Imphal: Popular Tangkhul Naga folk singer Guru Rewben Mashangva has said that the present crisis the state of Manipur is facing now is not between religions.
Guru Rewben said, “We heard that this crisis is between religions, or as between Meiteis and tribals, which are not true. I cannot agree to this misconception.”
He added, “Yes, there may be demands by one group or another, but that should be settled by the government based on justice. This is not a fight about religion or between Meiteis and the tribals.”
The Naga folk singer added, “I am a Tangkhul. I am from the hills and from Ukhrul. And, it pains me to see all the hills of the state becoming barren due to deforestation. As a result, it causes drying up of water bodies and we are facing acute shortage of water. My appeal is to conserve forest land.”
Moreover, he took part in the state government’s ‘War on Drugs’ campaign as an artiste by producing music videos.
“My appeal to all is not to resort to poppy cultivation even if it earns huge easy money. Ultimately, it will bring no good and will cause only harm on future generations.”
According to the popular folk singer, every community of Manipur should now involve themselves in the process of restoration of peace and normalcy in Manipur again.
Guru Rewben appealed to all the people of Manipur, citizens of the country and to his fans that restoring peace and normalcy in the state should be the top priority at the moment.
He further said that all should work together to bring reasonable understandings and negotiations. People should strive to live in peace and harmony together, he added.
Guru Rewben Mashangva is a folk musician and singer from Manipur, India. He is known for reviving musical tradition of the Tangkhul Naga of Manipur, and use of traditional musical instruments in his songs.
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Influenced by musicians such as Bob Dylan and Bob Marley, Rewben Mashangva has created many Naga tribal folk songs based on blues and ballad rhythms.
He is known by different names including, ‘Bob Dylan of the Nagas’ and’King of Naga folk blues’, plus ‘Father of Naga folk blues’.
He received the National Tribal Award 2011-12, for his contribution to the development of tribal music from the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Government of India.
The Government of India honoured him in 2021, with the award of Padma Shri, the fourth highest Indian civilian award for his rich contribution to art.
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