1891 Anglo-Manipuri War And Rarely Known Manipuri Heroes

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Yumkhaibam Shyam Singh


The Anglo-Manipuri War (1891) was a historic event of all the Manipuris. It also ignited a serious concern to the British citizens as in the event seven British officials were murdered. Some deep rooted anti-British mindset of the Manipuri masses that had apparently led to the murder could be- that after the First Anglo Burmese War (1824-1826), the Manipuris were not allowed to expand territory beyond their unproductive mountainous region, that their resourceful Kabaw Valley was ceded to Burma and that the Manipur Levy, which was a part of the British army, was also discontinued rendering the Manipuris to face a serious shortage of Rupee. The anti-British mindset of the Manipuri masses culminated when the British Government gave orders to deport Yuvaraj Tikendrajit for his revolt in 1890. To arrest the prince, the British army attacked the palace of Manipur and killed many innocent Manipuris on 24 March, 1891. Subsequently, those British officials were murdered leading to the declaration of war on 31st March, 1891against Manipur. Every Manipuri community fought the war united, but as they were much inferior to the mighty British, the Manipuris were defeated with a loss of about 400 warriors. But historians mainly recognise only those Manipuris punished later by the British Government giving rare notice to those who had sacrificed their lives at different battles of the war.

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