Our State Manipur BOSEM Class 6 Social Science Chapter 7

Our state Manipur: This is the 7th chapter of BOSEM/BSEM (Board of Secondary Education Manipur) class 6 social science. This chapter will teach you about the beautiful hills, the valleys the flora and fauna, and the Climate of Manipur.

Our state Manipur Bosem class 7
Our State Manipur BOSEM Class 6 Social Science Chapter 7


    The Chapter: Our State Manipur

    Manipur is located on the northeastern border of India. It is bounded on the east by Myanmar, on the west by Assam, on the north by Nagaland, and on the South by Myanmar and Mizoram. The state lies between 23°50’N and 25°41’N latitudes and 93°2’E and 94°47’E longitudes. The Tropic of Cancer runs very close to the southern boundary of Manipur.

    Manipur has a total area of 22,327 square kilometers. The Imphal valley covers only 1,843 square kilometres while the hills surrounding the valley cover the remaining area of 20,484 square kilometres. Thus the hills of Manipur constitute more than nine-tenths of its area.

    For administrative purposes, Manipur is divided into 16 districts. They are

    1. Imphal east
    2. Imphal west
    3. Bishenpur
    4. Thoubal
    5. Kakching
    6. Senapati
    7. Tamenglong
    8. Ukhrul
    9. Chandel
    10. Churachandpur
    11. Jiribam
    12. Kangpokpi
    13. Noney
    14. Tengnoupal
    15. Kamjong
    16. Pherzwal


    Physiography

    The hills of Manipur were formed as a part of the Himalayan mountain system. In general, Manipur is a land of hills with narrow valleys in between.

    According to relief features, we can divide Manipur into two major physiographic divisions viz.,

    • The central plain
    • The surrounding hills

    The central plain

    This plain lies in the central part of Manipur. It is also known as the Imphal Valley. It is located at a height of about 800 meters above sea level. The north-south extent is about 60 kilometres while the east-west extent is about 30 kilometres. This plain is not smooth and flat like that of the Ganga Plain. Isolated hills and ridges are found in this plain.

    The Imphal Valley was formed by filling up an ancient lake. A Part of the ancient lake is still found in the southern part of the valley. This lake is called Loktak. It is a freshwater lake and has great economic importance. It is about 12 kilometers long and 8 kilometers wide. Hills in the form of islands such as Thanga Karang, are located in the lake.

    The southwestern part of Manipur is a small plain formed by the deposition of alluvium by the Barak and its tributaries. The total area of this plain is less than 250 square kilometers. This region has the lowest elevation in Manipur i.e., about 200 meters above sea level.

    The surrounding hills

    The Imphal valley divides the hill ranges into two groups. The group that lies to the east of the Imphal Valley is known as the Eastern Hills while the group to the west of the valley is called the Western Hills. These two groups of ill ranges meet in the southern part of Manipur.

    The Eastern hills run as a continuous chain in the eastern part of Manipur. Their average height is 1,500-3000 meters above sea level. The length of these ranges is about 200 kilometers. Their width varies from 50 kilometers in the north to about 30 kilometers to the south. The Mapithel, Chingai, Mulain, etc., are the important ranges of the eastern hulls. Important peaks are Khayangbung (2833m), Shiroi (2568m), Kacaobung (2498m).

    The Western hills spread over the entire western part of Manipur. Several valleys are also found in between the ridges. Khoupam Valley is none of them. The valley is located in the Tamenglong district locally called Gaidimgjang. It is situated at 83 km on old Cachar road (Tongjeimaril). 

    Next to Imphal Valley, Khoupum Valley (Khoupum Tampak) is the second biggest valley of Manipur with an area of 600 hectares surrounded by evergreen forests. Other important valleys in the state are Zeilad in the south-western part of Tamenglong district, Dzuko Valley near Mao sub-division Sajik Valley (Sajik Tampak) in Chandel district, Cachar Valley of Jiribam, etc. the total length of these ranges is about 180 kilometers. Their width varies from 50 kilometers in the north to about 70 kilometers in the south. 

