has been known through the ancient and medieval times through Meetei manuscripts as one of the richest intellectual heritage in Southeast Asia, with roots equidistant from the Indus Valley Civilization in the west and the Hango Ho Civilization to the far-east – the account of its land, people and civilization stretching two millennia. At the crossroads of Asian economic and cultural exchange, Manipur has long connected the Indian subcontinent to Asia enabling migration of people and religions. There is great cultural diversity where various ethnicities have coexisted since ages.
It was the Kingdom of Manipur which during the 20th century joined India after its independence. This however has been contested by groups and has resulted in a 50 year insurgency in the state where lives have been lost and development halted. The recent decade has seen better days though and travelers can today access various areas safely.
Manipur is a state in northeastern India, with the city of Imphal as its capital. It is bounded by Nagaland to the north, Mizoram to the south, and Assam to the west; Burma lies to its east. Some of unknown facts about this land are as follows
- Merry Kom is actually from Manipur and she won the World Boxing champion trophy 5 times. She even earned India an Olympic Medal.
- And then there is Irom C Sharmila who is famous for being a political activist and a socialist. The hunger strike that she started back in 2000 as a protest against Malom Massacre ended in 2016. That’s 16 years of fasting. She didn’t have food or water during this period but her body was fed with essential nutrients using a pipe through her nose. She became famous as “Iron Lady”.
- One of the most popular sports in the state of Manipur is Mukna (wrestling).
- In 1966, Keibul Lamjao was actually designated as a sanctuary but was raised to the status of National Park in 1977.
- Loktak Lake is not only important to the humans but is also the home to 100 different birds species, 233 plant species and 425 animals species. Sambhar and Indian Python can be found here.The literal meaning of Manipur is ‘Land of Jewels’. You really don’t find jewels (stones) here but the most stunning jewel you will ever find is Mother Nature herself. Mother Nature let loose her generosity in this beautiful state
- The lingua franca of Manipur is Meeteilon or Meiteilon. It is actually the language spoken by the ethnic group Meiteis, which is the state’s primary ethnic group.
- One of the many things that Manipur is famous for is Lai-Haraoba. It is a traditional dance (stylized), which the Manipuris perform for appeasement of goddesses and gods.
- During World War II, Manipur was one of the Indian states that saw some fierce action. The British and the Japanese clashed at Imphal’s border. The battle ended with Japanese defeat.
- The aforementioned battle was called the Battle of Imphal. Surprisingly, in this battle on one hand when the Allied forces clashed with Axis forces, Indian soldiers clashed with Indian soldiers as well.
- Manipur’s sex ratio is 987:1000 (females:males) – the highest amongst the Seven Sisters.
- The Sangai lives in Keibul Lamjao National Park and it can easily walk on Phumdis because of the specially adapted hooves.
- Eld’s deer is Manipur’s state animal. It is a brow-antlered deer. In Meiteilon language, it is known as the Sangai.
- Manipur is the first Indian state which introduced Oak Tussar Industry (basically Sericulture). Some of the other major industries that are found in Manipur are leather goods, edible oil crushing, rice mills and articles of canes and bamboos.
- The largest industry that operates in Manipur is the Handloom industry. One out of three of all household workers of the state work in this industry.
- Manipur is primarily an agrarian state with maize, wheat and paddy being the primary products.
- Did you know that the famous game of Polo that the Europeans play was not really the brainchild of the Europeans. The Manipuris used to play Pulu (a game played by riding on horseback). It was during the colonial rule of India when British came to know about Pulu and introduced it in Europe in form of Polo.
- And, this Loktak Lake is the home of world’s only floating national park. That’s something really incredible. The park goes by the name Keibul Lamjao.
- Manipur is the home to the famous Loktak Lake, which is largest freshwater lake in Northeast India. It plays a major role in Manipuri economy.
- And don’t forget the Phumdis on the Loktak Lake. They are floating islands and you can actually stay on one. You may just find yourself at a different location after you wake up after a good night’s sleep. They float around on the lake, remember?
- Allied forces (British) had Indian soldiers because India was under colonial rule of the British. On the other hand, Axis forces came to the corridor of India because of the support of Indian National Army or Azad Hind Fauj (led by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose). Netaji’s ambition was to overthrow the British colonial rule and hence, INA joined hands with Japanese forces.
- Ras Lila in Manipur is one of the most famous dance performances of the state. This dance takes inspiration from the love affair between Lord Krishna and Radha and of course, unshakable devotion of gopis towards Krishna.
- The result of this conflict was that Indian soldiers pitched against Indian soldiers – one group raiding and another group defending.
- Imphal is not the only place where British and the Japanese fought. They even clashed at the Battle of Kohima. It was the same story there as well. Indians pitched against Indians – raiding and defending!
- Festivals of Manipur are Heikru Hindongba ,Kut festival ,Kangchigba ,Lai Haraoba,Ningol Chakouba
- The climate of Manipur is influenced by the topography. Summer months though hot and humid for a large part, receive in the form of relief ample rainfall from April through mid-October, with rains peaking during the monsoon months of mid-June to September. Winters, lasting from November to March, remain dry and cold, especially in the hills where temperatures can drop below though zero bringing frost and rarely some snow. Day hours during winters are generally sunny and warm, making the season ideal for exploring the outdoors.
Source : http://thegreenerpastures.com/places/information-about-manipur/