For a day, Manipur forgets blockade and celebrates [Economic Times]

IMPHAL: The markets were buzzing with excited revellers, many haggling over the price of fish, and there was excited chatter at homes as people prepared various cuisines, all in celebration of Ningol Chakouba, one of Manipur’s biggest festivals that came on Friday amid the trauma of an economic blockade.

Ningol Chakouba reinstates the bond between brothers and sisters. Married women are invited to their parental home and pampered with lipsmacking dishes, which mostly constitute fish, and gifts.

Although the economic blockade has reached nearly 90 days now and household commodities continue to be scarce and expensive, people have refused to let their spirits be dampened, even if that means toning down celebrations by a notch.

“Fish is a very important part of the Ningol Chakouba festivities. We cook different fish delicacies… and by god’s grace, that is something which we have not really run short of. Manipur is blessed with good fish production,” Sharmila Maibam, a homemaker, told IANS.

“My daughter, who got married last year, will be visiting us today and we have prepared a feast for her. My son has bought her a sari and other trinkets. It’s a happy occasion,” she smiled.

To liven up festivities, the state fishery department on Thursday organised a temporary fish market at a playground, Imphal Hapta Kangjeibung, to sell fish at cheaper rates. It was attended by thousands of people.

In addition, an angling competition was organised for the first time at the Kakching lake in the foothills of the state on Thursday.

Madhu Chandra, one of the organisers of the festival, said: “Ningol Chakouba is a very important festival of the Manipuris. Amid the misery of the blockade, we decided to organise this festival to encourage the people to have some fun and promote peace and brotherhood.”

“We had around 700 competitors from all over the state and over 10,000 people from Kakching and surrounding villages witnessed the event. The fishes were then sold to the people,” he added.

One of the specie most in demand is the indigenous Pengba. This is also being farmed at the Kakching lake.

“I bought a variety of fish yesterday, but more than anything, my sisters love the Pengba. Both of them are married and live out of Manipur, so they miss eating this more than anything else,” Mahesh Laba, a 26-year-old salesman, said. He, however, still had some last minute shopping to do at the Khwairamband bazaar.

“The market’s so crowded today! People seem to have forgotten that we are in the middle of some blockade and are celebrating wholeheartedly… I have come to pick up some bangles for my sisters,” Laba said.

“This festival means a lot to us, especially for my family, because it’s like an annual family reunion when my sisters come home. They dress up in their traditional best and I serve them food… after which they bless me. It’s a special time,” he smiled.

“Thank god, there is no dearth of fish,” said 50-year-old Amu Singha. “I went to the fish market yesterday and was happy to see that I could still rustle up a good lunch for my daughter, even though the other things, like sweets, have to be toned down because they are so expensive.”

As for the women, they too bought gifts for their families, and especially their brothers, before going home. “Things are so expensive now. But I have been saving for sometime. So I bought clothes for my parents and brother, and got some homemade sweets,” said Nira Singha, a homemaker, on her way home to celebrate the festival.

Source: Economictimes.indiatimes.com

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Governor, CM greet people on Ningol Chakkouba [Imphal Free Press]

IMPHAL, October 27: The Governor of Manipur, Gurbachan Jagat has greeted the people of Manipur on the auspicious occasion of Ningol Chakkouba.

In his message, the Governor stated that Ningol Chakkouba is a unique social festival of the Meiteis and it is observed on the second day of the new moon of the Manipuri month of “Hiyangei”. It rejuvenates family ties and strengthens the bond of love and affection mainly between married women and brothers, which ultimately helps in preserving and promoting unity and integrity in the society.

Ningol Chakkouba is a very happy and significant occasion on which the married women come to their parental houses along with their children and enjoy sumptuous feasts and receive “Dhakshina” after the feast as a token of love and affection. The festival will be celebrated in its true spirit with the involvement of different communities in Manipur, he added.

Chief Minister Okram Ibobi has also greeted the people of the state on the occasion of Ningol Chakkouba.

In his message, the Chief Minister stated that the festival of Ningol Chakkouba reinforces the fraternal and protective bond that exists between brothers and sisters and parents and daughters since time immemorial. Though the festival is originally observed by the Meitei community, the celebration now extends to other communities and tribes in Manipur thereby promoting unity and emotional integration in the state, he added.

Source: Imphal Free Press

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Indigenous fishes in short supply at the State Fish fair [Hueiyen Lanpao]

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Fishes on display in one of the stall at Hapta kangjeibung Fish exibition

Imphal, October 27: The State Fish fair organized by the Fishery Department on the eve of Ningol Chakkouba, at Hatta Kangjeibung, Palace Compound, today witnessed a scarce supply of Ngaton and Prawn, and many people went away disappointed at not being able to get a taste of these rare indigenous fishes.

