TODAY -

Chakaan Gaan-Ngai : The living and biggest ritual festival
- Part 2 -

Chaoba Kamson *

Gaan-Ngai celebration at Keishamthong Kabui Khul, Imphal :: 5th January 2015
Gaan-Ngai celebration at Keishamthong Kabui Khul, Imphal :: 5th January 2015 :: Pix - Deepak Oinam



Gaan-Ngai makes Zeliangrong people cheer

When spring season comes all trees and plants sprout, when rainy season sets in, vegetables grow profoundly, flowers bloom abundantly likewise Zeliangrong people also feel happy when much awaited Chakaan Gaan-Ngai festival comes. Their minds fill joy and gaiety and their faces look cheerful as festival is a part of life in human society.

Preparation of Gaan-Ngai

Two or three months before the celebration of Gaan-Ngai, some boys of males dormitory will set out to the nearest jungle to search and cut the thin bamboos (Guu). The bamboos will be made to dry for making headgear (Guu-pikam) which will be used on the first day of Gaan-Ngai huai procession (Huaigammei). Besides, the boys will prepare and get ready Mhaigang and Mhailu (Dried wood and bamboo splint) for producing at sacred fire which will be used in cooking.

The village council (pei) will formally announce the coming of the Gaan-Ngai festival for making wine. Hearing it, the villagers will prepare arrangement for the festival. On the other side, the Males Dormitory performs an act of blowing of cow or buffalo or mithun's horn (Goichei Kapitmei) which signals harbinger of ChakaanGaan-Ngai at Male's Dormitory or Jumping Ground (Daanshaanpung) inviting all kinds of gods for participation and informing the villagers for necessary arrangement of the festival. This is called as heralding of Gaan-Ngai (Gaan-Shaanmei). Boys will first dig the jumping ground on this day. The villagers are informed by the village council to make soak germinated paddy (Nappok Thuntho) prepare to wine.

Girls are busy for weaving works for the festival while boys prepare headgears (pikam) and repair traditional drum. Boys and girls are in practice of dance and learn folk songs for singing competitions. Boys are busy beautifying the village with decoration. Girls are engaged on their house works in keeping it neat and clean. They pound wet rice for making rice beer. Those who are in service outside Manipur state and students who are studying beyond the state return home for celebration and enjoyment of the festival. So, everybody loves Gaan-Ngai and calls its name Chakaan Gaan-Ngai when Chakaan season approaches.

One day ahead of Gaan-Ngai

One day ahead of the festival a village old man will inform the villagers to get ready banana leaf and eatables for the festival. In the morning at Males and Girls' Dormitory, an act of checking of firewood called Thingtinmei is carried out. Each and every member of Males and Girls' Dormitories will bring a faggot of firewood (Mailamban akhat). Thereafter, a Huai procession starting from northern gate of the village will march to the Males Dormitory.

On reaching there, some firewood will be presented to the owner of Males' Dormitory. Then, the Males'Dormitory will bring out an earthen jar of rice beer (zoulai) followed by oblation of holy wine to Tingkao Ragwang and other gods. A little quantity of Tam and a glass of rice beer will be given first to the owner of Males' Dormitory as a courtesy.

The same procedure will also be done to the Girls' Dormitory. In the evening, boys will collect a ginger and an egg from every household of the village for ritual offering to northern and southern presiding deities.

Maintenance of Discipline

All the boys including head boys will assemble inside the house of Males' Dormitory. The Gaanpi will teach young boys to obey what the elders say, to maintain discipline among themselves to execute the works assigned to them. Any member who disobeys the orders of the elders or senior will be punished by beating a whip as per custom.

As practice and convention, all the boys will be beaten on this day compulsorily. If the young boys make a request by producing a bottle of wine not to beat them and assuring that they will definitely execute all necessary duties. If the assurance is satisfied then they may be exempted from this punishment.

The 1st day of the festival (Ngaigangmei)

The first day of the festival is called Ngaigangmei. First, a small hour in the day-break, a riutual will be performed at the abode of northern and southern village deiteis by an old man offering an egg and a piece of ginger invoking them not to cause any kind of untoward incidents during the festival. Then, the priest will offer holy wine to Tingkao Ragwang and lower realm gods. Therefore, boys will start beating drum which singnifies beginning of Gaan-Ngai festival.