    The Yangpuijilong, Daimikilong, Vangai, Kalanaga, etc., are the important important ranges of the western hills. Mount Iso (Tenipu), which lies in the northwestern part of Mao, is the highest peak in Manipur. It is about 2,994 meters high above sea level. other important peaks of the Western hills include Leikot(2,831m), Tampaba (2564m) and Koubru (2652m). among them, Mount Koubru is easily recognized by its humped peak.

    Drainage

    The general slope of the central plain or Imphal valley is from north to south. So, most of the rivers of the valley flow towards the south. This valley is mainly drained by the Imphal River and its tributaries. The Imphal River rises in the highlands to the west of Kangpokpi and flows towards the south. Many tributaries such as the Leimakhong. Sekmai, Kongba, Iril, and Thoubal join the Imphal river. Among them, the Iril and the Thoubal are the most important.

    The Imphal River does not fall into the Loktak lake. It flows to the eastern part of the lake. Khordak drains the water of the Loktak to the Imphal River. Henceforth, the Imphal River is known as the Manipur River in its southward course. To the south of the Loktak Lake, the Manipur River is joined by the Khuga and the Chakpi.

    The Khuga River rises from the Singhat hills of Churachandpur district and the river does not fall into the Loktak Lake but merges with the Manipur River, ahead of the Ithai Barrage. The Manipur River crosses the southern part of Manipur through narrow and deep valleys and waters Myanmar. It finally falls into the Myittha River, a tributary of the Chindwin River of Myanmar.

    Another river that drains the valley is the Nambul. It rises in the Kangchup hills. The Nambul River passes through the heart of the Imphal city. It falls into the Loktak. Other rivers of the valley that fall into the Loktak are the Nambol, the Moirang, the Khujairok, the Thongjaorok, the Nambol, the Tuyungbi, the Awang Kharok, the Ningthoukhong, the Potsangbam, the Oinam, the Keinou, the Irulok, etc.

    There are many lakes other than the Loktak in the Imphal valley. Among them, waithou, lkop, pimlen, etc., are important. Most of these lakes are dry during the hot-dry season and feel fear of extinction. The Loushi pat of Langthabal, the Yaral pat of Imphal East, the Lamphel pat, etc have been only named due to situation and anthropogenic forces.

    The Barak and its tributaries drain the western hills of Manipur. The Barak is the largest river in Manipur. It rises in the northern highlands to the east of Mao. On its way to the south, it is joined by the tributaries viz., the Makru and the Irang.

    Further south at Tipaimukh, the Barak is joined by the Tuivai_ At Jirimukh, the Barak is again joined by the Jiri River. It then flows westwards towards the Cachar and Sylhet plains. 

    The Makru and the Irang are the two important tributaries of the Barak. The Makru River rises in the Barail Range, It joins the Barak at a place about 5 kilometers south of the Kalanaga village The Irang River rises in the Yangpujilong range to the west of Karong. It joins the Barak at a place about 32 kilometers north of Tipaimukh. 

    The rivers of the Eastern hills are small and swift-flowing. The Chalou and the Chingai drain the northern parts of the Eastern hills. In the south, the Maklang and the Tuyungbi join to form the Yu River in the Kabow valley of Myanmar Further south, the Lokchao and the Tare flow south-eastwards and join the Yu River.

    Climate

    India is a land of monsoon climate. You know that Manipur lies to the north of the Tropic of Cancer. So the state enjoys a Sub-tropical monsoon climate. The name sub-tropical is given because Manipur lies close to the tropics or torrid zone. 

    Elevation and topography modify the climate of Manipur to a great extent. Elevation above sea level varies from 200 meters in the Barak basin to about 3000 meters near Mao. 

    The central plain is at a height of about 800 meters above sea level. In general, temperature decreases with an increase in height. Therefore, the temperature is neither too high nor too low throughout the year. In other words, we can say that Manipur has a temperate climate. 

    The climate of this state is affected by temperate cyclones in winter and tropical cyclones in summer. The temperate cyclones (Western Disturbances) are brought by the Westerlies that blow to the south of the Himalayas. Tropical cyclones originate in the Bay of Bengal and very often they move north during the period from April to October. Thus, this state receives an adequate amount of rain from cyclones.

