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Imphal; April 28, 2017 (DIPR): Noted Manipuri musicologist Laishram Birendrakumar Singh, 97, was recently conferred Padma Shri, the country’s fourth highest civilian honour for his contribution to music in the country. Owing to health issues, he could not travel to Delhi to receive the award at an investiture ceremony held at Rashtrapati Bhavan, so the prestigious award was presented to him by Manipur Chief Secretary Shri O. Nabakishore Singh at his residence at Kwakeithel Ningthemkol Leikai, today.

On receiving the Padma Shri, Birendrakumar said, “I feel very happy. I have dedicated myself to the study of scientific approach of Manipuri folk music. I have been honoured with this prestigious award in a show of satisfaction by the Indian government over my work.”

He said learning folk music promotes communal harmony in the State by bridging the gap between the different communities and enhances the spirit of emotional bonding amongst them.

Sharing his feelings to media people on receiving the award, he said that he is highly elated that he is acknowledged for his contribution to music at this age.

He continued that he has a great inclination for folk music since a very early age and that due respect must be given to folk music as a mark of respecting our identity and culture.

He also spoke of how he used to speak on topics related to folk music and Lai Haraoba at seminars and workshops. He further expressed the need to understand the folk music in order to preserve the indigenous Meitei tradition and identity.

          Laishram Birendrakumar Singh, who is also a Sangeet Natak Akademi awardee, advised the young folks of today that they should respect folk music as it contains ingredients of wisdom.

Chief Secretary Shri O. Nabakishore lauded Birendrakumar and said he has done the State proud. The Chief Secretary also encouraged him to achieve higher laurels like thePadma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan.

Retired IAS Officer, R.K. Nimai, Director JN Dance Academy L Upendro, retired Vice-Chairman JN Dance Academy Prof. N Tombi and other higher officials attended the presentation ceremony. (DIPR)