Extraction of fresh fire

New fire is produced by the extraction of dried wood and bamboo splint on the first day of the festival at the Jumping Ground or at the individual house. If it is done at Jumping Ground, an elder will inform the villagers to come and collect the fresh fire which will be used in cooking. It is believed that if man eats the food cooked with the new fire, there will be a long life and prosperity of the coming year.

Sacrifice of pig

A big pig will be sacrificed as offering to Tingkao Ragwang and the spleen of the victim will be observed to find out the future omen. Then, holy wine locally called Gakpai Zou will be offered to Tingkao Ragwang and other lower realm gods. Then the grand feast is prepared at Males and Girls' Dormitories. After having cooked.

Ho-hoing known as Naplao-huai will be performed for dinner and followed by oblation of holy wine to Tingkao Ragwang and other gods. All the members of Males' Dormitory will first taste the curry of zeigan (curry of pig's internal organs cooked with blood) which is very important. Zeigam Tumei is equivalent to oath-taking.

Shouting of Huai

Shouting of huai is a kind of worship of Tingkao Ragwang. The philosophy of huai procession in the festival is to dispel evil spirits from the village.

Sports activities (i) The objective of shot-put competition on the first day of Gaan-Ngai is supposed to break the heavenly granary's door. The said granary is full of paddy. If the granary's door is broken, the paddy will leak out and spread everywhere. If the said paddy is used as paddy seed for sowing then a plenty of paddy will be harvested.

(ii) The purpose of long jump is to make the swelling earth kick up by the landing force of long-jump which is believed to be a sign of distribution of paddy to mankind. So, the objective of shot-put and long-jump is for successful cultivation and good harvest.

Hymns of Short-put

"We have dispelled evil spirits from the village by shouting huai and arrived now at jumping ground. We are about to carry out the act of shot-put competition. When we throw stone, Au. Haipou Tingkao Ragwang, let us throw stone like thread ball (Langdoi).

Hymns of Long Jump

"Today is the day of festival of our village, when the act of long-jump begins, Au. Haipou Tingkao Ragwang, let us jump like grasshopper (kah).

Greetings

After sports activities are over, a group of village elders divided into two to three, will go every household greeting the members to enjoy joyously the festival and warn them not to quarrel nor speak ill-words against each other during the festival. If there is any quarrel or fighting, the village authority will take a stern action against the offenders.

This message is called Shaopaak Thetmei in local dialect. Then boys and girls will spend dining together, indulge in merry making, entertain drinking, eating, dancing, joking, singing etc. They may arrange a programme of waving of sash (Pazeilaam). Some boys look after the village singing the village guarding songs the whole night.

To be continued...


* Chaoba Kamson wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The writer is General Secretary, Tingkao Ragwang Chapriak Phom, Assam, Manipur and Nagaland.
This article was posted on Janaury 25, 2016.


