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Tributes paid to Manipuri Muslim Women of Nupi Lal Agitation

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By Dr. Syed Ahmed

Imphal: Rich tributes were paid to Manipuri women who had shown extraordinary courage during the great women’s agitation of 1904 and 1939, popularly known in the history of Manipur as Nupi Lal, on December 12 , 2012 in various parts of Manipur. The main function was held at Nupi Lal Memorial Complex at Imphal, which was attended by Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh and Deputy Chief Minister, Gaikhangam. Some of the Muslim Civil organisations in the State also observed Nupi Lal day to pay respects to those Muslim women who participated in the second Nupi Lal of 1939. Nupi Lal Day was also observed by the United Manipur Muslim Women’s Development Organisation (UMMWDO) at the Community Hall at Kairang Khabeisoi in Imphal East, on 12 December, 2012. In the first Nupi Lal of 1904, Manipuri women rose in revolt against the order of the then British Political Agent of Manipur, H. St. P. Maxwell which forced all the male population of Imphal area to reconstruct the residential bungalow of the Assistant Political Agent, which was razed down by fire. In the second Nupi Lal that took place in December 12, 1939, thousands of Manipuri women marched towards the State Durbar Hall demanding ban on the export of local rice to Indian states by non-local businessmen, with the support of the British authorities. The export had caused acute shortage of rice in Manipur. Many Muslim women from the surrounding areas of Imphal took part in this agitation.