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Archdiocese of Imphal

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Archdiocese of Imphal
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In a land area of 22,356 square kilometers, the diocesan territory covers the entire state of Manipur.

Imphal is the biggest city in the diocese. Ukhrul, Senapati, Tamenglong, Chandel, Churachandpur, Thoubal, Bishnupur are other important towns.


In Imphal archdiocese, the population is 2,850,000 as of Census 2016. Ethnic groups are classified into three general categories: The Meiteis; the Kuki-Chin tribes and the Nagas.


Over 35 languages are spoken in the archdiocesan area. The main languages are Manipuri, Mao, Tangkhul, Maram, Poumai, Hmar, Moyon, Maring, Monsang, Anal, Mizo, Rongmei, Paite, Kuki, Zou, Thadou and English.


The American Baptists began a successful mission in Manipur in 1908 among the hill tribes. One of the outstanding pioneer missionary was William Pettigrew. The first Catholic priest, Father Ansgar Koenigsbaver, SDS, a German Salvatorian missionary looking after Assam mission, came to Manipur in 1912. He found 19 Catholics, 17 of whom belong to the band of the regiment which was stationed here. The Maharajah of Manipur told Father Ansgar that he had no objection to the opening of a Catholic mission in Imphal, the capital of the princely state.

Due to the limited resources and personnel, the opportunity to evangelize Manipur could not be realized.

Thirty-six years later, two Salesian missionaries, Father O. Marengo, SDB, and Father Attilio Colussi, SDB, who were working in Guwahati, Assam, visited Imphal.

The organized work of evangelization in Manipur actually began with the erection of the diocese of Dibrugarh in 1951.

The Catholic faith among the Tangkhuls, one of the first hill tribes to accept the faith, was brought by Dominic Shomi, former pupil of St. Anthony's School, Shillong, and George Hongrei, former student of Don Bosco School, Guwahati.


The city is managed by Corporation. The villages and small towns are administered by elected local bodies called Panchayats and municipalities respectively.


The diocesan area is well connected in terms of transport infrastructure by roads. The nearest airport is in Imphal city.


Per capita income in the archdiocese territory is Rs 17,950 ($387) as of January 2010. Farming especially paddy cultivation is the major occupation. Maize, beans, oranges, sugarcane and yam are also widely cultivated in the diocesan area.


Government and private operators provide extensive telecommunication facilities in the diocesan territory. The diocese is well connected by local cable TV networks.


Nearly 59.89 percent is the literacy rate in the diocesan territory.

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