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Manipur - মনিপুর, ꯃꯅꯤꯄꯨꯔ
Manipur emblem.svg
status State
Capital Imphal
surface 22,327 km²
Residents 2,721,756 (2011)
Population density 122 inhabitants per km²
languages Meitei , English
governor Najma Heptulla
Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren Singh ( BJP )
ISO code IN-MN
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Manipur ( Meitei : মনিপুর, ꯃꯅꯤꯄꯨꯔ) is an Indian state with an area of ​​22,327 km² and 2.7 million inhabitants (2011 census). The capital of Manipur is Imphal . The main languages ​​are the official languages ​​Meitei (Manipuri) and English .

With a value of 0.706, Manipur achieved 5th place among the 29 states of India in the human development index in 2015 .


Manipur is located in northeast India on the border with Myanmar (Burma). The state is one of the so-called seven sister states of northeast India, which are only connected to the rest of the country by a narrow land corridor. Manipur's neighboring states are Nagaland in the north, Assam in the west and Mizoram in the south. In the east lies the state border with Myanmar. With an area of ​​22,327 square kilometers (slightly more than the German state of Hesse ), Manipur is one of the smaller states of India.

The topography of Manipur is characterized by a contrast between the central valley region and the surrounding mountain region. In the center of Manipur lies the Imphal or Manipur valley with the capital Imphal . The valley, which is around 2000 square kilometers in size, has an almost oval shape and is an average of 790 meters above sea level. The Imphal Valley is surrounded on all sides by mountains. The mountain ranges of the Patkai Mountains run mostly in a north-south direction and reach heights of over 3000 meters in the northeast. The highest mountain is the Khayang Peak with 3114 meters above sea level. Around Jiribam in the far west on the border with Assam, Manipur also has a share in the lowlands of the Barak valley . Several rivers drain Manipur: the Nam Kathe flows down to the Chindwin , a tributary of the Irrawaddy ; the Barak is in Bangladesh to Meghna .

Minerals are low-grade coal and iron ores; Salt is obtained from hot brine springs . Elephants, tigers , leopards, bears, deer, buffalo, monkeys and giant snakes are native to Manipur.

The climate is moderate due to the altitude.



Population development of Manipur 1901–2011
year population
1901 284,465
1911 346.222
1921 384.016
1931 445,606
1941 512.069
1951 577,635
1961 780.037
1971 1,072,753
1981 1,420,953
1991 1,837,149
2001 2,293,896
2011 2,855,794
School children in Longa Koireng

According to the 2011 Indian census, Manipur had 2,721,756 inhabitants. Manipur is one of the smaller states of India. The population development is increasing: Between 2001 and 2011 the population increased by 18.7 percent. The growth rate is thus slightly above the Indian average of 17.6 percent in the same period. In the 110-year period from 1901 to 2011, Manipur's population increased roughly tenfold. The population density in 2011 was 122 inhabitants per square kilometer and was thus well below the overall Indian average of 382 inhabitants per square kilometer. The population is very unevenly distributed: 60 percent of Manipur's residents live in the densely populated Imphal Valley, which only takes 10 percent of the area, while the mountain regions are only sparsely populated. 30.2 percent of Manipur's residents live in cities. The degree of urbanization thus corresponds to the national average of 31.2 percent. At 79.9 percent, the literacy rate in Manipur is above the Indian average (74.0 percent).

The majority people of Manipur are the Meitei or Manipuri, who settle in the valley. Like most other ethnic groups in Northeast India, they speak a Tibetan-Burman language, but they are culturally closer to the Indian majority society. The mountain regions of Manipur, on the other hand, are populated by ethnic groups that the Indian authorities count among the “ scheduled tribes ” . According to the 2001 census, their share of the population is 34.2 percent. The Naga live in the north and the Kuki in the south , each of whom is divided into a number of different tribes. There are considerable tensions between the Meitei and the mountain peoples: The Naga and Kuki see themselves disadvantaged by the Meitei majority, while the Meitei complain that the Naga and Kuki, as a result of the special rights they have as scheduled tribes under the Indian constitution, be favored.


