[LONGREAD] Absence of Historicité in Manipur

The Chief Minister of Manipur N. Biren Singh laid the foundation stone for the construction of Chandrakirti Memorial park on December 19, 2017, at the site of the Chibu victory stone inscriptions which is located along the Indo- Myanmar border around 2km away from Behiang, Churachandpur district of Manipur. The state government took up this measure as part of a larger plan to develop the Churachandpur- Behaing road, as a trading corridor to connect Manipur with its South-East Asian neighbors under the much-celebrated Act East policy. Further, the project was meant to bolster tourism in this mofussil part of Manipur.

However, since the inception of the project objections were raised in certain quarters against the plan. And as the project is nearing completion, various civil bodies such as the ZCA (Zomi Chief’s Association) and the Tribal Intellectual Forum Manipur have respectively made a clarion call to the incumbent Chief Minister of Manipur to urgently denotify the Chibu victory stone inscriptions (Langam Nung in Manipuri) as a protected historical site under the Manipur Ancient and Historical monuments and Archaeological Act, 1976. Besides, they demanded that construction at the site be stopped immediately. The purpose of this article is not to question the building of the park or the oppositions to its building. Nor is it to advocate rambunctious support for the construction of the Chandrakirti Memorial park as all commemorations and commemorative projects are political in their very inception. Manipur state for a long time have been projecting a particular Meetei-centric history and identity through its museums, state holidays and other types of commemorations. In the same vein, local history writings in the region, whether Meetei, Naga or Kuki etc. continue to produce ethnocentric histories, extolling their ‘unique history’ and virtues.

Notwithstanding, this article contests the ahistorical reading of the Chibu inscriptions and the historical circumstances leading to their installation at the site. It further adds that some of the objections raised by the ZCA and Tribal Intellectual Forum Manipur is based on obfuscation of available historical evidences regarding the participation of the Manipuri contingent during the ‘Lushai’ Expedition and the stone inscriptions at Chibu. Finally, in the concluding section observations are made on why this recent controversy regarding the construction of the Chandrakirti park seems to be a repeat of similar episodes in the recent past. On the whole, it is a commentary on the contested nature of commemorations of historical events, objects, monuments and personalities in the Northeastern states of India, which emerged as battlegrounds for competing and overlapping political mobilizations by several political communities in the region.

A case of Misdirected outrage?

The outrage expressed by several Scholars and Chiefs mentioned above against the Chandrakirti Memorial Park are grossly misdirected. These objections stem from a lack of historical understanding of the Langam nungs, or victory stones erected by the Meetingu(s) of Manipur in a region stretching between Cachar and the Chindwin river, as well as a lack of contextual understanding of the historical sources or traces of past. Hence, the events leading to the Lushai expedition of 1871 and the reasons for the participation of the Manipuri army in this pacification/punitive campaign are outlined in this article.

The Chibu inscriptions were erected by contingents of the Manipuri army after the successful conclusion of the Lushai expedition of 1871 also known as Vailenlai (the time of foreign invasion by Mizos storytellers). In the period leading up to the Lushai expedition, the British government believed that chaos in the Lushai hills might jeopardize its plans to integrate the Northeastern Frontier with Bengal. The port of Chittagong was envisioned to be the proper outlet for the tea grown in Cachar and other products from Manipur. It did not appear tolerable to the British Raj that a tract of unexplored barbarism should permanently thrust itself up between the British districts of Cachar and Chittagong and the two native states of Tripura and Manipur. Meanwhile, the Lushais chiefs conducted fresh raids in the tea gardens of Alexanderpur in Cachar, killing some coolies and carrying off a young British girl Mary Winchester as a prisoner. In response to the raids in British territories, the government decided on sending an expeditionary force to the Lushai Hills. Expedition and conciliatory gift-giving were approved and popular British Frontier policy to deal with the turbulent tribes such as the Lushais. Gift-giving consisted of pale White men bestowing ‘rum and rupees’ to the friendlier Chiefs. The British officials at the time of the Lushai expedition had not yet evolved into the figure of the patrimonial Bara Sahib or Sahib. Thus, a complementary twin policy of punitive expedition and gift-giving was supposed to accomplish deference among the Lushai chiefs through salutary fear.

