Living a Dream

“Listen to the colour of your dreams” strummed The Beatles in their album Tomorrow Never Knows It seems incredible as I sit to write this editorial that I am actually living a dream in its different shades and hues. The Thumb Print is already a month old. From what appeared infeasible sitting in the living room of my residence in a district in Assam, a state in India’s Northeast, this online news magazine on a shoestring budget has already stormed its way into the cyberspace and has managed to win hearts of people all over the world. Such is the might of the internet. 

The genesis of this media venture penetrates deep into a wounded sentiment which has witnessed long years of neglect and apathy for a region which is a ‘paradise for journalists’. However, this is not a plaint or a requiem. We decided to carve our own space where we would be heard and seen. We want to tell the world that we are not a museum. We are not yet another killing field. But we are a vibrant and living world with our moments of joy and sorrow. We are men, women and children who wish to write our own stories and take it to the world and bring the world closer to us. No wonder, we call ourselves a ‘savvy international’ venture.

 The Thumb Print at the moment can best be described as a scaffold trying to maintain a precarious balance between the region and the world. But we hope to grow, not only in numbers and figures but as an institution that will help dispel many myths and stereotypes about the region and aid in bonding with the world. This is a dream to go global with local stories — tales of the marginalized, the under-reported, criss-crossing through geographical terrain and psychological barriers. We will also talk about popular stories and tales which strike the right emotional chord. Our soul lies in Northeast India. We hope to live and delve in the contemporary times and tell stories with a difference. 

We are treading an untrodden path since this region has grossly been under-reported. It has completely been out of the radar of the Indian as well as the international media. It’s a challenge we chose to take up inspite of the odds in our way. But we are brimming with ideas and promise to engage with our readers with novel and riveting stories. We have already started associating ourselves with social causes as media partners in the Kaziranga Green Marathon on the occasion of World Environment Day and Disability Scenario in Northeast India: Status, Challenges and Prospects. 

We have floated this venture with paltry resources. We do not know if we will be able to sustain this dream. But the unexpected response from our readers and encouraging messages from all quarters imbues new hope in us. We tried to offer a neat and salubrious mix of stories in our first issue with an assortment of local as well as international stories. In the last issue, we had an assorted array of stories from wild stories of wildlife workers to a school teacher discovering the wonders of internet to an exciting football match at Manchester United. In this issue, we have a heady mix of stories from Hollywood to a dancer’s annual trip to Majuli, the river island on the heart of the Brahmaputra River. 

We hope to continue this tradition of bringing delectable stories from the world over and of course, Northeast India. I can’t help getting lyrical again and hum a John Lennon number. “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one, I hope some day you’ll join us, And the world will be as one.” 

Teresa Rehman

Teresa Rehman

Teresa Rehman is an award-winning journalist based in Northeast India. She had worked with India Today magazine, The Telegraph and Tehelka. She is now the Managing Editor of The Thumb Print. She has been awarded the WASH Media Awards 2009-2010. She had recieved the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Award for two consecutive years (2008-09 and 2009-10) for the category 'Reporting on J&K and the Northeast (Print). She received the Laadli Media Award for Gender Sensitivity 2011, Sanskriti Award 2009 for Excellence in Journalism and the Seventh Sarojini Naidu Prize 2007 for Best Reporting on Panchayati Raj by The Hunger Project. She was also featured in the Power List of Femina magazine in 2012. Her two book are 'The Mothers of Manipur' (Zubaan Books) and Bulletproof (Penguin).