Orange Festival Dambuk, Memories of 2015 And so far….

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Orange Festival – Dambuk – Arunachal Pradesh:-December 15-18, 2016

Four days of songs, art and adventure in a faraway land.

December 15-18, 2016

Venue: Dambuk, Arunachal Pradesh

Adventure at Mechukha:-7,8,9th November 2016

Be there on 7,8,9th November 2016 for Adventure at Mechukha and experience the serenity of Mechukha and specially it’s a call for all the nature lovers , adventurous people and yes also to the people who love music , food , who’d like to witness the cultural programmes as well.

A glimpse of artist line up and adventurous sports… Stay tune for more updates..

Mechuka-Paradise on earth, Arunachal Pradesh

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ITAFORT AT ITANAGAR-The capital city of Arunachal Pradesh

Itafort at Itanagar-Arunachal Pradesh

Itafort at Itanagar-Arunachal Pradesh

Itafort at Itanagar, capital City of Arunachal Pradesh
Itafort at Itanagar, capital City of Arunachal Pradesh

ITAFORT AT ITANGAR

The capital city of Arunachal Pradesh, Itanagar has derived its name from the famous Ita Fort. The Ita fort of Itanagar is of ample historical importance and is located at the heart of the capital city in Papum Pare district of Itanagar. . The Research Department of the Government of Arunachal Pradesh has surveyed, explored and later on excavated the remains of the fort.

This historical monument the Ita Fort of Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh was established by the rulers of the Ahom dynasty, somewhere between 14th and 15th century. The excavated ruins of this historical fort are one of the major tourist attractions in Itanagar and being imposing it was highly irregular in shape.

There is a controversy regarding the date and builder of the Itafort. Scholars usually ascribed the fort to one Ramchandra of Jitari dynasty, who constructed it in between 1350 and 1450 A.D. however recently, Lila Gogoi, an authority on the Buranjis of Assam, reveals the fact that Itafort was built by the Ahom King Chakradhvaj Simha in 1688 A.D. on the basis of Assam Buranji, a history of Assam from 1648-1681 A.D., published from the Department of Historical and Antiquarian Studies.

The stone work of the Ita Fort at Arunachal Pradesh covers an area of 45 cubic meters and around 80 lakhs of bricks were required to erect the structure of the fort during that era. The volume taken up by the brick structure is about 16,200 cubic meters. Interesting facts about the fort is that almost 45,000 man days were used to build this fort. The fort has three different entrances at three different sides, which are western, the eastern and the southern sides.

The fort is actually a fortified area of an irregular shape, enclosed by natural ridges and brick ramparts. There are said to have two brick walls and three gates. Brick ramparts are noticed in the western and eastern sides. The eastern rampart is more than half a kilometre long having only one gates.; while the western one of more than 1.40 kms in length, has two gates. The average width of the wall is 1.5 mts. And the original height could be 5 meters. In the north and south, irregular steep ridges of more than a kilometre length each, provide natural defence. The area of more than a square kilometre, thus fortified, is slopping from south to north.

Three gates of varying sizes are noticed in eastern, southern and western directions. The eastern gate, a heavily damaged one, is built on stone masonry, overlooks Doimukh in the Dikrang valley. The southern gate is built largely in brick and limited use of stone, stone-slabs, animated and floral designs were used for the door ways. However, the doors are completely lost. The purpose of these gates was obviously to check the enemy from Gohpur and Ramghat in the south. The western gate, probably the main entrance, faces the Senkhi river. Thus ruins at the gate reveals that comparatively less defence arrangements existed in this area.

The fort is built of bricks as well as stone. The bricks are of variety of sizes, including the ornamental bricks. The stones used are mainly sand stone. The bricks of the fort are typically medieval and pre-Ahom period as well. Iron claps and nails were used in the fort construction. The fort belongs to the category of the forest hill fort and has an elongated semi-circular shape, as prescribed by the architectural texts mentioned above. The remains of Itafort indeed gives us an idea of the development of fort architecture in this part of the country.

There is a controversy regarding the date and builder of the Itafort. Scholars usually ascribed the fort to one Ramchandra of Jitari dynasty, who constructed it in between 1350 and 1450 A.D. however recently, Lila Gogoi, an authority on the Buranjis of Assam, reveals the fact that Itafort was built by the Ahom King Chakradhvaj Simha in 1688 A.D. on the basis of Assam Buranji, a history of Assam from 1648-1681 A.D., published from the Department of Historical and Antiquarian Studies.