Meanwhile, the Lushais not only raided Cachar but also carried out various raids in territories under the administration of Manipur state. They have been raiding Manipur with varying propensities ever since the reign of Maharaja Nar Singh’s (1843-49 C.E.) pillaging, head-hunting and capturing many as slaves. Such accounts can be corroborated from the colonial archives as well as various chronicles written in the court of Manipur. For instance, in 1868 the Lushais destroyed the village of Nungdang and Mukti. They also attacked the Manipuri thana (military outpost) of Kala Naga situated on the Manipur Cachar road. The Thana and the surrounding villages were utterly ravaged. The Lushai tactics of hit and run made it difficult for the Manipuris and the British to engage the Lushais. Therefore, to safeguard the safety and security of its Southern frontier and to restrain the Kamhows/Sokte tribes from joining the ranks of the Lushais, the Manipuri state at the instance of the British sent an expeditionary force of two thousand Siphais (Vernacular form of the Hindustani word sepoy in Manipuri) and 4000 coolies to take part in the Lushai expedition of 1871 to assist the Cachar column. Since the establishment of the East India Company administration in Bengal after the battle of Buxar in 1764, Manipur was considered as a natural ally and a British military outpost in the Northeastern frontier against the Burmese and other frontier tribes. A series of treaties had been signed between the company state and the Manipur administration since 1760s, and leading to the first Anglo-Burmese war. Much before the Lushai expedition, Manipuris have soldiered extensively for and with the British in the frontier regions of the empire such as the Khasi Hills, the Naga Hills and even in Arakan.

Plate 1: A photo of Manipuri Siphais who went on various expeditions in the 19Th century. This photo was taken in the decades preceding the Anglo- Manipuri war of 1891. (This photo is subject to copyright rules and cannot be reproduced without the Author’s permission and consent).

Meetingu Chandrakirti’s reign (1850-1886 CE) saw much closer military alliance between the British administration and Manipur state. Unlike Meetingu Gambhir Singh who had territorial and fiscal ambitions in British administered territories and was suspicious of their presence in the region, Chandrakirti was considered more pliable by the British administration.

The continuous Lushais raids also heightened the insecurity of the Manipuri Durbar for another reason. Various military intelligence reports suggested that some of the Lushai chiefs had formed a dangerous liaison with unscrupulous adventurers such as Kanhai Singh, a Manipuri prince in Cachar who wanted to usurp the gaddi in Manipur. Alliances between exiled Manipuri princes in Kabo, Ava and Cachar with powerful tribal chieftains in the surrounding region to invade Kangla was a common occurrence in the 17th and 18th century CE. Hence it is clear from the above discussion that Manipur administration had their reasons to take part in the expeditionary force against the powerful Lushai chieftains.

An absence of Historicité

Some of the scholars mentioned above have jumped the gun to pronounce Meetingu Chandrakirti Singh as controversial and treacherous for the capture of the Sokte Chief Kokatung and his followers without a proper appraisal of the historical evidences. This is particularly disconcerting since many pertinent questions are willfully neglected. For instance, who were the Sokte tribes? What was their relationship with Manipur state? Why was the Sokte Chief Kokatung arrested by the Manipuri Major Kangabam Thangal?

