Ancient Manipur ritual held in the state for the first time in 350 years

Ancient Manipur ritual held in the state for the first time in 350 years

IMPHAL, June 29, 2018: Sanamahee Ahong Khong Chingba, a traditional ceremony of Manipur for peace and prosperity, took place here after 350 years on Thursday.

A chariot, carrying an adorned Lord Sanamahee, travelled in the heart of Imphal city. The journey is locally known as Kang Chingba.

Devotees offered fruits, flowers and money as the chariot passed along the busy streets here. Various rituals with traditional Pena music and dances were performed.

The religious procession began in the morning form Imphal Polo ground, traditionally known as Mapal Kangeibung, and returned back to performSanamahee Cheng Hongba, another ritual.

During Sanamahee Cheng Hongba, rice, flowers and fruits were offered to the deity, seeking blessings for a prosperous family and lineage, and emancipation from diseases, untimely death, separation, evil and all worries.

People from different communities took part in the programme, organised by Lainingthou Sanamahee Sana Pung (LSSP), Kangleipak, a religious organisation.

"The local tradition celebrating Sanamahee Ahong Khong Chingba had been replaced by Rath Yatra," Tampak Puba, public secretary of the organisation.

Ishorjit Chandam, media coordinator of the organisation, said Sanamahee Cheng Hongba is performed annually, however, the Kang Chingba of Sanamahee Ahong Khong Chinba has not been performed for more than three centuries.

"We want to tell people that Manipur was once a land where all communities of both the hills and valley lived harmoniously and the ritual is performed for peace and prosperity," he added.

According to the LSSP, Kangleipak, the ceremony is performed on the 15th day of the Inga month according to the Manipuri lunar calendar, which is based on the myth of Lord Sanamahee circumnutating the world on the advice of his father. This is the day Sanamahee became the lord of every household.

Source: The Telegraph

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