Thoubal Keithel – Adds up to Growth Index of the State.

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The market is budding yet excellent. It has blue translucent roof to tape natural light. Multiple stairways for an easy access for customers. Open to the public around Yaoshang festival this year the business point has become a hub. You can witness a huge crowd in the evening or primetime when people gather to buy their stuff. Earlier it was lying vacant with just a well-built infrastructure. Ever since its’ opening people from far and near have visited the market for their buy.

The Keithel has become an earning point for many and customer’s pride as variety of products is sold in a single place. It has done well to the people living in the vicinity and the district as a whole. The customers are open to varieties of choice unlike before and they are the masters of their own opinion in their investment.

The kind of product being sold here looks very fresh and colourful ranging from the indigenous fish to vegetables. Fish farms and vegetable farms around Thoubal district must be doing very well ever since the market opened up. It is indeed a big promotion to the local products too. Making a customer happy is not an obligation to a market place but a stepping stone to prosperity and Thoubal market seems to be performing ever since it rolls out.

Young and old women are doing good business earning profit from what they sold. Indigenous fish being sold here include Ngamu, ngakra,ngakijou, ukabi, ngapemma, tharoi, ngaprum, ngaril, ngasangg,Porom etc. Ayok nga like rou, common caap, kandala,are a good buy.

Vegetables ranging from different seasonal varieties, thangjing, khongdrum,mairen,yendem, khamen, khamen asinba, karot, eekaithabi, paan, morok, cobi, thabi, maroinakupi,maroi napakpi,awaphadigom,hawai asangbi, chujak, laphu, u-morok, sabot, are lined up for an easy take away home.

The concrete slabs where the vendors sit on for an easy sale are built systematically with a firm foundation and elevation of around 3 feet from the ground. The buyers need not bend to get their choice from the spread out display within a vendor’s allotted limited area in the market. Well there is a number mark on the slab for proper functioning of the market and each number is registered under a vendors name in the municipal registry. The space below the slab is used for keeping cupboards kept locked by the vendors often guarded by paid locals during the night to prevent robbery.

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Photo:  Inside the Market

The elevated sitting space is good for health and hygiene as it keeps away from ground dust left behind by the invading buyers’ shoes and slippers. In another sense the buyer need not bend or squat to get their things, neither the business women has to stretch out their hands for every sale they make. In Manipur Street vending is sometimes hazardous in a way and the money you earn gets equalize with the investment you make on health care. Well there has been a demand for health scheme from the vendors association in Manipur.

Nutritious fruits both local and imported, laphoi, saem, komla, heikru, tarbuj, kamphoi, champra, kihom,etc  are another attractive items of products sold in the market. Indigenous fish caught from the river and local ponds and farms are sold fresh. Vegetables are quite fresh and colourful.

Dried fish of all kind, ngamu leirou, ngafk, prawns, snails, and tin fish are also available here. One can buy Kong kwa, pottery shop where different size of clay pots are sold.

Clothes from phanek mapanaiba, to enafi, all kinds of cosmetic from lipstick to powder, to eyebrow, bangles hair clip, are the available items in the market.

Another salient feature of the market place is it has a tailoring stoppage in open space where people order to stitch their designer wear or casual clothes. It has a book store for the student community, garment shops selling fashionable clothes and local products at the first floor is yet another additional market point. The arrangement of shops are done like a supermarket set up where allocations are made shop wise and shopkeepers deposit money for the shops where they run their business. Some of the shops sell jewellery products, yet there are shops selling men’s wear.

At the ground floor, garment point at the centre is assembled in row with bamboo set up and hanger clips displaying clothes for the visiting customers. One finds it tracing through the thick clothes and pulling out their choice. Well most of the garments sold here are mixed in terms of locally stitched or imported from other States.

The set-up is such that it has a bunch of business women selling vegetable, another bunch selling cosmetics, yet other selling clothes, at a point colourful Chinese foot wear and slippers for all walks of life etc.

A group of lady is seen preparing tea, bora, mangan ataoba and kanghou inside the Keithel complex.

You see hard paper dust bin box in certain areas. In addition to it Manipuri’s living outside the Country has beautified the Keithel recently with ornamental flowers and portable dustbins must to the aesthetic set up of the market.

Around the market complex fishes are sold at the side in a row. And there are a group of tea stall served with spot kitchen snacks. Some sell cassettes, the set-up is such that it become crowded and congested.  

Toilets are well maintained at the first floor both for gents and ladies. The lavatory is quite an ease for everyone.

Much to the uniqueness the promotion of such market is a big empowerment to the business minded women of the State who never hesitate to come out and make their earning. It is quite a respectable figure as women market is expanding. When Khwairamaband Keithel is recognise as the biggest women market in the World the count is still on for numerous Keithel around the State. Such development is good as our local products are purchased and consumed when it is making easily available. There is more encouragement for the growers who is equally benefitting from the ever expanding market.

Such set up is also good as it helps to lessen traffic at Khwairaband Bazar. Where many of women vendor from Thoubal area who did brisk business at Khwairamband Bazar is turning towards Thoubal Keithel as the souring business mark is progressing each passing day at the newly set up market complex located just next to the Thoubal Bridge. Mention may also be made that the old market shed at Mela Ground was shut down and the occupants were shifted to the new Keithel Set up. Protected from sun and rain, far away from the dusty roads women vendors had a good time selling their items. Much to the noisy gathering, friendly words pass on and the air of campus life at the Keithel premises marking their days, women of the State continue to earn in progress and their contribution in a family earning counts to satisfaction.

Well promotion at the right hour is just as inevitable and the growth of the State is determined by willingness to work by its people. Perhaps we need such kind of good infrastructure at certain strategic point. The Thoubal Keithel which was once an empty building is lively now.

Drop a visit and pick up your best buy. 

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