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Nagaland

 

 

Status: North Eastern State of India
Shopping: -
History of: -
Population: 19.88 Lac

Nagaland is a vibrant hill state located in the extreme northeastern end of India, bounded by Myanmar in the East, Assam in the West, Arunachal Pradesh and a part of Assam in the North with Manipur in the south. It offers rich incomparable traditional and cultural heritage. The State of Nagaland was formally inaugurated on December 1st, 1963, as the 16th State of the Indian Union. The State consists of eight Administrative Districts, inhabited by 16 major tribes along with other sub-tribes. The terrain is hilly, rugged and mountainous. The highest peak is Saramati in the Twensang district which is 3840 metres above sea-level. The average height of the peaks is between 900 and 1200 metres. The main rivers that flow through the state are Dhansiri, Doyang, Dikhu, Tizu and Melak. There is no waterfall in Nagaland. The only lake well known is Lacham to the east of Mehiri. The hill sides are covered with green forests. In the Angami region, the terraced fields are a feast to the eyes. Nagaland has a single-chamber Legislative Assembly with 60 seats. The state sends two members to the Indian national parliament: one to the Rajya Sabha (upper house) and one to the Lok Sabha (lower house). If one is looking for a quiet getaway, from the hustle and bustle of city life, it provides the right ambience; as life here is laidback and slow - providing a tension free life. For the adventurous and the intrepid, Nagaland is an ideal place for trekking, rock climbing, jungle camping and offers limitless exploration possibilities in its lush and verdant sub-tropical rain forests which are also a treasure trove of a plethora of medicinal plants.

Climate

Nagaland is blessed with salubrious climate throughout the year and one can visit it anytime. Rains are heavy in Nagaland. The average rainfall is between 175cm and 250 cm. Most of the heavy rainfall is during the 4 months from June to September. The rains during April to May is low. Strong winds blow from the north west in February and March. The climate is pleasant.

People and Culture

The population of Nagaland is entirely tribal. Each tribe is distinct in character from the other in terms of customs, language and dress. Each of the 16 odd tribes and sub-tribes that dwell in this exotic hill State can easily be distinguished by the colourful and intricately designed costumes, jewellery and beads that they adorn. It could broadly be said that they are straight forward people, honest, hardworking, sturdy and with a high standard of integrity. They are lacking in humility and are inclined to equate a kind and sympathetic approach with weakness. Weaving is a traditional art handed down through generations in Nagaland. Each of the major tribes has its own unique designs and colours. Warm and colourful Naga shawls, hand-woven shoulder bags, decorative spears, table mats, wood carvings and bamboo works make magnificent souvenirs. Tribal dances of the Nagas give us an insight into the inborn reticence of these people. War dances and dances belonging to distinctive tribes, form the major art form in Nagaland. In colourful costumes and jewellery, the dancers go through amazing mock war motions, which could prove very dangerous, if one were to be a little careless. Festivals, marriages, harvests, or just the joy of the moment - are occasions for the Nagas to burst into dance. Some of the important festivals are Sekrenyi, Moatsu, Tuluni andTokhu Emong. Nagaland is a rural state. More than four-fifths of the population lives in small, isolated villages. Built on the most prominent points along the ridges of the hills, these villages were once stockaded, with massive wooden gates approached by narrow, sunken paths. The villages are usually divided into khels, or quarters, each with its own headmen and administration. Dimapur, Kohima, Mokokchung, and Tuensang are the only urban centres with more than 20,000 people.

Handicrafts

Nagaland's handloom and handicrafts own a reputation for their quality. The beautifully hand woven tribal shawls of various tribes, Naga mekhelas (Sarongs), Naga hand bags, which are exquisitely and intricately designed, have won worldwide appreciation. The new generation of Nagas have ventured into fashion designing on a commercial scale, reproducing fabrics that represent the past, fused with modern taste. They have handicrafts like beads, cearlands & baskets, made of cane & bamboo.

Flora & Fauna

The variations in the altitude, latitude, climate and soil have given rise to a diversity of forest types, ranging from tropical evergreen to temperate evergreen and the coniferous.

Bamboo groves are extensive everywhere. Among the common species, mention may be made of the Naga Bhe and plants such as Mesuaferrea, Careyaarbotrea and Fiscus Electica. On the hill slopes are found oak, chestnut, birch, magnolia, cherry, maple, laurel and fig. Pine trees are found at high altitude areas, varying from 3,000 to 4,000 ft. Wild vegetables, roots, fruits and tubers are found in abundance throughout Nagaland.

Nagaland constitutes a meeting ground for the sub-Himalayan, Indian, Chinese and Burmese type of fauna. Elephants, tigers, barking deer and sambar are found in different places through the state. Monkeys, jackals, wild buffaloes, wild pigs, bear and wild dogs are sparsely distributed through the Naga Hills. Among the ritually most valued species is Mithun. Other common species are lizards, toads, monitors.

 

Map of Nagaland

 

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