Languages ​​in Manipur
language percent
Meitei (Manipuri)
Distribution of languages ​​(2001 census)

Manipur's main language is the Meitei or Manipuri language spoken by the Meitei majority people . According to the 2001 census, Meitei is spoken as the mother tongue of 60.7 percent of the population and is used as a lingua franca among the peoples of Manipur . Meitei serves as the official language of the state and is recognized on a supraregional level as one of 22 constitutional languages ​​in India (scheduled languages) . The Meitei belongs to the Tibetan-Burman language family and is written in the Bengali script . In the past, a separate font, Meitei Mayek , was used, which is no longer in use today. But there are efforts to reintroduce it.

The hill tribes of Manipur speak a large number of smaller Tibetan-Burman languages, the names of which are mostly identical to those of the corresponding tribes. According to the 2001 census, there are ten other Tibetan Burmese languages ​​in Manipur in addition to Meitei, the speakers of which make up at least one percent of the population. These are (in magnitude) Thado , Tangkhul , Kabui , Paite , Hmar , Vaiphei , Liangmei , Anal , Maring, and Zou .

The Indo-Aryan languages Nepali (2.2 percent), Bengali (1.3 percent) and Hindi (1.2 percent) are spoken among the population who immigrated from other parts of India .


Shrine for the Sanamahi god Pakhangba
Religions in Manipur
religion  percent
Distribution of religions (2011 census)

According to the 2011 census, Hindus and Christians each make up 41 percent of Manipur's population. There is also a Muslim minority of 8 percent. 8 percent of the population is also recorded in the census statistics under “other religions”.

In religious terms, there is a clear dichotomy between the Meitei in the Manipur Valley and the tribal peoples in the mountain regions. Most of the Meitei practice a Vishnuit Hinduism mixed with elements of the pre-Hindu religion. Vishnuism was introduced as the state religion by King Garib Niwas (1708–48). More recently there have been efforts to revive the pre-Hindu belief known as Sanamahism as a separate religion. In official statistics, Sanamahism is not counted separately, which explains the large proportion of "other religions" in the census results. A significant proportion of the Meitei also profess Islam.

The hill tribes of Manipur are predominantly Christians. According to the 2001 census, the Christian share of the population among the scheduled tribes is 96.8 percent. As in neighboring states, the tribal population of Manipur was Christianized by American missionaries from the late 19th century. Among the tribal population of Manipur and the neighboring state of Mizoram there are a total of around 7,200 so-called Bnei Menashe who identify themselves as Jews and see themselves as descendants of the biblical tribe of Manasseh . Around 1,700 Bnei Menashe have already emigrated to Israel , and the Israeli government has now initiated the emigration ( aliyah ) of the remaining Bnei Menashe.


From the principality to the Indian state

Kangla-Sa, a mythical dragon creature with deer antlers, is the heraldic animal of Manipur. The two statues erected in 2011 near the Kangla Fort in Imphal are modern replicas of the originals that were destroyed in the British colonial era in 1891

The Naga -Fürstentum with capital Imphal is the forecast for the last 35 n. Chr., Today dynasty ruled since 1714, when the Raja Panheiba to Hinduism transgressed and took the name Gharib Nawat. His successor Jai Singh allied himself with the British in 1762. From 1824 to 1826 Manipur suffered from the First Anglo-Burmese War and was largely depopulated (see History of Myanmar ). The Raja of Manipur received annual compensation for land ceded to Burma and the setting up of border posts . In 1891 there was a brief armed conflict between the British-Indian colonial power and Manipur, which ended with the loss of sovereignty. The ruling Raja Churachandra Singh (1891-1941) was formally raised to Maharaja , but had to recognize British sovereignty and was placed under the governor of Assam. Manipur thus became a princely state in British India . In the following decades there were repeated unrest and the development of resistance movements against the colonial power (first Nupi Lan 1904, Kuki uprising 1917–1919, Jadonang movement 1930–32, second Nupi Lan 1939). In World War II, Manipur was during the Japanese occupation of Burma temporarily to the front area (1942-1945).

