Imphal, July 25 2022: Rajya Sabha MP Leishemba Sanajaoba on Monday drew the attention of the parliament to take up the Pony Project in Manipur, similar to the centrally-sponsored project taken up by the Union government for tiger conservation.
Bringing the matter as a special mention in the on-going monsoon session of parliament, MP Sanajaoba said that Manipur is known the world over as the birthplace of Polo, also known as ‘Hockey on Horseback’ by many British officers.
From 1899 to 1905, the then viceroy Lord Curzon mentioned in his monumental paper, ‘The Cradle of Polo’ that the sport, which was the favourite of Englishmen in India, originated in Manipur.
Manipuri Pony, which is used in playing the game and also by the Manipuris during battles, is a rare and unique breed, with close ties to the state’s rich history.
However, the population of the breed has dwindled to less than 1000 owing to lack of proper farmlands/grazing grounds.
Although efforts are being made under Chief Minister N Biren to preserve and protect this rare breed, the state government is facing a difficult task due to lack of funds.
Thus, he urged for taking up a centrally-sponsored Pony project in Manipur, similar to the Tiger Conservation Project, so as to help save this rare and unique Pony breed.