampat bridge

Were killed a great many poor refugees

Manipur and World War II 1386, p.82

There was break-down of administration

The absent officials met with suspension:

With loyalty they were pardoned later

And they served Govt. In a matter better.

Manipur and World War II 1381, p.82

M.Borekeshore, Khongman Moirang Pandit leikai

R.K.Tamphasana, Tera Sapam Leirak

W. Amubi Singh, Moirang Leirak

S. Haladhara, Moirang Leirak

M.Sorojini, Thangjam leirak, Th. Bidhu Meino Leirak, Rk. Sanajaobi, Kwakeithel

Ch. Maipaksana, Kwakeithel hokchom Leikai

Nganmba Amrita Singh, Thangmeiband

W.Amubi, Sagolband Moirang Leirak

S. Ibemhal , Singjamei .

R.K. Tamphasana says that her family first fled to Patsoi and then to Leitong, West Imphal where her brother – in – law is cultivating a paddy field.

R.K.Tamphasana Devi

S. Ibemhal says that she and her family fled to Bashikhong, East Imphal.

S. Ibemhal

Ch. Merajao says that his family fled to Angom lawai, , East Imphal.

Chongtham Merajao, Thangmeiband

S. Ibemhal says that later on she and her family fled to Meijrao.

S. Ibemhal

R.K.Tamphasana, Tera Sapam Leirak

Singh. L. Ibungohal and Singh N. Khelchandra, Cheitharol Kumbaba, Imphal, 1989, p. 641;

MK Mangisana, Buddhacahndra’s sister – in – law and wife of Khedasana, Buddhachandra’s brother.

S Haladhara says that his family went to Langjing as his sister – in – law is from Langjing.

S Haladhara, Sagolband moirang Leirak.

R.K.Tamphasana says that the owner of the house is the husband of her husband aunty. R.K.Tamphasana

Ch. Maipaksana

W. Amubi Singh, Sagolband Moirang Leirak, grandson of W. Yumjao Singh.

S Haladhara; S. Ibemhal

R.K.Tamphasana Devi says that the house they took shelter belongs to one of her relatives who was a well to do ones. The shangoi (outhouse) of her relatives was so big that it accommodates around 100 persons.

R.K.Tamphasana

R.K.Tamphasana

Ch. Maipaksana

S. Ibemhal says that her family stay at the verandah of a stranger Basikhong.

Ch. Maipaksana

Nganmba Amrita Singh; S Haladhara; R.K.Tamphasana Devi

Nganmba Amrita Singh; Ch. Maipaksana says that her family cooked at the cowshed of a stranger in Bamon Lampu.she says that it was very filthy and we found it very difficult to eat food.

Ch. Maipaksana

M. Borekeshore, Khongman Moirang Pandit Leikai.

S. Ibemhal

M. Borekeshore

S. Ibemhal

W. Ibemhal Devi, Sagolband

Ch. Maipaksana

S. Haladhara

Ch. Maipaksana

W. Ibemhal Devi

S. Ibotombi, Yurembam

W. Ibemhal Devi

W. Ibemhal Devi

W. Ibemhal Devi

R.K.Tamphasana

S. Ibemhal

S. Ibemhal

M. Borekeshore

R.K. Sanajaobi

S. Haladhara

Th. Biddhu, Sagolband Meino Leirak

M. Borekeshore

M. Amarjit , Kakching

L. Rabei, Luwangsangbam

M. Tombiyaima, Heirok

L. Rabei

Chakpram Madhumangol, Nongmeibung

Khomdram Amar, Nambol

L. Bidur, Lairikyengbam Leikai.


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