Tripura - The Land Of Cultural Benevolence

Unakoti (Tripura)
A multi-social society existed in harmony in Tripura inspite of the diversity of religion, ethnicity and castes. We find a social fusion of different tribal and non-tribal cultures. Even during the times of the kings the character of the state was to welcome all those who sought refuge. Shah Shuja took refuge in Tripura for a short period of time, and the Maharaja built a mosque for him! The personal body guards of the Maharaja belonged to different sections of the society. We were not divided in the name of religion or ethnicity or caste.

The only tribal chief minister of Tripura was Mr. Dasharath Deb. Rest all were from the non-tribal community. Many of the oldest Bengali literature are the result of patronage from the Maharajas of Tripura. The Bengali language was even made the official language of Tripura. Maharaja Bir Bikram was the one to confer the title, "Bharat Bhaskar" to Rabindranath Tagore. History and partition have forced numerous people to migrate into the state. The state has always welcomed them.

Inspite of all these, there exists an underlying current of communal feeling which became evident in the riots of 1980. But today are we going to allow the political classes to broaden the rift between the two groups of people - the tribals and the non-tribals? Will we bury our glorious past in the rubbles of today's failures? Should we not humbly accept our mistakes and the lack of foresight?

Think about it.

- by Jebush Panna Dey
  (Agartala, Tripura)