The Soktes were a group of tribes settled in the Northern Chin Hills region of Burma on the Southern border of Manipur near the Pemberton Line. From 1856 onwards the Soktes had been committing serious raids on various hill villages of Manipur. They continued to raid Manipur sporadically till 1892. In response, the Manipuris sent various expeditions to pacify the Soktes. The Soktes were considered largely unamenable to both Burmese as well as Manipuri authorities. When the Manipuri troops were returning after the conclusion of the expedition, they fell in with a party of armed Soktes led by the Chief Kokatang. They were carrying away 957 captives from two Lushai Villages. The unsuspecting Soktes came into the camp of the Manipuri army apparently not expecting to be treated as enemies, but were all made prisoners through a ruse. The Chief Kokatang Sokte was taken to the Manipuri jail where he, unfortunately, died of Cholera in 1872. The then officiating political Agent in Manipur General Nuthall argued that the Manipuri Maharaja intended to settle the Sokte captives in the valley South of Moirang in Manipur. He added that ‘The Raja seemed confident of reconciling them and anticipated much useful service from the Soktes in the event of future strife with the Kamhow’s tribe in Northern Chin region of Burma’.

A section of British officials such as General Bouchier stigmatized the arrest of the Sokte chief Kokatang as an act of ‘treachery‘ on the part of the Manipuri army although Chief Kokatang had committed raids on Manipuri villages in 1871. British officials favorably disposed to the Sokte tribes were led to believe that the tribes were friendly to British interest and could offer valuable assistance against the Lushais. Reiterating this strand of colonial narrative, scholars of the Manipur Tribal Intellectual Forum Manipur has chastised the Manipuri Maharaja and his army as treacherous while declaring the Sokte Chief who on various accounts raided Manipur as a martyr.

Such a confounding argument seem to neglect the fact that other colonial officials such as General Nuthall, the officiating Political Agent in Manipur and the man on the spot approved of the Manipuri arrest of the Sokte Chief and his party. He argued that the Sokte tribe’s attitude towards Manipur was one of an ‘alternate pretense of submission and raid upon the Maharaja’s distant villages’. The Political Agent even pleaded to the Governor-General in council to acknowledge ‘the judicious and resolute conduct of the two Manipuri Majors Balaram and Thangal’ to whom success was due for restraining the Soktes from joining the Lushais. Further, the political agent informed that the arrest of the Soktes was effected to secure the release of several Naga subjects of Manipur who were carried off in raids conducted by the Soktes in Manipur around 1870. Difference of opinions between colonial officials regarding matters of policies and administration of frontier regions was a recurring issue, especially regarding the (re)settling of itinerant tribes in the territories administered directly by British administration and by native states like Manipur. Different political agents adopted different strategies regarding this issue, while some were more accommodative others such as Higgins adopted stern actions against such tribes. Higgins was accused by the representatives of North East India General Mission of burning villages, evicting and imprisonment of tribes who ventured into the territories of the Maharaja of Manipur without permission from the Durbar.

After the arrest of the Chief Kokatang, the Soktes raided in the Kumsol and Mukoong village in Manipur killing 17 men and carrying off 78 as prisoners. The British Government agreed to a plea from the Manipuri authority to send an expedition against the tribes in 1875. According to a Manipuri account, after a brief engagement, the tribes surrendered and acknowledge themselves as the Maharaja’s ryots. In this expedition, the Manipuri Army also secured the release of the wife and the Chief of Kumsol village who were captured by the Soktes earlier. Later prisoners were exchanged between the two parties. However, the effect of the expedition was momentary since the Soktes continued raiding in Manipur. Commenting on these sagas of expedition and raids noted historian Joy Pachau argues that the incursions of hill tribes into the plains were constructed as raids or wanton destruction, and this was because of an inherent difference in the perception of territory and territoriality for the British, the Manipuris and inhabitants of the hills. The colonial idea of identity was linked to fixed notions of space which created problems for peoples with more fluid notions of land and space. For the Sokte tribe, identity was created in their movement. A member of the tribe was attached to a chief who due to the practice of swidden cultivation had to move the location of the settlement every few years. An individual’s location was not fixed whether to a territory or even a chief. In contrast, the Manipuris in the postbellum of the First Anglo Burmese war became accustomed to notions of bounded territorial sovereignty marked by boundary pillars and frontier Thanas (Military outpost).

