The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf notebook eight

caption: crimes; murder, theft, and punishment
medium: notes
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Oting
date: 9.10.1936
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 4.10.1936-23.2.1937
note: [konyak] means text omitted
person: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: (68) Chingai doesn't know what punishment would be imposed on the murderer of a fellow villager, such a case having never happened in Oting, neither are there people who purposely set fire to other men's houses. But if a man sets fire on a house by carelessness, no punishment is inflicted on him. A thief is tried by a council consisting of the adult men of the Ang clan, the Ang being the chairman of this council. A fine is imposed and eaten by the members of the council. To exile a man would be "a little genna" according to Chingai. (69) But in the times of independence a man who committed adultery with the Ang's wife would have been exiled and in the very old times even killed. In Mon and Chi an adulterer and adulteress are still killed by binding them and pushing them down a precipice. Disputes about boundaries of fields are settled by the young men of the Ang clan. No appeal is possible against their decision which is final and always accepted by the disputing parties.