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

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Ziro Festival of Music 2016

Ziro Festival of Music 2016…September 24-28-2015

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.

Paradise on earth is Ziro Part II- words and image by Dani Sulu

One of the sweetest moments of our life is home coming experience. Wherever one may be, his home and her native land and neighbourhood is closest to her heart, however ugly or dirty the home and native town may be, it remains perched in the green land of our memory, forever lovely and refreshing. Coming back to Ziro, my home town, is tantalisingly romantic. It still gives me goose bumps when we start to ascend the hills from Yazali. As one drives through hairpin bends, cool breeze is felt smooching your cheeks and gently weaving through your hair as if mother is running her loving fingers through hair while we are asleep in her bossom. One can smell the pine trees and feel freshness of mountain air coursing down your lungs.

          There hardly is a rest period for the people of Apatani Plateau. As the autumn gives way to winter, Apatanis start preparing their field for next agriculture seaon with repair of bunds and irrigation channels. Even on a chilly winter day, when the sun hides behind the clouds from biting winter wind of Ziro Valley, you will find farmers in the fields cleaning and caressing their fields as would a painter feel his canvass before the start of a master piece. Here I post winter scenes of Ziro giving way to Spring…

Nursery bed to sow paddy seedlings is being prepared. After the Myoko, in the month of April, paddy sapplings will be transplanted.

Elsewhere, paddy fields are treated with crystal clear water….

And the flowering of takung apu..announces arrival of Myoko Piilo.

Here is a closer look of flowers of peach…

Looking through the wide fields one can view Ziro blossoming into youthful beauty..of flowers….

Another of visual Vista.

Flower blossom in a far off place is seen from the ground which has borne the winter brunt of Ziro. Grass has turned brown because of cold.

Flowers deck the bamboo gardens and pine groves.

Closer view of the blossoming Ziro.

Care to take a walk with me?

This is a bird’s eye view of Ziro during Winter.

My dear friends, you might delight youselves in the depthness of winter, when the cold becomes unbearable with these poetic sentence.”When winter comes, can spring be far behind?” But I ask you,” If winter be skipped for it’s severity, would spring have appeared so young and beautiful?” The beauty of winter is, that ,it gives spring a backdrop to appreciate it’s magic. On the rugged surface of winter, beauty of spring is painted. Thus Sulu muses.

Paradise on earth is ziro…Part I- words and image by Dani Sulu

Well, of heaven in the sky, a promising paradise after death…I really am not very sure. But place where your heart and soul remains on this earth is paradise to our living being. Loveliest places are one’s with which you identify yourselves.  My hometown Ziro, where I grew up and where I go to live back my childhood is dearest to my heart. Here, I am posting some of the pictures  of  Ziro, where a small patch of my rice fields lies. These pictures were taken during last summer  and also during the visit to my beloved valley I made during October 2005, before I left for Afghanistan. It was a gala harvesting time.

Ziro

As I go to my field, I have to pass through LEYU,(Leyu is a passage through the bamboo groves which one must take to leave village for any work .. including field work.) Here I take nenting leyu, which is a way to upper Hija village’s fields and forests.

As soon as I leave Leyu, this is the vista my eyes are blessed with.

 Another eye feasting vista as you view the Myoko( Open space beyond village area) beyond your village.

Here, I turn to my right and find the fields swaying to the music of the winds playing with instruments nature provided in abundance in the open fields. What symphony can compete with nature’s sweet music. huh!!!!

Moving with steps that are confident of grounds beneath, of the paths that I grew up with, I find the lush green fields swaying with a blush of young heads of rice as the wind blows gently.

I take a detour and take picture of my field from afar, where my father was laid to rest last year. A patch of raised land is called Nendu Nenchang – a public burial ground. My dad, rests not there, but where I stand and take these snaps. Small hut you see is Myole Piinyi, where the apatani priests perform rituals to propitiate the spirits. White bamboo structures are burial memorials.

This is another picture – my eyes are never tired of such visual feast of greenery, freshness, beauty and tenderness that was all along.

 When you see something, and find it beautifull, you behold it. Nature takes its tolls, and you look again, and wonder, where is that which I beheld with such awe? How has it withered with time and age? Where do I find such beauty, such love, which neither time nor age will leave it untouched. And you wonder!!!!!! 