While reiterating the colonial narrative of ‘treachery‘ albeit packaged for the mobilizational needs of a narrowly defined identity politics, the scholars of the Tribal Intellectual Forum Manipur have also argued that the Chibu Stone inscriptions factually distorted history and that the Manipur army neither subjected nor pacified the Lushai Chiefs and villages mentioned in the inscriptions. Such an understanding of these sources arises from an utter neglect of historicité in critically engaging with sources in question. Besides, the Chibu stone inscriptions comprise of three sets of inscriptions and not one as pointed out by scholars of the Tribal Intellectual forum Manipur. Other than the Chandrakirti Singh victory Stone, there are two other stone inscriptions besides it. One was to commemorate General Nuthall, the concerned Political Agent. The third victory Stone is carved with the form of two men, most probably intended to represent the two Manipuri Majors, Balaram and Thangal who played a major role in the expedition and the capture later.

Eminent scholars of precolonial India such as Upinder Singh have demonstrated that epigraphic sources such as inscriptions should not be read in verbatim. Inscriptions are texts of a particular nature with its distinct normative tradition, structures, styles and convention. Inscriptions are panegyrical text extolling the virtues of a patron or a king for his achievements in a highly stylized manner. They were engraved for the eyes and ears of a niche audience. Sometimes the intent of erecting or inscribing such spectacular objects tells us more than what the actual object or what is inscribed on that object tells us. The audience of such stones and inscriptions may not necessarily be the tribes inhabiting the region where they were erected. Just as the inscriptions extolling the victory of Islam over infidels in the Qutub Minar and Quwwat-ul-Islam mosque built on the ruins of Qila Rai Pithora were not meant for Hindu subjects of the sultan, but were meant for other Turkish political dispensations which were competing to establish their rule from Delhi, these stone inscriptions in Chibu may be well intended for his political adversaries in Kangla, or else where among the exiled princes in Cachar and Kabo. Moreover, it may also be intended for the British power, to recognize his military capability in the region and his willingness to work and cooperate with them in subsequent military expeditions. The Chibu inscriptions are also unique because one of the three inscriptions were dedicated to a Political Agent (General Nuthull), which consists of an image of a dog and a human foot print (probably his footprint). Nuthull’s inscription is also inscribed in Roman letters and numerals, along with motifs which resemble a church bell, which distinguished it from Chandrakirti’s inscription in Chibu which consisted of his footprint, an image of a mythical horned animal. The inscription was written in the old Meetei language, in the Bangla/Ahomia lipi which is consistent with Chandrakirti’s patronage of Bangla and Bangla/Ahomia lipi in the court.

Furthermore, the Chibu inscriptions of 1872 were not a novelty of 19th century Manipur but a reiteration of a Manipuri tradition which can be termed as Victory Stones (Langam Nung in vernacular Manipuri). These stones were erected after a successful military campaign. Several specimens of such victory stones dotted the landscape of Manipur and parts of Naga Hills, revealing the footprint of Manipuri military adventurism in the past. For example, we have Gambhir Singh’s stone erected near Kohima in 1832 CE, and Pamheiba’s Bangai range stone inscription located in Pherzawl district, erected in 1734 CE to commemorate his victory over the invading Takhel army. Some of these stones were vaguely reported in several colonial accounts, however the first comprehensive study of these stone inscriptions was done by Wahengbam Yumjao Singh, with encouragement from the Durbar and missionary-scholar William Pettigrew. Yumjao used these stone inscriptions as sources for studying the history of Manipuri language, and they were part of his major works such as Notes on Manipuri language written in the 1920s and his Report on Archaeological Studies in Manipur, Bulletin No.1, 1935. He along with his assistants were responsible for collecting, recovering and sketching many of these stone inscriptions and copper plate inscriptions in the 1920s and 1930s. His works were later reproduced again and again by later scholars, and most recently Mutua Bahadur had compiled these inscriptions in his Manipurgi Nungda Lairik Mayek Eerambasing (2014). While it is reasonable to question the building of the park and the symbolic meanings associated with the park or the inscriptions, it is incendiary to demand its denotification as a protected archaeological site under the 1976 Act, especially by reputed academicians. All these stone inscriptions are of great value for studying the history of languages and literary cultures in the region.

