Greening the ‘hiding place of gods’ at Laipham Loknung in Kakching Hills of Manipur

A mass cleanliness drive and planting of tree saplings was carried out by the locals in the hills of Kakching in Manipur to preserve the sacred place - Laipham Loknung – believed to be the “hiding place of gods”.

Lush green is the valley and the hills of Manipur, but the need to preserve the place with planting of more trees and ensuring a clean environment for a healthy life is the mission of peace conscious people across the state. Joining the effort to save the mother earth and the environemnt of the place, a mass cleanliness drive and planting of tree saplings was carried out by the locals in the hills of Kakching in Manipur to preserve the sacred place - Laipham Loknung – believed to be the “hiding place of gods”.

Since time immemorial, ‘Laipham Loknung’ in Kakching, is considered a sacred place which people believed is the “hiding place of gods”. The place is associated forest deity, Ima Yaiphulembi. Locals believe the forest deity guards and protects the forest.

A mass cleanliness drive followed by a tree sapling plantation was carried out at Laipham Loknung, at the front side of Kakching Hills, led by the Lai Committee of Ima Yaiphulembi and Range Forest Officer Kakching Naorem Munal on Saturday. The Lai Committee has resolved to consecrate the said sacred place for the forest deity, Ima Yaiphulembi.

The committee members planted several tree saplings at the site on Saturday. Munal planted a five feet height ‘U Thambal’ (Magnolia Teracarpo) sapling tree. He brought the sapling from Moirang, a village which is believed to be the abode of god Marjing, a consecrated diety of the Meitei community.

Explaining the significance of the traditional religious belief of the locals of the place, Munal said that in Manipuri society, forest deities plays a crucial role in making the people conscious of their environment and safeguard and preserve the forests and the ecosystem.

Several big trees are found growing where such forest deities are worshipped.

“In order to save our mother earth and the environment, the trees are planted. Let us protect these trees, make our earth beautiful and make it a place where we can live peacefully by planting more trees,” Munal said.

First Published:June 28, 2020, 12:43 p.m.

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