Independence Day celebrated under tight security in Manipur
Imphal, Aug. 15 (EMN): Amidst the boycott by insurgent groups in Manipur, the 75th Independence Day was celebrated in the state on Sunday under tight security arrangements.
The state-level function was held at the 1st Battalion Manipur Rifles parade ground, where the Chief Minister N Biren Singh hoisted the national flag and reviewed the guard of honour and took salute from 12 march-past contingents commanded by SP (CID/Technical) Anupam.
Later, addressing the gathering, he said that Manipur has achieved remarkable progress and development in the past four years and a half. He said 1039 UG cadres belonging to different outfits had laid down arms till date, the most recent being 20 cadres of Thadou Peoples’ Liberation Army and valley based groups who surrendered in March 2021. Government’s pro-active efforts to make Manipur a blockade and bandh-free state to ensure its all-round development had resulted in drastic decrease of bandhs and blockades in the last few years, he said.
Regarding the destruction of poppy plantations due to the Government’s ‘War on Drugs’ campaign, he maintained that the farmers affected due to destruction of poppy plants had been assisted by the government. Many oxygen plants were installed in the state. Earlier, there were only 25 D-type and 117 B-type cylinders, currently there are 5438 D-type and 335 B-type cylinders available. There are 2624 oxygen concentrators now, where there was not even one earlier, he said.
In order to tackle Covid-19, 317 doctors, 596 staff nurses, 530 MTS and 50 drivers had been engaged on contract or daily wages apart from existing manpower in the Health department. Altogether, 41 ambulances are currently deployed including 20 in hill districts, he said. He further added that 14 Covid Treatment Centres are functioning in district hospitals and larger CHCs besides 28 Covid Care Centres had been set up in all the districts. 142 Community Home Isolation Centres (CHIC) had been set up in all the Assembly segments with support of MLAs. Altogether 4,198 treatment beds are available today for Covid treatment, with 280 ICU beds.
The state had managed to scale up testing capacity and performed a total of 11.41 lakh tests with 1.06 lakh positive cases and added that Genome sequencing for Covid virus has started in IBSD, Imphal. 14.25 lakh persons had received vaccination in the state with 2.6 lakh already receiving 2nd dose. Manipur has so far produced 19 Olympians while five athletes represented the country in Tokyo Olympics. To promote sports and encourage Olympians hailing from Manipur, the State Cabinet has created 18 posts for Olympians, three Joint Directors posts for gold medallists, five deputy directors posts for silver/bronze medallists and 10 assistant director posts for Olympic participants in the youth affairs and Sports department. The government had also identified 10 acres of government land for setting up Olympians’ Park, he added.