Plate 2: The Maharaja Chandrakirti Victory stone. This Victory stone was engraved by Mongjamba Darmeshwar Singh of the Karikara Loisang or institute. An English translation of the inscription reads as such: ‘’ His highness endowed with the five qualities, Lord of Manipur, snake King of the Meities, born to the throne, Ruler of the Sky, the Maharaja Chandrakirti Singh on Saturday, 3rd of Wakching of the year 1793 of the Saka era reduced to subjection the Lushais towards the South of Manipur. The two servants of his highness who attended him were Balaram singh, Major of the Tulihal regiment and Major Thangal of Tulinaha Regiment with whom were the General Nuthall, 130 officers and 2000 muskets.’’ They took as tribute elephant tusk and gongs and dedicated this salt spring and carved the footprints of his highness. The tribal villages PoIboi, Lengkham, Dambam, Bumhang and in all 112 villages, and including Thankalet, the Lushai, they captured four Chiefs and one village.

A case of Déjá vu?        

Confrontational academic posturing by sections of scholars in Manipur is not a new occurrence. The centenary commemoration of the Kuki rebellion of 1917-19 in Manipur was heavily objected by groups of Naga civil societies in Manipur. The Nagas accused the Kukis of distorting history and took exception to the Kukis erecting memorial stone that said ‘In defence of our ancestral land and freedom’. Open violence and conflict nearly erupted between the two communities as a result of it. The recent issue regarding the Chandrakirti park seems to be a repeat of the similar confrontation- a clash of multiple and overlapping historical visions which often spills into the contemporary, continuously reshaping and restructuring the fragile political landscape of the region.

There is no concrete ground to make Chandrakirti Memorial park issue an emotive one based on a narrow understanding of the historical evidence because the inscription commemorates not only the allegedly ‘controversial’ Manipuri Maharaja Chandrakirti but also his two Majors Balaram and Thangal, the latter who lost his life in the struggle against British colonialism in the 1891 Anglo- Manipur War. Besides, the inscriptions also pay homage to General Nuthall, the Political Agent of Manipur, half of the Manipuri Siphais who died due to illness in the Lushai expedition, the coolies, the Khongjai Kuki sepoy villages who acted as auxiliaries for the state army and the Naga villages who were raided and plundered by the Lushais and the Sokte tribes in the southern border of Manipur.

A historical figure such as the Sokte Chief Kokatang who raided territories under Manipuri administration and captured villagers as slaves has been invoked as a martyr for the mobilizational needs of identity politics. This is merely a replication of what Manipur state administration had been doing for decades, projecting Meetei heros and Meetei history to represent the history and identity of the state which was multiethnic and multi lingual. One can also ask how a belligerent neighboring Hill chief from Northern Chin Hills in Myanmar acquired the clan name Guite as Kokatang Guite in some of the press note and public statements on the issue. Perhaps it might have emerged from local oral narratives of the events which is not yet discussed by any of the scholars. Colonial knowledge regarding the various tribes in the Northeast Frontier of Bengal remained vague even in the latter half of the 19th century. The initial phase of the encounters between the British and the hill tribes produced proto ethnographic material containing a description of the people encountered and rudimentary language exercises. It was only with the commencement of the slow process of settling them down that more detailed ethnographic material emerged. The Government of India in 1903 sanctioned at the suggestion of Sir Bampfylde Fuller, the Chief Commissioner of Assam a scheme for the preparation of a set of tribal monographs. Several official monographs such as Gurdon’s The Khasis (1906), John Shakespeare’s The Lushie Kuki Clan (1912) were produced as part of the policy. During the 19th century, scholars often encounter conflicting and ambiguous categories such as ‘Lushai kookie’, ‘Eastern Lushais’, ‘western Lushais’, and ‘Lushai Nagas’ in the various correspondences and dispatches in the colonial archive making it very difficult to derive minute facts on the Sokte Chief and his tribes.

