1,470,000 in India (2001 census). Total users in all countries: 1,485,000.
Mainly Manipur; Nagaland, Peren, Dimapur, Kohima, Phek; Assam, Cachar and Dima Hasao; Mizoram, Aizwal and Kolasibi; other communities possible in nearby states.
2 (Provincial). Statutory provincial language in Manipur State (1992, Constitution, Amendment 71).
Meitei, Loi (Chakpa), Pangal (Manipuri Muslim, Panal, Panan). Intelligibility of Meitei in Bangladesh is difficult. Those in Bangladesh may understand India Meitei better than vice versa possibly due to more language change in Bangladesh over the years. India Meitei is more standard. Intelligibility between dialects in Bangladesh definitely sufficient to understand complex and abstract discourse. Lexical similarity: 80%–86% between dialects in Bangladesh, 65%–70% between Bangladesh and India varieties.
SOV; postpositions; articles before noun heads; CV, CVC, CVV, VC, VCV; nontonal.
Also use Hindi [hin]. Used as L2 by Aimol [aim], Anal [anm], Chiru [cdf], Chothe Naga [nct], Gangte [gnb], Hmar [hmr], Inpui Naga [nkf], Kharam Naga [kfw], Koireng [nkd], Kom [kmm], Lamkang [lmk], Mao Naga [nbi], Maram Naga [nma], Monsang Naga [nmh], Moyon Naga [nmo], Purum [pub], Tarao Naga [tro], Thado Chin [tcz], Thangal Naga [nki].
Mainly rural. 6 clans (Ningthonia, Luwang, Angom, Moirang, Khabanaganba, Chonglei). Hindu, Christian, Muslim, traditional religion.