IMPHAL, September 9: Thousands thronged the Khongjom War memorial today for the ceremonial offering of tarpan homage to the martyrs who laid down their lives for the land during the 1891 war at the sacred Khongjom River near the Khongjom War Memorial Complex.
The 21st Khongjom Tarpan was organised by the Khongjom War Memorial Trust.
BJP, Manipur unit president Thounaojam Chaoba said after the tarpan offering that he would convince the Centre to actualise a proposal of the trust to install what could become the world’s longest sword in the memorial complex.
Elaborating further, he said the proposal to place a 150 feet long sword is reasonable and it is heartrending that the State government is interested, though he had reservation about the state government’s proposal for making the sword shorter.
Expressing his belief that the Prime Minister would certain give his consent to the proposal, Chaoba said he will urge the Centre to take up the proposal and not to shorten the length as is being considered by the State government.
He said the sword could be called “Statue of the brave.”
The Kheba Hill and Khongjom River have today become places of pilgrimage and there is a need to develop a vast water body in the vicinity for the future generation to offer tarpan at, he said.
The present generation should never forget the sacrifices of the martyrs who laid down their lives for the land, he said.
The few Manipuri soldiers who fought against the mighty British army had shown the courage of the Manipuris to the world, he said and added the present generation should also have the same courage.
The State BJP president further urged the people to pray that the closing of the Sanjenthong by the present government doesn’t throw the State into chaos.
Offering of Tarpan during the Manipuri month of Langban to the forefathers who had sacrificed their lives for the land is our duty, said trust president M Hemant.
He continued the trust has been proposing the installation of a 150 feet long sword on top of the Kheba Hill since some four years back, however, the trust has been informed that the government is considering shortening of the sword.
The trust will never obstruct to any developmental work undertaken by the government at the Khongjom War memorial complex, but it will not allow shortening of the sword, he said.
Meanwhile, the United COmmittee Manipur also organised a tarpan offering at the Keikhrupat Martyrs complex to the 18 martyrs of June 18 Uprising.
The ceremony was attended by leaders of several organisations, family members and the public.