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IMPHAL | Oct 2 : As Tarao tribe faces the threat of becoming extinct, secretary of committee on promotion of Tarao community (COPTARC), S. Moses Tarao today urged the government to take necessary steps to promote the group of tribe before they are extinct, during a press conference held today at Manipur Press Club.
He said that in 2009, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) had declared that the tribe became extinct as their official language is no longer spoken.
But according to researchers of the community, the tribal community were involved during the Anglo-Manipuri war and the tribe took a main role during the time of war. During that time, the population of the community was large but in 1912 it was found that there were only 13 households, he added.
He further said that at present, there are only five villages which belong to Tarao tribe namely Laimanai, Leishokching, Khuringmul and Heikakmul which is located at Chandel district and Sinakeithei located at Ukhrul district. There are only about a total population of 723 including male, female and children in the five villages, he lamented.
COPTARC had met chief minister and showed the population data, and he gave his assurance that government will take necessary steps to promote the community to prevent extinction, Moses added.
If an epidemic occurs among the community, then there is a fear that the tribal community might become extinct from the world, Moses lamented.
He appealed the state and other communities of the state to co-operate and promote the tribal community. The tribe had been taking part while protecting the integrity of the state and if it becomes extinct then it would be a big lost for Manipur, he asserted.