This article does not intend to voice support for the construction of this contentious commemorative park. All commemorations and commemorative projects are political in nature, and each represents the political visions of a community, which in most of the cases transgress the political or cultural autonomy of another community. Manipur state for a long time have been projecting a particular Meetei-centric history and identity through the museums, state holidays and other types of commemorations. This should be questioned and had been questioned through political and academic language for years, but with little success. For example, the entire history of Pangal community or Manipuri Muslims hardly found any space in history writing, hero-making or such state commemorations in the region. The building of this contentious park is a continuation of this problematic state commemorations, and is most likely to result in political confrontations, which is avoidable in such a fragile political arrangement in the state. The purpose of this article is not to question the building of the park or the oppositions to its building. It merely questions the ahistorical reading of the Chibu inscriptions and the historical circumstances leading to their installation at the site.

Most of local history writings in the region, whether Meetei, Naga or Kuki produced ethnocentric histories, extolling their unique history and virtues, but in most cases, historicity emerged as impediment to such writings. History writing, including academic history remained largely derivative of colonial historiography and even recent works such as Scott’s Zomia. One of the main issues in these works is the understanding of the nature and behavior of pre-colonial state systems in this recalcitrant frontier region. Whether it is Henri Claessen’s entry in the Encyclopedia of Cultural Anthropology which described the state as, ‘an independent, centralized socio-political organization for the regulation of social relations in a complex, stratified society living in a specific territory, and consisting of two basic strata, the rulers and the ruled, in this whose relations are characterized by political dominance of the former and tax obligations of the latter, legitimized by an at least partly shared ideology’ or the Weberian definition of the state as a monopoly on the legitimate use of violence in a given territory or understanding of state by other anthropologists such as Evans-Pritchard and M. Fortes, or the notion of state-rejecting societies by Pierre Clastres and popularized by Scott in Northeast India, they have been carefully appropriated by many scholars, and were woven in their understanding of state-systems in the region. While more detailed study of the nature of pre-colonial state systems in the region and their transformations in the 19th century due to encounters with colonial modernity is required, there are some works which clearly indicate popularity of ahistorical understanding of political systems in the Northeast frontier region. The landscape of the region was described by the European cartographer R. G. Woodthrope (June, 1896) as ‘a confused sea of forest-clad hills and narrow valley’, and Bodhisattva Kar adds, ‘interceded with numerous state and non-state spaces with rivers and streams, with fluctuating boundaries and reversible destinies’. The region was like a moving maze of state and non-state spaces, continuously changing their nature, non-state spaces overwhelmed by state institutions and in many cases state spaces overtaken by stateless wilderness. The common political practice of state systems in the region, whether located in the uplands or lowland plains was marked by constant raiding, seizures of human populations along with agricultural surplus, and in some cases larger scale military expeditions. Sovereignty in the region was not indivisible, or concentrated in a single political center but was rather scattered in many centers with varying control over resources and human population. Sovereignty until the 19th century was not defined by absolute, demarcated fixed territories and boundaries. When a ruler claimed that he ruled over a territory, it did not mean that he exercised absolute sovereignty over the entire region. The Burmese state at Ava claimed Manipur as a vasal state or a province of their empire throughout the 18th century, but it did not mean that they exercise absolute sovereign powers over the region. This was equally true of the Ahom and Meetei states.

These states- Burmese, Ahom, Meetei and Tripuri were not ethnic states as the later ethnic histories tend to popularize in the recent period. There is not enough space here in this article to explain this argument in details, but these states were multi-ethnic in nature. The word ethnic might not be entirely appropriate to use here considering its disciplinary origin, but these states expanded through a process of accommodation as well as assimilation of several communities, clans and tribes within their state-systems. They were not necessarily ethnic units. Scott’s paradigm of rendering statelessness to certain societies because of their geographical location, agricultural pattern or post-literacy is also based on ahistorical assumptions. This argument needs more explanations, but for example works of J. S. Lansing and Michael R. Dove clearly demonstrate that state formations can be effectually based on swidden agriculture.

