Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh, who was the chief guest, said the state had made it to the top three among Northeast and hilly states in the India Innovative Index 2020, released by NITI Aayog.

Manipur celebrated its 50th Statehood Day on Thursday with a colourful march-past by eight parade contingents at the 1st Battalion Manipur Rifles Parade Ground, Imphal.

The contingents included the 5th Battalion Manipur Rifles, Khongjaron; 8th IRB; Combined Civil Police (Male) Imphal East and West; 9th Indian Reserve Mahila Battalion; Home Guard (Male); Combined VDF, Imphal East and West; Traffic Police; and CID-Technical and Bomb Squad contingent.

Speaking on the occasion, Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh, who was the chief guest, said the state had made it to the top three among Northeast and hilly states in the India Innovative Index 2020, released by NITI Aayog on January 20.

He attributed the achievement to ministers, MLAs, DGP, all government employees, CSOs, NGOs, bank employees and media persons, among others.

The Chief Minister that the recognition by NITI Aayog showed that the state was moving forward with new ideas, development at grassroots level and considerable improvement in law and order.

“With improvement in every field, like balanced economic growth in valley and hill regions, good relations amongst different communities residing in the state and positive change in the mind-set of the people, the state has become an attraction point in the eye of everyone in the country,” he said.

CM Singh asserted that Manipur has all the potential to be “one of the best states in the country”, provided everyone, regardless of their position, worked with sincerity and transparency and in unison “against the evil of corruption”.

Singh appealed to the public to come up with positive suggestions and constructive criticism, which are “very necessary” for a democracy.

He announced that state government would build children’s parks in seven districts, including Chandel, Churachandpur, Jiribam, Kangpokpi, Senapati, Tamenglong and Ukhrul. Moreover, construction of 47 Primary Health Sub-Centres in rural and hilly areas under Minority Department are also in the pipeline, he added.

During the celebration, Singh presented a cheque of Rs 5 lakh to the sister of (Late) Major Laishram Jyotin Singh under Major Jyotin Bravery Award. Major Laishram Jyotin Singh had died in Kabul in 2010, fighting a suicide bomber.

Manipur had earlier planned to celebrate the Statehood Day on a large scale, this being the 50th anniversary. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state cabinet decided to observe the day with restrictions. Ministers, MLAs, Chief Secretary, the DGP, top civil and police officers attended the function, among others.

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