Yes, as promised, here is the second installment of Seven Sisters of India facts. But at the very beginning, we must clarify something to all our readers. When we speak of Northeast India, we usually think of the Seven Sisters. However, Northeast India includes another state as well. It is Sikkim. Before we start our list of facts, let us take a look at the time line of their creation and their capital cities.
After India earned her independence from the colonial rule of British, there were only three states in Northeast. Those states were:
- Assam – a province which was directly ruled by the British.
- Manipur – was a princely state.
- Tripura – was also a princely state.
Assam’s capital was at that time, Shillong, which, as of today, is the capital city of the state of Meghalaya.
Over the next few decades that followed after independence, Assam was broken down into pieces, making way for new states. The first state to form after Assam broke was Nagaland, followed by Meghalaya and Mizoram. The timeline is given below:
- 1963 – Nagaland separated from Assam and became a new state.
- 1972 – Meghalaya separated from Assam and became a new state.
- 1972 – Mizoram separated from Assam and became a Union Territory.
- 1987– Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh gained statehood.
As far as Sikkim is concerned, Sikkim became Indian Union’s 22nd state on May 16, 1975. Indian Army actually took over Gangtok a month earlier in 1975 and the palace guards of Chogyal (monarch of Sikkim). A referendum followed this and eventually, 2.5% voted in favor of Monarchy while the remaining 97.5% voted against it. That is when Sikkim was absorbed in Union of India as a state. In 2003, China formally accepted that Sikkim is a state of India against India’s acceptance that Tibet belongs to China. If you want to learn the proper history of Sikkim, read this book. Though this book is currently available on Amazon.in as Kindle Edition, you can actually find the hardcover version on Amazon.com but at a very high price. On Flipkart, the book has been sold out. Keep a track and if you are lucky, you might just be able to grab a copy.
Now, the capitals of the Seven Sisters of India and Sikkim:
Okay, now time for the promised facts but, this article will mainly focus on Manipur facts. Facts about the other northeastern states will be covered in subsequent articles.
Fascinating Seven Sisters of India Facts (Manipur Facts): 1-5
1. The literal meaning of Manipur is ‘Land of Jewels’. You really don’t find jewels (stones) here but the most stunning jewel you will ever find is Mother Nature herself. Mother Nature let loose her generosity in this beautiful state.
2. The lingua franca of Manipur is Meeteilon or Meiteilon. It is actually the language spoken by the ethnic group Meiteis, which is the state’s primary ethnic group.
3. One of the many things that Manipur is famous for is Lai-Haraoba. It is a traditional dance (stylized), which the Manipuris perform for appeasement of goddesses and gods.
4. During World War II, Manipur was one of the Indian states that saw some fierce action. The British and the Japanese clashed at Imphal’s border. The battle ended with Japanese defeat.
5. The aforementioned battle was called the Battle of Imphal. Surprisingly, in this battle on one hand when the Allied forces clashed with Axis forces, Indian soldiers clashed with Indian soldiers as well. How? Read on…