The Manipur Sangai Festival is set to be held from November 21 to 30, and the Manipur Tourism Corporation is actively promoting it all over the country.
An unexplored tourism paradise—Manipur, has a lot to offer to every tourist to the state. This year, the state is back with its grandest festival—Manipur Sangai Festival—to celebrate the rich culture, heritage and culture of this pristine land.
An annual affair, the Manipur Sangai Festival is celebrated from November 21 to 30. The festival takes its name from the state’s unique, shy and gentle brow-antlered, Sangai deer or the dancing deer. The Sangai deer is found only in Manipur’s floating Keibul Lamjao National Park at the Loktak Lake. The festival has great profundity in showcasing its rich art and cultural heritage and celebrating the various ethnic diversities in Manipur.
The chairman of the Tourism Corporation of Manipur Limited, Dr Sapam Ranjan, informed that the festival will be inaugurated at Imphal on November 21. Two other districts of the state—Bishnupur and Senapati, will also play host to the festival and have a line-up of events ranging from half-marathons, water sports and trekking along with other adventure activities. He was speaking at the curtain-raiser of the festival which was recently organised at the Select CityWalk mall at Saket in New Delhi.
The member of parliament and Padma Bhushan awardee Mary Kom, the former boxing world champion and Arjuna awardee Sarita Laishram, along with the former Indian football team captain P Kenedy Singh, marked their presence at the event to promote the festival in the capital. Officials from Manipur Tourism along with its stakeholders shared updates on the preparations for the largest tourism festival of the state.
“Taking the festival as an opportunity, we are here to connect with our potential stakeholders in the capital city of the country. We wish to invite them to come to our state and enjoy our cultural extravaganza. Manipur holds great many surprises for every visitor. The profound natural beauty of the state and the unique attractions that we have, like the floating national park of Keibul Lamjao and Sangai are found nowhere else in the world,” said Ranjan.
A variety of dance forms of over 34 recognised tribes of Manipur will be the special attraction of this mega tourism event. The main venue of the festival at Hapta Kangjeibung, Imphal, entertains visitors with its mesmerising performances of renowned artists from all over the world every evening. The famous Raas Leela dance of Manipur is a must watch amongst the variety of performances by folk dance artists.
“Manipur receives the maximum number of visitors during this time of the year when we celebrate our biggest tourism festival. The curtain raiser for this festival is organised in Delhi to create awareness amongst potential visitors about the state’s offerings as a tourist destination. Manipur is largely unexplored and offers huge opportunities for adventure, culture and rural tourism aficionados,” said the tourism director of the state government W Ibohal Singh.
The director further added, “Our state presents huge opportunities for adventure tourism and we are exploring opportunities to associate with domestic and international adventure tourism associations. It is the right time for us to inform travellers in the region that our side is ready to welcome them to the Manipur Sangai Festival. The state is considered one of the safest state for women travellers. It has a women’s only market where many businesswomen run their small vegetable stalls till late at night.”
Started in 2010, the festival has grown by leaps and bounds over the years and has become a platform to boost tourist inflow. The domestic tourist inflow during 2010-11 was recorded at 116,652 which increased to 164,483 in 2017-18. Similarly, there has been a manifold increase in foreign tourist figures to the state from 431 in 2010-11 to 3,787 in 2017-18.
Writer: Team Viva
Courtesy: The Pioneer