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Manipur's growth depends on peaceful coexistence: CM

Friday, 06 October 2017 13:06
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Imphal, October 5: Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh today called for solidarity among hill and valley people, saying development of the state would depend on peaceful coexistence of different communities.

Speaking at 'Mera Houchongba' -- celebrated to foster and promote peace and solidarity among various communities of Manipur, he regretted that efforts were being made to divide the state on ethnic lines by antisocial elements, which the people must not allow to happen.

"Manipur cannot be Manipur when the people of hills and valley are not together. We must build peace and solidarity between hill and the valley, " Singh said.

His statement comes days after the expiry of the October 1 deadline set by the United Naga Council (UNC), an influential body of Nagas, for the government to resolve the contentious issue of creation of new districts in the state.

UNC had opposed the forming of two out of seven districts, which were created by the previous Ibobi Singh government last year, and had blocked two national highways in the state.

Beginning November 1 last year, the over four-month-long economic blockade was lifted in March this year when the new BJP government led by N Biren Singh took over.

Addressing a gathering of different communities of the state, including chieftains of various hill villages, Singh said his government has laid special emphasis on growth and development of hills through various state-sponsored schemes.

"Without the development of remote places in the hills, there can be no development of Manipur," he said.

The chief minister said with a view to fostering peace and harmony between hills and valley, his government has decided to make the 'Mera Houchongba' festival a state- sponsored event. It was earlier celebrated separately by different bodies, including the titular king of the state.

"Our government is committed to supporting this festival which is a mark of peace and harmony in the state since historical times so that we can take forward the spirit of oneness," Singh added.

The chief minister also emphasised on the need to promote Manipur as a peaceful state for which his government has taken up several tourism related projects, including building ropeways in landmark hills of different districts.(PTI)

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