Manipur pays homage to Khongjom Martyrs

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Violence not the right approach to air grievances, says CM Ibobi

IMPHAL, April 23: Manipur today paid befitting floral tributes to the war heroes of Manipur who were killed during the historic ‘Khongjom war’ fought in the year 1891 against the British Empire.

The state government observed the day at the Khongjom memorial complex at Kheba Ching, Thoubal.

The ‘Khongjom war’ was one of the bloodiest Battle ever fought in Manipur history wherein Manipur lost its sovereignty. The day is annually observed as ‘Khongjom Day’.

Addressing the function, chief guest of the occasion, Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh, admitting the fact that Manipur was once a princely state, underscored that the people have every right to fight for their freedom.

Nevertheless, he contended that violence is not the right approach to air ones grievances or demand ones right may it be with the India Government or international body.

Ibobi claimed that the citizen of Manipur should take pride in honouring the martyrs of the Manipur who selflessly had sacrificed for the cause of the freedom.

PIC. for Net, April 23_1
People offering tarpan at the Khongjom River during the Khongjom Day.

The Khongjom Battle is the testimony of the bravery and courage of the sons of the soil, who under any circumstances easily backed down while defending their freedom, said Ibobi. Let the sacrifices of the heroes stand tall as a lesson to the present and future generation of Manipuri, he continued.

The chief minister further opined that despite several plans on the card the election code of conduct has stopped the government to spell it out.

Addressing his presidential speech, deputy chief minister, Gaikhangam, held that the epic Khongjom Battle was an important historic event not only for the Manipur and India, but for nations striving for independent.

Claiming that a nation without freedom is meaningless nation, Gaikhangam asserted that it is the obligation of today’s generation to safeguard the freedom and integrity of the nation to make the sacrifices worthwhile.

“We must remember that the freedom that we enjoy today is not easily handed down by the British raj, but a hard earned freedom achieved after having spilled blood of thousands of heroes”, said Gaikhangam.

Marking the observation Chief Minister Okram Ibobi led the people in paying floral tribute at the memorial site of the martyrs at Kheba Ching followed by a gun salute by Manipur Rifles contingent in honour of the heroes.

Floral tribute was also paid at the statue of Paona Brajabashi led by the Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister and offered of tarpan at the Khongjom river.

The observation was also attended by Lok Sabha MP Dr Th Meinya, Rajya Sabha MP, Abdul Salam, speaker of the Manipur Legislative Assembly, Th Lokeshowar, deputy speaker and cabinet ministers, parliamentary secretaries, Chief Secretary, DGP etc.

Belinda Morse, Jeremy Morse, Judith Macauly, Kate Macauly, grand children of British officers, also taken part in the floral tribute.

Meanwhile, the Patriotic Writers Forum Manipur on Wednesday observed the Khongjam Lan Ningshing Thouram at Manipur Press Club, Major Khul Imphal.

A poetry reading session was also organised as part of the program.

Prof Jodhachandra Sanasam, president of the Patriotic Writers Forum Manipur presided over the function while Salam Tomba, president of the Progressive Writer Forum Manipur moderated the poetry reading session in which 20 participants took part in the poetry reading session.

During the function, Prof Jodhachandra Sanasam said that Khongjam Lan Ningshing Thouram which is held every should be continued.

Meanwhile, the Aam Aadmi Party Manipur in a press release said that AAP Manipur also observed the day at its office at New Chekon Road near Singh Publicity Building.

During the function, the party leaders and workers of the AAP Manipur paid floral tribute to pictures of the martyrs who sacrificed their lives trying to safeguard the sovereignty of Manipur in 1891, it said.

As part of the function, a discussion was also organised on the supreme sacrifices of the Khongjom Lal martyrs so that it could inculcate the spirit of nationalism among the party members and younger generation, it said.

The All Assam Manipur Students’ Union has also said in a press release that Khongjom day was held at Udharbond Pan Gram, Cachar, Assam.

During the event, floral tributes were paid to the statue of Paona Brajabashi.

After the offering of homage, the president Seram Herajit of AAMSu and Probha Devi, vice president of All Assam Manipur Women Meira Paibi Coordination Committee and A Kamaini Singh, finance secretary, Paona Ningsing Lup attended as presidium members of the event.

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