Imphal Aug 19,
The Meeteis in Tripura has been following and conserving the cultures of the Meeteis despite living in another state by wearing the traditional attire during rituals and festivals.
Most womenfolk wore Rani Phi, Wangkhei Phi, Moirang Phi and other traditional attires on auspicious occasions bought at high cost from the Nepalis.
“The economy of the Meeteis living in Tripura can be strengthened if expert weavers from Manipur teach the Meeteis of Tripura or if the Manipur Government initiate a free training program at Manipur or Tripura for making such dresses” suggested Nongthombam Kusum Singha who is the General Secretary of Chhechhuria Federation, Chhechhuria weaving training Centre Agartala while speaking to Imphal Times.
Highlighting the centre, she stressed that the centre was funded by the World Bank under the Ministry of DoNER and NERLP and added that it was established in the year 2014 by the Meeteis and the Bengalis residing there. Speaking to Imphal Times she further said that poor people of the area especially the women were made self-employed through livestock farming and giving training on weaving thus generating their own economy.
Two Weaving experts from Assam came and taught the women at the centre in weaving various types of clothes with patterns and designs in it, she added.
Kusum further said that around 9 Meetei women were there at the centre learning weaving on the 9 looms.
The Meeteis in Tripura have known how to weave simple clothes of the Meetei like Khudei and Phaneks and such clothes were also widely used by the Meeteis residing in Tripura, Kusum stressed. She continued that costlier and intricately designed clothes worn by the Meeteis like Wangkhei Phi, Rani Phi, Phige, Moirang Phi were beyond the skill of the weavers there and added that the Meeteis there longed to learn making such clothes.
She added that the Meetei women living in Tripura generate their income mainly from weaving and agricultural activities.
Considering the plight of the Meeteis living in Tripura Kusum urged the government and all the Civil Society Organisations and also Organisations like SALAI and individuals who love the Meeteis to help in giving training to the Meetei women in weaving and preserving traditional dresses and costumes like Wangkhei Phi, Rani Phi, Phige, Moirang Phi and help in strengthening their economy.
Rabi Takhellambam, a resident of Kairembikhok Mayai Leikai, ThoubaI District has been in the field of Journalism for more than 10 years. Rabi, is well known for his reporting from Thoubal side and Indo-Myanmar border. Rabi is also a member of All Manipur Working Journalist Union, the parent body of Journalist Union in Manipur. He can be contacted by email at [email protected]
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