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: setting out and crossing river on suspension bridge
medium: books
person: Lovraj/ SonuElwin/ Verrier
ethnicgroup: Wanchu
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 1962
text: From Khonsa we set out in a jeep and drove largely through (215) tropical forest as far as the Tisa River. The track continues on the far side of the river, but the connecting bridge had not yet been built, and we had to unload our luggage and get it carried across on a cane suspension bridge. Lovraj, who accompanied us as far as the river, had sent word to the Wanchus of nearby villages and as we arrived we were greeted by a colourful crowd of men dressed and tattooed exactly like the Konyaks of such villages as Oting or Longkhai. The friendly and easy way in which they chatted to Lovraj demonstrated beyond doubt that the officers of N.E.F.A., inspired perhaps by Verrier Elwin who acted as anthropological adviser to government, had won the confidence of the tribesmen by their sympathy towards local customs and traditions. While in Nagaland a secessionist movement was then disturbing the peace, in Tirap district the relations between the administration and such tribes as Noktes and Wanchus appeared to be excellent. Sonu Lovraj entertained the assembled Wanchu men by giving them short rides in the two jeeps in which we had come and the experience clearly delighted men who had probably never been on a wheeled vehicle.