IMPHAL, Aug 13: Rich tributes were today paid to Bir Tikendrajit, Thangal General, Niranjan Subedar, Kajao and Chirai Naga on 120th Patriots’ Day observed at various parts of the state and outside.
The day is being observed every year to mark the valiant sacrifices made by the great patriots of the state. After the defeat of the Manipuris in the Anglo-Manipuri War of 1891, Prince Tikendrajit and Thangal General were executed by the British rulers at Sahid Minar on August 13, 1891 while Niranjan Subedar, Kajao and Chirai Naga were executed at Manipur Jail on the same day. Maharaj Kulachandra and 22 other noblemen were then exiled to Kali Pani.
The state level observation of the Patriots’ Day was held at Bir Tikendrajit Park with Governor Gurbachan Jagat as the chief guest and Chief Minister Okram Ibobi as the president.
Speaking at the occasion, Governor Gurbachan Jagat stated that the brave sons of Manipur had made supreme sacrifices on the gallows for the cause of their motherland on August 13, 1891 at Pheidabung, now called Bir Tikendrajit Park, Imphal.
“The Day reminds us of the heroic acts of Manipuris – both known and unknown – in different war fronts of the Anglo-Manipur War, 1891, that showed to the world that Manipuris had the sacrificing and unflinching courage to challenge the then mightiest world power, the British for the sake of their motherland. They also proved that freedom can neither be traded away nor conceded at any cost under any circumstances; instead they finally sacrificed their lives for the cause of the freedom of their motherland. Their lives will always inspire us with the sense of sacrifice, patriotism and bravery. While celebrating the Day, we, the present generation, along with paying our homage and tribute to the heroic forefathers of Manipur who perished for their motherland, should renew our pledge to work with dedication for the cause of our motherland”, he asserted.
“We all are the citizens of free India. It is our bounden duty to make the country strong and prosperous. India is a vast country comprising many States and Union Territories. Its prosperity and development depends upon the prosperity and development of its units. It is in this context that Manipur too should gear up the speed of development for prosperity and welfare of the people of Manipur. The wheels of development can move faster only when there is an atmosphere of peace which is also inextricably linked to economic prosperity. There is a symbiotic relationship between peace and development and this has to be remembered and always pursued”, Gurbachan enjoined.
He further maintained that Manipur today is passing through a very difficult phase. Ethnic and social tensions, extortions from public, businessmen, contractors, Government employees and departments, abduction for ransom, senseless killing due to inter-group rivalries and violence against civilians continue to be a matter of serious concern. Again, calling of strikes and bandhs have become a frequent phenomenon. The ultimate sufferers of all these are the common people. The above practices have to be avoided in the interest of the common man.
He has also expressed confidence that the general people will extend their fullest cooperation in the efforts of the Government to maintain peace and harmony in the State.
The Governor appealed to all the communities of Manipur to shun violence and hatred among themselves and bring about an atmosphere of love and mutual understanding so that Manipur can move forward on a par with other sister-states which have already gone ahead.
Chief Minister Okram Ibobi stated that the people should learn great lessons from the great patriots who had fought valiantly against the mighty rulers. The people should vow to safeguard the integrity of the country, he appealed.
Ibobi further maintained that the Indians should have sense of oneness and brotherhood among themselves so as to face any threat to the sovereignty and integrity of the country.
The Governor, Chief Minister, ministers and other state officials laid wreaths to the martyrs at Kangla Uttra and then at Sahid Minar in the afternoon.
The Chief Minister and other state officials also paid floral tribute to the martyrs at Hicham Yaicham Pat, Moirangkhom and Thangal General Temple, Palace Compound.
The contingents of Manipur Rifles also gave gun salutes at various observation venues.
Meanwhile, various political parties, social organizations, student bodies, educational institutions and local clubs of the state also observed the Patriots’ Day.
Manipur State Congress Party (MPCC) observed the Patriots’ Day at Congress Bhavan with President Gaikhangam as the chief guest.
Manipur University observed the day at Senate Hall with Padmashree RK Jhaljit as the chief guest and acting vice-chancellor Prof HNK Sarma as the president.
Other organizations which have observed the Patriots’ Day include Kanglei Chanura Chaokhat Lamching Lup (Kangleichall), Apunba Manipur Kanba Ima Lup (AMKIL), Socio-economic Environment Development Organization (SEEDO), All Manipur Recognized Private Schools’ Welfare Association, Patriotic Writers’ Forum, Nilamani English School, Mayang Imphal, All Manipur Students’ Union (AMSU), Imphal West Committee, All Manipur United Clubs Organization (AMUCO), All Manipur Tammi- Chingmi Apunba Nupi Lup, Students’ Union of Maharaja Bodhachandra College, Imphal East United Clubs’ Organization, United Ching-Tam Clubs Association, Huyen Lallong Manipur Thang-Ta Cultural Association and Ibotonsana Girls’ Higher Secondary School,
All Manipur Students’ Union (AMSU) also observed the Patriots’ Day at Kasom Khullen High School, Ukhrul district.
The day was also observed at the Regional College, Lilong organized by the College Committee.
Meanwhile, the students and staffs of Believers Church Bible College conducted social service at Chingmeirong TB Hospital by distributing sweets and other gifts to the patients today in connection with the observation of 120th Patriots’ Day.