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PRESS RELEASE (r)
The Imphal FREE PRESS
Imphal, Manipur State of India
Friday, January 3, 1997.
ABSL and friends to celebrate Burmese Day
By A Staff Reporter
IMPHAL Jan 2: The All Burma Students League will be
observing the 49th anniversary of Burma's Independence
Day at Moreh on Saturday.
Various political leaders, including the president of
the Manipur People's Party, O Joy Singh and the State
Janata Dal general secretary, Kh Jibon Singh, student
and youth leaders, Human Rights activists and other
intellectuals in addition to the local Burmese
community are expected to attend the ceremony.
A peace march and public rally are also to be held
after the ceremony. The ABSL statement received here
said the rally would highlight ongoing human rights
violations being committed by the ruling State Law and
Order Restoration Council (SLORC).
The rallyists also expect to issue a memorandum calling
on SLORC to accept Aung San Suu Kyi's offer for
peaceful talks, and transfer power to the National
League for Democracy, NLD. The memorandum also urges
the international community to impose a global trade
embargo against the ruling military regime.
The ABSL statement added that with this forthcoming
Independence day function, the organization hoped to
renew the support and solidarity of the people of India
to the struggling people of Burma and to promote people
contacts between the two communities.
(A news item covered in a local newspaper of Manipur
State of India)
49th Anniversary of Burma's Independence Day
4th January 1997 (Moreh, Manipur State, India)
The 49th Anniversary of Burma's Independence Day was
celebrated on 4th January 1997 at Moreh, a bordering
town of Manipur State with Burma. The ceremony was
organized by the All Burma Students League (ABSL), a
national political organization fighting for the
restoration of democracy in Burma. It was jointly co-
operated by the All Manipur Students Union (AMSU) and
Kuki Students Organization (KSO) which are the major
local student organizations actively supporting Burma's
The ceremony started at 11:30 AM at Cinema Hall
situated at the centre of Moreh township. It was
attended by the political leaders, students and youth
leaders, human rights activists of Manipur State and
local Burmese community. Welcome and Presidential
address was delivered by Com. Myat Thu, the President
of the All Burma Students League. Myat Thu, in his
speech, highlighted the fact that Burma today is not
free even though Burma achieved Independence from
British 49 years ago. The people have been suffering,
much more worse than what they suffered under the
British colonial rule, because of the military
dictatorial system which have existed since 1962. He
continued to say that as long as the military
dictatorial system exists in Burma, the sufferings of
the people will be prolonged. So, it is the historic
duty of the people to unitedly fight against the ruling
military regime in Burma. He urged the people of Burma
from all walks of life to join the Second Independence
Struggle led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi for the
restoration of democracy in the country.
The Chief Guest of the ceremony was Mr. O Joy Singh,
the President of the Manipur People's Party (MPP) and
Convener of the Friends of Burma (Manipur). Mr. O Joy
Singh, in his speech, said that democracy in the
neighboring country, Burma, would strengthen democracy
at home, India, and military rule in Burma would
escalate the chances of the same in India.
The distinguished speakers include Mr. Somrendro Singh,
President of the All Manipur Students Union (AMSU), Dr.
R.K Ranjan, Deputy Registrar of Manipur University and
Secretary of Manipur Association of Science and Society
(MASS), Mr. Ksh Saaala, State Secretary Council Member
of Communist Party of India (Marxist), Mr. L.
Sotinkumar, State Executive Council Member of Communist
Party of India, Mr. Y. Ratan Singh, General Secretary
of Janata Dal (Manipur), Mr. S. Haopao Baokip, General
Secretary of Kuki Students Organization (Moreh) and Mr.
S.L. Lunzapan Vaiphel, President of the Hill Tribal's
All the speakers assured the Burmese students and youth
their full support and solidarity in the struggle for
democratic changes in Burma. The ceremony ended with
the participants singing the song "We shall over come".
After the celebration, the participants along with
local Burmese community staged a Peace March along the
main road of Moreh. The peace march which took nearly
one hour was led by Mr. O Joy Singh and taken part by
about hundred students, youth, human rights activists
of Manipur and Burmese community. The peace marchers,
holding placards and banners, highlighted the on going
human rights violations committed by the military junta
in Burma. Moreover, the marchers shouted the slogans
demanding for the restoration of democracy and human
rights in Burma and for the ouster the military
government. They also pledged that the NLD government
must be established in Burma in 1997.
During today's celebration, a memorandum was signed by
the participants, the people of Manipur and Burma. The
memorandum demanded the military junta to immediately
release all the political prisoners and accept the
offer of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi for the dialogue to solve
the country's problems politically and peacefully.
Similarly, the 49th Anniversary of Burma's Independence
Day was celebrated simultaneously by the Burmese
democratic forces who are exiled in various parts of
the world. The demonstrations and public rallies,
demanding for the restoration of democracy in Burma,
were held in front of the Burmese Embassies in New
Delhi, Bangkok, Ottawa, Tokyo and Sydney on 4th January
All Burma Students League.