Manipur Government sanctions Rs 46 crore for Shirui heritage site development
The 4th edition of the Shirui Lily Festival 2022 at Shirui village was inaugurated on Wednesday by Manipur Governor La Ganesan in the presence of Chief Minister N Biren Singh.
Updated 27 May 2022, 9:48 am
All roads led to Shirui Lily Festival 2022 in Ukhrul district, which is located at a distance of around 83 km from Imphal city, as the event commenced with music, food, traditional games and other cultural activities, after a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
The 4th edition of the festival was inaugurated on Wednesday at Shirui village ground by Manipur governor La Ganesan in the presence of Chief Minister N Biren Singh.
The state Tourism department, in collaboration with the Ukhrul district administration and Shirui Village Authority is organising the programme till May 28. The festival will be mainly held at Shirui Village ground.
The other location will be at Bakshi ground at Dungrei where Shirock, a rock fest will be held with participation from various bands all across the country.
Governor La Ganesan, who attended as chief guest, said that the festival is annually celebrated in Manipur, and it aims to increase awareness about the ‘Shirui Lily’ flower, and develop sustainable and responsible tourism in Manipur, he said.
The Shirui Lily, which blooms from late May to early June, is known to the world due to its rarity, he further said, adding the flower is found only on the top of the Shirui Hill of Ukhrul district in Manipur. He further said that proper scientific study is needed so that the flower can continue to thrive in its original habitat.
He mentioned that the tissue culture of the plant has been done by ICAR and it plans to preserve the plant not only in the original habitat but also in laboratory conditions.
Giving focus on global warming, climate change and their impact on the Lily and taking up remedial measures are laudable, he further said, adding that it is high time to do so.
He also said that if marketed properly, Shirui Lily Festival can become a tourist attraction. It will not only create awareness about the need to protect the environment but also can attract tourists, he said. It will not only improve the well being of the local populace but can also bring in advanced knowledge and expertise to improve the environment, he added.
Not only the Lily but the seasonal flowers of the Shirui range such as Rhododendron can be marketed, he said. The governor also wished for a successful week-long programme.
Our Ukhrul Correspondent added that as a part of the festival, traditional items were displayed by various communities of the state.
The inaugural festival began with blowing of indigenous trumpet by national awardee Guru Rawung, a renowned state folk song singer.
Speaking at the occasion, chief minister N Biren Singh greeted the people of Ukhrul invoking ‘Leikhaya Ngashun’ (meaning good afternoon, people of Ukhrul).
Making public the amount earmarked for developing Shirui heritage site, he said that under the Ministry of Minority Affairs, Government of India, a sum of Rs 46 crore has been sanctioned.
He said that due to Covid pandemic, the festival could not be organised in the last two years. “The state has become Covid free now,” he added.
He expressed that he was touched by the TNL led Tangkhul CSOs for their full support in the state government’s fight against ‘War on drugs’. He appreciated their stand and announced that several communities of the state have joined the campaign to ensure that Manipur becomes a drugs free state. He lauded the stand of the community and CSOs.
The Tangkhul community is blessed on various fronts, he said and mentioned about indigenous Tangkhul hui (Hao fa), Nungpi black pottery and Shirui Lily among others.
He also highlighted the major projects initiated in Ukhrul district. He pointed out that rope ways from Mahadev to Shirui via Ukhrul have been earmarked. The state government has given top priority to it. He also laid stress on the need to minimise compensation and tax collection to ensure smooth undertaking of developmental projects in the district.
Concerning the upgrading of Pettigrew College Ukhrul, he said TNL president David Shimray has apprised him to elevate Pettigrew college to University level. “Among the hill districts of the state, priority is given to this college and one bus has been allotted for the college,” he added.
He asserted that he will not compromise on quality and directed contractors overseeing the ongoing Pettigrew college building construction to maintain quality.
“Let this festival be a platform to unite all the different communities of this tiny Manipur state,” he said.
The inaugural programme was attended by cabinet minister Biswajit, minister Khashim Vashum, ADC chairman, Dipu Gangmei, Letpao Haokip, Awangbou Newmai, MLAs, Tourism department, transport, high ranking government officers, police and Assam rifles.
It may be mentioned that the inaugural programme was delayed by almost two hours as the visiting inaugural chief guest and president who were to come by chopper got cancelled due to weather conditions.
Governor and chief minister led team also inspected various stalls namely the Phungcham Haofa stall, mithun stall, Nungpi black pottery among others.
Meanwhile, minister Awangbou Newmai inaugurated ShiRock at Bakshi ground, Hungpung.
First published:25 May 2022, 5:28 pm
ukhrulShirui Festivalstate festivalshirock
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