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Foundation Stone For Guest House Laid At Siroy

A cultural item being presented by children during the foundation stone laying ceremony. Image Credit: Sangai Photo

UKHRUL, May 10: In a significant development that would boost promotion of tourism industry in the hill districts of Manipur, foundation stone of a new guest house was laid near the mountain peak at Siroy (Shirui) by Works Minister K Ranjit at 11:45 am today.

The new guest house is envisioned to be dedicated to the visitors of the state flowerSiroy Lily’ and its majestic peak.

The guest house would be constructed by Public Works Department (PWD) at the cost of Rs 1.5 crores.

After unveiling foundation stone of the guest house about half a kilometer from the National Highway 150, people came back and assembled for a public function at the newly constructed assembly hall at Siroy village.

Works Minister Ranjit in his speech as the chief guest said the plain and the hill people who have been living together for more than 2000 years need in-depth retrospection in the present era keeping in mind that peaceful co-existence between the hill and plain people as exemplified in the brotherhood of the ‘Ching-Tam’ is far more older than Christianity in the hills and Hinduism in the valley.

He further added that though he had been extensively travelling in most parts of the district it was his first time in Shirui village and it deserved real consideration for its significance in the topography of the district.

The Works Minister announced two packages for developing road connection, one from the main road to the peak as well as black topping of the four kilometers long stretch from zero point up to the middle peak via Sarikan to Pinbai and Ngapakong to Raimaka.

Principal Secretary (Works) Ram Muivah said that Siroy Lily deserved good attention from everyone as this flower has earned its own position in the flower-map of the world in terms of its uniqueness and beauty.

The rare flower species was first discovered by Captain Kingdom Ward   from the Siroy Mountain and he named it Siroy Lily taking the name of his wife Miclliean Lily.

Not long after its discovery, Siroy Lily won a golden award at the Botanical Flower Exhibition in the year 1950.

Narrating the tale of Siroy Lily, Ram said apart from many precious stones, varied animals and birds, the peak has more than 150 numbers of different varieties of wild orchids and the same number of flowers.

Earlier during unveiling of the foundation stone as well as during the public function Ms Phylazan Shang, on behalf of all the villagers as a moderator, clarified the mistake of naming the village as ‘SHIROI’ (in the stone) instead of ‘SHIRUI’, saying that the frequent misspelling of the village name on many occasions is a reason to be worried and that it need immediate acknowledgement from all concerned.

The villagers also submitted a memorandum to the Works Minister appealing for early completion of Shirui Lily guest house.

They also urged for completion of the tourist lodge at Shangthar taken up by the PWD and abandoned for the last 25 years, and another tourist home at Kashongpak taken up under Tourism Department of Manipur which is lying incomplete till today.

Among others, the program was attended by PWD Chief Engineer, DC Ukhrul Ashok Kumar, Pastor TBCA, Pastor TNBC, headmen of Shirui village, EE’s, AEs and Shirui villagers.

Speaking to this correspondent on the sideline of the program, Shirui Chingkha village headman Qr. Ngatasngkhui lamented that though Siroy Lily has been known and acknowledged by the world as one of the most magnificent flower, the same flower has been neglected for long.

Despite being the State flower, the State Government has not been paying due attention to Siroy Lily.

This is one of the major factors for declining growth of the unique flower over the last few decades, said the headman of Shirui Chingkha.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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