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It was Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru who bestowed upon Manipur the Sobriquet it deserves-

"A Jewel of India". It indeed is a sparkling jewel, the glitter of which refuses to be dimmed by tumultuous tests of time.

Bestowed with diverse flora and fauna, Manipur is home to a host of species hard to spot elsewhere. One with an inclination for tourist adventure will be greeted in this state with pleasant surprises ranging from virgin forests to cascading waterfalls, breath-taking hill-sites, valley-view and streams flowing to lakes levelled by shades of emerald.

The fish cuisines offered by the local eateries pamper one's palate with a flavour one would find missing even in the world-acclaimed foods elsewhere in the world. If you are a sports-freak, freak out at the Khuman Lampak Sports Complex at Imphal, a unique complex which houses all the major stadia in one complex, or be enthralled by the skilful matches of the State's indigenous games. One with a penchant for classical dances may enter into a show of Manipuri Dance and get entranced for hours. Of course, the piece-de-resistance is the unique handloom and handicraft products. rows of open stalls in concrete sheds manned by womenfolk of the main market display such stuff in colourful varieties.

The hills of Manipur echo and reflect different sounds and sights. They are inhabited by ethnic groups with a global outlook. Food habits there tilt heavily on non-vegetarian delicacies. Cross-topped church-spires adorn the country sides. Feminine dresses are often embroidered with traditional patterns.

Having teetered under the yoke of British colonialism from 1891 to 1947, it is to the credit of freedom loving Manipuris that their collective walk along the path of mainstream nationalism has not tottered in the post-independence era. 1949 heralded the merger of Manipur with the Union of India. In 1972, it became a full-fledged state priding itself with 60-member Legislative Assembly out of which 19 are reserved for Scheduled Tribes and 1 for Scheduled Castes. The people of Manipur elect 2 MPs for the Lok Sabha and 1 MP for the Rajya Sabha.