Imphal: Sharing the spirit of nationalism and oneness, Manipur joined hands with the rest of the country and observed the 74th Independence Day of India at 1st Battalion Manipur Rifles Parade Ground in Imphal on Saturday.
All necessary safety guidelines, including wearing face masks and maintaining social distancing, were strictly adhered to during the celebration.
While addressing the occasion, chief minister N Biren Singh firmly appealed all the elected legislators cutting across the party lines, officials and people in the state to work together towards a common goal to overcome the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The contagion has already claimed 13 lives in the state.
Our main priority right now is coming together and unitedly put efforts so that we could contain the spread of the virus in the state, said Singh.
Citing the unfortunate incidents of a young pregnant woman from Noney district who lost her life after hospitals in Imphal refused for medical assistance and another COVID-19 patient who allegedly died at RIMS due to medical negligence, Singh urged the medical fraternity in the state for an equal treatment towards all the people, both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients, seeking for medical treatment.
Everyone’s life is very precious and any hospitals found violating the instruction would be strictly taken action against, said Singh.
The chief minister also announced a ‘Major Jotin Bravery Award’ which carries a cash amount of Rs 5 lakh. In memory of him, the ex-gratia award will be given to those from the state who are serving in the paramilitary and police forces.
Major Laishram Jotin Singh, a recipient of Ashok Chakra (posthumous), was an Indian Army medical officer from Manipur who died while fighting terrorists barehanded in Kabul in 2010, saving the lives of his fellow army officers and personnel, CM said.
On the occasion, Singh also urged the people in the state to pledge their support to the armed forces by expressing gratitude towards them for their selfless service to the nation.
“Today, India salutes the serving soldiers, ex-servicemen and those who have sacrificed their lives for the nation,” he added.
Similarly, celebrations were also witnessed across the district headquarters and sub-divisions in all its grandeur and ceremonial splendour despite the COVID-19 lockdown.