TODAY -

Cultural Integrity Pillars unveiled
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, January 24 2013: Two Cultural Integrity Pillars (I and II), which have been erected at within the complex of Directorate of Art and Culture at Palace Compound here with the aim of instilling the spirit of oneness among the various ethnic groups settling in the State, were unveiled by Chief Minister O Ibobi today.

Carved out of boulders brought from Ningthoukhong, each of the pillars that depict the different cultural, traditional and historical facets of all the ethnic groups of Manipur stands 18 ft tall with 3 ft in circumference and weighed 7 tonnes.

Art & Culture Department has erected them at an estimated cost of over 5 lakhs each.

Of the two, Pillar-I has been erected at the main gate of Directorate of Art & Culture and it depicts engraved figurines of man from different ethnic groups and animals belonging to 17th and 18th centuries, while Pillar No 2 which displays several designs imprinted on various cloths used by people of the State has been erected at the main gate of Bheigyachandra Open Air Theatre (BOAT), which is also situated within the complex of Directorate of Art and Culture at Palace Compound.

Speaking at the unveiling ceremony as Chief Guest, Chief Minister O Ibobi stated that there would be a time when we need to go to the British Museum whenever any problem or confusion over the more than 2000 years old history of Manipur creeps up.

This is because of the fact that the British Museum is filled with records of the history of Manipur.

"The manner in which the historical records of Manipur are being kept intact in the British Museum is not to be seen in any of the museums of the State.

In fact, even one tenth of the records being kept in British museum on the history of Manipur, cannot be found in the museums here.

So, there is an urgent need to establish a Cultural Museum in the State.

However, due to financial constraints, it could not be materialise as of now", the Chief Minister, who is also holds the portfolio of Art and Culture, said.

Nonetheless, he observed that the two which have been erected at the Directorate of Art and Culture Complex are going to be the properties of future generations to come.

"The two cultural integrity pillars signify that different ethnic communities in the state have co-existed since time immemorial and they would provide valuable information about the culture and traditions of the people of Manipur", he said.

The CM also assured that the State Government would be extending all possible assistance to the Art and Culture Department to preserve the rich cultural heritage of Manipur.

Dr RK Nimai, Commissioner of Arts and Culture, who was present on the occasion, stated that the newly erected Cultural Integrity Pillars would add to the glory of the Arts and Culture office building, which otherwise, has a plain view.

Even if there are differences among the various ethnic groups in Manipur, resemblance not just in physical structure but also in their lifestyles and culture is undeniable.

And the two integrity pillars which were unveiled today would stand as testimony to the inseparable bonding among the different ethnic communities of Manipur, he maintained.

Dr K Sobita, Director, Art and Culture, also stated that the Cultural Integrity Pillars have been erected to strength the everlasting bond among the different communities of the State.

Mutua Bahadur and 12 other artists, who have carved and given life to the two Integrity Pillars were honoured with gifts on the occasion which was also attended by MLA E Chand Singh amon other dignitaries.


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