The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf Naga diary on his return to Nagaland, 1970

caption: discussion of land ownership
medium: diaries
person: Namkia
ethnicgroup: Zemi
location: Laisong
date: 18.8.1970
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 12.8.1970-9.9.1970
person: private collection
text: In the morung we found a few men who had stayed in the village to await a party of officers from Haflong. The Zemi village level worker, the son of Namkia of "Naga Path" fame, had met us yesterday at the bungalow and awaited us now in the village. With his help we talked to a gaonbura about land ownership but did not get very far because the interpreter himself did not seem to understand the system.
text: What emerged is that two men known as Kadepeo are considered owners of land, which they received together with the title from the Kachari kings. Both are of Indrame clan. One owns the entire village site and jhumland above; the other owns land below the village. The other villagers do not pay him rent for the house sites, but anyone cultivating on his land pays him one basket of rice.
text: There was some suggestion that the three clans have separate lands for jhuming, but this could not be definitely confirmed. The village elders seem to confirm what area is to be jhumed, but within that area there is no clear allocation of land.