The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

printed - Tour Diary of the Deputy Commissioner for 1873 (John Butler) volume three

caption: respite from rain allows Austin to finish survey near Laisen; burnt village of Khuntak
medium: tours
person: Tongal Major
location: Leishan (Laisen) Khuntak Phatang Turim
date: 24.3.1873-25.3.1873
person: Butler
date: 17.2.1873-11.4.1873
note: inaccurate spelling in the original text
text: 24th March. The rain stopped about 7 p.m. last night and this morning we had a clear view all round which enabled Austin to finish up all he had to do, after which we marched through Laisen and encamped on the banks of the Ihang below Khantak.
text: 25th March. Passing through Khuntek and Turim we encamped today at Patang. Whilst at Khuntak I noticed that the village had all the appearance of having been burnt at no very remote date and so asked a Manipuri Subadar, who happened to be near me and could speak Hindustani, how it was and he said that it had been burnt down accidentally by the villagers setting alight to the jungle. Shortly after this the Thongal Major came up and on my putting the question to him he informed me that the village had been destroyed by another rival village with whom it had a feud of very long standing. This contradictory story naturally made me suspicious and I then enquired from some of the Khuntak men how their village had come to be burnt, but I could get no information whatever out of them, and I learnt from my Dobashas that the Manipuries had given strict orders that they were not to reply to any questions I might put to them. However when I got to Phatang I heard that the Manipuries themselves had burnt down Khuntak three years ago because it had refused to furnish them with rice, etc. gratis. I must here mention that owing to the instructions issued by Manipuri I can obtain but little information of any kind from the villagers themselves who only shake their heads and reply "khangte" (I don't know) to every question I put to them.