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Manipur Sangai Festival

Manipur Sangai Festival:

The Prime Minister of India recently addressed the Manipur Sangai Festival.

  • Every year the State of Manipur celebrates the “Manipur Sangai Festival” from 21st to 30th November.
  • The objective is to showcase Manipur as a world class tourism destination.
  • The ‘Festival’ is named after the State animal, Sangai, the brow-antlered deer found only in Manipur.
  • It started in the year 2010.
  • The theme of this year’s Sangai festival is “Festival of oneness”.
  • Every edition of the festival showcases the tourism potential of the state in the field of Arts & Culture, Handloom,
  • Handicrafts, Indigenous Sports, Cuisine and Music of the state etc.

Sangai Deer:

  • Scientific Name: Rucervus eldii.
  • Common Name: Sangai, Brow antlered deer, Dancing Deer.
  • Population: About 260 (acc. to a joint census conducted by the Forest Department in 2016).
  • Habitat and Distribution: It is found only in Keibul Lamjao National Park – the largest single mass of phumdi is in the Loktak Lake – in Manipur’s Bishnupur district.
  • Sangai is a medium-sized deer, with uniquely distinctive antlers, with extremely long brow tine, which form the main beam.
  • The forward protruding beam appears to come out from the eyebrow, hence called the brow-antlered deer.
  • It has a dark reddish-brown winter coat, which turns paler in summer.
  • The deer walks on the hind surface of its pasterns with mincing hops over floating foliage, and is hence also called the Dancing Deer.
  • Status:
    • State animal of Manipur.
    • Schedule-1 of Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
    • Endangered on IUCN Red List.
    • Conservation Issues:
      • Sangai faces threat from steadily degenerating habitat of phumdi as a result of continuous inundation and flooding caused due to artificial reservoir.
      • There is also invasion of non-native plants like Paragrass.
      • It also faces threats of diseases from the livestock, inbreeding depression and poaching.