Kut should not lose its sanctioned honour

Haoginlen Chongloi *

As the refrain goes

Akum kum’a kimang jing....
Liem u te khannou guol...
Ganpijangte Chanvang Kut...

A Golden Jubilee stone of "Chavang Anthah Lhun Kut" has been erected on the the 18th of this month at Ganpijang village, Sadar Hills. This indicated that Kut celebration had attained some height with its 50th year. The Chanvang Anthah Lhun Kut celebration which probably began in 1961 [for this village] in no time caught the attention of the whole of Manipur.

Thanks to our beloved forefathers who had contributed their might for the event. We fully owe the credit to them for their names are inscribed on the wall of every living heart everytime we celebrate. In fact, till 1978 Kut was just a matter of a village affair and do not gain serious attention. But 1978 was a turning point in the Kut history.

It was in the year 1978 that the Kut Committee of this village invited Pu Ashon and Pu Holkhomang Haokip the then Minister of State and Cabinet Minister respectively which ultimately popularised Kut to the whole of Manipur, if not the whole world. The Kut which traced its revival from this small village is no longer a village affair.

It begins to catch the eye of every individual who considered it a rejuvenation of our past glory. A large scale celebration was held for the first time at Jatamphai also known as Keithelmanbi Military Colony in Sadar Hills in the year 1979. Celebration from then spread like a wildfire in the whole of Manipur and begins to knock the door for recognition. To the relieve of our leaders November 1 was declared as a State holiday from early 90s.

Experiencing the present scenario

Against the expectation of our forefathers Kut of today hardly realises the true spirit of its celebration. This perhaps arises due to the love for western culture.

To be precise, modern-culture-influence-Kut no longer act as a tool to educate the young ones. Rather it turns to be a favourite time pass for half-clad-girls and full-baged-man. Kut in the real sense has lost its sanctioned honour.

Cultural dances and display of traditional riches as the main event are replaced by Miss Kut-contest which is something unusual when the real sense of Kut got defined. The villagers (the Gangpijang village) who claim to have celebrated Kut before the advent of Christianity do not found any inherited tradition of Beauty contest. So as September ends the tussle between pro-miss and anti-miss goes to take a heavy toll to the Kut fraternity.

While beauty contest is gaining popularity there emerged a band of boys and girls who oppose Kut at all cost. How thought-provoking is the minds of these young youths? The writer is also a strong proponent of this "school of thought". He holds this not merely of curiosity but after enough and thorough study of Kut celebration from time to time and from place to place. His finding urgently argues to present this write-up to all parents, loving brothers/sisters and to all friends.

Because, if this trend of Kut celebration continues a nation moves ahead to nowhere but to the straight end of Death. He said that he was once a victim of night programmes or Miss Kut. By then nobody (leaders, elders) was there to care about the future of thousand pillars.

After a five-year stint [in the building of western culture] he began to realise those useless pursuits of selecting beauties". Because beauties are celebrated at anytime and everyplace in the world and this post-harvest-festival in no way deserves to add silver on it. Besides Imphal, the writer had gone to celebrate Kut festival at Kanggui, Lamka, Saikul and Moreh and witnessed how people of different places experience and accept this post harvest festival.

He is bold to state the similar attitude every [or we] Kutters had—Kut is meant to have Beauty contest at night. People begin to feel Kut celebration "bored" without beauty contest. Apart from matured ones who feel Kut a boring subject without Beauty contest there, are children too. Young children nursed from such environment are bound to follow suit.

These young children when attained a considerable age will ultimately follow the wrong footsteps of what it is today. They are likely to consider Beauty contest to be a part and parcel of Kut celebration. How hard it could be to deal with this growing up children? Successive Kut Committee fails to address this "Viruses" that had crept into our society [or today].

It is a well known fact that symptoms are the last stage of a man infected by virus. Are we going to wait the symptoms totally disregarding the virus? The champions of this Group are neither leaders of frontal organisation nor a political leader. They are just students—a victim to what their parents of today enjoy?

It is the saddest state of affairs when a son teaches his educated father on morality. In one place where this writer celebrates Kut he was shocked to see young children aged between 13-17 holding bottles of B***. A vendor nearby happens to ask why they were so abnormal that evening. One of the boys abruptly replies: "We have no other time to enjoy like this, only Kut provides us. Our parents will say nothing". This is one example among thousands of our children. They are the unlucky ones as leaders on the stage never knew it.

