Imphal (DIPR): Chief Minister N. Biren Singh maintained that the government is there to protect all indigenous communities of the State and that no community should discriminate against or threaten smaller communities for forceful assimilation. He said that the government is there for the upliftment and to protect the weak and small communities.
He was speaking as the Chief Guest of the Morning Session of the inaugural day of the two-day long Berkap-Reiju Festival, a cultural extravaganza to revive and promote the rich cultural heritage of the Kom Tribe at Ichum Keirap Kom Village, Kangpokpi district on Saturday.
The Chief Minister stressed that the COVID pandemic had hampered work execution of the government in the previous term, nonetheless, the government sent out the message that the government recognizes and is there for every small tribe and community residing together in the State.
He said that to strengthen this message, the government has constructed replicas of traditional huts of all the 34-35 indigenous tribes and communities at the Sangai Ethnic Park, where they can showcase their identity through their traditions, culture and lifestyle.
Warning against any threat for forceful assimilation of smaller and weaker communities, the Chief Minister said that every indigenous tribe or community, regardless of their population or size, should be allowed to live freely without any threat.
The government is fully ready to meet any threat on any community, the Chief Minister said, adding that the government is working under the Prime Minister’s mantra of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas, Sabka Prayas’.
Saying that the government is also working for the proper representation of minority tribes and communities, the Chief Minister assured his commitment to ensure that government nominees in the Autonomous District Council are from the minority tribes. He said that a budgetary allocation for only minorities has been included in the budget.
Stressing further on the beauty of democracy, the Chief Minister said that India’s beauty lies in its secularism, unity in diversity and we should encourage these characteristics.
Biren also assured to consider the demands submitted by the locals including widening of road, upgradation of UJB School, construction of Primary Health Centre, among others. He conveyed that construction of a Hills Leaders’ Bhavan in Imphal will be completed soon.
Informing that Manipur received the highest foreign tourists in the North East region, the Chief Minister encouraged the locals especially the youth to develop their location naturally to attract more tourists.
He further encouraged the villagers to ensure that the economically weaker families are receiving the benefits of the government welfare schemes.
MLA of Saitu Haokholet Kipgen, MLA of Lamlai AC Kh.Ibomcha, MLA of Moirang AC Th.Shanti, CSO leaders, village chiefs, church leaders also attended the function among others.
Chief Minister Biren also beat the gong as part of the inaugural function of the festival. Biren also opened the festival with the shooting of an arrow aimed at an image of a bird hanging from a pole.
Traditional dances and cultural performances were the main highlights of the inaugural function. On his arrival, the Chief Minister and the other dignitaries were accorded a warm traditional welcome by the villagers.