TODAY -

3rd Shirui Lily Festival concludes
Source: The Sangai Express / DIPR

Imphal, October 19 2019: The 3rd State Level Shirui Lily Festival 2019, organised by the Department of Tourism concluded today at Tangkhul Naga Long (TNL) ground, Ukhrul.

Governor Dr Najma Heptulla, Minister of Art and Culture L Jayanta-kumar, Youth Affairs & Sports Minister Letpao Haokip, Education Minister Th Radheshyam Singh and Chairman, Tourism Corporation of Manipur Limited Dr Ranjan Sapam graced the closing ceremony as chief guest, president and guests of honour respectively.



3rd Shirui Lily Festival concludes
3rd Shirui Lily Festival concludes


Addressing the gathering, Governor Najma Heptullah said that Shirui Lily was discovered by Frank Kingdon-Ward, an English Botanist during his expedition to Manipur in 1946 .

He named it after his wife Jean Macklin and the flower won the Merit Prize of the 1948 Royal Horticultural Society.

Because of its rarity and beauty, it is now a well-known flower.

The chief guest opined that Shirui Lily Festival, if marketed properly can become a tourist attraction.

"Going by the increase in footfalls from the previous editions, the festival can lead to a boom in tourism for the district and the State in general.

Such a festival will not only create awareness about the need for protection of environment which needs to be priori-tized but would also attract tourists which will improve wellbeing of the local population," she said.

Lamenting on the rising temperature and common sight of small bamboos encroaching upon the habitat of the Lily, she said that there is need for more vigilance on the part of all stakeholders and a proper scientific study on the flower, so that this renowned flower can continue to thrive in its original habitat.

"Manipur is known for its orchids, flora and fauna and it will be a huge disappointment to all if this wealth is not preserved and used to our advantage", said the Governor.

The jhum cycle in the hills is becoming lesser and lesser on account of the need to feed the rising population and as a result, soil is getting easily exposed and subjected to erosion.

Due to forest destruction on the Siroy range, Ukhrul headquarters is now facing very serious threat of water scarcity, she continued.

While giving his presidential address L Jayantakumar stated that in memory of the World War II, the Government will construct a war memorial complex or a tourist spot at Harva Khangai of Ukhrul district.

It is a sin to destroy the nature's bountiful gifts, he said and appealed for preservation of environment.

"Among all the hill districts of the State, Ukhrul has lots of potential for tourism.

The festival is only in the beginning stage and we need to do more to preserve this rare gift, the Shirui Lily.

Ukhrul's Shirui lily and Sirarakhong chilli are State's pride and it is our duty to promote them and the Shirui Lily festival is one such step", Jayantakumar said.

MLA of Phungyar A/C Leishiyo Keishing and Chingai A/C MLA Khashim Vashum, Tourism Commissioner Nidhi Kesarwani, DC Kamjong Kengoo Zuringla, dignitaries, officials from different departments and hundreds of people from many parts of the State attended today's closing function.

As part of today's programme, the Governor and other dignitaries released 'Child Rights Slogan', distributed cash prizes to the winners including consolation prizes of various competitions.

Cultural programmes were also performed to entertain the crowd.


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