The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

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

caption: Dispensary and opium shop at Wakching; increased use of opium; problems with insects caused by uncut jungle
medium: tours
person: MakatobaSaopaAhon
location: Wakching Mokokchung Yungya Namsang
date: 18.6.1925
person: Hutton/ J.H.
date: 29.5.1925-29.6.1925
person: Pitt Rivers Museum Archive, Oxford
refnum: Hutton Ms. Box 2
text: 18th
text: Halted Wakching. I visited the dispensary where pukka buildings of some sort are really needed, particularly for the Sub Assistant Surgeon's and compounder's quarters. The present Sub Assistant is new and the compounder is under orders of transfer. It is a great mistake to change the two together, as I have pointed out in the note I wrote in the dispensary. I also visited the opium shop, which I think is now being honestly run by Makatoba for Saopa. Saopa, the vendor, pays him Rs.20/- per mensem and clears about Rs.350/- gross, which probably means about 300/- net profit for him per month. I think myself that it would pay to lower the price of opium at Mokokchung. As all the consumers are rationed, lowering the price will not increase consumption and it will tend to keep out smuggled opium from across the frontier. I am really rather concerned about the opium grown in Yungya, as Namsang are always going there to trade and are bound to bring it away, seeing that the price of Government opium is so high. This is a point on which I should like the Sub Divisional Officer's opinion. I see Anaki, Kantsung Toluba, and Warumung buy here, but no one from further south. Where do Yachang, Mirinokpo etc. get their opium from? They must get it from the plains, where someone's license ought to be cancelled. Ahon tells me that there are a good many new kaniyas in Wakching, and that they get opium from the old ones in very small quantities. On the other hand the old ones repeatedly come asking for an increase of ration as they have not enough for themselves, and indeed they many of them exhaust their ration long before the end of the month.
text: The mosquitos here are baddish but not nearly so bad as I had been led to expect. The Sub Divisional Officer thinks they are due to the place of the Inspection Bungalow, but this is obviously not the case as they are worst in the verandah - there are none inside. Obviously both the mosquitos and the other insects which are a curse when the lamp is lit are due to the uncut jungle round the Inspection Bungalow. This ought to be cut down almost to the stream that rises North East of the Inspection Bungalow, leaving all the large trees of course. This year it can be done by the punishment coolies that will be supplied by the village who helped in the unsuccessful head-hunt after Yongpho, but it ought to be done yearly until it gets kept short naturally by cattle. I spent part of the morning in the village, where I completed the evidence for a theory I have held for some time but lacked proof of. This proof I got quite unexpectedly this morning in a most convincing form.