After Great Britain gave India its independence in 1947 (see History of India ), Manipur initially gained independence. On September 21, 1949, the Maharaja Bodhachandra Singh (1941-49) signed the Treaty of Connection to India, which came into force on October 15, 1949. Under the Indian Constitution of January 26, 1950, Manipur became a Category C state, ruled by a chief commissioner appointed by the central government . Not a few of Manipur's residents saw this development as a step backwards and not as a democratically legitimized act, especially since the elected parliament, which was only established in 1948, was dissolved again. From May 6, 1953, the Chief Commissioner was assisted by a Council of Advisors , which consisted of five members (three from the valley and two from the mountains). With the reorganization of the states in the States Reorganization Act 1956, Manipur became a union territory and in 1957 received a Territorial Council ("Territorial Council"), which consisted of 30 elected and two presidential-appointed members. In June 1963, the Legislative Council was transformed into a Territorial Legislative Assembly, which was composed of 30 elected and 2 nominated members and began its work on July 23, 1963. On January 21, 1972, Manipur was granted full state status.

Social revolutionary and separatist movements, security situation

From the mid-1960s onwards, several social revolutionary groups were active in Manipur, including the United National Liberation Front (UNLF), which proclaimed the goal of establishing a socialist society in Manipur.

Fatalities from riot and terrorist activities in Manipur from 1992–2016

In the state, separatists belonging to the Naga ethnic group are also fighting for independence or for connection to neighboring Nagaland . The Naga separatists are mainly active in the four districts of Ukhrul , Senapati , Tamenglong and Chandel . As a result of their territorial claims, the Nagas have come into conflict with the Kukis , who claim the same areas for their ethnic group. In the years 1992 to 2010, several hundred people were killed every year in terrorist actions (e.g. bomb attacks) and corresponding counter-actions by army and police forces. Since 2011 the violence has decreased. In 2016, 33 people died in terrorist acts. On August 3, 2015, after years of negotiations, representatives of the Indian government signed a peace agreement with representatives of the Naga rebel organization National Socialist Council of Nagalim-Isak-Muivah (NSCN (IM)). The NSCN (IM) agreed to give up its demands for the independence of the Naga areas. The reintegration into civil society was agreed for the estimated 4000 armed Naga activists. In return, the areas populated by Naga were to be given increased autonomy. The details of the agreement have not yet been fully worked out or implemented.

In the fight against separatist activities and attacks in northeast India, the Armed Forces Special Powers (Assam and Manipur) Act , which came into force in 1958 under the government of Jawaharlal Nehru , gave the police and army units great powers. According to human rights activists, this led to a higher number of targeted extra-legal killings of alleged terrorists by the security forces. Relatives of people who had died in such anti-terrorist actions by the security forces organized themselves into the Extra Judicial Execution Victim Families Association (EEVFAM, “Association of families of victims of extra-legal executions”). This association filed a petition with the Supreme Court of India in 2012 calling for a detailed investigation into the documented killings of a total of 1,528 people in fake encounters . On July 8, 2016, the Supreme Court ruled that the more than 1,500 cases of alleged unlawful killings were being investigated and that the powers of the security forces must be limited. The problems of unrest areas could not be solved by the army and police exercising power here for an almost unlimited period of time. The judgment met with criticism from representatives of the security forces on the one hand, and on the other hand it was welcomed by human rights activists and seen as a signal for other unrest areas in India ( e.g. Jammu and Kashmir ).


Political system

The legislature of the state of Manipur consists of a unicameral parliament , the Manipur Legislative Assembly . The 60 members of parliament are elected by direct election every five years . 19 seats are reserved for the "tribal peoples" (scheduled tribes) . The parliament has its seat in Imphal . The Chief Minister (head of government) of Manipur is elected by parliament. At the head of the state, however, is the governor appointed by the Indian president . Its main tasks are to appoint the Chief Minister and to entrust him with the formation of the government. The highest court responsible for Manipur was the Gauhati High Court until 2012 . Since 2012, Manipur has had its own Manipur High Court based in Imphal.

Manipur has two members in the Lok Sabha , the lower house of the Indian parliament, and one in the Rajya Sabha , the Indian upper house.


