17-06-2017 05:00 AM | Lathika Saju | My Indian Dream
The Loktak lake in Manipur is one of a kind as it houses the world's only floating national park as well as a floating school and is an important tourist spot.
There are many places in India that are truly unique and one of them is the Loktak Lake in Manipur. Here you can have a special and distinctive experience of being on a land that floats which is truly amazing.
The iconic Loktak Lake is located in Bishnupur district that is 53 km from Imphal. It is the largest freshwater lake in Northeast India and is known for its circular floating swamps called phumdis by locals.
Phumdis are a heterogeneous mass of vegetation, soil and organic matter that look like small islands floating on a lake. The lake is also a source of livelihood for the locals. While fishermen depend on it for their daily bread and sustenance, their children can be seen running around and playing on the phumdis.
Tourists are also welcome here. The Sendra Tourist Home built on one of the largest phumdi islands attracts tourists who wish to stay here and soak in the natural beauty of the place. The important islands that offer facilities to visitors are Sandra and Phubala.
On the fringe of the Loktak lake is the Moirang town where visitors will find the INA (Indian National Army) interesting. The exhibits include letters, photographs, badges of ranks and other articles associated with the INA. There is also a bronze statue of Netaji Subash Chandra Bose on the lawn.
The lake also thrives with biodiversity. It is home to 233 species of aquatic plants, more than 100 species of birds and 425 species of animals including python and sambhar.
The Loktak lake is one of a kind as the world’s only floating national park, the Keibul Lamjao National Park is located in the Southwestern part of the lake. The brow-antlered deer, Sangai which is endemic to Manipur and is an endangered species is found in the national park. Sangai is also the state animal of Manipur.
The lake also has an important bird area which is a potential breeding ground for waterfowl and a staging ground for migratory birds.
Another interesting fact about the lake is that it has the country’s first floating elementary school. Here, efforts are being made to provide quality education to children. It also caters to the needs of the illiterate adults who wish to educate themselves.
The Loktak lake which is referred to as the lifeline of Manipur is also a source of hydropower generation, irrigation and drinking water supply. May the Loktak lake be untouched by encroachments and pollution by mankind and may it always be able to retain its magic for posterity.
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