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Manipur State Information

Capital : Imphal

Districts :9

Language: Meitei, Bishnupriya Manipuri, Hindi, English, Mizo and local dialects.

Introduction to Manipur

Due to its geographical situation, Manipur is a shining pearl in the Himalayan system. Jawaharlal Nehru once described Manipur as the 'Jewel of India'. Manipur is a natural delight with hills around the cup-shaped valley and numerous small lakes and swamps. Manipur had been a Union Territory from 1956 and became a full-fledged state from 1972. Manipuri was recognised as a national language in 1992.

Geography of Manipur

Manipur is located between 23.83oN and 25.68oN latitude and 93.03oE and 94.78oE longitude. It comprises 1820 sq. km of flat plateau of alluvial valley and 20,507 sq. km of hill territory and forms a part of the Himalayan mountain system, which carries this cup-shaped wonderland inside its series of hill ranges. Nagaland in the north, Mizoram in the south, upper Myanmar in the east and Cachar district of Assam in the west bound Manipur. Hill ranges from all sides surround the valley portion of the state. All the hills are covered with luxuriant growth of forests with nagesar, jurul, Indian rubber, tan, oak, ash, teak and palm.

Brief History of Manipur

Manipur has population of two groups, the people who inhabit the hills called the Nagas and those who inhabit the valley called the Meiteis. The hills are also inhabited by the group called the Kukis. Imphal is the political capital of Manipur. The earliest recorded history dates to 900 AD. In the course of its history there have been several invasions from Myanmar (Burma), which borders with Manipur and numerous clashes with the Nagas.

In 1826, Manipur was brought into India by the treaty of Yandavo by Raja Jai Singh with the British at the end of the Indo-Burmese war. This followed a dispute in accession to the throne. With the intervention of the British the dispute was settled.

In 1891 Churachand was nominated the Raja and it came under British rule as a princely state. During World War II Imphal was occupied by the Japanese. After Indian independence Manipur became a Union Territory and subsequently achieved statehood in January 21,1972.

Districts of Manipur

Manipur has 9 districts: Bishnupur, Chandel, Churachandpur, Imphal-East, Imphal-West, Senapati, Tamenglong, Thoubal and Ukhrul

Economy of Manipur

Agriculture and allied activities is the single largest source of livelihood of rural folk. Paddy is the main crop grown. Manipuri rice is very sweet. It can be eaten without curry. Other crops are wheat, pulses, maize etc. There are two modes of cultivation viz, punghul and transplantation of seeds. In the hill area Jhum and terraced cultivation are carried in the agricultural season. In general the land is cleared in the month of January and February. Crops are sown in May-June and harvesting starts in October and ends about in the early part of December. The soil is considered fit for all kinds of grain crops, vegetables and fruits. Sirohee hill in Ukural is famous for the Sirohee lily. The species of this plant is endemic to that particular hill only. Fruits cultivated include pine-apple, arum, orange. In some areas of the valley apricot, oranges, lemons and mangoes are also grown. Every kind of vegetables like cabbage, carrot, radish, beetroot, turnip, ladies finger, pumpkin and pulses are grown and the yield is very good. Vegetables also include chilly, potato, cabbage, pea, brinjal and tomato.

Manipur has also made some progress in the setting up of small-scale industrial units. A joint sector plant to manufacture drugs and pharmaceuticals has been commissioned and electronic goods; Steel fabrication articles and plastic goods are being produced in the state. Among other industries a spinning mill, a ghee manufacturing unit and similar factories to make other consumer products have been commissioned. A factory is already making colour and black and white, TV sets.

Manipur Travel Information

Manipur has a many offer to the tourists visiting this state. Some of the places worth visiting are the Shree Govindajee Temple, Kaina (a sacred place of Hindus), Khwairamand Bazaar, Manipur Zoological Garden, apart from the beautiful Loktak Lake and Sendra Island. Besides, Langthabal (historic sites), Moirang, Moreh, Phubala, Singda, Khongjom, Sahid Mandir, Khonghampat Orchidarium, Keibul Lamjao National Park, Sekta Archeological Living Museum, and the Manipur State Museum are surely worth a visit.

Rivers of Manipur

Manipur has Major Rivers - Imphal, Iril, Nambul, Sekmai, Chakpi, Thoubal and Khuga.

Education in Manipur

Manipur has an overall literacy rate of 68.87% with male literacy rate at 77.87% and female literacy rate at 59.70%. The Manipur University came into existence on June 5, 1980 and is located in the historic Canchipur with the ruins of the old palace of Manipur in the background. The University, which has jurisdiction all over the state of Manipur, has affiliated colleges and 3 permitted colleges situated at different parts of the state. Training facilities have also been created to enable the young men and woman to acquire technological capability and provide industries with readymade trained manpower. A center for electronic design and technology and the central institute of plastic Engineering and Technology have been set up at Imphal.

Food of Manipur

In Manipur eromba is a special fish delicacy of this state. Vegetables and bamboo shoots are some of the other delicacies of Manipur. Among the sweets, Kabok, made up of molasses and rice, is a famous name among the Manipuris. The drink called shekmai, made in a village with the same name, is a famous country wine of the state.

Arts & Culture of Manipur

Manipur has been identifying itself to the people living in India as well as abroad through its rich arts and culture. Love of art and beauty is inherent in the people and it is difficult to find a Manipuri girl who cannot sing or dance. Much has been written on the Manipuri dance, on its lyrical beauty and rhythm. The Manipuri school of dancing whether folk, classical or modern is devotional in nature. The folk dances of tribal people captivate the beholders with their exotic costumes and simple but graceful rhythm. Their folklore is quite rich in quality. The dances of the tribal people are ritualistic and recreational, religious and temporal. The ritual dances are performed at a particular rite or ceremony or sacrifice and these dances naturally have a spiritual and religious basis.

The rich culture and tradition of the Manipuris are also depicted in their handloom clothes and handicrafts. The Manipuri handloom and handicraft are world famous for its craftsmanship as well as ingenuity, colourfulness and usefulness. The people are artistic and creative in their thinking and outlook. The creativeness in their habit and tradition has found expression in the designing of handloom and handicrafts products. The handloom products are as varied and colourful as the individual needs and tastes. Bed sheets and covers, colourful tribal shawls curtains and screens, sarees and gowns of Manipur find markets throughout India and abroad.

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