Distribution of seats after the
2017 parliamentary elections
INC 28
BJP 21st
NPF 4th
NPP 4th
More independent 1
total 60

Manipur's policy is dominated by the Congress Party (INC). Since Manipur, previously administered by the Indian central government, became self-governing in 1963, the Congress Party has provided most of the governments. Most recently she was able to win an absolute majority of the parliamentary seats in the parliamentary elections in 2002, 2007 and 2012. The Naga People's Front (NPF), the political representation of the Naga, which is based in the neighboring state of Nagaland, has also been represented in Manipur's parliament for several years . The incumbent Chief Minister since March 7, 2002 was Okram Ibobi Singh . In the all-India parliamentary election in 2014 , the Congress Party in Manipur defied the extremely bad trend across the country and won both constituencies in the state. In the 2017 parliamentary elections, however, she suffered significant losses and lost her absolute majority in seats. The Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which has barely played a role in the state so far (it did not win a single constituency in 2012), was able to significantly increase its votes and mandate shares. On March 15, 2017, Nongthombam Biren Singh , the BJP's candidate, was sworn in as Chief Minister. He heads a coalition government made up of the BJP and a few smaller parties.

Administrative division

The number of districts of Manipur has increased continuously since the introduction of the district division . Until 1971 there was only one district, five in 1971, six in 1981, eight in 1991 and nine in 2001. Seven new districts were added from December 9, 2016, so that Manipur has since been divided into 16 districts.

In the following table, the number of inhabitants and population densities refer to the nine districts at the time of the 2011 census. Only the two districts Imphal West and Bishnupur remained unchanged in their boundaries during the reorganization in 2016. No official figures are yet available for the districts created in 2016.

Map of the 9 districts of Manipur in 2011
District Administrative headquarters Area
Bishnupur Bishnupur 000000000000496.0000000000496 km² 000000000240363.0000000000240.363 000000000000485.0000000000485 inhabitants / km²
Chandel Chandel 000000000003349.00000000003,349 km² 000000000144028.0000000000144.028 000000000000043.000000000043 people / km² within the limits of 2011
Churachandpur Churachandpur 000000000004598.00000000004,598 km² 000000000271274.0000000000271.274 000000000000059.000000000059 inhabitants / km² within the limits of 2011
Imphal East Porompat 000000000000708.0000000000708 km² 000000000452661.0000000000452,661 000000000000639.0000000000639 inhabitants / km² within the limits of 2011
Imphal West Lamphelpat 000000000000519.0000000000519 km² 000000000514683.0000000000514,683 000000000000992.0000000000992 inhabitants / km²
Senapati Karong 000000000003257.00000000003,257 km² 000000000354972.0000000000354.972 000000000000109.0000000000109 inhabitants / km² within the limits of 2011
Tamenglong Tamenglong 000000000004379.00000000004,379 km² 000000000140143.0000000000140.143 000000000000032.000000000032 people / km² within the limits of 2011
Thoubal Thoubal 000000000000514.0000000000514 km² 000000000420517.0000000000420,517 000000000000818.0000000000818 inhabitants / km² within the limits of 2011
Ukhrul Ukhrul 000000000004578.00000000004,578 km² 000000000183115.0000000000183.115 000000000000040.000000000040 people / km² within the limits of 2011
Jiribam Jiribam Separated from Imphal East in 2016
Pherzawl Pherzawl Separated from Churachandpur in 2016
Tengnoupal Tengnoupal Separated from Chandel in 2016
Kamjong Kamjong Separated from Ukhrul in 2016
Kangpokpi Kangpokpi Separated from Senapati in 2016
Noney Noney Separated from Tamenglong in 2016
Kakching Kakching Separated from Thoubal in 2016


