The Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi called upon the people of Manipur to be Vocal for Local, which is the only incantation for real identity of the manipuris. While launching a water supply project through video conference on 23rd July, 2020, the Prime Minister lauded the people of Manipur for their consciousnessto keep their identity intact. Elaborating the exact meaning of Vocal for Local, Shri Modi referred tohow the people of Manipur reacted to when a group people outside Manipur wanted to brand it as Modi Gamacha.The Prime Minister wearing the manipuri Leirum Lengyan in the water supply project launching ceremonyappreciated the move of the people to retain the original brand name and urged to take similar efforts to protect other Manipuri products. The Prime Minister said that the original Manipuri products and artefact should be value added, popularised and provide market access. Many of our local handloom and handicrafts need to be value added to meet the present time needs and provide market access. We must be vocal for our local products. This is what the Prime Minister interprets for Vocal for Local for Manipur and I consider the Prime Minister hit the nail on the head.
The Prime Minister expresses his deep appreciation for the people of North-East particularly Manipuris for their rich cultural heritage and the potential of tourism which if explored can be engine of economic growth of the state. The Prime Minister is of the opinion that in addition to tourism, the bamboo products and large scale introduction of organic farming can beanother area for economic identity of the people of this region, for which the state government and the people of the state should be vocal.
He sighted the example of India’s agarbathi industry for which several crores worth of Bamboo are being imported while there is large bamboo plantations in the entire North East region. He called upon replacing the supply chain by utilising the bamboo industry of the region and curbing imports.
Kashmir which was once described as “Heaven on Earth” for its scenic beauty and for large number of domestic and foreign tourist attraction became the driving engine for economy for people of Kashmir. However, with the surge of militancy the ever growing tourism industry has been lost today in Kashmir and it will take time to reclaim it. Notably, in Manipur as the law and order situation is developing in course of time. The Prime Minister took it asa challenge and opportunities for revival of tourism in the state. Indeed Manipur food cuisines are not only popular in the country but also liked by people across the world. The cultural events and exhibits such as Holi festival including Thabal Chongba, Lai Haraoba are quite memorable to the people across the world who had a glimpse of it. The hair-rising Thang-Ta exhibit is a matter of thrill to the people across the world. All these are good inputs for tourism and people have to inculcate the spirit of hospitality (Guest/tourist are god).
Launching of water supply project of over Rupees Three Thousand Crores is indeed a milestone in the path of development but more important is the Prime Minister’s clarioncall for Vocal for Local. The state’s own products of Handlooms, Handicrafts, local vegetable are gradually dwindling our cultural are also slowly influence by some forces outside the country. In such a situation, the Prime Minister’s call for Vocal for Local not only saw relevance ineconomic activities but also in other fields which will help in rejuvenation to a new height. Also, it can be a wake-up call from Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to the people of Manipur to consider it as an opportunity to promote our own local traditional products.
Author: B S Sharma
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