Tamphasana Devi leads the way towards a brighter future for Manipur's youth

Tamphasana Devi leads the way towards a brighter future for Manipur's youth

IANS Photo

Kolkata, May 6 (IANS) The Indian Army has been playing a stellar role in weaning off the youth in Manipur from ethnic strife and nudging them towards positivity when things seem to be going wrong for the state.

One of the success stories has been that of Tamphasana Devi from the otherwise tranquil Saitapur village under the Kumbi gram panchayat.

Tamphasana took up the sport of wushu at the age of 10 and aimed to make it big at the national and international levels. Her initial training was supported by the state government. However, challenges emerged due to the change in the socio-political situation since May 3, 2023, when ethnic violence hit the state.

“The Indian Army recognised her talent and sponsored her training with financial assistance, nutritional support, and access to top-notch training facilities from November 2023. After that, Tamphasana embarked on a rigorous journey, honing her skills under the guidance of the Indian Army.

"Her perseverance bore fruit as she began clinching medals at various levels in the 52 kg category. She won a bronze in the East Zone Games held in Guwahati in January 2024, followed by another bronze in the Khelo India Senior National Women’s Wushu League held at Ranchi in February, and a gold in the North Eastern Games held in Nagaland in March,” said a senior official of the Army’s Eastern Command.

“Tamphasana has now moved beyond mere participation to coaching, in her bid to nurture the next generation of talent. Drawing from her experience, she mentors aspiring athletes, particularly those from underprivileged backgrounds. Her dedication to empowering young athletes reflects the ethos of the Army's support for nation-building and fostering a brighter future,” the official added.

Tamphasana stands as a beacon of inspiration, not just in Manipur, but across India, symbolising the indomitable spirit of the Northeastern youth and the transformative impact of the Indian Army.

Her journey exemplifies the power of determination, perseverance, and the crucial role of support systems in realising dreams amid adversity. Through her story, she continues to inspire millions, transcending boundaries and instilling hope in aspiring children, even amid the ongoing strife in the state.

“There has to be a unified sports command structure to enhance sports infrastructure and promote peace in states like Manipur, Mizoram, and Nagaland. The stakeholders, including the Sports Authority of India (SAI), state sports associations, etc., must emphasise the urgent need for such a structure.

"This initiative should aim to organise national and international events throughout the year. Such efforts will not only elevate the region's sporting prowess, but also contribute significantly to regional peace, projecting a tranquil scenario within the next five years,” said Col Partha Pratim Barik, Secretary, Directorate of Ex-Servicemen Affairs, Government of West Bengal.

Col Barik served in the Northeastern states for 15 years.