Clusters of cherry trees in full bloom seen at Mao Gate, Manipur during the first Manipur Cherry Blossom Festival at Mao which is being held from November 26 to 28. The festival is organised by the Mao Flower Growers Association in association with Institute of Bioresources and Sustainable Development (IBSD), a National Institute of Department of Biotechnology, Government of India. (Morung Photo)
Flower cum Cherry Blossom Festival begins in Mao Gate
Morung Express News
Mao Gate | November 26
Against the backdrop of the towering Mt. Esü, the highest peak in Manipur and the white waters of Elei waterfall, the 3rd Mao Flower Festival cum 1st Cherry Blossom Festival was hosted on November 26. Green hills covered with blooming cherry trees captivate visitors.
The festival was hosted under the theme ‘Celebrating Nature’s Abundance’ and organised by Mao Flower Growers’ Association and District Administration, Senapati in association with Institute of Bioresources and Sustainable Development (ISBD), Government of India, Indian Council for Cultural Relation (ICCR), Government of India, Horticulture & Soil Conservation (GoM), Tourism Department (GoM), Trade & Commerce (GoM), Public Health Engineering Department (GoM). The festival was also supported by the Mao Council.
The grounds at Mao Gate were beautifully decked with Cherry Blossoms, innovative décor and floral arrangements. The crowd enthusiastically visited the flower stalls, where a variety of succulents, orchids and other flowers upto 60 to 70 species in number were displayed. The vegetable stalls were successful with vendors happily selling organic vegetables and fruits.
The inaugural program was held today with ceremonial welcome of the chief guest N. Biren Singh, Chief Minister of Manipur and other dignitaries. This was followed by unveiling of the Monolith.
Later in the evening, cycling from Imphal to Mao in coordination with Manipur Adventure and Mountain Biking Association (MAAMBA) was flagged off from ISBT Khuman Lampak.
During an interaction with press personnel, the organizers said, “We are glad to note that the number of people attending the festival is slowly but surely increasing over the years. The cherry blossoms added more colour and flavor to the festival this year.”
The organizers also stated that the flower festival has been successful in providing a platform to local entrepreneurs, home based workers and students in generating income. The festival, they said, has helped people who were unemployed, in turn, strengthening the local economy.
A three-day event, from November 26 to 28, the Festival will also host a variety of events like Trekking to Mt. Esü, Cycling to foothill of Mt. Esü, Cultural Show, Musical Evening and display of illuminated Cherry trees. The organizers have planned the event to highlight the rich varieties of flora and fauna, history of cultures and traditions drawn from nature and fully celebrate Nature’s abundance.
Manipur CM, others make tall promises to Mao
Newmai News Network
Mao Gate | November 26
Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh said that politicians should refrain from playing politics at the cost of human lives because human life is precious.
He said this at the start of the 1st Manipur Cherry Blossom Festival at Kayinu Village, Mao Gate, Senapati district.
Speaking as chief guest at the function, the Chief Minister said that we follow different religions, cultures, traditions but are all human beings. Mentioning the May 6, 2010, incident at Mao Gate where two students were shot dead, the Chief Minister maintained that we should not let it happen again and stand united from divisions created by politics and religion.
On the development front, he informed that Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways Nitin Gadkari has announced Rs 25,000 crores for the construction of roads and highway expansion in Manipur State. Acknowledging the pains and sufferings of the Mao people for the search of market for selling their products, he announced that the government would construct Mao Market at the Lamphel Market area at the cost of Rs 1-2 crores soon.
He further said that a Transit Accommodation would be constructed at Mao for the doctors and teachers who are posted here. The transit accommodation would be constructed at the cost of Rs 3 crores, he added. He further stated that a new transfer policy would be introduced from January 1, 2018 by the State government. Under this transfer policy, every employee would be posted in hill areas for two years on rotation basis.
He also announced that a water supply scheme to provide safe drinking water to the people of Mao would be constructed soon. And a rain water harvesting scheme would be set up at Mao to resolve water scarcity problem during off season. A total cost of Rs. 5 crores would be sanctioned for both the schemes, he added. Stating the importance of having the office of Additional Deputy Commissioner of Senapati for smooth administration, Chief Minister stressed that the State government has earmarked a sum of Rs. 64 crores for the construction of the office and necessary infrastructure of the said office at the earliest.
Acknowledging Makhel as a historic place of the State, the Chief Minister said that the Government would set up a Heritage Centre at Makhel and Rs. 1 crore would be sanctioned for the purpose for initial stage. He assured that the government would work relentlessly towards the conversion of the only Potato farm of the State located at Mao into an organic farm soon.
Biren Singh announced that the Flower Festival cum Manipur Cherry Blossom Festival will be a part of the Manipur Sangai Festival from 2018. He stated that the government will construct permanent structures at Kayinu Village (Flower Festival Site) after discussions with Architects, Mao Council, organisers of Cherry Blosom Festival and Tourism Department.
Minister for PWD, Commerce and Industries, IPR, Th. Biswajit mentioned that Bhartia Infra Projects Limited has been entrusted for the repair and construction of National Highways in the State within 2 years.
He said that the government is planning to develop the border areas as cultural and business hub. With the new slogan of ‘Go to the Hills,’ we are moving towards development and bringing emotional integration in the region, he promised, and added that every village of Manipur State would be electrified by 2018.