The population of Manipur consists of several major ethnicities, each with its distinct culture, language, and traditions. Here are some of the prominent ethnic groups in Manipur:
- Meitei: The Meitei people are the majority ethnic group in Manipur and form the largest community in the state. They have their own language, Meiteilon, and are known for their rich cultural heritage, traditional arts, and Manipuri dance.
- Naga: The Nagas are a significant ethnic group in Manipur, belonging to various Naga tribes. Some of the Naga tribes found in Manipur include Tangkhul, Mao, Maring, Poumai, Zeme, and Thangal. They have distinct languages, customs, and traditional practices.
- Kuki: The Kuki people, also known as Chins, are another major ethnic group in Manipur. The Kuki community is further divided into several sub-groups, including Thadou, Paite, Hmar, Gangte, Zou, Simte, and more. They have their languages and cultural practices.
- Pangal (Manipuri Muslim): The Pangal community, also known as Manipuri Muslims, comprises the Muslim population of Manipur. They have a distinct cultural identity that reflects a blend of Islamic traditions and Manipuri culture.
- Mizo: The Mizo people, also known as Lushai, are an ethnic group found in Manipur, Mizoram, and other neighboring regions. They have their language, Mizo, and have cultural ties with the Mizoram state.
- Kom: The Kom community is an ethnic group residing primarily in the hill areas of Manipur. They have their language, Kom, and have a distinct cultural identity.
These are some of the main ethnic groups in Manipur, but the state is also home to other smaller communities and tribes, each contributing to the cultural and ethnic diversity of the region.