"…O North-East India! Is it not the base of ULFA's ? Here people of Bihar and that of Bangladesh are killed…. Isn't that so? Aren't the people there are man eaters? Portrayed in the Hindi film TANGO CHARLIE). Is rupee the currency there ? What a mess, the people there are anti socials and what they eat? God Knows… Hills…hills and there live the Chinkeys. Hey, don't go there, they might eat you..! Basically, they don't have brain… that's why very short tempered…! Is it really a part of India ? Aren't they only our guests? (Portrayed in the Hindi film CHAK DE INDIA). Go hell with them, why should we care..!". Let's find in...
Friends,welcome to North East – North East India. You people from the mainlandmight be thinking what's there over here so as to welcome you. Butbefore saying anything let me at first clarify the term, 'MAINLAND.'
Itis being said by many that the country India is the step mother ofNorth-East (NE) and often it's being referred to as the mainland. Doyou also feel so? If not then check all the enlisted 'facts' about NEand if you get along with anyone of them, just accept the termmainland…! So, as far as isolation of the North-eastern states isconcerned, it all began as a result of British imperialism, when theregion was cut-off from its traditional trading partners (Bhutan,Myanmar and Indo-China). Later, Indian independence and partition madethis a landlocked region, exacerbating the isolation that is beingrecognized lately, but not studied yet. However, bodies like the NorthEastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd (NEDFi) were incorporatedon August 9, 1995 and the Ministry of Development of NortheasternRegion (DONER) was set up in September 2001 to reach here.
Anyway,for giving you the exact picture of NE India, we will have to flashbackto the day when the seven sisters were together – the NEFA (North-EastFrontier Agency). The North East Council (NEC) was constituted in 1971as the nodal agency for the economic and social development of theseven states. Just NEFA was really not sufficient to compress the widediversity of life found here. People themselves, origins, livelihood,languages, habits and mental and physical behavior were all not thesame. Based on that, seven new states came up. All though very contrastamong ourselves, we the people are often referred to as 'Chinkeys' andthis place – the land of tribal culture. Now you may say it is muchuncivilized, but how we have adapted to the situation prevailing hereis far to seek. You people have given the phrases, - base of ULFA,Bihari people killed, minorities are screwed up etc. etc... But, mydear friend, we too suffer from that, and how we cope up to them andeven prosper like the beautiful lotus in the mud, is the lifestylemanagement.
"Love is the beginning of Wisdom and Love stems from Understanding. One cannot Love blindly; he's got to understand first."
One has tounderstand the uniqueness of tribal culture, in order to love them, toexperience their warm hospitality, simple ways of living yet a shrewdand sincere judgment of opinions. Presentlynumbering approximately 20 million people, we have existed as adistinctive tribal community for thousands of years, surviving wars,plagues and epidemics, man-made and natural disasters, and we thereforeowe allegiance to our Land which have suffered with us, and haveprotected and preserved us as a people through all these centuries,comforting our dead, blessing and enriching the living.
With ourunique tribal genius we have been able to live in harmony with nature,possessing the inbuilt knowledge of knowing the extent of developmentwhen to do it and how to do it in the best capacity to incur lastingresult for benefiting the present and future generations. We take fromnature sufficient enough to keep ourselves fittest for survival withoutdisrupting the balance of natural development, of man and hisenvironment, adopting our ways of living in conformity with the changesof the natural environment.
Yes, weare sensitive to change, for we are able to deeply feel and appreciatethe goodness and wisdom of the Creator in giving us this beautifulearth for man to live in harmony and at peace with his fellow man andwith mother earth; to develop and not to destroy. Wellfriends, what you might have drunk in the morning, is a cup of tea andAssam Tea is more refreshing than anything. The state Asom (Assam) isthe largest producer of tea and timber in the country and it has theoldest oil refinery in India (Digboi). Some 79% of India's crude oil isfound in the NE region only. Its rich bio-diversity supports an immenserange of rare and endangered creatures such as the one hornedrhinoceros, the golden langur, the Gangetic dolphin and the cloudedleopard.
Asom is reputed for its silk and the most prominent variety is muga, the golden silk exclusive only to this state. Apart from muga, there is paat, as also eri, the latter being used in the manufacture of warm clothes for winter.
A wide range of decorative items are available in cane and bamboo work and bell-metal and brass. Tribal arts, including masks (bhaona) in metal, bamboo and wood are popular souvenir items.
Thus, asstated, we the people of NE are living our life up to the fullest.Tension is there in every place, even maybe at your home also, but whatit matters is how we tackle them. Till now we the people have learnt tostay with difficulties. Simple adaptation is just what the nature wantsfrom us. NE is vast-its terrain difficult. But vacationing in NE is anadventure – an exciting, enlightening and incredible adventure –reminding you again what a wonderful privilege it is to savor thedelights of wild beauty at its very best.
So, thatmight have cleared your myths. How come a place so on verge ofdevelopment can live under the shadow of terror? Media is providing youthe news which you want to hear. Can't you change your perspective orat least try to analyze on the feeds being given to you before reachingon to a conscience?
Before Iwrap it up, I will definitely say, embarking on a journey of India'sremote eight states of the North-East is a tumultuous but rewardingone. In recent years, the region has seen a deep interest in itstourist potential. The infinite variety of its geographic setting, itstopology, its varied flora and fauna and avian life, the history of itspeople and the variety of its ethnic communities and their richheritage of ancient traditions and lifestyles, its festivals and craftsmake it a holiday wonderland that's just begging to be discoveredafresh. Discovering the NE states, including the partially opened upSikkim, in the Eastern Himalayas, is a challenge – yet a romanticadventure in the best traditions of travel and discovery………………….
SinceNorth East India is the only distinct unambiguous region of India alongwith South India, I beseech everyone to look into the article moreseriously and thereby providing true prospects for the tourism industryto prevail here. Do check in at the ground reality and don't at allbelieve on myths……. You might be missing the God's land…..on nature'sown canvas…!
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