After the inauguration of the Fish fair, most of the people who came to the fair thronged the stalls where Pengba and Ngaton were sold. As the saying goes “Early bird catches the worm”, those few buyers who came in early were able to buy Pengba and Ngaton, while many others who came a bit later went back disappointed. Some of the Pengbas were sold alive in a polythene bag of water, which were on average of smaller sizes.

The inaugural function of the Fish Fair was graced by Md Allaudin Khan, Minister, Fisheries and RK Sukumar, Secretary, Fisheries as the Chief Guest and President respectively. K Sarat kumar, Director, Fisheries and Devendra, retired Director, Fisheries, GoM were the Guests of Honour.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister Md Allaudin said that with the increase in population the production of local fish needs to be increased.  Since the production of fish in the state is far behind the demand of the state, a large quantity of fish is being imported from other states.

With the advancement in science and technology, scientific methods are also being used in the state by fish farmers. And gradually the production rate is also increasing. In the next few years the fish production in the state will hopefully be able to meet all the demands of the state, he said.

He further went on to say that the quantity of fish which is brought in to the state has been reduced to a considerable level due to the ongoing economic blockade on all NHs of the state. But still, the demand is being met by the local production. This shows that the production of fish in the state is increasing.

The state is 9 metric tones short of the daily requirements of fish. To make up the shortage, fish farmers of the state need to use advance technology. The state, on its part, will also try its level best to solve the problem. To encourage the fish farmers of the state, the price for this year Fish Crop Competition has been increased, he said.

Speaking on the occasion, K Sarat Kumar, Director Fisheries, said that the Fish Fair has been organized on the eve of Ningol Chakkouba since 1976 to make available fish to the general public at reasonable rates. There are 65 stalls participating in today’s fair.

Source: Hueiyen Lanpao

 

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Lamlai fish fair makes a statement with reasonable rate [The Sangai Express]

Fish put on sale at Lamlai during the fairIMPHAL, Oct 27: Under the joint initiative of All Manipur Nupi marup Lamlai Area Committee and All India Youth Federation Lamlai Local Council, a Ningol Chakkouba Fish Mela has been organised for the very first time in Lamlai area at Irawat Park, Chalou Lamlai today.

Inaugurating the first fish fair as the chief guest, Agriculture Minister Ph Parijat said the fair has been organised under the objective of promoting fish farming in Imphal East district.

Stating that various fish varieties would be made available to the public at Rs 25 less than the rate fixed by the Government, the Minister informed that a common fish rearing pond of four paris in size would be developed at  Leimakhong near Lamlai. Noting that there is shortage of fish production in  Imphal East district areas, he expressed confidence that on completion the Leimakhong pond would be able to contribute to fish  production.

Imphal East district Fishery Officer Y Ibobi Singh recounting that the Fishery Department had been organising fish fairs every year since 1976 in connection with the Ningol Chakkouba festival, asserted that efforts would be made to organise fish fairs in Imphal East district.

In all fishes were sold at five stalls while chicken were put on sale in six stalls  at the fair. The rate of fish sold at the fair was fixed at Rs 125 per kilogram for Rohu (Rou) variety, Rs 115 for Grass Carp and Rs 75 for Silver Carp, while chicken was available at Rs 110 per kg.

It is informed that the total quantity of fish at the fair is 3400 kgs and 1000 kg chicken.

The fair inauguration programme was also attended by AMNM LAC president O Lembi Leima, Lamlai Nagar Panchayat Chairperson Ng Robin Singh and CPI Lamlai Local Council secretary Y Megha Singh.

Source: The Sangai Express

 


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Ningol Chakkouba greetings [The Sangai Express]

IMPHAL, Oct 27: Governor Gurbachan Jagat and Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh led others in extending warm greetings to the people of the State on the joyous occassion of Ningol Chakkouba.

In his message, Gurbachan Jagat said that the festival rejuvenates family ties and strengthens the bond of love and affection, mainly between married women and their brothers which ultimately help in preserving and promoting unity and integrity in the society.

The Governor also expressed hope that the festival would be celebrated in true spirit with the involvement of people from different communities.

O Ibobi Singh in his message said, Ningol Chakkouba reinforces the fraternal and protective bond exists between brothers and sisters and parents and daughters since time immemorial.

Though the festival is originally observed by the Meitei community, the celebration has now extended to other communities of the State thereby promoting unity and emotional integration in the State, the Chief Minister added.

O Ibobi said, “Let us imbibe the ideals associated with the festival to foster the spirit of amity, harmony and goodwill in our lives.”

Greeting the people of the State, MPCC President Gaikhangam said, the festival brings communal harmony in the State as it is now celebrated by hill and valley people together. He also wished the festival brings peace, development, communal harmony and prosperity in the State.

Manipur State Janata Party and All Manipur Rickshaw Drivers’ and Pullers’ Welfare Association have also greeted the people of the State on the occasion of Ningol Chakkouba.

