IMPHAL, February 4: The 70th anniversary of the Battle of Imphal (WW II) will be observed this year from March to July under the aegis of Manipur Tourism Forum (MTF) and 2nd World War Imphal Campaign Foundation.
Announcing the five month long observation, the two organisations called a press conference today at Imphal Hotel.
President, MTF Dr Th Dhabali Singh said that the combined battle of Imphal/Kohima fought in 1944, was named on April 20, 2013 as Britain’s Greatest Battle by the National Army Museum of the United Kingdom.
He further announced that the state chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh has agreed to be the chief patron of the 70 anniversary commemoration.
While expressing sincere gratitude to the CM for agreeing to be the chief patron, he said it will enable Manipur to successfully commemorate the event as the 70th anniverssary fall this year .
From March to July, 1944, over 200,000 Japanese, Britons, Indians, Gurkhas, and men from several nations clashed in the hills and valley of Manipur during World War II in what has been depicted as one of the greatest battles of the war, he said.
Seventy years ago, Manipur witnessed an epic battle fought between Britain and its allies and the Japanese and the Indian National Army (INA), he observed.
The Battle of Imphal is also significant from a national perspective since it saw Indian soldiers fighting on both sides in the WW II—together with the Japanese as part of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose-led India National Army and with the British as part of the British-Indian Army.
WWII Imphal Campaign Foundation functionaries Arambam Angamba Singh, Yumnam Rajeshor Singh also attended the conference.