TODAY -

The three ultimate factors to visit Manipur

Dr. Thamsing Lamkang *

Sangai Festival 2014 : Stalls at Hapta Kangjeibung :: November 30 2014
Sangai Festival 2014 : Stalls at Hapta Kangjeibung on November 30 2014 :: Pix - Nganthoi Lourembame



Watch the polo match between South Africa and Manipur; it was indeed an enthralling match. Manipur is now the 8th consecutive times champion of the international polo tournament which is being held every year alongside Manipur Sangai festival.

Comparing to the previous editions, the overall standard of the polo tournament has improved tremendously. All the participants' teams have played some great game of Polo.

If we look at this festive season there is great potential for the overall evolution of Manipur as a good tourist destination. If we make account for the lack infrastructures facilities and the infamous law and order situation of the state, things could really improve for the better.

The Prime Minister Mr. Modi was here at Sangai Festival closing ceremony and he went on to join the Hornbill festival there at Kohima. Come winter and enjoy the double treats of Sangai and Hornbill festival; this could have been a bonanza of festivals. Northeastern part of India could be promoted as a hub of festival. Every winter could be a season of festivals which everyone waited to visit this part of the world.

There is no doubt about the potential of both these festivals; they have all what it take to go a long way. But people never look these two festivals together; promoting them together is a far thing at the moment. At the moment both the sangai festival and the Hornbill festival will be consider a tame affairs as far as the question of pulling the crowd from outside the region is concern.

The real spoiler of the Sangai festival was the 'traffic jam'. The narrow streets of Imphal east are all over crowded by vehicles. One hope it will be better organized next time. Things could look up once Sanjenthong Bridge which is being under construction get over.

Howsoever the problems are there was some infrastructures development because of the Sangai festival. Credit goes to state government; at least there were some development.

Sangai festival ends with the closing speech of Mr. Modi and international polo tournament ends with the mesmerizing theme song of 'Manka".

There are three factors which puts Manipur in an advantageous position as far tourism industry is concern. The first thing which puts Manipur in such an advantageous position is the geographical position of the state. Manipur is a border state, bordering many neighboring countries but right now the so call eastern door is yet to open fully. So at the present juncture Manipur is rather a close entity.

We may or may have the good relationship with the neighboring countries but we surely are on the wrong foot as far trade and communication relation are concern, which is a potential factor in the development of any reason in the world.

As an example China and Japan never have very good relationship but the volume of trade between these so called arch rivals is far greater than the volume of trade between India and many of its friendly countries. One reason for the development of Europe in the 19th and 20th century is its inter-permeability between the different nations of the Europe. Even USA and China is consider one of the biggest competitor the history has ever seen; but the trade relation between these two countries is there to be seen by everyone.

The big question is why can't India have similar trade relation with China, Bangladesh, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and other countries? If such a thing happen and in fact are broad plans already in existence, it will do a world of good to the entire region.

The second factor which put Manipur in such a good position in tourism sector is the fact that Manipur has such a good scenic natural beauty and rare species of floras and faunas; right from Sangai and Siroy Lily to Dzuko valley and different hills of the state. Loktak Lake adorned the state in a poetic manner. May be the infrastructure and lack tourism promotion is hindering the path of Manipur to become an ultimate tourism destination. The huge untapped potentials of Manipur are needed to be delved so that all potentials of Manipur do not get lost in the misty hills of the state.

The third and most important factor which placed Manipur in such an advantageous position is the fact that Manipur has such a rich cultural heritage.

The different tribes of Manipur and their different customs is enough to raise interest of anybody who visited here. Thang-ta the traditional martial arts form of Manipur is still regarded as a beautiful and affective martial arts form. Manipuri dance is famous the world over. Above it all the tribes of Manipur have their own traditional dance form and songs to complement them. It being said that music and dance are in the blood of the tribal folk of Manipur; the only requirement is to promote the same to be seen by the world.


* Mubasir Raji wrote this article for Hueiyen Lanpao as part of 'Unlocking trends with Mubasir Raji' column
This article was posted on December 13, 2014.


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