By Waikhom Chitradhani
Imphal(Manipur), April 23 : The state observed the 130th Khongjom Day, remembering the last war of independence that the erstwhile South-East Asia kingdom fought against the British.
Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh led the observance ceremony at Khongjom War Memorial. Deputy Chief Minister Y Joykumar, cabinet ministers, MLAs, among others paid floral tributes at the war memorial atop the Kheba hill. They also paid tributes to Paona Brajabashi Statue located at the foothill. The group of lawmakers also offered Tarpan at Khongjom River.
The Khongjom Day is observed on 23rd April every year to pay rich tributes to the martyrs who had sacrificed their lives fighting against the British to protect the freedom of Manipur (Anglo Manipur War 1981). The main battle took place at Khongjom, Thoubal District, some 33 km from Imphal city, on Indo-Myanmar road.
CM Biren Singh called upon the people of the State to follow the footsteps of our forefathers with a sense of nationalism and work hard together by maintaining unity among different communities for bringing overall development in the State. He was speaking to the media persons on the sidelines of the occasion.
Unlike the previous years, the State government had made sure that social distancing was maintained and devoid of large public gatherings in view of the prevailing situations due to the second wave. The group paid only floral tribute and offered Tarpan. The state restricted large public gatherings at the complex today.
The Anglo-Manipur War was fought between the British Empire and the Kingdom of Manipur that lasted between 31st March and 27th April 1891. It ended with a British victory. Many brave soldiers of Manipur including main soldiers such as Major General Paona Brajabashi, Chinglensana etc. were killed in the battlefield.
The war was a great historical event. During the whole of the 19th century, Manipur was an independent Kingdom and was never colonized.