IMPHAL, March 10 � President Pratibha Patil arrived here today on a two-day historic maiden visit to this border State amid boycott calls by militant organisations.
Manipur Governor Gurbachan Jagat,Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh, Speaker of the legislative Assembly I Hemochndra, Cabinet Ministers and top brass of both civil and security officials, including Chief Secretary DS Poonia and DGP Manipur Y Joykumar welcomed the President under tight security on her arrival at Tulihal Airport here around 2pm.
Soon after the ceremonial Guard of Honour by Manipur Women Police Contingent, the visiting President was greeted by deserted streets on her five minute drive from the airport to Raj Bhavan wherein she was scheduled to meet the self help groups and NGO representatives.
Imphal town wore a deserted look as there was no vehicular movement and all business establishments and market places remained closed since early morning due to Manipur People�s Liberation Front (MPLF)�s 40-hour general strike from Wednesday midnight to boycott the President�s visit. However there has been no report of any unwanted incident till the filing of this report.
MPLF is an umbrella organization of three militants groups that has been demanding restoration of Manipur�s sovereignty.
The visiting President is also scheduled to inaugurate an information technology park besides launching a Statewide Area Network (SWAN) centre at Mantripukhri, four km north of Imphal before her departure to New Delhi on Friday morning.
Meanwhile, the members of the Manipur Legislative Assembly wanted the President to be present at the ongoing Budget session which was adjourned after Question Hour due to the President�s arrival. However, Chief Minister Ibobi informed the House that the matter has to be discussed with the President�s officials as Rashtrapati Bhavan plans the President�s itinerary.