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Uranium Mining in Meghalaya: Simmering Problem

There is intense opposition to the uranium mining project in the West Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya. Yet the state government and central institutions in charge of nuclear energy are intent upon continuing with the project.

Lacking Objectivity

Apropos the editorial ‘Nagaland: Needed, a New Direction’ (August 4), it is unfortunate that a respected magazine makes an editorial comment of the Naga issue with factual errors. For instance: “...Swu and Muivah, both Tangkhul Nagas, have dominated since the 1980s”. Swu, however, is not a Tangkhul...

Socio-Political Unrest in the Region Called North-East India

One can evaluate the socio-political unrest in the north-east as an offshoot of unequal power relationships between the ethnic groups in the region. History shows that ethnic conflict in the north-east has long social and cultural roots. The current turmoil has more to do with ethnic political aspirations and the effort to protect local territories and resources. The expansion of ethnic identity has captured political institutions and social movements. Moreover, the socio-political assertion is based on demographic power in order to maintain ethnic hegemony.

Women's Work in Naga Society

This paper attempts to understand household work, workforce participation, division of labour and women's position in Naga society with special reference to the Tangkhul Nagas of Manipur state. Using a qualitative approach, the average time spent on housework and agricultural activities by men, women and children and the gendered division of labour are examined. Although Naga society is patriarchal, women enjoy considerable freedom and play an important role in family and community life. Women have a greater range of responsibilities, from domestic work - within and outside the homestead - to various agricultural activities and bear a greater work burden as well. Gender disparity measures reveal that men's responsibility for household activities is shrinking while women's work frontier is expanding, as they take over work traditionally designated as 'male'.

Equality as Tradition

In the classless, casteless Naga society, women have traditionally enjoyed a high social position, with a pivotal role in both family and community affairs. In the 'modern' milieu, with the insidious influence of drugs and violence, Naga women's organisations have taken the lead in forming social movements for peace and revitalising customary laws.

Ethnicity and Socio-Political Assertion

Assertion of ethnic identity and the accompanying political unrest is rooted often in fears among minority groups of losing their historical and culturally acquired identities. But such assertions may have several dimensions as seen in Manipur where for long several groups have agitated against the centre and state government's perceived neglect of their needs.

Linguistic Matrix in Manipur

Language, especially tribal language, is a major feature of ethnic identity. The decline of a tribal language often represents subjugation of that community.
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