The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

typescript - J.H. Hutton's tour diary in the Naga Hills

caption: famine at Ghaspani and Ferima, and possibly Mezifema; a dangerous lorry; excessive numbers of cattle and elephants at Piphima
medium: tours
person: Dixey/ Mr.Gray/ Mr. Errol
location: Ghaspani Chephema (Chiphama) Priphema (Piphima) Pherima (Ferima) Meziphima (Mezifema)
date: 14.6.1922
person: Hutton/ J.H.
date: 15.6.1922-7.7.1922
person: Pitt Rivers Museum Archive, Oxford
refnum: Hutton Ms. Box 2
text: 14th
text: To Ghaspani. On the way the Chiphama G.B. came in. He said that his village was starving; that six persons had already died for want of food; that there was no demand for labour by the P.W.D. between Ghaspani and Piphima at present; that rice when they could get it was 4 seers the rupee (at the Piphima shop or from gari wallas); that they could not go far afield for work for fear of their families dying in their absence, and would I give them work and either pay them in rice or import rice at a cheaper rate. Out of sixty households in the village, only 3, they say, have any food stuffs at all or money to buy with. The millet, what there is of it, will not be ripe for another month, and they are too weak to keep their fields clear of weeds. A small loan given last year is still outstanding against Chiphama, but clearly something must be done at once. I have the Sub-Deputy Collector II here and he will go to Chiphama and see how things are. He should get back in time for me to send down to Dimapur by tomorrow's post for paddy - if I can get it, if not rice, which should then be here by the 20th at the latest. The village can work off the price afterwards. But for this embargo on Manipur rice the price at Piphima would be reasonable.
text: Ferima seem equally badly off and in addition have had their village burnt, about which I heard a case here. Mezifema is probably the same.
text: Mr. Dixey came through on a lorry numbered 7 M.S. the hand break was out of action and the lever of the foot break seemed bent. I do not know enough about cars to know how far this is dangerous to other traffic, but Mr. Dixey seemed quite perturbed about it as regards the danger to passengers in the lorry itself. I assured him that it was quite the best and safest lorry on the road. It well might be.
text: Piphima complained of the excessive number of cattle kept by strangers on their land. I will see about discouraging them (the cattle owners). They also complained of elephants, and I gave them leave to shoot one, provided they did it within 5 days. A keddah is badly needed in the Rengma valley, but the country is very difficult and I believe that Mr. Errol Gray could find no place where a number of elephants could be fed for any length of time at all.