The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

typescript tour diary of W.G. Archer, S.D.O. Mokokchung 1947

caption: visit to Jotsoma
caption: village feuds and alliances
medium: tours
person: Pawsey
location: Jotsoma Khonoma Pfuchama Phesama Kigwema
date: 8.1.1947
person: Archer/ W.G.
date: 31.12.1946-14.2.1947
text: After crossing the bridge I climbed a steep lane and at length came out at the gaonbura's house. This official has the chief duty of collecting the house tax and of knowing how many men and cattle are in his Khel. He is also a repository of village custom and does his best to settle quarrels. When a dispute arises, he either sits with other gaonburas or assembles all the villagers and the general judgement prevails.
text: I was told that formerly Khonoma and Jotsoma were at feud and that in Jotsoma itself the different Khels were often at war. Since the British came however war was stopped and now the feuds have ended. On this latter point Pawsey tells me however that this statement is little more than wishful thinking for when they offered Jotsoma a pipe line, the Khel whose water was involved was so bitterly opposed to sharing with its neighbours that the scheme was dropped.
text: Between Jotsoma Khels and certain other villages there are various alliances. The Toloma Khel for example is an ally of the Merhema Khel in Khonoma and the Kroma Khel of Jotsoma also visits the Semoma Khel of that village. There has even been a more ambitious development. In 1942 the Toloma clan pledged friendship with the villages of Pfuchama, Phesama and Kigwema and a monument memorialising this pact was erected on 20.4.42 and is still in the village.