Ways on and ways ahead

And to be calculative it is a well known fact that a large part of the sanctioned amount is spent on prizes of Beauty contests. For a wanderer [foreigner] who once got the sight of celebration will never accept it as a festival recognised on the ground of tradition.

This year the whole prizes of State level beauty contest is estimated to be around Rs 3 lakhs while every district level celebration is willing to throw away Rs 2 lakhs each. It is estimated that a sum total for the whole State could be approximately Rs 20 lakhs which perhaps shows Kuki people are by large Hedonistic. There are people who are unwilling to donate some bucks for a meaningful cause but donate in tens of thousands in beauty contest.

In these sense kut has great and rich patrons. But to the writer—20 lakhs are utilised just to satisfy drunkards and nocturnal life meaningful. It is painful on how useless sons and daughters of a man in power. But parents, as loving they are, fail to admit it. This is the reason behind why sons and daughters of a high profiled man became a liability to the family and the society as well. All this can be checked only when all educated parents take steps. Negligence if any on the part of the parents and leaders could be seen with the heightened responsibilities with retirement.

Off course 20 lakhs are just notes. And money is meant to be earned and spent. The essay is not just for the sake of volume spent but the volume, big or small, spent to pollute the young minds. Money is not the matter but matters what money does.

There are more meaningful things needed to be done. 20 lakhs can be spent in reviving our tradition. It can be used to produce 1000 or more expert players of Gosem, which the society is lacking; can be used to teach 10,000 or more boys and girls expert in Suhta-Laam (Bamboo dance). Moreover, it can be utilised as an award to promising personalities who could serve as a role model to the young ones.

If not, it can also be used in construction of library, war cemetery or a museum where these tribes can preserve their rich cultural heritage. This may sound strange but in practice, it will yield more result than beauty contest.

Never mind on the saying Kutters and drug users shared a single similar character. Because as in the case of drug takers whose "Dose" got increased every time they take, Kutters too increase their "Dose" in the form of incentives for miss kuts. The implication is that if the Dose [or prizes] is not increased you are not going to enjoy the "Kick" you expect.

This is the simple reason why Miss Kut prizes got increased by 50% in 2 years. If the trend continues, by 2020, Miss Kut prizes alone could never be less than Rs 15 lakhs and the total prizes for the whole contest could be approximately 35 lakhs (for State level only).

According to the present growth rate of 50% in 2 years, the whole State spending for Miss Kut by 2020 is something in terms of millions. The irony is that the amount is going to grow yet not the neart of the people. Some people are skeptical whether Kut be still accorded a post-harvest-festival or a state owned festival by 2020. We are lucky if it is accorded as a post-harvest-festival by 2020. And continue to cherish if kut is still celebrated by 2050.

When culture foreign to us begins to intrude, it is accepted that it already consolidate its position in some ways or the others. So, let's all be a part of it to take up the issue. It is a right time to adopt a model on the line of tradition. The present form lacks its real sense of protecting our identity.

A weeklong celebration, if not a day, may be proposed instead of a single night with plastic bottles everywhere. It will be the wisdom of the organising committees if pleasing Kutters change from "Ramp-walk" to offering traditional snacks and drinks to all.

As in the word of Napoleon, a word impossible is for fools. It is possible if reforming society through Kut is the priority. I, the writer, wish all Kutters, and more of its celebration committee, for grand success of KUT 2010.

Thanks once again to the KUT celebration committee, Moreh for adopting a model on the line of tradition. I hope a Paradigm-Shift with the next celebration for the whole of Manipur.


* Haoginlen Chongloi wrote this article for The Sangai Express . The writer can be reached at lienchongloi(at)gmail(dot)com
This article was webcasted on October 26 2010.

* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.

