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This time Govt. made a good decision

by Rinku Khumukcham
0 comment 3 minutes read

Even, if one is critical in considering the SOP of the government to ban Thabal Chongba and other entertainment programmes during the Yaoshang festival as completely successful or not, the fact is that it helps to control the mass gathering which we had been witnessing during the last couple of decades.
To be précise the level of noise pollution was a decrease to almost nil during the night time of Yaoshang as compare to the Yaoshang festival of the last couple of decades. There were less gathering of youths during this festival this year as the government had already imposed a ban on certain entertainment programme such as Thabal Chongba, Sumang Leela, Live concerts. etc.
Apart from assuming that the government had not given many opportunities for the dreaded virus to spread from direct contact, Parents and guardians of teenage youths had got some relief as their children had no chance for excuses of returning late at night during the festival times. Perhaps the level of crime and road accident related to the Yaoshang festival too has been reported very less while compared to those witnessed in the yesteryears.
We all know that Yaoshang is perhaps the largest festival of Manipur. The festival unlike others is celebrated by all age groups. Children find their happiest moment playing colours earlier and later participating the sports events. Teenagers waited for this festival as it is a chance for every teenage youth to find their life partners. Manipur’s special characteristic of this festival is the event called ‘Thabal Chongba’ (dancing in the moonlight), where boys and girls get the approval of dancing together in front of the elders or family members. While the aged people waited for this festival to perform Holi dance. Naturally, it is a festival where young and old, men and women, boys and girls together celebrated. And to be précise the way that Manipuri celebrates Yaoshang, which is also celebrated across the nation as Holi festival is unique.
There is a traditional and aesthetic beauty in the way that Manipuri celebrates the Yaoshang festival. With the changing of time, the Yaoshang festival is added with another flavour with the introduction of sports activities. Today, the Yaoshang festival is also another event that promotes sports activism.
In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, the state government had put certain restrictions on the celebration of the festival. Thabal Chongba, which indeed is an integral part of the festival, has been restricted along with the organizing of Sumang Leela events. Local club organizing sports festival has also put certain SOPs.
The kind of restrictions put to events of the Yaoshang Festival, even though has angered some sections of the society, state government this time has taken up a serious decision.
With the election just around a year to go, those in the government may have understood the impact of such measures, but the perception that people need to survive and need to take up some SOPs to celebrate the largest festival of the state is a bold decision. The action of the N. Biren Singh Administration showed that it is the people first and others are secondary.
Having said so people of the state did felt the taste of celebrating Yaoshang festival in a different way. It is true that not every SOP could have been enforced properly, but the fact is that other events often organized between this festival, which some sections sometimes criticized had been reduced this time.
Indeed, the Covid-19 pandemic has once more brought some good deeds to the society of Manipur. This is also perhaps another blessing in disguise.

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Imphal Times is a daily English newspaper published in Imphal and is registered with Registrar of the Newspapers for India with Regd. No MANENG/2013/51092


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