A step towards social redemption

[ Amar Sangno ]

Revenge system that continues to prevail has been the ‘curse of East Kameng district. It hangs like the proverbial sword that everyone is scared of and worried about. However, the East Kameng Social Welfare and Cultural Organisation (EKSWCO) has dared to take up the issue and take it to streets on its 39th Foundation Day cum 7th General Conference that concluded in a grand manner recently at Seppa.
The proceeding was entirely dominated by three contentious issues- revenge system, mortgage during election and exorbitant interest rates by money lenders. The EKSWCO argued that these issues are pushing the district backward in all developmental fronts.
The EKSWCO denounced revenge system as barbaric and resolved to continue its endeavor to educate and reform the tribal society of East Kameng district.
Unconfirmed data says that at least seven revenge killings were reported in East Kameng district over the last five years, but none of the cases made it to police records.
“The victim’s family takes revenge as a prestige issue, as the society looks down upon one who cannot take revenge”, said senior Advocate Pritam Taffo, who presented a discourse over the topic.
“The society also glorifies the people who avenge murders. It doesn’t matter if they take life of a person closely related to the accused. However, it is observed that many now believe it is wrong to do so, and that is a good sign”, Taffo added.
The ‘an eye for an eye’ revenge system has been prevalent in the district since many years and there is some hope that the EKSWCO’s attempts to bring reformation would help in addressing the issue.
Other issues weighing heavily on the district’s parental organization are mortgage during election and 10 percent interest money lending issue.
The organisation further rejected mortgage during election terming it an unethical practice, and argued that the prevalent culture is the root cause of corruption and plays a vital role in gerrymandering during election.
The EKSWCO knows that it will take time for reforms to be successful as the prevalent system has mass acceptance; making it a tough and slow process, for which collective and sustained efforts are required.
To achieve a metamorphosis of the society, it further resolved to relentlessly pursue the agenda by helping stakeholders to take informed decisions by roping in the expertise of social engineers and targeting the funders.
The exorbitant interest rate by money lenders has become a menace and cause of social disorder in the district. Reports say many families have been broken apart over the issue of 10 percent interest rate. The EKSWCO further resolved it would discourage 10 percent interest rate and would advocate that it is reduced to five percent or below.
As the parental organisation, EKSWCO has more responsibilities to shoulder and more issues to take up, but these three mentioned issues remain contentious. The district parental organisation has to face the litmus test ahead to achieve its three tough yet noble goals.