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HindustanTimes Wed,27 Aug 2014

Manipur’s Modi village paves its own ‘achchhey din’

Rahul Karmakar and Sobhapati Samom, Hindustan Times  Guwahati/Imphal, June 15, 2014
First Published: 00:25 IST(15/6/2014) | Last Updated: 00:31 IST(15/6/2014)

‘Achchhey din’ is in your hands. Residents of a Manipur village named Modi, helped by neighbours and paramilitary personnel, seem to have conveyed this by paving a 22km road to the world beyond.

An Anal tribal chieftain had chosen a highland in present-day Chandel district of Manipur for his people to settle down a century ago. He subsequently lent his name — Modi — to the settlement.

However, village Modi fell on bad days, allegedly because of the Imphal Valley-centric Manipur government’s indifference to the hill districts.

Last month, as India tuned in to ‘another Modi’, locals worked on a road to nearest town Pallel.

“The government’s failure to repair the road for years made us undertake the 22km road project connecting Modi village,” said Kanral Anal, president of Chandel Naga People’s Organisation. The organisation coordinated the work by members of seven tribes across 60 villages, local contractors and personnel of Assam Rifles and Manipur Rifles.

Locals hope that the name of their village would catch the interest of the PM for ‘better days ahead’. The hope is fuelled by the possibility of former Nagaland chief minister Neiphiu Rio getting a berth in the NDA cabinet.

“Elders tell us the name of the founder of our village means nothing. It should mean everything now,” said Modi village resident Pashel Ngamnahring, 27.


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