The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book : Return to the Naked Nagas (1939;1976)

caption: Chapter Twenty-six. Tribesmen Of Tirap
caption: history of Wanchus, closely linked to Konyaks
medium: books
person: Lovraj/ SonuSrivastava/ L.R.N.Elwin/ Verrier
ethnicgroup: Wanchu
location: Khonsa
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 1962
text: Though officially described as Wanchu, one of the tribes of , that area is closely allied to the Konyak Nagas, and its inclusion in a different administrative unit was a matter of historic accident. It was accidental too that throughout the entire British period no serious attempt had been made to extend the writ of the Government of Assam to the villages of the Wanchus. After some early brushes with British expeditions the Wanchus has been left to their own devices, and not until after 1947 did the Government of India take effective steps to bring them under its administrative control. The middle-aged and older people I met in 1962 had thus spent the greater part of their lives under a political system organized on traditional lines.
text: When the Government of India incorporated the region henceforth named Tirap district into the North East Frontier Agency, a district headquarters was established at Khonsa, a village in the outer ranges accessible by a jeep-road from Jorhat in the Brahmaputra plains. In Khonsa my wife and I enjoyed the hospitality of Sonu Lovraj, the political officer in charge of Tirap, and it was due to his enthusiastic assistance that in a relatively short time I gained a fairly clear picture of the tribes under his jurisdiction. In addition, L.R.N. Srivastava, one of the team of research officers trained by Verrier Elwin, gave me the benefit of his familiarity with the Wanchus and introduced me to some of the leading men.