On the grand occasion, N. Biren Singh stated that he felt much honoured to be among the people of Nagaland and being in the lustrous land, defined and shaped by bravery and the rich traditions of the many tribes.
‘It is also indeed a privilege to be part of the ‘Hornbill Festival 2017’, in this picturesque setting of Kisama and experience the impressive rich cultural displays and traditions of Nagaland’, said N. Biren.
On behalf of the people of Manipur, the CM extended his best wishes and warm greetings to the people of Nagaland and for the celebration of 54 years of statehood for Nagaland.
‘Nagaland is indeed the land of festivals and Hornbill festival is definitely the festival of festivals’, praised N. Biren.
He thanked the chief minister of Nagaland for the invitation to attend the festival and also thanked him for taking time to visit Manipur last month for the recently concluded ‘North East development Summit’ in Imphal during ‘Manipur Sangai Festival’.
There is so much that connects the two states and its people and based on the shared history and close cultural affinities, people must build the foundations upon which institutions of the two states can collaborate and cooperate with a strong sense of common purpose, said N. Biren.
Pointing out suggestion made by Nagaland CM on ‘tourist circuit’ for the northeast region, N. Biren stated that from next year onwards, attempt will be made to evolve concrete collaborative mechanism for jointly promoting the two biggest festivals of the states, Manipur Sangai festival, which is held in the last 10 days of November and Nagaland Hornbill festival, which is held in the first 10 days of December.
There are many untapped opportunities which Manipur and Nagaland as neighbours should jointly leverage to unlock the full potential of the two states and fulfil the aspirations of the people, especially the youths, he added.
While recalling the history, the CM mentioned that some of the fiercest and deciding battles of the Second World War were fought in Imphal and Kohima, 74 years ago. Collaborative efforts of the governments with entrepreneurs, historians and enthusiasts to develop a tourist circuit should be supported not only for promoting tourism but for preserving the history and relics of forgotten battles of World War II, he added.
Biren Singh further spoke about the importance of sports in the region. He said that the enduring foundations laid by the inspiring legacy of Dr Ao of Nagaland, who was the first captain of Indian national football team after independence had been a promising prospects for the young sports talents, like those of the eight Manipuris who represented India in the recent U-17 FIFA World Cup.
Sports unify people and more opportunities should be explored to increase interactions between the two states in the area of sports at various levels starting from schools, colleges, village, professional clubs level and others, he added.
He continued that there is a need for extensive and meaningful ‘people-to-people’ interactions and between institutions for collaboration and partnership in the area of entrepreneurship, skill development, commerce, arts, culture, films and theater.
The CM congratulated the government and the people of Nagaland for putting up a grand impressive show and the kind hospitality. He also mentioned that the cultural troupes from Manipur will be reaching the venue to attend the festival.
CM N. Biren also extended his warm greetings and best wishes for Christmas, on behalf of the people of Manipur.
Source: Imphal Free Press