Sekrenyi is the premier festival of the Angami Nagas and is celebrated annually Credit: EastMojo image

Kohima: The Angami Naga tribe is all set to host the second edition of ‘Sekrenyi’ Mini Hornbill Festival from February 25-27 at Khouchiezie (local ground) in Kohima under the theme ‘Restoring Values’. As the premier festival of the Angami Nagas, it is also one of the biggest social gatherings for the community.

Sekrenyi is the festival of “purification and sanctification” of the body, mind and soul. In olden days, rituals were performed to cleanse off the past wrongs and sins and further usher in the greater aspirations and purpose in life. However, with the coming of Christianity, the old practices of performing rituals are no longer in practice but the ancestral believe of renewing oneself and one’s relationship with the kinsmen, village and community as a whole is fostered through the festival.

This year, the festival is jointly organised by the Angami Public Organisation, apex body of the tribe, and the government of Nagaland. This edition of the Sekrenyi Mini Hornbill Festival aims to revisit the “great virtues and values” that was part of its culture and to restore those that will give “worth and depth” to the identity today.

Addressing a press conference on Friday, Lithrongla Rutsa, ADC, said that the festival is organised with the aim to promote the culture and tradition of the Angami Nagas. She said that it is also an opportunity for the younger generation to learn about the rich tradition that was passed on by the ancestors.

Unlike the previous edition of the Mini Hornbill Festival which coincided with Sekrenyi festival, this year’s edition will witness indigenous games and art competition. A special feature is the traditional song competition which will be conducted for persons below the age of 20 years.

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An evening will also be specifically dedicated to explore the musical heritage of the Angami Nagas, with the hope to revive the traditional language/dialect through music. Although ‘Tenyidie’ is the common dialect of the Angami’s, the way of speaking it varies from village to village. The traditional practices and beliefs also slightly varies from region to region. The four regions of the tribe are – Northern, Southern, Western and Chakhroma — spread across the districts of Kohima and Dimapur.

The chief host of the festival is chief minister Neiphiu Rio. The first day of the festival will be graced by the president of Sumi Hoho Hekhushe Shikhu as the guest of honour. The Tenyimi tribes of Nagaland (Chakesang, Pochury, Rengma and Zeliang) will be part of the festival as special guests.

Altogether, 24 stalls will also be set up within the venue to exhibit and promote the traditional items and indigenous food of the tribe. Besides revenue generation, the participating stalls with the best presentation of indigenous items will also be awarded. The festival will also coincide with the first ever Kohima monthly night carnival.

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