Ukhrul: Wungchanphy Lungleng, 20, was crowned Hunphun Miss Luira 2020 — a beauty pageant that celebrates femininity, beauty and women empowerment — at a glittering ceremony held at Manipur’s Ukhrul district headquarters on Wednesday evening.
Lungleng took home a cash prize of Rs 80,000 along with gift hampers — altogether worth Rs 1.3 lakh. She will also directly enter Miss Manipur 2020 contest to be held in Imphal.
Philayung Jajo and Nimri Vashum were adjudged the first and second runners-up, with cash prizes of Rs 70,000 and Rs 50,000, respectively.
Altogether, 15 girls from across the district vied for the coveted title.
The beauty pageant was part of the five-day-long Hunphun Luira Phanit, a seed sowing festival, that was organised to encourage and help young girls to improve their confidence and self-esteem.
The pageant is also to interlinked to the traditional form of beauty contest known as ‘virgin dance or ngala khanganui’ to celebrate the femininity, beauty and women empowerment.
“It’s a really thrilling moment for me since I am myself beauty pageant winner. There was someone who decided my destiny and tonight, I got an opportunity to decide someone’s destiny through this beauty contest platform,” said Miss Manipur 2019 AR Mathing, who was one of the jury members.
Braving the cold night, denizens of the hill district packed the Mission Ground at Alungtang and witnessed the two events, Miss Luira 2020 and Hunphun’s Got Talent Season 3, under a single platform.
As many as 11 young talents from the region took part and showcased a medley of talents at the talent show, keeping audiences completely glued.
People from the region, especially youngsters, are often left unnoticed despite being gifted and talented due to scarce of opportunities. The talent show aims to create a nascent step for the young talents and a will power to achieve something in life.
After a gruelling competition, young singer cum composer, Reyamee Chahongnao, was adjudged the Season 3 Hunphun’s Got Talent 2020 title winner with Rs 20,000 as an award.
Magdalene, a freestyle dancer, Chuireingam, a beatboxer, were given the first and second runners-up, respectively.
A six-year-old girl and a student of Class II, Venus, was the youngest participant among the talent show contestants.
Luira Phanit, a seed sowing festival which is widely observed by the Nagas in Manipur, is held to invoke the blessings of god, locally known as ‘Ameowo’, to bless the seeds to be sown for the year and to ensure a healthy harvest.
The annual festival is also held to ward off other crop destroying elements such as natural calamities.