The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Dress code for women teachers

Imphal, Nov. 12: From class IX to university, girls in Manipur are not seen on campus in anything other than the traditional phanek (sarong). The proscribed Kanglei Yawol Kanna Lup (KYKL) now wants women teachers to adhere to the same dress code.

The outfit had begun its “Operation New Kangleipak”, meant to cleanse the state’s “decadent education system”, by making it mandatory for girl students from class IX onwards to wear only the phanek on campus. Nobody has disobeyed the diktat, encouraging the KYKL to extend the dress code to the teachers.

The insurgent outfit has, however, not set any code for women outside educational institutions. Its publicity and research secretary Lan-ngamba Manganag today said women who teach should set an example by wearing traditional attire to schools and colleges. “If the teachers are good, the students automatically prosper. They are the ones who lead the way,” the KYKL member said.

In keeping with the image of an insurgent outfit with a conscience, the KYKL had a few things to say about morals and ethics. Describing the education system in Manipur as one that makes students merely dream of white-collar jobs, it said the community of teachers should focus on development of human resources.

The outfit said teachers were “engineers” of character, morals and ethics. “Teachers are the ones who can mould children into good human beings and build a good society,” it added.

The KYKL’s “Operation New Kangleipak” has already had an impact on the education system. The outfit monitored the matric and Class XII examinations this year in a bid to prevent students from employing unfair means. It even “punished” a few people, including invigilators, for violating the “ban”.

On another occasion, the KYKL took some university teachers to task for allegedly tampering with the marksheets of some students to help them get admission at the cost of deserving candidates. Its activists shot at the secretary of the Council of Higher Secondary Education recently for allegedly bribing the school education minister to get the post.

The People’s Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak (Prepak) is another insurgent outfit that has strong views on several issues. All forms of entertainment were put on hold today in response to Prepak’s call to observe a “black day” to mourn the death of some of its founder leaders at the hands of security forces.

Theatres remained closed and entertainment programmes postponed to other dates. Prepak observes November 12 as a “black day” every year in honour of Ayekpam Dhiren, Kabikanta and Gambhir killed in an encounter in Imphal West district on this day in 1978.

The outfit’s founder, R.K. Tullachandra, died in another encounter on November 12, 1985. The incident had taken place at Kabowakching village of Bishenpur district.

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