       Suddenly, a whiff of fresh memories, not fresh in a sense it is new, but fresh because of its essence, … the memories of childhood, of neighbours and surroundnings that looks so unpalatable to the foreigners, whispers, here I am. And, you know you have found true beauty. It grows with age, and as the seasons change, it reveals its beaty in phases. 

      What is beauty? Is it skin deep? Is it limited to the pereiod when you are young and fresh? Where does the beauty fade away when the age catches up with it?

             Haaa Haa haa…. ha ha ha. Like most people, I am usually confused between youth and beauty. That loveliness that we see usually are the youths in bloom, not the beauty in its true colour. True beauty is deeper and unfathomable. Like a good old wine, it becomes better with age. So is Ziro. You thought, green and beautiful Ziro will give way to old and withering autumn and winter? No way. These are some of the pictures I took during the harvest season in October’2005, before, I left for Afghanistan.

As Ziro matures from spring to summer and to autumn, it turns golden in its look and its content. Whole of Ziro valley is carpeted with golden crops of ricewith a far away blue mountains as a back ground. This is the time when gangs of male and females( Patangs), as per their age, band together and have maximum fun and frolick harvesting the rice fields and getting drowned in its celebration. Those of you, who have never experienced abandoned gay and joy, come during the harvest time to Ziro and join one of the patangs to drink the last drop of joy that lifes gives us. I assure you, you would have squeezed out the nectar, the honey that life has never blessed anywhere else.

This is a view from Siilang Diiting of Siilang, Boppii, Tbyo and Piisa pu putu. I took this scenary while proceeding to my fields beyond those blue mountains with my wife and children.

Just as I cross a small stream to enter my field, I see this view. The fenced field is others. Beyond that, in a far off hirizon where lies the blue mountains is our clan’s naring morey and katu morey.( Morey refers to forest, here clan forest.) To the left is Aifu Puttu(AAifu Hillock) and to the right is Piisa Pu Puttu.

This is another shot of fraction of my field and beyond as described above. It looks surreal. Doesnt it?

The  picture at the top is of my son Dingyang performing pabung banni, which means carrying the threshed rice grains to a place called intii pere. Usually children are tasked with pabung banni while the young and grown up females reap the rice stalks and young and grown upmales thresh the rice. It is one of the most beautiful moments of any childhood who have grown up in a typical Apatani Village life.)

Well, Ziro is covered under goldend carpets all around during the months of September and October

THANKS TO MR. DANI SULU Sire for allowing me to upload his Words and Images over pasighat Blog…

Ziro Festival of Music, Arunachal Pradesh

Ziro Festival of Music

The Lineup

Ziro Festival of Music-the poster

Ziro Festival of Music-the poster

Ziro Festival of Music-the vanue

Ziro Festival of Music-the vanue

Music[/caption]

THE LINE UP:
Arunachal gets a new music festival this September in Ziro, a scenic town close to the state capital Itanagar. To be held between September 14th and 16th, 2012, Ziro festival includes bands from Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata besides several upcoming bands from the North East.

Here’s the three-day lineup

Friday, September 14th, 2012

3 pm Frisky Pints, Delhi

4.15 pm SPACE, Kolkata

5.30 pm Omak Komut Collectives, Itanagar

6.45 pm OFF, Kohima

8 pm Bombay Bassment, Mumbai

9.15 pm Teddy Boy Kill, Delhi

Saturday, September 15th, 2012

2.15 pm Alisha Batth, Mumbai

3.15 pm Lucid Recess. Guwahati

4.15 pm Aftertaste, Mumbai

5.30 pm The Vinyl Records, Delhi

6.34 pm Blek, Mumbai

8 pm Peter Cat Recording Co, Delhi

9.15 pm Menwhopause, Delhi

Sunday, September 16th, 2012

2.15 pm Dayglocrazie, Guwahati

3 pm Tritha Electric, Kolkata

4.15 pm The Dirty Strikes, Imphal

5.30 pm Street Stories, Shillong

6.45 pm Digital Suicide, Guwahati

8 pm Sky Rabbit, Mumbai

9.15 Lou Majaw & Friends, Shillong

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.

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