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Champu Khangpok Takes Center Stage in World Wetlands Day Celebration, Pledging Sustainable Preservation for Loktak Lake

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Waari Singbul Network |

Bishnupur, Feb 03: Champu Khangpok, the remarkable floating village on Manipur’s Loktak Lake, classified as a wetland of international significance by the Ramsar Convention, took center stage as Loktak Development Authority (LDA) and the fishing community commemorated World Wetlands Day on the theme ‘Wetlands and Human Wellbeings’, underscoring the critical role wetlands play in enhancing human lives.

The village assumes significance in preserving age-old traditions associated with Loktak Lake. Its unique cultural and ecological importance came into focus during the World Wetland Day observation, emphasizing the need for collective efforts to ensure its sustainable future.

As part of the observation, LDA Chairman M Asnikumar, a local of the lake area, along with Bamboo expert Kamesh Salam and state government officials, pledged a collective commitment to preserving Loktak Lake. They distributed Solar Lamps, Water Filters, a Generator set, and a fiber canoe, generously funded by the MoBC Department. This initiative, tailored for Champu Khangpok, aimed to enhance the community’s living conditions and promote sustainable practices in the heart of Loktak.

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Acknowledging Champu Khangpok’s deep roots in history, Chairman Asnikumar Moirangthem stated, “The cultural and ecological importance of this floating village is crucial for Loktak’s sustainable future, making collective efforts imperative.”

The LDA director pledged support for the construction of a special floating school for Champu Khangpok, with funding allocated by the government of India through the state education department. Plans also include the installation of Bio-digester toilets for each khangpok shang (hut), contributing to improved sanitation facilities tailored for the unique lifestyle of Champu Khangpok.

Chairman M Asnikumar took the opportunity to appeal directly to the fishing community, urging responsible practices and a halt to illegal fishing and hunting of water birds in Loktak Lake, particularly through the use of electric current and lights. This call aligns with ongoing efforts to protect the diverse ecosystem of the lake and uphold the sustainable practices championed by Champu Khangpok.

As Loktak Lake faces an imminent threat of extinction with its natural life cycle disrupted by the Ithai barrage, the hydroelectric project, Champu, with its population of around two thousand settling on 500 circular floating huts comprising the village, is central to the collective commitment towards sustainable development, conservation, and the overall well-being of Loktak Lake and its associated wetlands.

This year’s theme ‘Wetlands and Human Wellbeing’ highlights how wetlands contribute to flood protection, clean water, biodiversity, and recreational opportunities, all of which are essential for human health and prosperity.

Read: A celebration of Faith marks 150 years of Church establishment in Garo Hills

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