From Neiyie Tsupre, a test of strength and maturity undertaken by the Angamis, to Akikiti, a form of martial arts practised by the Sumi tribe, visitors get to witness a unique side of Naga tradition
Kohima: Various tribes living in Nagaland continued with their cultural performances on the sixth day of the Hornbill Festival in Kohima on Thursday.
The day began with a presentation on Akhetsu Kukakeu (top spinning), a traditional game played by the Sumi community. In this game, each player takes turns to spin the top for the longest duration and also try to strike the spinning top of the other competitor. The longest spinning top becomes the winner.
Next up was the Sumi kick fight ‘Akikiti’ that was held at the Kisama Amphitheatre. Akikiti is a form of a vicious martial art where soles of the participant’s feet are his only weapon and only defense. It was traditionally played as an amusement game for men and used to settle disputes between two parties or individuals whenever it arises. However, it is increasingly gaining ground as a sport.
A folk song called Wochak Khundung was presented by the Yimchunger tribe during the programme. The song is traditionally sung by groups of workers in harmonious rhythm as they keep working and cleaning the weeds in the fields.
The Angami cultural troupe also presented the Neiyie Tsupre (test of strength and maturity) as part of the festival on Thursday. In this game, the young lads traditionally attempt to carry a hearth stone above their head without touching the body and walk around the yard to show their strength and eligibility for marriage. Failure while attempting this was interpreted as immaturity. Furu Thsuh Khisong, the ‘rice-pounding’ song, was presented by the Sangtam cultural troupe.
The day also saw various other performances such Adoubvu Akhanyo, an indigenous game of the Pochury tribe; the serpentine dance (Baikhon/Bai Jubu) by the Kachari community; and Ejupta (cock fight), a traditional game played by the Lothas, among others.
Earlier in the day, Governor of Mizoram Kummanam Rajasekhar attended the porgramme as chief guest while Major General VK Mishra attended the festival as special guest in presence of many others, including Nagaland minister for transport, civil aviation & railways and land resources, P Paiwang Konyak.
Governor of Mizoram, Kummanam Rajasekhar, speaking on the occasion expressed happiness to be a part of the cultural extravaganza in the Northeast.
“The mission of the festival is to revive, protect, sustain and protect the richness of the Naga heritage and the traditional is clearly being seen here. The colourful display of traditional dances, sports and songs of various tribes is a once in a lifetime experience. Cultural dances, indigenous sports and folk songs are the rich medium to promote the culture of Nagaland to other parts of the country,” he said, adding: The colourful and vibrant celebration the log drums, the colourful headgear, the soulful war cry, the exquisite costumes of the culture is so mystic and intriguing.
The Hornbill Festival has become a unique platform to witness the cultural diversity, not only for the people of Nagaland but also for the people the seven sisters and tourists from various parts of the country and world. He also congratulated the people of Nagaland for making Hornbill Festival one of the most important and talked about festival all over the world.