Updated 26 Oct 2020, 3:31 pm
The Apunba Imagi Machasing (AIMS), Manipur urged the state government for the inclusion of cane and bamboo as a vocational subject and skill development in school curriculum in Manipur as a part of energizing vocational education in the National Education Policy, 2020.
AIMS director Atom Sunil said that the skills of Manipuri people on the cane (rattan) and bamboo related products are associated with the evolution of the society.
“In Meitei tradition, once a baby is born, the baby is kept into a 'yangkok', which is made of cane and bamboo. Bamboo is needed during childbirth, marriage and death in Meetei/Meitei society. Bamboo is closely associated with our tradition, and we have separate puya for bamboo called "Warol”, he said. The AIMS director said that Manipur has around 9,903 square km on bamboo cultivation across the state, the 3rd largest in North East India after Arunachal Pradesh and Assam.
Dwelling into the benefits of bamboo, he said that the intrinsic designs curated by local craftsmen are highly praised globally, and the soibum (fermented bamboo shoot) is increasing high demand, especially during COVID-19 pandemic as its health benefit and its immune booster properties.
“Bamboo can be harvested faster within 3-5 years than other trees (10-20 years). It dramatically reduces erosion with a sum of stem flow rate. It is also the fastest growing plant on this planet. It has been recorded growing at an amazing 47.6 inches in a 24-hour period”, he pointed out.
Following the ban imposed on felling of trees at will, Sunil asserted that bamboo and cane have become an essential replacement for timber or wood-based household items. Perhaps even more important, given the carbon dioxide emissions thought to be responsible for global warming and the threat to biodiversity, bamboo produces 35 per cent more oxygen than trees, he added.
It is necessary not only for sourcing raw materials and superfood but also for protecting the natural environment. Unlike the bamboo, cane products of Manipur are one of the finest cane qualities in the world, he said.
Sunil further informed that a proposal letter has been submitted to the chief minister and governor of Manipur, on Sunday.
First published:25 Oct 2020, 5:21 pm