The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

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

caption: Land spoilt for agriculture by oil company and elephants; thatch dispute
medium: tours
ethnicgroup: Lhota
location: Nichuguard R.S. (Nichuguard) Samaguting Kohima
date: 2.3.1928-3.3.1928
person: Hutton/ J.H.
date: 11.1.1928-3.3.1928
person: Pitt Rivers Museum Archive, Oxford
refnum: Hutton Ms. Box 2
text: 2 March
text: Halted Nichuguard. In the morning I went up to the Oil Company's vacated site. Their drillings have been filled in and the wild elephants have apparently tested the fillings. Still the top layer of earth is only laid on plantain stem so it may not be very substantial underneath. I had the Gaonburas with me and I warned them that probably in the course of time the fillings would drop in and the holes would open. Samaguting complain bitterly of the damage done to their land. They cannot jhum distant land because of elephants and the land near the village has been spoilt by occupation and will take some years to recover. They cannot irrigate the slopes of their hill because the soil is sandy and there is no water, and they cannot cultivate wet rice in the valley because of the distance from the village and the elephants have already invaded the Oil Company's vacated land to take the plantain and papuya trees. I told the Gaonburas to take charge of their land again.
text: There is trouble here about thatch which foreigners grow on Naga land. If they had not disputed among themselves there would have been no trouble, but as they cannot leave well alone and steal thatch which other men have ever marked I told the Naga Gaonburas that they had better take small payments for thatch taken from their land, as this will put the ownership of thatch paid for beyond doubt.
text: The Chaukidar applied for a house site and land for cultivation along side the camping ground. The land on that side of the road is reserved and I refused. He can go into the village opposite.
text: I propose giving the mauza to the Lhota Gaonbura of Kukhidolong next year instead of to the existing Mauzadar who lives away in Ekarani. The Lhota can read and can write with some difficulty. He does all the work of a Mauzadar at present except the likhapora.
text: 3 March
text: To Kohima