Poppy cultivation is against Christianity and its teachings, Manipur Tribal Affairs and Hills Minister Letpao Haokip on Sunday said while reacting strongly against the mass illicit poppy cultivation taken up in the interior jungles of the state which are mostly dominated by Christians.
“If we don’t leave behind such bad deeds (poppy cultivation), the true meaning of Christianity will slowly perish from the soil of the state”, the minister said.
Letpao made the statement while delivering the chief guest speech during the third day (last day) of the platinum jubilee celebration of Penaching Village and Church held at the village in Chandel district.
Releasing of the celebration balloons after an invocation prayer marked the opening ceremony of the last day of the celebration which also showcased cultural dances and folk songs by various troops.
Stating that women always outnumber men in every spiritual-related activity, the minister stressed the need of more men getting involved in the spiritual world.
A family will be compromised and start involving in unwanted activities if its head, who is usually man, stays far from the spiritual world, he explained.
Lauding the past leaders and villagers of Penaching for maintaining their village in a well-organised manner in every aspect, Letpao called upon the villagers to be exemplary in spreading the true meaning of Christianity.
Lastly congratulating the Penaching Village and Church for its 75 years of existence, the minister also promised construction of a full-size playground at the village on top of blacktopping the inter village roads of the village.
Chairman of the Planning Committee of the celebration, Koko Nungchim, stated that the village was started with just five households and now the village has a total of more than 80 households with over 400 villagers.
He said with the blessing of the almighty and strict supervision of the church leaders, the village has been settling with peace and harmony since its establishment, staying far away from hideous crimes and activities.
The village authority and church leaders have also been leading the youngsters towards the spiritual world with good education and morals, in order to lead them to a better future, he added.
During the celebration, the chief guest also unveiled a monument of the village with engraved names of first settlers, chronology of chiefs, chairmen and pastors among others.
It was also attended by director of Horticulture and Soil Conservation, Honey Chara, and special contractor, Ng Victor, as guests of honour while president of BAP (Moyon Apex Body) Francis Chinir presided over the programme.