IMPHAL, Jan 21 - Manipur today observed the 49th Statehood Day with a colourful march past at the 1st Battalion Manipur Rifles Parade Ground here. Chief Minister N Biren Singh, Deputy Chief Minister Y Joykumar, ministers K Shyam (Revenue) and N Kayisii (Fisheries), MLAs, top civil and police officers attended the function held on the occasion.
Chief Minister Biren Singh stated that the State Cabinet had approved of an amount of Rs 46 crore to set up a heritage park at Keibul Lamjao in Bishnupur district. The park will have traditional huts of all recognised tribes of the State, the Chief Minister said.
Biren Singh added that the State Government has been focusing on sectors like agriculture, horticulture, fishery, etc. The Chief Minister said that due to its efforts, Manipur bagged the Krishi Karman Award 2017-18 for the best performing State in total foodgrain production under Category III. At the same time, fish production has also witnessed a considerable rise in the last few years, he claimed.
Biren Singh stated that free education would be provided from pre-nursery to Class X or Class XII from the current academic session in most government model schools under the 60 Assembly constituencies of the State.
Two farmers – Y Bishworjit Singh of Kakching Panji Leikai and Th Johnny of Lamboikhul Awang Leikai – who recently received the Krishi Karman Award from the Union Agriculture Minister, were rewarded with a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh each at the function.
The march past was commanded by Sarangthem Asana, Assistant Director of the Manipur Police Training College. The dog squad was the main attraction of the celebration.
Meanwhile, the banned People’s Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak has alleged that there are no valid grounds to observe the ‘Statehood Day’. Alleging that Manipur was merged with the Indian Union “forcibly” before it was granted Statehood on January 21, 1972, the outfit, in a statement, said that the people have been made to forget that Kangleipak (Manipur) was once an independent nation with a 2000-year-old history.
Shillong Staff Correspondent adds: Chief Minister Conrad Sangma today greeted the people of Meghalaya on the occasion of its Statehood Day.
At a function here, Sangma stressed the need to remember the glorious past, document it and pass it on to the younger generation. He said that slogans to die for the State should be replaced by slogans to live for the State and the nation by doing what needs to be done.
The Chief Minister said that there are many communities who are still fighting for their identity.
Reminding the people that Meghalaya would celebrate its 50th Statehood anniversary in two years, the Chief Minister said that he wished to see Meghalaya in the top rank among the small States of the country.
Sangma also presented the Meghalaya Day awards to government employees.
Similar functions were also held in other district headquarters. In South West Garo Hills, DC Ram Kumar said that the celebration was not only about remembering the past but also about focusing on the future of the State.
In North Garo Hills, Deputy Speaker and Resubelpara MLA Timothy D Shira recalled the contributions of the visionary forefathers who fought against all odds for the creation of the State.
In West Jaintia Hills, Chief Executive Member of the Jaintia Hills Autonomous District Council Thombot Shiwat, remembered the founding fathers for their sacrifice and selfless contributions.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a tweet, said: “The people of Meghalaya are known for their kind and compassionate nature. From sports, music to conservation of nature, there is much to learn from them. Praying for Meghalaya’s development in the coming years.”