  • Teinem Luira Phanit @Ukhrul #1 : Gallery
  • PM Narendra Modi @Imphal #1 : Gallery
  • Candle Light for Pravish @Delhi: Gallery
  • RTE taunts Kamuching: Mapithel Dam
  • Please dont become slave to any holy book
  • Pravish's Parents meet HM Rajnath Singh
  • Assam Rifles celebrates Cheiraoba
  • Job requirements @SKY Hospital
  • Nursing opportunity across Europe
  • The Killing Fields :: News Timeline
  • Education: addressing the core issue
  • Call to amend the Army Act
  • MoUs inked to boost tourism in NE
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba Chingkaba #1: Gallery
  • Yaoshang Sports @Kakwa: Gallery
  • Human right intimidated by SF: Amnesty Intl
  • Bikers rally to spread awareness on Cancer
  • TB survivor resolves to make TB-free ..
  • State Level World Kidney Day
  • Course in Comparative Literature at NEHU
  • Candle Light at DU for Pravish Chanam
  • PS issue stands as litmus test for CM
  • Cheiraoba Chak Katpa #1 : Gallery
  • Premier League coaches train : Gallery
  • Culturals @ Republic Day #3 : Gallery
  • Draft Asian Declaration: right to justice #4
  • Radhakumar's Atoppa Sansar Amada #2
  • Prevention of cruelty to trees
  • Premier League coach train NE participant
  • GoI may sign agreement without NSCN(K)
  • Manipur celebrates New Year with gaiety
  • Zeliang denies involvement in terror funding
  • Shopping: Sajibu Nongma Panba #1: Gallery
  • Stall @Science Congress, MU #1: Gallery
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba (Meitei New Year)
  • Saving Nambul: Convergence of view
  • Job @ PR Enterprises, Khurai
  • National Institute for Locomotor Disabilities
  • Seminar on 'Conflicts in South Asia'
  • Luck matters; but not always
  • On completing one year in office
  • Spectacle distribution at Loktak Station
  • DGAR visits Manipur on his farewell visit
  • PM at Science Congress @MU #1: Gallery
  • Yaoshang Water & color #3: Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • A tribute to Stephen Hawking
  • Draft Asian Declaration: right to justice #3
  • Effect of a Sleepless Night :: Peom
  • Psychology at MIT School of Vedic Sciences
  • So near yet so far
  • Naga CSOs walking with JCILPS
  • Vegetables grown @Thanga #1: Gallery
  • Yaoshang Fancy Dress Contest: Gallery
  • Yaoshang Sport @Khagempalli #2: Gallery
  • Truth of Life :: Poem
  • Celebration of womanhood
  • HQ IGAR (S) celebrates 15th Raising Day
  • Jet Airways for more flights for NE
  • Publicity doing good, Garbage filth continue
  • Other issue overriding education: Class XII
  • Wortam: The Rising Young Mashangva
  • Eidi Ethantani by Eyoom :: Review
  • OMCT : UA on harassment of Ranjeeta
  • Mass destruction of opium poppy cultivation
  • Career options in printing press
  • IBSD launches hi-tech facility for farmers
  • Bangalore Yaoshang - Cheiraoba Thabal
  • Quality over quantity
  • What will the PM have to say ?
  • Zeliang gets fresh summon from NIA
  • Lui-Ngai-Ni @Longmai (TML) #4 : Gallery
  • Nengneingah, Lungkhambou :: eMing
  • Yaoshang Water & color #2: Gallery
  • Draft Asian Declaration: right to justice #2
  • BJP led Govt, not flunk in first year
  • Demand handing of Pravish case to CBI
  • PDA Govt claims false credit: NPF
  • Feminism & Path to Women's Liberation
  • Word of caution from Ibobi: BJP to listen
  • Yaoshang Cooking Contest #2 : Gallery
  • Yaoshang Mei Loukhatpa #4 : Gallery
  • Radhakumar's Atoppa Sansar Amada #1
  • Nigol :: Poem
  • List of Portfolios : Nagaland Govt
  • Clarify: Report of Zeliang summoned by NIA
  • Academic Programs offered by PHFI
  • Cong speaks: Changes expected in future
  • One year under the BJP: Significant but..
  • Students @ Class X Exam #2 : Gallery
  • Yaoshang Sport @Khongman: Gallery
  • Draft Asian Declaration: right to justice #1
  • Cry Of A Dying River...21 :: Peom
  • Manipur-Nagaland border disputes
  • Not a word on beauty on Women's Day
  • Women Religious Tour reaches New Delhi
  • Yaoshang Mei Loukhatpa #3 : Gallery
  • Chirom Indira- Nari Puraskar Award: Gallery
  • Human Rights Defender intimidated by Army
  • Rooftop Solar Power Plants: Gallery
  • Home stay for nature tourism in Manipur
