Let's learn about our neighbours: Here comes Myanmar (Burma)After Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives, here comes Myanmar. Most of us know that this country was earlier called Burma. Now we call it Myanmar. Many Indians have settled in this country. Myanmar is green and full of natural resources. Let us know about some features of this neighboring country.
1. Contrary to the notion of many of us, Myanmar is ethnically very diverse. There are eight major ethnic races and 135 recognized ethnic groups in this country. Besides there are some ethnic groups which are not recognized by the Government of Myanmar. One such unrecognized group is Rohingiya.
2. Although 60% of the population speaks Burmese language, there are more than sixty languages spoken in Myanmar. English is the secong language of the country.
3. The national dress of Myamnar is 'longyi'. Bengalis, Bangladeshis and Assamese people can instantly recognise it as 'lungi'. Both men and women wear 'longyi' in Myanmar.
4. Women of Myanmar do make-up with 'Thanaka', which is a cream-like paste prepared from woods found only in Myanmar.
5. Pickled or fermented tea is a very popular beverage of Myanmar. There are some tea-stalls where unlimited cups of free tea are served.
6. Myanmarese people are extremely fond of 'paan' (betel leaves). People of all age groups from all communities chew 'paan' in Myanmar. Myanmar is also the second-largest producer of opium in the world after Afghanistan.
7. Myanmarese people don't accept old, wrinkled US dollars or other foreign currencies. They accept crisp and new notes (in foreign currencies) only.
8. The cars of Myanmar are peculiar. This is the only country where the traffic is right-hand but the cars are manufactured for left-hand traffic.
9. Myanmar is known as the 'Land of Golden Pagodas'. There are thousands of beautiful pagodas all over the country. More than 80% of the population is Buddhist.
10.The traditional sport of Myanmar is 'Chinlone'. There is no opposing team or player in this sport. No team/player wins or loses. The aim of the game is to play as beautifully as a player can.
All of us must try to visit the beautiful 'Land of Golden Pagodas' at least once.