Tribals of Manipur celebrate their harvest festival with fanfare

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Khongnang Ani Karak (Manipur), Dec.3 (ANI): Hmar tribes of Manipur celebrated their community's colourful harvest festival, Hmar Sikpui Ruoi recently with much fanfare.

Manipur Chief Minister O. Ibobi Singh and Dr L. Fimate, Director of Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) as the Chief Guest, graced the festival.

On this occasion, various troupes presented cultural dances and songs during the festival.

Though there is no particular date for holding this festival, it is celebrated on any convenient days during the winter in December (Mimtuk thla) and January (Tuolbuol thla).

Sikpui Ruoi, in olden days, was celebrated for several days and sometimes, the celebration lasted a month. But usually, the celebration lasts for a week.

The all-embracing mood of the festival where everyone, rich and poor, young and old can participate without any social inhibition is a distinctive feature of the Sikpui Ruoi.

On this auspicious occasion, everybody be it young or old, rich or poor, dances in blissful harmony on a common platform.

The committee chairman of the festival, Joseph Aar Hmar said that the festival is being celebrated after the arrival of good crops and maintaining peace amongst the Hmar community.

"We are celebrating this year because after bamboo flowering and failure of the crops, this year there are good crops and there is peace among the Hmar. So we are celebrating this festival," said Joseph Aar Hmar.

The other name for Sikpui Ruoi is "Inremna Ruoi" which literally means 'A feast of Peace'.

Earlier, it was considered a taboo to partake in the feast with any grudge against fellowmen.

In case, any person harboured a grudge or had enmity with anyone, he must first rid himself of all those ill feelings before the Sikpui feast.

Thus, the feast brought a sense of harmony among all the people and it was this harmonious relationship that made the feast so unique. (ANI)

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