Manipur Students in Delhi University: Caught Between Two Worlds

Delhi university
India today

The condition back in Manipur is harsh and so of the Manipur students in Delhi University are not untouched. They are swinging between a Double Life of Study and Despair. There are many stories of the Manipuri students in Delhi which have drawn our attention.

Laskit (name changed), a Kuki student from Manipur, is pursuing her studies in the bustling corridors of Delhi University. She feels tremors in pain when she recalls how her life took a sudden turn. When her family’s house was razed to the ground by fire, forcing them to seek refuge in a relief camp.
Laskit’s family was further isolated from the outside world. Due to the shutdown that followed the arson attacks on her community. During this time, their house was also burned down. Laskit, who was studying at Delhi University at the time, felt devastated to learn of the news. She was helpless.
“My family could only survive on dal in the relief camp,” Laskit said. “There was no rice at all, only dal.” (as mentioned in the Probe)
Lee(name changed), is a Manipuri student at Hindu College, Delhi University. He also suffered losses both at home and in college, owing to the violence. He shared that there have been many instances of violence around his family. The impact of the turmoil in Manipur is reaching far beyond its borders. Manipuri students in Delhi are also feeling the effects of the same.
Months have passed since the violence in Manipur. But the divisions between the two communities remain. Suspicion lingers, even within the college campus. Lee, another Manipuri student at Hindu College in Delhi. He explains that students from the two communities avoid confrontation.
The once vibrant and inclusive college atmosphere no longer exists. Due to a tense hush, the college environment has changed.
The consequences of this divide have been far-reaching. Lee recounts a distressing incident on the college campus. He and his friends were ambushed by a mob of 30 to 40 people while escorting female friends back to safety. This followed after a prayer meeting held to address the violence in Manipur.

Manipur Students in Delhi University Living Double Life

Akoyo (name changed), another Manipuri student at Delhi University. She describes how students are living a double life. How they are trying to cope with the mental strain of the violence back home. While also trying to focus on their studies. She says that it is a survival strategy to shield themselves. The constant barrage of distressing news saddens them.
Akoyo’s parents are working without rest in a relief camp in Imphal. And she says that whenever she talks to her father, she only gets bad news. She hears harrowing accounts of children who have lost their parents. She hears the sounds of women who have lost their husbands. The stories of people who have lost family members terrified her.
She paints a bleak outlook of the conditions in the relief camps. The necessities have become luxuries. People don’t have clothes or food, and many of them are always crying. She says that everyone is helpless and asking for help from each other.
Moreover, she describes how two of her aunts came to her house in Manipur for refuge. Because their house was under attack. At one point, there was no house in her locality that did not have refugees. In one house, around 20 people came to take refuge in one night because their houses did not exist.
Their stories are powerful testaments to the human cost of the violence in Manipur. It is also a reminder of the resilience of the Manipuri people. They are struggling to rebuild their lives in the aftermath of the conflict.



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