    Based on temperature and rainfall, we divide a year in Manipur into four seasons. They are-

    1. Cold season (December to February)
    2. Hot season (March to May)
    3. Rainy season (June to September)
    4. Retreating Monsoon season (October and November)

    Cold season

    The cold or winter season starts in December and continues till the end of February. This season is the most pleasant period of the year. The temperature rarely drops below freezing point. Morning fogs are very common and sometimes we cannot see the sun up to 10 a.m. In January, frost is seen on the roofs of thatched houses and on the grass. Clear skies, warm sunny days, and cold nights are the common features. Such fine weather is disturbed by the temperate cyclones. They cause light winter rain in January. In Manipuri, we call it Wakchinggi Nong. As the temperature increases in February, gusty winds start blowing in Manipur.

    Hot season

    The hot season starts in March and lasts till the end of May with the beginning of March, there is a gradual increase in temperature. Because of its lower elevation, the central plain is warmer than the surrounding hills. The hot air over the plain, being light, rises upward so, cool winds from the surrounding hills blow towards the plain. As a result, gusty winds blow during March. We call it Ashit Awan Tha. As the temperature rises further in April, thunderstorms are very common and they are associated with hailstones. 

    In May, the heat of the sun is so great over the plain that educational institutions are closed for summer vacation. Such hot weather is Often checked by cyclones from the Bay of Bengal which bring much rain.

    Rainy Season

    The rainy season starts in June and continues till the end of September. It is a season of high temperatures and heavy rainfall. The southwest monsoon winds enter Manipur from the west and the south. The western hills, that lie across the monsoon winds, receive heavy rain. Tamenglong, which is located in the Western hills, is the rainiest place in Manipur. 

    It has an average annual rainfall of 400 centimeters. The Imphal valley receives a lesser amount of rain i.e., about 140 centimetres annually. The amount of rainfall increases towards the Eastern hills. Ukhrul has an average annual rainfall of 180 centimeters. Rainfall is heavy during June and July but it is moderate in August and September.

    Retreating Monsoon Season

    The retreating monsoon season is a period of transition from the rainy season to the cold season. In October, the monsoon winds begin to withdraw from Manipur. This withdrawal of monsoon is known as a retreating monsoon. In general, rainfall decreases considerably and skies become clear. It is becoming cooler and fogs of short duration occur in the early morning. The season is noted for its cool moonlit nights. Sometimes, such pleasant weather is affected by the cyclones that come from the Bay of Bengal. They bring much rain and sometimes cause floods in the Imphal valley. The weather starts to cool further in November.

    Natural Vegetation

    Forests are the important natural vegetation of Manipur. They cover about 78% of the total area of this state. These forests are found mainly in the surrounding hills. 

    The forests of Manipur vary according to altitude. In the Barak basin, tropical semi-evergreen forests are found. Higher up, sub-tropical deciduous trees occur Between the altitudes of 1,200 to 2,400 meters coniferous trees are found Above 2,400 metres, grasses are predominant.

    Four different types of forests are found in Manipur. They are

    1. Sub-tropical deciduous forests
    2. Sub-tropical evergreen forests
    3. Tropical moist deciduous forests and
    4. Tropical moist semi-evergreen forests.

    Sub-tropical deciduous forests occur on the hill slopes around the central plain. These forests have been exploited for their timber and firewood. So they present a denuded appearance. Oak, toon, chestnut, etc., are the important trees of these forests. Isolated hills and ridges in the valley are also covered with oak and chestnut. 

    Sub-tropical evergreen forests are found mainly in the Ukhrul District. They occur at elevations varying from I,200 to 2,400 meters. The cold climate of this region favors the growth of coniferous trees like pine. Pine forests cover about 1,300 square kilometers. At lower altitudes pine is mixed with oak and chestnut. 

    Tropical moist deciduous forests occur along the boundary with Myanmar. Because of its lower elevation, this region has a hot and moist climate. Such a climate is suitable for the growth of trees like teak, gurjan, and ken. Teak grows well on the alluvial banks of the river such as Maklang, Tuyungbi, Lokchao, Taret, etc. Nowadays, teak is widely used for making furniture. These forests cover about 900 square kilometers. 

