HISTORY AND GEOGRAPHY
Manipur has a long and glorious history from beginning of the Christian era. The recorded history of kingship started from 22 AD which marked the coronation of Pakhangba. After Pakhangba a series of kings ruled over the kingdom of Manipur. The independence and sovereignty of Manipur remained uninterrupted until the Burmese invaded and occupied it for seven years in the first quarter of the 19th century (1819-25). Then came British Paramountcy in 1891 and later on it was merged in the Indian Union as part “C” State on 15th October 1949. This was replaced by a territorial council of 30 elected and 2 nominated members was established under the Union Territories Act, 1962. The status of the administrator was raised from Chief Commissioner to the status of the Lt. Governor w.e.f. 19th December 1969. Manipur attained full-fledged statehood on 21 January 1972. With this a Legislative Assembly consisting of 60 elected members was established.
Geographically the state is divided into two tracts: the hills comprising of five districts and the plains with four districts. It is bounded by Myanmar on the east, Nagaland on the north, Assam and Mizoram on the west and Myanmar and Mizoram on the south.
From the level of subsistence agriculture, the State Agriculture Department now plans to go ahead with commercialization and self-sustainability during the 10th Plan period. The department focuses on (1) increasing cropping intensity from the present level of 123. 50 % to 136 % (2) increasing present level of firm mechanization, i.e, 0.1 HP/Ha. To 0.9 HP/Ha. (3) improving the soil health through amelioration of acid soil (4) minimizing external dependence for supply of seed inputs by strengthening infrastructure in state farms so that gradually the state can produce its own requirement of seed inputs (5) giving better protection to plants from insect pests and diseases through integrated Pest Management (6) Strengthening the existing training infrastructure for better transfer of technology to the farmers (7) developing infrastructure for agriculture and (8) bringing a change in the cropping scenario in hill areas of the state by introducing high yielding varieties of crop particularly paddy, oil seeds and pulses for overall increase in agricultural production and productivity to meet the demands for foods by the increasing human population.
Total area under forest cover is 16,926 sq. km of which 5,710 sq. km falls under dense forest while 11,216 sq. km falls under open forest. The forest cover accounts for 75.8 percent of the State’s geographical area. Siroy hill range in Ukhrul District, Manipur is the abode of Siroy Lily (Lilium macklineae), the paradise flower which is not found elsewhere in the world. The Dzuko valley is also the only habitat of the endemic and the rarest species Dzuko Lily (Lilium Chitrangade). Manipur is the only spot on earth in which the Brow-Antlered Deer (Cervus eldi eldi) locally known as Sangai is found. This rare deer is surviving in its natural habitat at the Keibul Lamjao.
The habitat was declared as a National Park in the year 1977 covering an area of 40 sq. kms. It is unique in its own physical feature as the park lies submerged under water covered entirely on the surface by a floating entangled mass of vegetation like grass, shrubs and earth, called phumdi. The deer survives on top of this phumdi. The conservation measures taken up by the State has led to the rise of Sangai Population from a mere 14 animals in the year 1975 to 180 in the year 2003.
The other area already declared as protected area besides Keibul Lamjao national Park is the Yangoupokpi – Lokchao Wildlife Sanctuary with an area of 180.40 sq. km. It is situated at Chandel District and is located on the Indo-Malayan Zoogeographical Zone. The Malayan Sun Bear is found in this wildlife sanctuary.
The State is very rich in bio-diversity, large areas are still virgin forests. These are the habitats of very rare plants of rich medicinal value like Taxus baccata, ginseng, etc. it is also the home of many rare orchids and ferns.
Major and Medium Irrigation had been introduced in the State from 1980. So far 8 (eight) Major and Medium Irrigation & Multipurpose projects have been taken up viz; i) Loktak Lift Irrigation Project ii)Khoupum Dam Project ii) Sekmai Barrage Project iv) Imphal Barrage Project v) Singda Multipurpose Project vi) Thoubal Multipurpose Project vii) Khuga Multipurpose Project viii) Dolaithabi Barrage Project..
Out of the above i) Khoupum Dam ii) Imphal Barrage iii) Sekmai Barrgae iv) Loktak Lift Irrigation v) Irrigation component of Singda project vi) Barrage component at Keithelmanbi and a part of the left canal of Thoubal Multipurpose Project had been completed upto the end VIIIth Plan. The Irrigation potential created from these projects upto the end of IXth Plan was 28,500 Ha. With utilization of 20,910 Ha. and that upto March 2004 is 28,500 Ha. With utilization of 21,850 Ha. In addition, 1,200 Ha. and 900 Ha. of low lying areas of Loushipat and Poiroupat respectively has been reclaimed by Thoubal Project. 4 MGD of raw water is supplied to the State Public Health Engineering Department for water supply from the reservoir of Singda Dam.
Irrigation potential of 26,500 Ha. From the completed projects are targeted for restoration under the scheme during the IXth Plan. Because of financial constraint, irrigation potential of 350 Ha. only could be restored during the IXth Plan. The schemes are spilled over the Tenth Plan. At present, three ongoing projects viz; i) Khuga Multipurpose Project ii) Thoubal Multipurpose Project and iii) Dolaithabi Barrage Project are in progress. The projects are targeted for completion during Tenth plan.
The State Government is also planning for taking up new Major/Medium Irrigation Projects under State Plan and with funding by NEC. Chapki Multipurpose Project, Iril Multipurpose Project and Sekmai Multipurpose Project are to be taken up under State Plan and Jiri Irrigation Project and diversion of Chapki basin water to Loktak Lake are to be taken up with funding by NEC. An additional irrigation potential about 28,000 Ha., water supply potential of about 13.00 MGD and power potential of about 17.50 MW will be created.
Roads : Imphal, the capital of Manipur is joined by road (NH-39) with Nagaland on the north and Myanmar on the east, on the west with Assam by NH-53 and Mizoram on the south by NH-150.
The State has 8648 km of roads both surfaced and unsurfaced. The length of roads consists of National Highway 967 km. State Highway 668 km. District roads 1977 km and village roads 5036 km.
Railways : The state is including in the railway map of India with the opening of a rail head at Jiribam in May 1990. It is 225 km from Imphal. Dimapur, 215 km from Imphal is the nearest rail-head. The Prime Minister of India laid foundation stone for a new railway line (Jiribam-Tupul Railway line) on 20 November 2004.
Aviation : Imphal airport is the only airport which is linked with other stations in the region by Indian Airlines, Jet Airways and Alliance air. The Indian Airlines flights connect Imphal with Guwahati and New Delhi while Jet Airways flights connect Imphal with Guwahati and Kolkata. Alliance Air connects Imphal with Silchar and Kolkata.
AREA, POPULATION AND HEADQUARTERS OF DISTRICTS
|| Area (sq. km)
|| Population (in lakh)
|| Imphal West
|| Imphal East