Rice fields in Senapati district
Market in Imphal

Manipur's economy is still heavily influenced by agriculture. In 2011 just under 53% of the working population were employed in the primary sector. Due to the inadequate irrigation systems so far, this is heavily dependent on the onset of the rainy season. In drier years, such as B. 2014 to significant crop failures. Agriculture is often operated as a subsistence economy . Traditionally, the slash and burn economy ( Jhum ) was operated in the mountainous region, in which a piece of forest was burned down and abandoned after a few years of use. In the years 2005 to 2011, more than three quarters of all farms had an agricultural area of ​​less than one hectare (ha). Farms with more than 10 hectares of usable space were a rarity. Exact figures on land use in Manipur do not exist, as there is no land register for the mountain districts . The relative arable land (including forest) was highest in the districts of Imphal West, Imphal East and Bishnupur at around 50 percent in 2015-16, slightly lower at around 40 percent in the Tamenglong and Churachandpur districts and lowest in 20-25 percent in the districts of Chandel, Ukhrul and Senapati. On the 204.19 thousand hectares of agricultural land on 83.39 thousand hectares more than one sowing per year took place. The main crop cultivated was rice (in 2014/16 on 178,000 ha, harvest 482,000 t). The cultivation of crops such as the white mulberry ( Kabrangchak in Manipuri, a traditional medicinal plant), oilseeds and sugar cane is considered to be of macroeconomic importance, but so far this has only made up a small proportion of less than 1000 hectares of cultivated area. The quantitatively most significant fruit and vegetable plants in 2014/15 (with a cultivation area of ​​1000 ha): arum (7.5), cabbage (5.5), bananas (4.1), potatoes (3.7), peas (2nd , 6) and cauliflower (1.7).

According to official statistics, livestock husbandry declined in numbers from 2003 to 2012. Mainly cattle (2003: 418,003, 2012: 263,840), pigs (2003: 414,530, 2012: 277,020) and poultry (2003: 2,940,670, 2012: 2,499,520) are kept. Fish farming is promoted by the Manipur government (production 2001/02: 16,450 t, 2015/16: 31,997 t). This took place predominantly in the Bishnupur district (survey from 2007). The sericulture is strongly on the increase (2015/16: production of 518 tonnes of raw silk ). Manipur's industry is mainly limited to the processing of agricultural products. Of the 1089 industrial operations (factories) statistically recorded in 2015, 691 were rice mills . The Geological Survey of India (GSI) carried out a systematic inventory in the three districts of Ukhrul, Churachandpur and Chandel and found deposits of limestone , asbestos , chromite , copper , nickel , lignite and others there. It is being examined whether these deposits are worth mining.

The number of motor vehicles more than doubled from 96,626 to 265,544 between 2002/03 and 2013/14. With around one motor vehicle per 10 inhabitants (2013/14), the degree of motorization is still low compared to European conditions.

Proportion of forest area by district (2014/15)

According to the Manipur forestry authorities, the total forest area of ​​Manipur was 17,418 km², of which 4,171 km² had a protection status. The forest area is very unevenly distributed. The districts of Bishnupur (3.0%), Thoubal (6.0%) and Imphal West (13.1%) had the lowest proportion of forest in 2013/14. The forest use consists of the extraction of firewood , construction wood and precious woods ( teak ). The economic contribution of forestry is, although around three quarters of the country's area is covered with forest, relatively small, as the government of Manipur deliberately pursues a policy of conservation of forest resources and restriction of forest use for reasons of sustainability and ecology.

In addition to the still inadequate infrastructure, according to economic experts, the simmering and recurring ethnic conflicts in Manipur are a serious obstacle to increased economic growth.


  • Imperial Gazetteer of India , 2nd ed., 26 vols., Oxford 1908–1931.
  • George Bruce Malleson: An historical sketch of the native states of India. Longmans, Green and Company , London 1875, reprinted Delhi 1984, online at
  • Joseph E. Schwartzberg (Ed.): A historical atlas of South Asia , 2nd edition, New York / Oxford 1992, ISBN 0-19-506869-6 .