Tattooing in Arunachal Pradesh- the culture of tribal tattooing

Tattooing in Arunachal Pradesh- the culture of tribal tattooing:

Many tribes of Arunachal Pradesh used to tattoo different parts of the body as a means of personal decoration and in some cases, certain religious or social taboos were there behind the tattooing. The most famous tribes known for tattooing are the Noctes and Wanchos of Tirap district. Nocte men generally did not tattoo their faces or bodies except for a few cases where men were tattooed on the face and the chest. Tattooing of women was common in all Nocte villages. Women were generally tattoed on the arms and the back and the common design was normally big stars with cross lines joining the ends. In some of the areas, girls were tattooed after puberty and in some other cases it was done by the maternal uncle of the girl. Faces of the small girls were tattooed on chin with a diamond and line through it. Besides face tattooing, other parts of the body such as the chest, naval, thighs and calfs were also tattooed with lines and dots.

Amongst the Wanchos, both men and women heavily tattooed their bodies. Tattooing in fact had a very special significance for the Wanchos. Besides being a personal decoration, it had both social and ritual importance. Apart from the rank and social status of a person, different designs of tattooing on different parts of the body signifies the attainment of different stages in life, particularly in case of women. A man from the chief’s family had very elaborate designs all over body, while the tattooing was rather simple in other cases. They had beautiful designs on the neck, throat, chest, arms, back and the stomach and even round the eyes. A head-hunter had special designs on the face and body as marks of bravest parts of their bodies such as chest, arms, back, umbilicus, thighs and calfs were tattooed. Tattooing was a part of the marriage ritual. The first tattooing was done over the umbilicus at the age of 6 or 7 years. Calves were tattooed when the girls attained puberty. When the girls left the house of the parents after marriage, third tattooing was done on the thighs. The last and the fourth tattooing was done above the breasts during the seventh month of pregnancy, or in some cases, after the first child was born. The girls of the chiefs family also got their forearms tattooed. Tattooing of the different parts of the body had different names; that on the different parts of the body had different names; that on the face was called thun hu, on the chest kha hu, on the neck dino hu, on the back tock hu, on the thighs batan hu and so on.

Amongst the Nishis, the art of tattooing was to be found amongst few people of joram area where a perpendicular line was drawn in the middle of the chin, crossed by two horizontal lines, and one line on each cheek connecting the corners of the lips to the ears. Otherwise, tattooing was not done in the Nishi society.

 The Apatanis, a close neighbour of the Nishis, both men and women, used to tattoo their faces, which distinguished them from their neighbours. The men tattooed the face below the mouth. This was of ‘T’ shape on the middle on the lower chin. The tattooing of the women were perpendicular from the forehead to the tip of the nose and five lines on the lower chin vertically done and one horizontal line on the upper portion of the lower chin. All the children were tattooed at the age of 7-8 years.

The Shingpho men used to tattoo their limbs slightly, and the married women were tattooed on both legs from the ankles to the knees in parallel bands.

Amongst the Akas, the art of tattooing was quite common. The women tattooed their faces in a pattern of straight lines running from below the forehead to the chin where it bifurcated into two directions. Other parts of the body were not tattooed. Tattooing was done generally in the early years of girlhood and always before puberty. Men were generally not tattooed.

Amongst the Adis, though tattooing was not common, some tattoo marks could be found amongst some tribes on the forehead or on the nose. The design of these tattoos was usually a cross having a single or double horizontal beam, the vertical line running from the forehead down to the tip of the nose.

PROCESS OF TATTOOING:

The process of tattooing amongst the tribe was a very painful one and demanded great patience and endurance on the part of the person upon whom it was done. Normally, tattooing was done only on a special day fixed by divination which signified its ritual importance. Designs were first drawn with black paint made from the soot over the body and they were picked by thorns of cane. Then the juice of a particular plant mixed with blue colour was applied over the designs or in some case, the colour made from ashes of straws was smeared over the pricked portions. The juice of the plant believed to have healing effects on the wounds. The wounds sometimes became serious, and usually confined the person who could hardly move about for a few days. No medicine was applied but hot fermentation was given for a few days. The persons who performed the tattooing operations, mostly male but in some cases female were considered to be experts in this art; they were mostly paid in kind such as rice, rice beer and meat. Nowadays, the custom of tattooing has almost been given up by the various tribes of Arunachal Pradesh, probably realising the futility of such painful operations and also because of the impact of the outside world.

Satellite view of Ranaghat Bridge, Siang River, Pasighat

Satellite view of Ranaghat Bridge

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