The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

published - extracts from 'Account of the valley of Munnipore and of the Hill Tribes' by Major W. McCulloch

caption: hereditary village offices
medium: articles
ethnicgroup: Koupooee
person: McCulloch/ Major W.
date: 1858
refnum: from: Selections from the Records of the Government of India, No. 27 (Calcutta) 1859
text: Every village has three hereditary Officers, namely Kool-lakpa, Looplakpa, and Lumpoo, any Officers besides these, are elected. If the hereditary chief or Kool-lakpa be a man of wealth, he will be also a (49) man of influence, but usually this is not the case, and who the head of the village is would be difficult for a stranger to perceive. Before their subjugation to Munnipore, the most successful warrior would have been the most influential man in the village; now wealth, and the faculty of speaking well, which doubtless in former days also had their influence, render their possessors leading men. With the internal government of the Koupooees or of any of the other hill tribes, the Munnipore Government does not interfere, they are left entirely to themselves and looking at them casually they appear individually to be under no control, but the appearance is false. The authority of a hereditary chief they have rejected, but each village has become a small republic, the safety of which, experience has taught the members, is only to be gained by strictly observing the rights of person and property, individuals infringing the laws or usages of the community are punished by fine, or even expelled.