TODAY -

Promoting people to people contact : 2nd edition of Shirui Lily Fest
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: April 26 2018 -



A run away success. This is how the script of the Shirui Lily Festival has turned out to be in only its second edition.

To many, all roads today lead to Ukhrul district headquarters and then to Shirui village the home town of the Shirui Lily and if reports coming from Ukhrul district headquarters is anything to go by, then today, at the moment, Ukhrul town is choc-a-bloc with visitors to the festival and this is perfectly in line with the spirit of the festival.

Clearly the slogan Go to Hills of Chief Minister N Biren has percolated down to the common people and this goes well with the idea of Manipur as a geo-political reality.

The benefits of the homestay facility cut both ways.

It is a blessing for those going to Ukhrul for the festival and it is also an opportunity for those at Ukhrul to develop the idea of hosting visitors, who may or may not be known to them, at their own homes, besides the domestic revenue that is generated.

This also falls in line with the hospitality spirit of the people of Ukhrul with the Tangkhuls well known for their hospitality, long before the homestay arrangement was even heard of or thought feasible.

It is the interaction between the people that is remarkable and this will obviously mean well for the people and the State in the long run, long after the fun at the festival venue becomes a memory.

People to people contact, that is what the festival has promoted remarkably and this will prove to be much more effective than some of the rhetorics one gets to hear from ‘public leaders’ at every stage.

Promoting the State flower and promoting people to people contact and nothing can be better than this. Credit for upgrading the Shirui Lily Festival to the State level should obviously go to the BJP led Government.

The Government may take a leaf out of the success of the Shirui Lily Festival and see how this may be replicated in other districts, such as at the Tamenglong Orange Festival, Barak Festival at Senapati and the Flower Festival at Mao.

Likewise, the Government should also study how Sangai Festival can attract more people from the hill districts.

Such interactions between people of different communities can certainly go a long way in promoting people to people contact, a subject which has been touched upon in this column on many occasions.

Putting in the works to make the festival a success and this is where the idea of Shirock needs to be lauded.

Apart from the opportunity to view the Lily in its natural abode, visitors to the festival will be treated to rock shows notably by two US based rock bands, with Steelheart opening the show and Queensryche set to enthral the crowd on April 27.

In between there will be live shows from rock bands drawn from Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Assam.

Top this off with the Shirui Lily Miss contest, the trekking and camping dos at Phangrei a vast meadow on the hills, just after crossing Shirui village and surely the festival has the right mix of adventure and entertainment.

A festival with a meaning that is what Shirui Lily Festival should be about and as stated earlier, let it promote people to people contact for as the publicity blitz of the festival said, Shirui Lily Festival is more than a festival.



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