But where do most of these assumptions of state systems, ethnic states, and their nature come from? Some works suggest that it came from colonial accounts and other ethnographies. Considering Scott’s popularity, we can also argue that recent anthropological works continue to shape the writings of many local scholars in the region. Kar talks about what he called Welsh’s Fallacy, which is a fallacious assumption of the Ahom political system as reported by Captain Welsh after his expedition to the Ahom territory ravaged by power struggle and civil war. He argues that Captain Welsh constructed an idea of indivisible sovereignty, well defined hierarchy, sharply cut borders and ethically pre-programmed understanding of inter and intra state conflicts in the region. Ahom state was produced as well defied state with a fixed boundary dominated by a well-defined racial or ethnic group. This was iterated in most of the colonial accounts-which produced an ahistorical depiction of sovereignty, identity and territories in the region. A cursory reading of colonial accounts of Manipur state also reveal similar discourse. This continues to be the dominant discourse of political cultures in the region even today. It is possible that the native informants which usually come from the older literati or aristocracy might have provided information which led to the colonial construction of such discourse. Neo-colonial historians and anthropologists have emphasized on the agencies and roles of local/native informants to counter any arguments which make colonialism and colonial writings complicit in producing such problematic narratives on the history of the region.

Post Treaty of Yandabo (1826 CE), the political landscape in the region began to change. Some states such as Manipur, Cachar and Tripura began to quickly adapt to the changing circumstances such as by acquiring fixed boundaries, fiscal subjects and more defined indivisible notion of sovereignty. On the other hand, other political communities in the region, especially the mobile communities continued to disrupt the new political systems established in British administered regions and in regions administered by the native rulers of Manipur, Cachar and Tripura. It is in this post Treaty of Yandabo political developments in the region that we should locate punitive expeditions like the Lushai Expedition (1871-72) and participation of native states like Manipur in these expeditions.


  1. The Lushai Expedition 1871-1872 by R.G. Woodthrope, Hurst and Blackett Publishers, London 1873.
  2. History of the Relations of the Government with the Hill Tribes of the North-East Frontier by Alexander Mackenzie, Home Department Press Calcutta,1884.
  3. The Chin Hills by B.S. Carey and H.N. Tuck Volume I, Superintendent Government Printing Burma, Rangoon 1896.
  4. Being Mizo: Identity and Belonging in Northeast India by Joy L.K. Pachuau. Oxford University press, New Delhi 2014.
  5. Modern Practices in North East India edited by Lipokmar Dzuvicu and Manjeet Baruah, Routledge 2018.
  6. Mutua Bahadur, Manipurgi Nungda Lairik Mayek Eerambasing, part 2, Manipur Museum, Imphal, 2014, Genesis Printers and Publishers Pvt. LTd, Guwahati
  7. Clastres, Pierre, (1974) 1977. Society against the state. Oxford: Mole Editions, Basil Blackwell
  8. Fortes & E.E. Evans-Pritchard (Eds.), African Political Systems. London: Oxford University Press
  9. Kar, Bodhisattva, ‘Welsh’s Fallacy: Rereading the eighteen-century Ahom Crisis’, in Subhas Ranjan Chakraborty (eds), The Eighteen Century in South Asia, New Terrains, A Centennial Tribute to Pratul Chandra Gupta, The Asiatic Society, Kolkata. Pp. 129-167
  10. S. Lansing, ‘The Indianization of Bali’ (Journal of South Asian Studies, 14 (1983), 409-421
  11. Michael R. Dove, ‘The Agro ecological Mythology of the Javanese and the Political Economy of Indonesia’, Indonesia, volume. 39 (1985), 1-36
  12. Pratt, Saroj Nalini, The Cheitharon Kumpapa: The Court Chronicle of the Kings of Manipur, Vol 2 and 3, London: Routledge.


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Kenedy Mutum & Deepak Naorem are research scholars at Delhi University

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