The inaugural ceremony of the five-day festival will be held at Shirui village Ground while the closing function at Tangkhul Naga Long (TNL) ground in the district headquarters, 84 km north east of Imphal while the Shirock 2018, the musical festival featuring two international bands from USA-SteelHeart and Queensrÿche will be held at Bakshi ground.
Speaking to media, Prasant Kumar Singh, the Principal Secretary of Tourism department said that the festival is organised to spread awareness about conservation of the endangered Shirui Lily and promote the district of Ukhrul as a tourist destination in Manipur.
The festival which aims to promote afforestation and sustainable tourism efforts in the state, is organized by department of Manipur Tourism and supported by North Eastern Council.
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“For the first time, we’ve identified 1,100 home-stays across 28 locations in and around the Ukhrul town to accommodate at least 3000 overnight travelers on a daily basis,” says Principal Secretary (Tourism).
“The idea is to promote homestays as a way of creating a sustainable livelihood for the locals,” he said.
Travelers looking for accommodation at Ukhrul during the festival should visit www.shirockfest.com/accommodation.php for bookings/reservations.
“This time we’re expecting more 40,000 travelers during the festival,” the Tourism official said.
The festival will showcase cultural performances by various cultural troupes from across the state, live music performances, exhibits, folk songs, traditional dances and indigenous games and sports competitions like the Shirui Lily Grand Prix besides other side events like camping and trekking and other adventure activities etc.
Besides the popular rock bands of the Northeast states numbering around 20 rock bands (6 from Manipur) which were shortlisted for Rs 10 lakh worth Shirock 2018 competiton award will also performed during the fest.
Permanent toilets blocks have been arranged at Bakshi and TNL grounds where the major events will be held during the festival this time, the official added.
At the same time elaborate traffic management plan has been made with several roads declared one-way besides making adequate parking sites in coordination with district administration.
Six buses will operate to and fro between Imphal (ISBT Complex, Deulahland) and Ukhrul town on subsidized fares during the festival.
The buses will depart ISBT from 7 am till 9.30 am with an interval of 30 minutes between the departures of each bus and will return to Imphal on the same day between 2 pm to 4.30 pm.
Byy: SOBHAPATI SAMOM | Source: NE Now