Monday, October 28, 2013

The Nomadic Mhongtung

        The Hmongtung-though its origin inexplicable and lacked testament-is believed to be name of aperson(i am not clear) as he fenced his house with anhmong thing. It is a sub-group of Kom (Kakom)of which besides the cave incident, cultural closeness, traditional similarities and customs or dialect as its affinities. 
The origin of the Mhongtung is believed to be deeply rooted in Burma (Kapo) erstwhile Myanmar. The cruelty of the King Akva and the black plague aggravated the environment which escalated into  hell for the mhongtung group. As the result, they left Burma. After leaving Kapo, they entered into Lusei Hills. Here also their plight continued; the indigenous tribes-Lushei, poi, Lakhel and Shaneirong (dwarf tribe) and their intra-feud affected the hmongtung in general. Unable to bear the brunt, they moved towards Northern Tripura. However, the same fate followed them. Difference developed which consequently malaise the relationship with the Hrangkhols, Ranglong, shatkachep, Darlong, Chorai and Tuikup over socio-cultural differences. So, they left Tripura and moved into North Cachar Hills and then to the south of Manipur-in the surrounding region of Tuivai and Tuirong. As years passed, conflict had grown up with the Zongye and the Chiljang coupled with the strife of the Manlung and Mangchong which added up more load on it. At that time, Kuki Raja Mangjahu was in power. As the consequent, they left Cachar and settled in Kailam Hills. Finally entered into the central region of Manipur, Kapeibung, a hill side region of Thampui (Loktak) and then to Thingcherbi to Mhongbung. During this time, the Meitei King exploited them harshly: they were made to carry King’s carriage, pull chariot and were put in a menial works. In order to escape from this inhuman exploitation and the perpetual subjugation, they moved to the Hill side, west of Tamenglong at Laijang. Beginning from the stressful Burma episodes to Tripura, from Tripura to Cachar and finally to Manipur, the nomadic hmongtungs had many villages such as:-Kholamdar, Khovaibe, Khojampher, Khothutpui, Mhongbung, etc. Later they established new villages like Songpherkholen, songpherlhutjachung, Mongkotyang, Lhongchin etc. These villages are in the government records; however, the communal tension that struck Manipur in 1990s compelled them to leave for. Now these villagers though scattered, few re-establish villages in the valley region such as the Songpher and Songpherkholen in Saikul side respectively. The Mhongkotyangs moved into IchumKeirap, Khongnangpokpi, Saikul, Khudengthabietc.In fact, the incident also had great impact upon the social and economics of the affected people; the grave part is of the economic morass that ate them to the root and the morale degradation, a repercussion of the poverty. However, as every dark cloud has a silver lining, the event also led to cultural and political amalgamation with the valley komrem people, eventually leading them to adapt to the new ambiance.  Indeed God is great, and has been endowing them with multiples. He has wiped away the tears. The mighty God will restitute and double what had been lost. To God be praises.

Source: Mhongkotyang golden Jubilee's souvenir, 1979.

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