The official languages of the state are Manipuri and English.
Manipuri language (Meiteilon)
Meiteilon, the official language of Manipur, has a long history. Courses on Manipuri Language and Literature are offered as a subject up to M.A. level in both Central and State Universities. It is the main language of communication among all different tribes and people inhabiting Manipur. English is also slowly gaining ground as a common language of communication.Hindi is also in use by the migrants from northern India. Meitei has been recognized as the Manipuri language by the Indian Union and has been included in the list of scheduled languages (included in the 8th schedule by the 71st amendment of the constitution in 1992). Meitei is taught as a subject up to postgraduate level (Ph.D.) in Indian universities, apart from being a medium of instruction up to the undergraduate level in Manipur.
Meitei Mayek (Manipuri script)
Meitei Mayek is a script, commonly referred as Mayek, which has been used since ancient times. Though out of vogue for a certain period, in the recent past it has gained popularity.
Languages of hill people
There are 29 different dialects spoken in Manipur. Six main hill dialects recognised by Government of Manipur for medium of instruction & examination up to class XII are :
- Thadou-Kuki, dialect of Kuki people, the second language in the state after Meiteilon during Colonial Period.
- Tangkhul, dialect of Tangkhul people
- Hmar, dialect of Hmar people
- Paite, dialect of Paite people
- Mao, dialect of Mao People
- Rongmei dialect of Rongmei people