IMPHAL, February 4: A cultural festival of the Kharam tribe “RIAL KAHOI” was revived after more than 200 years at the Kharam Pallen village ground today by state deputy chief minister Gaikhangam.
Deputy chief minister Gaikhangam officially inaugurated the biggest cultural festival of the tribe but the ritual ceremony of festival was opened by the Kharam king by cleaning the holy area as a mark of opening and reviving the festival after more than 200 years.
The preparation for the revival of the festival took four long years, Gaikhangam observed.
Gaikhangam addressing the function said that Manipur is a house of different cultures, traditions.
“We have 38 recognised tribes in state and the number could be 40 after including the valley communities, he said before adding, “it could go upto 50-60 if the unrecognised communities are also included making the state a beautiful place.”
He further said that Kharam is a small tribe of state, however a strong force to reckon with during the period of the kings.
The tribe has been a peace loving people since time immemorial, he said.
Since time immemorial, different communities have been peacefully co-existing, however, certain individuals have been trying to disunite the people with external physical force and the people should not fall victim to such trap, he said.
He continued, the tribe has urged for the construction of Kharam Union Manipur Office Building and the black topping of the Kharam approach road to the National Highway 37, which he assured that since the present financial year will be ending next month, the government will certainly include funds for the blacktopping of the road and the construction of building in the next financial plan of the state.
He said he will also discuss the issue with the local MLA Ngamthang Haokip who is also the minister of IFCD.
IFCD minister Ngamthang Haokip said that there are a few Kharam villages in the state, but he knows only village in his constituency.
Kharam tribe has a rich and unique traditional culture and dance form, he said.
The grievances of the people are very much but even after being the leaders of the state it is hard to fulfil all the problems, he lamented.
The government will look at what best can be done for the Kharam people.
People from four Kharam villages came to participate in the festival at Kharam pallen.
Highlights of the festival include different forms of cultural and traditional dances.
The deputy chief minister also released the Kharam Souvenir2013-14 and a book entitled “Origin and settlement of Kharam” written by the Sh Khotisan Kharam Tuisenphai.