Noted folk singer Guru Rewben Mashangva and women ace boxer Mary Kom from Manipur were awarded with the National Tribal Award in New Delhi last evening by Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Government of India. The awards were handed over by V Kishore Chandra Deo. Each of the awards carries a cash prize of Rs 2 lakh, a citation and a trophy.
“This is to acknowledge the commendable contribution of Shri Guru Rewben Mashangva in the field of tribal art and culture. As a recognition, the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Government of India hereby confers the National Tribal Award for the year 2011-12,” said the citation for Guru Rewben Mashangva.
As for Mary Kom, her husband received the award on her behalf since the boxer is in Mongolia participating in the Asian Women Boxing Championship event.
Talking to the press, beaming Guru Rewben Mashangva said he feels delighted for being recognised. But added with a lamentation, “However, back home in a state like Manipur it is sad that the people are not giving much value to the folk music.”
Started taking up flute and guitar in the late 1980s, Rewben Mashangva has come a long way. He had struggle a lot and is still struggling to make both ends meet while most of his time he devote to the folk music promotion. He said it is because of his wife who works in a private school as a teacher, he can engross to this profession. Most of the domestic chores, his wife looks after.
There is an interesting anecdote of Guru Rewben Mashangba. Many years ago during a hearty concert, the crowd applauded him with clapping and other ovations shown to him, Guru Rewben had said, “I’m a hero here tonight but once at home, I will sit down for my dinner with just a plate of rice and Eromba, a chilly filled Manipuri vegetable mashed with a fermented fish.