This week's book giveaway is in the OCAJP 8 forum. We're giving away four copies of OCA Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide and have Edward Finegan & Robert Liguori on-line! See this thread for details.
The proper way to add a manifest is not to have a file in a META-INF directory, but to specify the file in a manifest attribute. The file can be anywhere and be named anything; Ant will package it properly.
Even better, you can keep the meta information in the build file (if you want):