    Tropical moist semi-evergreen forests are found in the Barak basin. You know that the Barak basin is the lowest part of Manipur. So this region is hot and wet. Such a climate favors the growth of dense vegetation. Bamboos form the most important vegetation. These forests contain more than 15 major species of bamboo. Important trees are Agar, Toon, etc.

    The hill forests of Manipur abound in various types of orchids. Kwaklei (Vanda caerulea), the rarest blue orchid in the world, is found in the forests of Western hills. Among the flowering plants. Shiroi Lily and Dzuko Lily are famous for their beauty. Shiroi lily is the state flower. It grows on the height of the Shiroi hills in Ukhrul while the Dzuko lily grows in the Dzuko valley to the north-west of Mao in the Senapati district of Manipur

    Wildlife

    Wildlife includes animals, reptiles, fishes, birds and insects. This state has some animal species that do not exist anywhere else. The brows-antlered deer, locally known as Sangai, lives only in Manipur. You know that Sangai is the state animal. Keibul lamjao, in the south-eastern part of the Loktak Lake, is the home of this rare species

    The Keibul Lamjao National Park has been set up by the government to protect and preserve this endangered deer species. The Phumdi (floating weed) and marshy surrounding keibul lamjao provide the natural habitat for sangai. In the olden days, leopards, tigers, and elephants were abundant in the forest of Manipur. Wild pigs, bear, and santhou live in the forests of the south-east and south-west. Porcupines, moles, and rats are found in large numbers, particularly in the forests of western hills.

    Reptiles such as snakes, pythons, lizards, etc., are found throughout the state. Snakes and pythons live in marshes and swamps while lizards are found on land.

    Birds like partridge, fowl, quail, snipe, duck, etc., are found mainly in the lake basins. The Loktak lake is famous for these game birds. In the past, the Britishers and the kings of Manipur went to the Loktak to shoot these birds. Now killing these birds has been banned.

    Fishes such as khabak (Banana dero), Ngaton (Labeo bata), etc., are native to Manipur. The Waithou pat of Thoubal district was once known to be the breeding place for indigenous fish species Ngaton. Today, it has completely vanished from the lake. These fishes were noted for their special taste. Nowadays, these fishes are endangered and the government is trying to save these species by establishing fish-seed farms.

    Wildlife is a valuable gift of nature. It attracts tourists from different parts of the world. Forests are the home of wildlife. The loss of forests and wildlife is a matter of great concern. Government and other organizations are working hard to protect the forests and wildlife. Moreover, every one of us has a responsibility to protect and preserve them.

    Short Notes / Important Points

    ๐Ÿ“— Manipur is located on the northeastern border of India. The state lies between 23°50’N and 25°41’N latitudes and 93°2’E and 94°47’E longitudes.

    ๐Ÿ“— The tropic of cancer runs very close to the southern boundary of Manipur.

    ๐Ÿ“—Manipur has a total area of 22,327 square kilometers. The Imphal valley covers only 1,843 square kilometers, while the hills surrounding the valley cover the remaining area of 20,484 square kilometers.

    ๐Ÿ“—The hills of Manipur are formed as a part of the Himalayan mountain system.

    ๐Ÿ“—According to relief features, we can divide Manipur into two major Physiographic divisions. The Central Plain and The surrounding Hills.

    ๐Ÿ“—Loktak Lake is a freshwater lake and is about 12 km long and 8 km wide.

    ๐Ÿ“—Mount Iso is the highest peak in Manipur and is about 2,994 meters above sea level.

    ๐Ÿ“— There are many lakes other than the Loktak Lake in the Imphal Valley. They are Waithou, Ikop, Pumlen, etc., and most of these lakes are dry during the hot dry season.

    ๐Ÿ“— Tamenglong is the Rainest place in Manipur.

    ๐Ÿ“— Forest covers about 78% of the total area of the state.

    ๐Ÿ“— The Barak Basin is the lowest part of Manipur.

    ๐Ÿ“— Shiroi Lily is the state flower of Manipur. Sangai is the state animal and Nongin is the State bird of Manipur.