Manipur is a jewel of the North India and is also the land of festivities. The festivities run through the entire calender year. The entire cycle is filled with celebrations and festivities so much so that there is some observance or festivity in every month of the year. Fairs and festivals of Manipur not only rejuvenate but act also add sheen to the monotony of people’s lives. Indeed in the humdrum and cauldron of life on the fast lane these celebrations may certainly be curtailed due to the lack of time but the feeling of community and togetherness is strengthened with these celebrations specially in a time when relationships between an individuals and community is strained and is merely an un kept obligation. Hence the Fairs and Festival of Manipur as a follows
Lai Haraoba- Lai Haraoba is celebrated in honor of the deities of the land known as Umang Lai. The Lai Haraoba of Thaijing is one of the most revered. This festival represents the worship of the traditional deities and dances. This festival is celebrated in the months of May. These ritualistic celebrations are both religious and cultural in nature. A number of dances are performed by men and women before the ancient deities.
Yaoshang (Dol Jatra) - This festival is celebrated in the month of February and March. The festival commences on the full moon day of Phalgun. Yaoshang is a premiere festival of Manipur. The cultural highlight of this festival is the Thabal Chonga. This is a Manipuri folk dance which has boys and girls dance together. Another distinctive feature of the festival is community celebrations. For the purpose of holding community celebrations individuals both young and old rally around the community collecting money for the same. Of late apart from the dance and other festal celebration individuals have began to invest more in games and sports events that has enabled greater participation especially among the youth.
Rath Jatra- This festival is celebrated for a period of ten days in the month of Igen (usually held in the month of June or July). It is one of the most hallowed festivals for Hindus in the state of Manipur. The highlight of the festival is the Rath Jathra wherein an idol of the Lord Jagganath is carried on a decked chariot (Kanga) that is pulled by devotees and pilgrims who vie with one and another for this honor.
Ramzan ID- Ramzan ID is celebrated with fervor among Muslims in the region. Meitei Pangal in Manipur is celebrated in usual spirit of joy and festivities as in other parts of the Muslim world.
KUT (festival of Kuki Chin Mizo)- It is an autumn festival that is celebrated by different tribes of Kuki Chin Mizo groups of Manipur. This festival is also known by the names of Chavang-Kut and Khodou. It is a day of thanksgiving wherein the villagers thank the almighty for the bounty which they have labored for in the last few years. Song and dance add color to the festivities. This festival unlike other tribal festivals is celebrated every year on November 1.
Gang Ngai (festival of Kabui Nagas)- Celebrated for five days in the month of Wakching that is usually celebrated in the month of December and January. This is an important community celebration for the Kabui Nagais. The festival commences with a not peculiar omen taking ceremony that on the first day of this community celebration. The highlight of the festivities is dances and presentation of farewell gifts. A point to be noted that since 1996 the date of the festivities has been fixed for the 21st of January.
Chumpha (festival of the Tangkhul Nagas)-Chumpha festivities last for an entire week and is the community festival of the Tangkhul Nagas. The last three days of the festivals are dedicated for social gatherings as well as rejoicing. Unlike other festivals women play an important part in the festivities. The festival concludes with a village procession.
Christmas- The festival of Christmas is observed on two days, the 24th and the 25th of December. The festivities start with the liturgy that includes prayers, reading of the Gospels, lectures on Christ and singing opf hymns. Fellowship, get together and sports activities form the cultural part of festivities. In some places the festivities continue till the 1st of January.
Cheiraoba (Manipur New Year)- before the festival people clean their homes and prepare special dishes that are first offered to the deities. The new year is ushered in the month of April , as part of the ritual villagers are climb the nearest hill tops with the faith they would rise to greater heights in the coming year.
Heikru Hidongba- This festival is celebrated in the month of September. There is little religious significance to this festival. The highlight of the festival is the boat race where long narrow boats carrying of the statue of Lord Vishnu race in the lakes of the region.
Ningol Chakoubha (Social festival of Manipur)- Married women of the family who were married to distant places come to the parental house along with her children and enjoy sumptuous feast. It is a form of family rejoinder to revive familial affection. The festival is also observed by the Pangals (Manipuri Muslims) to a certain extent now-a-days. It is observed on the second day of the new moon in the Manipuri month of Hiyangei (November).
Lui Ngai Ni- It is a collective festival of the Nagas observed on the 15th day of February every year. This is a seed-sowing festival after which tribes belonging to the Naga group begin their cultivation. Social gathering, songs, dances and rejoicing highlight the festivity. The annual festival also plays a great role in boosting the morale and strengthening the bond of Naga solidarity.
Kwak Jatra:- Goddess Durga is propitiated with pomp and ceremony in this festival. It is celebrated in the month of October and represents the victory of righteousness over evil.
been known to the other states and outside India by their ethnic tribal culture.
All the distinctive features turns into a feast whenever the religious,
spiritual and musical aspects of each festival comes into play. The variety of
festivals is due to the existence of various tribes in the state.
Sekreyi (February)-The festival of Sekreyi is celebrated in the month of February by the Angami tribals. The ten-day festival is also called Phousanyi by the Angamis.
Aoling Monyu (March) -By the end of March, Aoling Monyu festival is celebrated by the Konyaks tribe and it stretches for six days. The festival marks the end of winter of the previous year and heralds the New Year beginning with spring.
Moatsu-The Aos observe Moatsu after the sowing is done. Stretching over a period of six days, the festival is marked by vigorous merry-making after the hard labour of farming.
Naknyulum (July)Celebrated during the first week of July, Naknyulum is the festival of the Chang Nagas celebrated for a period of six days. The Chang decorate their houses with a special kind of tree, the Ngunam.
¤ Tuluni (July)-The Tuluni is held in the month of July and is the most important festival of the Semas. The festival is marked by the prayers and offerings to Litsaba - the deity of fruitfulness who gives life and protection to the crops.
¤ Hornbill Festival (December)-The Hornbill festival is celebrated every year at Kohima from the first to fifth of December.
¤ Metemneo (December)-The Yimchungers celebrate the Metemneo festival after the millet crop is harvested. This festival is dedicated mainly for the souls of the departed.
¤ Tsokum(October)-The Khiamgans celebrate the festival of Tsokum in the month of October, which is also associated with harvesting.
¤ Amongmong (September) -The Sangtams celebrate Amongmong in the first week of September when the new crop is ready for harvesting. The main feature of the festival is the worship of the God of the house and the three cooking stones in the fireplace.
¤ Tokhu Emong -Tokhu Emong is celebrated by the Lothas once the harvesting is over and the granaries are full.
¤ Ngada (November/December) -Ngadaisan annual celebration of the Rwengma Nagas observed towards the end of November / December. It is believed that during this festival, the spirits of the dead visit their graves and the homes of their relatives.
¤ Monyu (April)-Monyu is celebrated by the Phoms after the sowing of paddy every year, from the first to third of April.
¤ Christmas (December) -Christmas is celebrated throughout the state as almost all of the people are Christians. This is definitely a pleasant time of the year as the people gather in churches, sing gospels and rejoice on everything. Though the Christmas is on 25th of December, the whole month exudes pomp and festive spi