IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


16th March, 2023 Culture

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Context: The five-day-long Yaoshang festival, Manipur’s version of Holi, has begun.



  • The festival is celebrated every year on the full moon of Lamta (February-March) of the Meitei lunar calendar.
  • Yaoshang begins just after sunset followed by Yaosang Mei thaba, also known as Burning of the Straw Hut.
  • Children visit neighbours to ask for monetary donations, called nakatheng.
  • Yaoshang, unlike Holi, is celebrated with a traditional twist in Manipur.
  • During these five days Manipur comes alive with sporting events during the day and traditional “thabal chongba” dance in the night.
    • The thabal chongba is a traditional dance of the Meitei, where boys and girls gathered in an open ground and dance in a circle.
    • But these days thabal chongba is performed throughout the month of Lamta.
    • Business activities and public transportation come to a grinding halt during Yaoshang. All educational institutions, both private and government, will also remain shut.
  • Yaosang is indigenous traditions of the Meitei people. It is considered the most important festival in Manipur.

About Meitei:

  • The Meitei people also known as the Manipuri people, are the predominant ethnic group of Manipur in Northeast India.
  • They speak Meitei language (officially called Manipuri), one of the 22 official languages of the Indian Republic and the sole official language of Manipur.
  • The Meiteis primarily settled in the Imphal Valley region in modern-day Manipur, though a sizable population has settled in the other Indian states of Assam, Tripura, Nagaland, Meghalaya, and Mizoram.
  • There is also a notable presence of Meitei in the neighboring countries of Myanmar and Bangladesh.
  • The Meitei ethnic group represents about 53% of Manipur's population


Q) Which of the following statements is/are incorrect with reference to Yaoshang Festival?

a. Yaosang is indigenous traditions of the Meitei people.

b. The Meitei ethnic group represents more than half of Manipur's population.

  1. Only a
  2. Only b
  3. Both a and b
  4. Neither a nor b

Answer: Option IV