BHOGALI BIHU CELEBRATED AT IMPHAL (MANIPUR)

The function, held at the countryside in Sangaiprou locality in the outskirts of Imphal City was well attended. Apart from Imphal a few families scattered in other parts of the State also took part in the celebration. On the eve of the Bihu Day called “Uruka”, “Bhela Ghar” (Thatched Pavillion) and “Meji” (a cone shaped wooden structure) was put up at the paddy field in Sangaiprou Mamang Leikai. Acknowledging the enthusiasm of the Assamese people, the residents of Sangaiprou Mamang Leikai also chipped-in manually in erecting the structure of “Bhela Ghar” and “Meji”. All the Assamese people along with a few enthusiastic residents of the locality spent the “Uruka” night in the thatched pavilion put up for the purpose. The “Bhoj” (community feast) for the night was prepared by the inhabitants of “Bhela Ghar” and consisted of traditional Assamese delicacies such as “Mangshor Jhol”, “Machor Tenga” “Behua”, “Mati Dail laced with Outenga”, “Kath Alu Poora” and “Kharicha” along with famed Manipur dish called “Ironba”. The night after the sumptuous dinner was spent by singing, dancing & merry making.

The very next dawn, people after taking bath and attiring themselves in traditional cloths & “Gamocha” paid obeisance to the Sun God. Then the flag of ASOM SAMAJ : MANIPUR was hosted by Shri Rajen Gogoi, Hony. General Secretary along with Shri Upen Basumatary, Hony. President. The “Bhela Ghar” alongwith “Meji” was set on fire denoting that the festival has begun. “Meji Prajwalon” (Setting fire of Meji) was done at the hands of Shri Basumatary, Hony. President of ASOM SAMAJ : MANIPUR. The Assamese people then paid their obeisance to “Agni” the God of Fire by bowing in front of the burning “Meji”. A few Bihu songs were instantly rendered on the occasion by “Bihu Bolia Raij” (Bihu mad audience). Thereafter “Boot-Maah” (chickpea & green moongdal soaked in water) offerings made to the traditional deity were distributed, which made the members nostalgic about their “Naamghar” (House of Names, i.e. a Community Worship Hall) back at home in Assam. To mark the occasion games like “Koni Juj” (Egg fight) was held as a part of the celebration, which was enjoyed greatly by all the people present especially the children. In the meantime all the ladies who turned up in traditional attire of “Mekhala Chador” did a quick jig by going around the burning “Meji”. The President of Samaj then explained the significance of “Bhogali Bihu” for the benefit of non-Assamese people who were present in great number.

This was followed by serving of traditional breakfast with mouth watering Assamese delicacies like “Doi’ (Curd); “Chira” (thatched rice); “Mithoi” (Sweet Dollops); “Til Pitha” (Rice cake filling of Til & Jaggery); “Tilor Laru” (Balls made of Til & Jaggery); “Narikolor Laru” (Balls made of grated Cocoanut, Sugar & Jaggery). Assamese women prepared all the delicacies themselves. The breakfast was thoroughly enjoyed by all the people present including media persons.

After the breakfast was over “Xolagor Xarai” (Vote of Thanks) was offered by S/Shri Dilip Das, Jt. Secretary and Dilip Singh, Cultural Secretary, ASOM SAMAJ : MANIPUR. The Publicity Secretary of the SAMAJ, Shri Biswajit Deb, extended his heartfelt gratitude on behalf of the ASOM SAMAJ : MANIPUR to the local residents of Sangaiprou Mamang Leikai for their overwhelming response and co-operation in making the “Bhogali Bihu Celebration” a grand success. He also took time to praise media persons both from print & electronic media, for the keen interest shown by them in covering the celebration.


BISWAJIT DEB, Publicity Secretary, ASOM SAMAJ : MANIPUR