Manipur: Emoinu fish fair records huge turnover, boosts local economy
Emoinu fish fair

Imphal: Few outside Manipur may have heard of the Emoinu festival. The festival, one of Manipur’s biggest festivals, pays tribute to the goddess of wealth and prosperity and true to this, several locals made a handsome profit thanks to the efforts of the state fishery department.

Such was the turnout that the department informed media persons that they had sold over 51,000 kg of fish, including 2,600 kg of homegrown Meitei Sareng.

In a crucial boost to the local economy, fishermen from the Bishnupur district contributed the highest production with 17,709 kg, followed by Imphal West with 14,218 kg and Thoubal with 9,009 kg, generating a turnover of Rs 1.30 crore. In a state still recovering from the devastating damage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, this is nothing less than a blessing, experts said.

Such was the demand that even Silver carp, a species which is not so popular in other festivities, also sold like hotcakes, registering sales of over 18,890 kgs. Other big numbers included 10,633 kg of Grass Carp and 8073 kg of Catla, Rohu and Mrigal, commonly known as Indian Major Carp. But crucially, even the indigenous fish varieties sold in high numbers, with over 3360 kg of Ngaton, 686 kg of Pengba and 246 kg of Khabak.

But perhaps the star of the show was Meitei Sareng. The popularity of this species, which has been promoted extensively by the Manipur Chief Minister and State Fisheries Department, was such that people thronged by thousands to purchase the offering for goddess Emoinu. Even a hefty price of Rs 1,200 per 750 gram to 1 kg fixed by the state fisheries Department didn’t hamper the spirit of the enthusiastic consumers.

Unlike the annual festivals held on the eve of the Ningol Chakouba festival in the past, this year’s Emoinu festival witnessed departmental stalls of agriculture, horticulture, forest and various start-ups catering to agro and allied products like organic black rice, ginger, turmeric, fresh seasonal vegetables, value-added local fruits, and beverages, etc. Apart from giving more options to visitors, this also allowed helped record sales of over Rs 3 lakh.

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