Manipur spelling competition
Picture credit: Meena Longjam

Imphal: The ninth edition of a state-level spelling competition organised by the Students’ Union of Kangleipak (SUK) nearly turned chaotic after over 5,000 students turned up to participate, leaving organisers and parents stunned and worried at the same time. Thankfully, no untoward incident was reported, and the competition’s first round was completed successfully. 

Students between classes 5 and 10 from over 230 schools participated in the competition. 

Photo courtesy: Meena Longjam

Commenting on the turnover and the apparent lack of management, SUK president Dhanakumar Ningthouja said initially, they had decided to conduct the spelling competition at the Johnstone Higher Secondary School. However, due to an overwhelming response from the participants and parents, the venue was shifted to Khuman Lampak indoor stadium. 

Photo courtesy: Meena Longjam

Parents attending the event with their children said the management could have been better. Meena Longjam, an independent filmmaker and a participant’s parent, told EastMojo: “Like any other parent, I happened to enrol my son at the state-level spelling competition, not knowing it would be open to another staggering 5,000 students in Manipur. Since most schools were closed for over two years due to the pandemic, many parents were looking for a shift to normalcy. But the management was a little poor, as they had to control a huge outbreak of the numbers of students and parents.”

Photo courtesy: Meena Longjam

Despite a huge turnout, volunteers and police personnel helped eventually bring the situation under control, and the preliminary round was successfully conducted, informed Ningthouja. He added that the competition results would be announced on June 12, and those who clear the preliminary round will face the final competition on June 19.

Also read: Manipur: 3 held with contraband worth over Rs 10 crore

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