Web links

Commons : Manipur  - collection of images, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Manipur  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Sub-national HDI - Area Database - Global Data Lab. Retrieved August 12, 2018 .
  2. a b c d e f STATISTICAL HANDBOOK OF MANIPUR 2017. (PDF) Directorate of Economics & Statistics, Government of Manipur, accessed on December 23, 2017 (English).
  3. ^ Census of India 2001: Provisional Population Tables and Annexures ( Memento from January 10, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF) and Provisional Population Totals - India - Rural-Urban Distribution (PDF file; 7.74 MB).
  4. a b Census of India 2001: Manipur. Data highlights: The Scheduled Tribes (PDF file; 42 kB).
  5. ^ Census of India 2001: Statement - 3 Distribution of 10,000 Persons by Language - India, States and Union Territories - 2001 and Distribution of the 100 Non-Scheduled Languages-India / States / Union Territories.
  6. Census of India 2011: Population by religious community.
  7. More than 7,200 Indian Jews to immigrate to Israel, in: Times of India , September 27, 2011.
  8. a b Sharma, Hanjabam Shukhdeba: Self-determination movement in Manipur . 2010, Chapter 4 (English, online [accessed July 4, 2017] Dissertation from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences).
  9. ^ Separatists call shutdown in Manipur. The Hindu, October 16, 2012, accessed December 31, 2016 .
  10. Merger of Manipur With India: September 21, 1949: The text of the agreement. (PDF) Retrieved December 31, 2016 .
  11. ^ Manipur Legislative Assembly. (No longer available online.) Http:// , archived from the original on October 16, 2016 ; accessed on December 24, 2017 (English). Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  12. Chitra Ahanthem: The Road to Peace in Manipur. (PDF) (No longer available online.) Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies (New Delhi), March 2014, archived from the original on January 1, 2017 ; accessed on December 31, 2016 (English, PCS Special Report # 156). Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  13. ^ Insurgency related killings 1992-2016. 2016, accessed December 31, 2016 (South Asia Terrorism Portal (SATP)).
  14. Naga Peace Accord: A year later, Naga society divided over effectiveness., August 6, 2016, accessed December 31, 2016 .
  15. Sanhita Ambast: Unexplained Deaths: 'Fake Encounters' in Manipur. The Diplomat, February 12, 2016, accessed July 3, 2017 .
  16. 1,528 fake encounters in Manipur alone: ​​Why the Supreme Court judgment on AFSPA matters., July 11, 2016, accessed on July 3, 2017 (English).
  17. WRIT PETITION (CRIMINAL) NO.129 OF 2012: REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CRIMINAL ORIGINAL JURISDICTION WRIT PETITION (CRIMINAL) NO.129 OF 2012 Extra Judicial Execution Victim Families Association (EEVFAM) & Anr. ..... Petitioners vs. Union of India & Anr. .... Respondents. (PDF) (No longer available online.) July 8, 2016, archived from the original on March 29, 2017 ; accessed on July 3, 2017 (English). Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  18. ^ The North-Eastern Areas (Reorganization) and Other Related Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2012. PRS Legislative Research, May 2012, accessed on November 7, 2017 .
  19. Manipur election results live: BJP's Ram Madhav claims support of NPP, LJP to form govt., March 14, 2017, accessed March 14, 2017 .
  20. Bikash Singh: Congress starts rapprochement to bring back Nongthombam Biren Singh. October 7, 2016, accessed March 14, 2017 .
  21. Notification: Imphal, 8th December, 2016 . In: Manipur Gazette . No. 408 , December 9, 2016 (English, online [PDF]). online ( Memento of the original from April 21, 2017 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.  @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  22. ^ Census of India 2011: Provisional Population Totals. Paper 1 of 2011: Manipur ( MS Excel ; 20 kB).
  23. a b c Economic Survey Manipur 2016–17. (PDF) Directorate of economics and Statistics, Government of Manipur, October 26, 2017, accessed on December 23, 2017 .
  24. Kabrangchak. Manipur State Medicinal Plants Board, accessed December 23, 2017 .
  25. Profile of Manipru 2014–15 at a glance. (PDF) Development Commissioner, Ministry of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises, accessed on December 23, 2017 .
  26. Jiyaur Rahman, Zeba Sheereen ( Aligarh Muslim University ): Economic implications of intra-state conflict: Evidence from Manipur state of India . Ed .: Munich Personal RePEc Archive. No. 9276 , January 11, 2012 (English, online ).

Coordinates: 24 ° 48 '  N , 93 ° 57'  E