Parted 20 year ago by ethnic violence, villagers keeps bond alive with annual meet

IMPHAL, September 26 : Exactly 20 years after the 1990s ethnic flare up between the Kukis and the Nagas forced them to scatter in various districts of Manipur,  the erstwhile villagers of Songphal village, Tamei subdivision, Tamenglong district continue to keep alive the non-existent village at least in their spirit.

Songphal village, also called Lhutjachung, was a Kom village reportedly established in 1920.

Now scattered in Churachandpur district, Sadar Hills of Senapati district and elsewhere, the former villagers of Songphal come together on September 25 every year to keep alive the bond that was shared 20 years ago.

On September 25, 1993 the villagers of Songphal had left their village following a quit notice served allegedly by the NSCN-IM. Some villagers chose to go to Churachandpur district while others settled in various villages of Sadar Hills in Senapati district and elsewhere.

However, the villagers did not feel at home in their new villages. They contacted each and every villager and had decided that they would come together at least once in a year to keep alive the bond of love shared in their former village far away in Tamenglong district.

Each year, the venue of the get-together of the former Songphal Kom villagers changes and have chosen to observe the day at New Songphal village in Sadar Hills, Senapati district this year. The erstwhile villagers of Songphal from far-flung Churachandpur district, Senapati district and elsewhere turned up at New Songphal village, Sadar Hills yesterday (September 25) and observed the day.

Chief of New Songphal village, Sadar Hills Vomlal said,"By observing this type of event, we not only able to experience the warmness of ones villagers parted 20 years ago once again but we would also like to show how hard it is to separate from one's co-villagers."

According to Vomlal, the Songphal villagers of Tamei subdivision are now scattered in the Senapati district villages of Iching Kom Keirak, Saikul Kom, Mokokching, Luwang Sangol, Maibung and Ikouphai.

In the south Manipur district of Churachandpur, Songphal villagers have been scattered in Sagang, Khoirentak, Harmantlang and Samu Lamkai he added

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Courtesy:ISTV Imphal


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