Imphal: Kangla Fort in Imphal was onTuesday crowded as hundreds thronged the historic fort to lit sacred flame to inaugurate annual local sports competitions to be held during the five-day Yaoshang festival.
Yaoshang, the biggest festival in Manipur, which coincides with Holi and would be celebrated over the next five-day, kicked off today.
Sports and entertainment activities are being held widespread besides religious fervor and merrymaking during the five-day festival. Games and sports are increasingly becoming an integral part of the festival.
The actual celebration of the festival began in the evening with the burning of traditional Yaoshang (a small thatch hut). It was followed by ‘Nakatheng’ – an age-old tradition of house-to-house donation campaigns by children.
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However, with organizing games and sports becoming popular in the last several years, the festival begins in the morning with a ‘torch-run’ to light the sacred flame from nearby temples.
Inaugurating sports competitions by lighting with sacred flame from a temple inside the Kangla Fort is also becoming very popular in the last few years.
From early morning of the day, a number of ‘torch-runs’ converged at the Kangla Fort to light their torches with the sacred flame from the temple. With more ‘torch-runs’ converging, traffic jams were witnessed on very roads in Imphal leading to the fort for the day till late this evening.