The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

published - Chapter IV 'Detailed Report on the Naga Hills Expedition of 1878-80', Capt. P.J. Maitland

caption: occupation of Paplongmai; supplies harrassed by Konoma; withdrawal of surrender offer by Semnama khel
medium: reports
person: Abbott/ Capt.Hinde/ Mr.Henderson/ Lt.Heath/ Mr.
location: Pulomi (Paplongmai) Lampi Chakwima
person: Maitland/ Capt. P.J.
date: 1880
person: India Office Library, London
refnum: IOR L/MIL/17/18/24
text: Paplongmai was reached by Captain Abbott on the 9th March, after a journey of upwards of four weeks, during which time considerable anxiety had been felt at Kohima regarding his movements and safety. It transpired that Captain Abbott had been taken by his political officer, Mr. Hinde, as far to the south as Lampi, the residence of the Kuki Rajah, " in order to try and get some of the Kukis to join with us." The Kukis, however, declined the arrangement, as their season for cultivation was about to commence, and the detour thus made seems to have been wholly without result. Captain Abbott also met with difficulties in the shape of bad weather, which retarded his progress, and in the desertion of his coolies, twenty three of whom, out of ninety five, disappeared on the very first night. No opposition was met with at Paplongmai, and Captain Abbott was directed to remain there till further orders. As it was necessary to supply him from Konoma, a convoy was started on the 10th March, escorted by seventy five rifles, 44th Sylhet Light Infantry, under Lieutenant Henderson. " After proceeding for about seven miles the convoy was suddenly fired on from both sides of the road by Nagas concealed in the jungle, and three sepoys were killed and one wounded. The coolies ( Chiefly Nagas of Mozima.) threw down their loads and refused to proceed. Many made off into the jungle and did not appear again, (57) and a large quantity of the supplies were lost. The affair was nearly terminating disastrously for the whole party, but Lieutenant Henderson judiciously determined to return, protecting his wounded man and the remainder of the stores. The enemy were so effectually concealed on this occasion that Lieutenant Henderson states he could not even see the smoke of their guns ( Meaning of course muskets.) when they fired on him." ( Review of Operations in the Naga Hills. No. 108, from Brigadier General Nation to the Adjutant General in India, dated Shillong, 6th May 1880.) After this, Mr. Heath, political officer at Sachima, arranged for the conveyance of supplies to Paplongmai by friendly Nagas of Mozima, Sachima and Jotsoma, without escort. But the carriers were stopped by Konoma men, and forced to return. Supplies were finally conveyed to Captain Abbott from the Zumha post, through the Katcha Naga country, and he was thus enable to hold his position.
text: The success of the Konoma men in having been able on two occasions to prevent supplies reaching Paplongmai appears to have caused a return of confidence, for the Semnama Khel discontinued the negotiations they had commenced. At the same time it was evident from the persistent efforts of the enemy to hinder the occupation of Paplongmai that the presence of troops at that place involved them in serious difficulties. A party of Manipuris was also holding the village of Chakwima not far from Paplongmai, and by acting in concert with Captain Abbott effectually closed that part of the country.