  • Moodle: A learning management system
  • You can't stop small newspapers ...
  • BJP show in NE State: The backroom boys
  • Moldhin Chan: A Thado-Kuki Folktale #2
  • Yaoshang Nakatheng Chatpa #2 : Gallery
  • Mapithel Dam, Thoubal River & Tumukhong
  • Yaoshang Mei Loukhatpa #2 : Gallery
  • Time for "Nokphade" to go global
  • Campaign on International Women's Day
  • War between Left & Right has begun
  • Poppy plantation, destruction & missing link
  • Yaoshang Halankar #1 : Gallery
  • Yaoshang Water & color #1: Gallery
  • Harassment of Ranjeeta (HRA) by Army
  • Women's positions need to change
  • The Weeds :: Poem
  • We now know gold was created in space
  • Issues of women's rights should be priority
  • Protection of paddy land Act
  • Thabal Chongba @Khurai : Gallery
  • Bor-keina race @Yaoshang Fest : Gallery
  • Front Page Photo 2018 #1: Gallery
  • Tanushree @Elecrama Startup Award: Vote
  • Indian Science Congress in MU: Act East?
  • Fulbright 'pathways' for college leaving class
  • Job @ St. Stone Medical Devices
  • Army jawan martyred in Bongjai IED blast
  • National Integration Tour for Women
  • AR conduct Yaoshang sport festival
  • Condemns rising vendetta politics in NE
  • Yaoshang Sport - Marathon #1: Gallery
  • Yaoshang Sport @Keishampat #2: Gallery
  • NERIST Director post vacant since 2014
  • Dynamic Startup 3.0 at MIMS, MU
  • NDPP Legislature 1st Meeting at Kohima
  • 8th Theatre Olympics at Guwahati
  • Yaoshang Cooking Contest #1 : Gallery
  • Yaoshang Sport @Keishampat #1: Gallery
  • Sentinel Cup Equestrian #5 : Gallery
  • Translating inclusion into seclusion is..
  • Condemns land acquisition of muslim
  • News erroneously portraying Zeliang
  • Report: Shillong Lajong vs East Bengal
  • Yaoshang Sport @Khagempalli #1: Gallery
  • LGBTQ Yaoshang Sports Meet #1 : Gallery
  • M. Shenbangpu : Akademi Award 2014
  • Tribe: A concept in a state of crisis
  • Neiphiu's NDPP-BJP alliance stakes claim
  • Digital footprints: Blueprints for detection
  • Rio refutes news about 'Naga Peace'
  • Yaoshang Mei Loukhatpa #1 : Gallery
  • Yaoshang Nakatheng Chatpa #1 : Gallery
  • Yaoshang with Governor : Gallery
  • Black holes that are neither holes nor black
  • Lingaraja Temple- Lord of Three Worlds
  • Study helps hill student make up lost day
  • Yaoshang Mei Thaba : Gallery
  • Saroi Khangba #3 : Gallery
  • Chirom Indira: Highest Civilian Honour
  • Rejoinder to "MCPCR in dire straits"
  • Poppy destruction: The new norm ?
  • Stop harassment of Urikhimbham
  • Sadar Hills District Demand :: Timeline
  • Understanding the origin & essence
  • Call to reduce Yaoshang days: Make it 3
  • 8th AMWJU Sports Meet : Gallery
  • March Calendar for Year 2018 :: Tools
  • Yaoshang Thabalgi Sen Khaiba #2 : Gallery
  • Stop this shaming of menstruation
  • Yaoshang Greetings from BJP Manipur
  • Self-conscious manhood: Find true self
  • Parl Secy: To be or not to be ?
  • Holi colours can cause side-effects
  • Equality matters
  • Creating nuisance on the roads
  • Lui-Ngai-Ni @Longmai (TML) #3 : Gallery
  • Cultural @ Republic Day #2 : Gallery
  • Nonsense is Sense : Guv's attention invited
  • Protection of Human Rights: Resolution
  • Protection of Human Right Defender: Meet
  • Mapithel dam chapter before NGT
  • GOC 3 corps calls on the Governor
  • Gangnam style is better
  • From boycott call to verbal duel: NPF, BJP
  • Festival of Colours to Sports Festival
  • Food Processing Training @Oinam : Gallery
  • Time to ban malicious Moreh products
  • Cry of a Dying River - 20 : Poem
  • Training prog on Food Processing at Oinam
  • One year - now a doomsday ahead..
  • Thought on full five days of Yaoshang
  • Loree Kaju Luita Phanit #3 : Gallery
  • Yaoshang Thabalgi Sen Khaiba #1 : Gallery
  • Lui-Ngai-ni Token Celebration at Chadong
  • Sannaroisingee Numit 2018 : Gallery
  • Students @ Class X Exam #1 : Gallery
  • AoNna tEnaba :: Seireng
  • Thanga Keithel : Gallery
  • Indo-Naga Talks 2017 :: News Timeline
  • Temples of Manipur : Gallery
  • Singcha Wuya Won @Kamjong #5: Gallery
  • Recipients of Akademi Awards for 2014
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic