Imphal: The 173rd death anniversary of Narasingh was observed today at Kangla, with floral tribute being paid to the portrait of late Maharaja Narasingh at his Manglen. The observation was organised by the State Archaeology Department, Department of Art and Culture, of the Government of Manipur.
Chief Minister N. Biren Singh led the other dignitaries in paying floral tribute and offering tarpan at Nungjeng Pukhri, Kangla. The Chief Minister also paid obeisance to the Shree Shree Govinda Jiu Jalakeli Pala, led by Maharajkumari Hemamanjuri.
Addressing the gathering, during the formal programme, N. Biren Singh expressed satisfaction that the observation of the death anniversary of Maharaja Narasingh has grown with the participation of government officials and the public and the organisation of a formal programme.
The Chief Minister observed the need for the present generation to remember and honour the sacrifices made by our great forefathers in defending the freedom of their motherland. He expressed concern that the present generation seemed to forget the contribution of our forefathers, instead many youths are getting addicted to drugs and intoxicants in the name of modern Manipur.
The Chief Minister continued that, acknowledging the heroic efforts of Maharaja Narasingh and Herachandra in driving the Burmese away, to end the Seven Years Devastation in 1826, the State Government had installed their statues beside the statue of Maharaja Gambhir Singh at Canchipur. Apart from this, a bigger statue of Maharaja Narasingh had also been installed in front of the Kangla Western Gate. Besides, the installation of another statue of Maharaja Narasingh at Moreh near the Ningthi River had been completed and would be inaugurated soon, he added.
The Chief Minister stressed the need to maintain unity among different communities residing across the State, adding that the State Government had set up traditional huts representing different indigenous tribes of Manipur at the Sangai Ethnic Park at Moirang Khunou, to showcase and promote our rich indigenous cultures. He informed that the delegates of the G20, who were on their visit to the state earlier this year, were surprised to see the beauty and diversity of the state’s culture and traditions.
Biren further maintained that the state is moving ahead towards development with considerable improvement in the law-and-order situation, adding that domestic and foreign tourists do not have any tense feelings when visiting the state. He continued that the state has become an attractive destination because of the public’s support in maintaining peace across the state. As such, many events like the G20, the Tri-Nation Football Tournament, and the Grand Finale of Femina Miss India are being held in the state, he added.
Further stating that the habit of cleanliness has been associated with our culture and tradition, since time immemorial, he appealed to the public to also take concern in maintaining cleanliness outside their respective residences too, as they do to make their house neat and clean. He also informed that he had instructed the police department to catch those people who throw garbage in rivers, which has been a major factor in polluting the river. He further informed that bottle banks have also been installed at different places to drop plastic bottles.
Concluding his speech, the Chief Minister reiterated that the people of the state have been able to live as a civilization because of the selfless sacrifices and contributions made by our forefathers. He expressed the need for all communities to live together as one and join hands to take the state to a new height of development. He also informed that the state government would start a mass tree planting drive in the coming rainy season, in various hill and valley areas of Manipur and sought their support for the same.
In his presidential speech, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Yumnam Khemchand Singh stressed the importance of remembering and honouring our great forefathers for their heroic efforts to drive the Burmese soldiers away during the period of Seven Years of Devastation. Maharaj Narsingh was one of the kings of Manipur who had taken a significant role in saving the Manipur civilization from the atrocities of the Burmese soldiers, he added.
The Minister added that the developmental gap between the hill and valley regions had been bridged by taking up various welfare initiatives. The law-and-order situation in the state has considerably improved, with a prevalence of peace across the state, and many tourists have started visiting the state in recent years, he continued.
The Guard of Honour, Gun Salute, and Sounding of the Last Post by a contingent of 1st Battalion Manipur Rifles were also highlights of the observation. A two-minute silence was also observed by all as a mark of respect to Late Maharaja Narasingh.
Many state cabinet ministers, civil and police officials also attended the observation, among others.