KOHIMA, OCTOBER 12
It was momentous occasion as the people of two villages from Chakhesang and Sumi tribes came together affirming the age-old brotherhood during the Lazami (Lozumi) Migration Monolith Erection at Khezhakeno village under Phek district yesterday.
Khezhakeno is also called the Naga ancestral village. The monolith jointly erected by the two villages commemorating the Ancestral Brotherhood reads, “This monolith is erected to attest the historic origin and migration of the Lazami (Lozumi) of Sümi Community from the ancestral home Khezhakeno village. This is also symbolic of the reunion of Lozü and his fellow brothers who once shared the good fortune of the ‘Tso Tawo’ (Kükümügha Tupa), the magical spirit stone which generated double fold if a basket of paddy was spread on it in the sunlight. This stated historical account is corroborated by the magnificent intact remains of the burnt ‘Tso Tawo’ (Kükümügha Tupa) till today”.
Narrating the entire episode of finding the bond between the two villages – Khezhakeno and Lazami, ex-MLA Joshua Achumi said, “This is a historic milestone for the two villages, but to achieve this, many leaders including past and present have devoted all their time and energy.”
It is a fact that the Nagas have no written script and have an oral tradition where stories have been passed on, he said, despite the changes in the 19th and 20th centuries few remnants of Naga traditional stories of migration survived and were precariously passed on to the present generation.
He said, fortunately for Lazami, the migration of Lozu Sumi from Khezhakeno was passed on by their forefathers, but things became obscure with time. He recalled that before the stories were lost in the sands of time, few elders in 1970s entrusted Lt. Shikato to maintain a written record of their migration. He said that after Late Shikato’s demise in August 1995, Lazami people set up Lazami People’s Union in 1998 and among other it was entrusted the task to search for migration stories which was more of myth with Akhalu, s/o Khulu as its president.
He said that task of LPU was to authenticate the migration stories passed on by their forefathers with Khezhakeno village.
He also narrated that after that Lazami Village Council and other Lazami village organisations and Khezhakeno village leaders met in March, 2000 at Khezhakeno village to authenticate the migration stories. Based on six points, which include folklore and folk stories; story of the burning of rice basking stone at Khezhakeno, performance of dead ghenna by the two villages; rituals during auspicious festivals etc., both sides accepted that Lazami people departed from Khezhakeno as Lozu’s people.
“Let the erection of the monolith stone be the bench mark for all the Nagas to trace the origin together and live as brothers forever,” he wished while also calling upon Khezhakeno village leaders to trace back the migration of Nagas to the village.
Gracing the occasion as chief guest, Naga Hoho president, Dr. P. Chuba Ozukum said it is a red letter day not only for Lazami and Khezhakeno but for the entire Naga people.
Accepting that Nagas have no written script, he said presently there are many Naga scholars with Ph. D degree and they should think seriously and conduct research to trace the migration history of Naga people as it is very important.
Lauding the upholding of bonding between the two villages, he said, “This should set an example for other Naga tribes to emulate and avoid conflict between tribes”. He also urged upon other Naga tribes to follow such brotherly bonding.
Such occasion, according to him, will uphold the relationship between the Naga family so that they can become one people and one family.
On the occasion, Village Council chairman of Khezhakeno village C. Kemvü Koza and Lazami village chairman Vitoho Kappo also exchanged Bible as a mark of building stronger brotherhood while both sides also exchanged gifts.
Chaired by Advocate Timikha Koza the programme commenced with Rev. Bulechü Koza who did the invocation while N. Ate-ü entertained with a special number.
Khezhakeno village elder Dikha Meche Koza administered the act of traditional blessing upon the relationship of the two villages. President Lazami Welfare Society Kohima K. A. Jacob tendered the vote of thanks while Rev. Kityeo Lohe pronounced benediction.
Migration monolith erection feast and cultural performances marked the momentous occasion.