14-07-2017 05:00 PM | Lathika Saju | My Indian Dream
Shedding light on the lives of the people of Angami Naga tribe
There are many people in India who wish to know more about the seven sister states of India located in the northeastern part of the nation. One such state is Nagaland which is the land of glorious mountains, rich flora and fauna and interesting cultures. There are around sixteen tribes in Nagaland of which the people of Angami tribe are in majority.
The Angami tribes are known to inhabit the Naga Hills for centuries. Some studies have revealed that the Angami people are the first tribal society to have settled in Northeast India. The tribe has its own folk tales, legends, proverbs and poems. They also celebrate many festivals according to their own culture and tradition. Tendydie is one of the most commonly used mother tongue of the Angami tribe.
The Angami Nagas basically prefer to reside in the hills. They are known for terraced wet rice cultivation. They are one of the only two groups of Nagas out of the sixteen who practice wet-rice cultivation on terraces made on the hill slopes. This allows them to cultivate the same plot year after year. Their occupation also includes livestock rearing as well as woodcrafts and artworks which are done with great skill. Nowadays, people of the tribe also pursue spinning, weaving, pottery and basketry. Weaving is a must for every Angami woman. They are also very good in performing folksongs, folk-dance and folktales.
The Angami tribe observes democracy. Even though there is a village headman, all important decisions are made after consulting the elders and important persons of the village.
The staple food of Angami tribe is rice and they relish a popular drink called zu (rice beer) which is brewed in every home.
This tribe is known for their celebration of the Sekrenyi festival which is a ten-day affair celebrated in the February month. It is the most significant festival of the Angami people. Sekrenyi means ‘sanctification festival’ and it is celebrated after harvesting of fields.
They perform certain rituals in the initial days. The most interesting day of the festival is the thekra hie, when young and old people gather at a place wearing their traditional dresses. They sit together and spend the day singing songs while partaking of beer and plates of meat. It is a time of the year when all work ceases and people spend their time in feasting and merry making.
Young men of the tribe go on hunting during the seventh day. The eighth day is also important as the ceremony of bridge-pulling, or gate-pulling, is performed and inter-village visits are exchanged.
People who belong to the Angami tribes have attained prominence in many fields like medicine, air force, music, education and many others. Some have become members of Parliament and one among them has also served as the Chief Minister of Nagaland.
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