Source: The Sangai Express

 


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GOC, IGAR (S) greet [The Sangai Express]

IMPHAL, Oct 27: GOC 57 Mountain Division, Major General Binoy Poonnen and Inspector General Assam Rifles (South) Maj Gen UK Gurung have greeted the people of Manipur on the auspicious occasion of Ningol Chakkouba festival.

The GOC extending warm greetings to the people said “Ningol Chakkouba is a significant festival for the married women in the State.”

The festival is celebrated to rejuvenate family ties and strengthen the bonds of love and affection between the parents, brothers and married sisters/daughters.

In a press release made by Col Ajay Chowdhry, PRO Defence, Gen Poonnen has said, “May this festival also strengthen the bonds of love and affection between all the communities of the State, to usher in a new era of peace, harmony and reconciliation in Manipur”.

Meanwhile, Inspector General Assam Rifles (South) Maj Gen UK Gurung and all ranks of Assam rifles greeted the people of Manipur on the auspicious occasion of Ningol Chakkouba, which will be celebrated tomorrow.

Conveying ‘very warm greetings and sincere goodwill’ to the people, the IGAR (S) expressed that the festival herald an era of peace and brotherhood amongst the warm and friendly people of the State.

Source: The Sangai Express

 


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Appeal for payment of annual bonus to private sector employees [Hueiyen Lanpao]

Imphal, October 25:  Deputy Labour Commissioner, Government of Manipur E Tomba Singh has issued a notification appealing to all the employers of shops/establishment in private sector for payment of annual bonus before the ensuing Diwali and Ningol Chakkouba festivals.

All the employers of shops/establishments, which are covered by the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965, are liable to pay annual bonus to their employees, the notification said, while pointing out that the rate of minimum bonus payable to the employees who worked on all the working days of the accounting year is an amount equal to 8.33 percent of the total amount of salaries earned by the employee and the rate of maximum bonus payable is an amount equal upto 20 percent of the total amount of salary earned by the employee during the accounting year subject to the amount available from the allocable surplus (60 percent of the gross profit). Moreover, the rate of bonus payable to the employees who worked for at least 30 days of the accounting year is Rs 100, the notification said, and added that payment of annual bonus for the accounting year, 2010-11 is due from the month of April, 2011 for every employer of shops/establishments under Section 19 (b) of the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965.

Source: Hueiyen Lanpao

 

Government Employees’ pay to be drawn and disbursed with effect from October 20 in view of Ningol Chakkouba [The Sangai Express]

IMPHAL, Oct 19 : In view of the ensuing Ningol Chak-kouba festival, the Finance Commissioner has issued an order which said that pay and allowances of all Gover-nment employees includ- ing Gazetted officers for the month of October may be drawn and disbursed with effect from October 20.

Pay of Work Charged/Casual Muster Roll establishment whose appoint- ments have been made and approved by the Government may also be drawn and disbursed from the same date.

However, adhoc/substitute/officiating/contract/casual/MR appointments made in violation of DP/Finance Department’s ins- truction and guidelines would not be covered by the order, said a notification issued by Finance Commis- sioner Rakesh Ranjan.

Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal Municipal Council instructs eatery shops of the city to maintain cleanliness [The Sangai Express]

IMPHAL, Oct 19: Imphal Municipal Council has instructed eatery shops of the city to maintain cleanliness while selling eatables and sweets for Diwali and Ningol Chakkouba festivals. 

The eatables must be covered with cloth or plastic sheets and must not be touched with hands while serving to the customers, it advised.

Those eatery shops which are found violating the directive would be penalised according to the law, warned an IMC statement.

Source: The Sangai Express

Ningol Khudol Mela 2011 kicks off [Hueiyen Lanpao]

One of the stalls of the Ningol Khudol Mela

One of the stalls of the Ningol Khudol Mela

Imphal, October 18: The 10 days Ningol Khudol Mela – 2011 organised by the Manipur Apex Handloom and Handicrafts Weavers’ Artisans’ Co-Operative Society Ltd (AWAS) kicked off at Yumjao Leirembi Lai Lampak, Yumnam Leikai today.
The function was graced by O Nabakishore, Principal Secretary,(Commerce & Industry), GoM, V Tualthang, Director Commerce and Industries, Manipur as the Chief Guest and President respectively. M Binodini, Deputy Registrar Co-Op Societies (H/L), Manipur and M Satyabhama, President, Manipur Apex Handloom and Handicrafts Weavers Artisans’ Co-Op Ltd were the Guest of Honour.

Speaking on the occasion, M Rajen, OSD (Handloom), Commerce and Industries said that the a huge amount of money is being drained out of the state to other parts of the country in procuring different goods from the other states. We need to promote our handloom products which are of great demand and export them outside.

Source: Hueiyen Lanpao