* 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 e-pao.net. 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.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Keibul Lamjao- Drama Fest #1: Gallery
  • Anti-economic blockade protest: Gallery
  • Sadar Hills Demand 2011-2017 : Timeline
  • Becoming a rights defender
  • Grave situation for people of Manipur
  • Kaladan: A sea gate for India's NE!
  • What meaning is there to life from Buddha
  • 45th Manipur Statehood Day
  • Kakching Lamkhai :: 360 View Panorama
  • Leiteng Changdamnaba: Gallery
  • Letter to PM Modi on UNC Blockade
  • Chakaan Gaan-Ngai, Zeliangrong fest #1
  • Election Code: Short Film Competition
  • The casuality of tie with suit
  • The Naked Reality :: Poem
  • Jobs at Ascend Institute, Lambulane
  • Students Admission in private school
  • Civil Engineer to be stationed in Manipur
  • Training & Rehearsal Programme on EVM
  • NE has potential to push medical systems
  • Film to be screened at Berlin film fest
  • The hopeless future
  • Khoupum Valley & Cave #3 : Gallery
  • Neroca FC kit distribution : Gallery
  • Gita-Govinda : Synopsis of Play
  • BJP vs Congress: Setting the right agenda
  • The Northeast migrants in Delhi #1
  • Economic blockade : Why it matters?
  • Intensifying Global Crisis & Conflict #3
  • EVM / VVPAT familiarization Campaign
  • Indo-Naga Talks 2017 :: News Timeline
  • Inadvertently strengthening Cong : Election
  • Timely action
  • USPA Vs Manipur : Women's Polo #1: Gallery
  • Combing operation @Thangal Bazar: Gallery
  • Gaan Ngai @ Namguilong #2: Gallery
  • Atonna, Chanaphul, Morungkham :: eMing
  • Kabuliwallah : Synopsis of Play
  • On MCSCCE-2016 : Open letter to MPSC
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
  • The Fruit :: Poem
  • Zeliang asked to step in
  • Ensuring Nagaland State Diversity Policy
  • Director of Education(S) : admission norms
  • Election Code : Facilities for Observers
  • Issuing invite to UNC for talks
  • Trekking to Dzukou Valley #1: Gallery
  • Keibul Lamjao - Play synopsis
  • This Way, That way or Highway
  • Significance of Gaan-Ngai festival #3
  • Bandhs and blockades of Manipur
  • A Boat on the River :: Poem
  • RIST talk 25: Dynamics of Deep Eutectics
  • Election Model Code : Requisition of Staff
  • General Body Meeting of CADA
  • Germany hosts 35 soccer players
  • LDFM likely to play key role
  • The Killing Fields :: News Timeline
  • Time to make AFSPA a poll issue
  • Politics in Manipur
  • Meiteilon Folk & Tangkhul duet : Ooba
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #3: Gallery
  • How to be unique among private schools
  • The measuring Tape :: Poem
  • Points On Election Manifesto in Manipur #4
  • HSE examination Schedule 2017
  • HSLC examination Schedule 2017
  • Election Code : Use of school Grounds
  • Public hearing on Child Rights- Postphoned
  • TSA DJ Celebration Committee Formed
  • Lecture : Democratic Transition in Burma
  • Mary Kom- needs to tackle insurgency
  • Group seeks global support
  • Not the time to pass the buck
  • Lamkhunu Na Chakkouba :: Funga Wari
  • Gaan Ngai @Moirangkhom #1: Gallery
  • Gaan Ngai @Ragailong #2: Gallery
  • Ever smiling Prof Gangmumei
  • Buddhism and politics #2
  • Election Model Code : Use of Loudspeakers
  • Election Model Code : Govt. Scheme
  • Interaction of President Of India
  • Mohammedan signs Reisangmei Vashum
  • Rs. 6.95 lakh cash in new notes seized
  • Dos and don'ts for the media
  • Sanamanbi Sanarei :: eRang Classic
  • Angkor Wat @Cambodia #3: Gallery
  • Kappu Ema Kapsi Penna Ngasidi : Poem
  • ESC for PG Course, MU- abnormal case
  • The old mental baggage
  • Buddhist connection of Hajo in Assam
  • Sadar Hills District Demand :: Articles
  • Women Support Centre launched in Delhi
  • Power of the commoners
  • Gaan Ngai @ Namguilong #1: Gallery
  • Chinglen Nongdrenkhomba #2: Gallery
  • Jangled all the way with Jiangam
  • 2nd Statehood Women Polo Tournament
  • Polo tour to protect rare breed of pony
  • What do Nagas think about Nagas?
  • RIST talk 24: Cosmological Observations
  • Appointment of Director of IGNTU-RCM
  • Alleged Torture of Gaidon Kamei
  • Non-indigenous Nagas filing nominations
  • Key issues missing in run up to polls
  • Assumption but it is possible
  • Lamlong Keithel #5 : Gallery
  • Sonia Nepram bags Young Achiever Award
  • Human Rights in India: UN periodic review III
  • Indian NGOs slam India's human rights
  • God Loves You All The More :: Poem
  • My maiden sojourn of enchanting NE #2
  • Summary Of Electoral Rolls Released
  • Jobs Opening @ Virgo Enterprise
  • Jobs Opening @ Taibang Sintha
  • Questioning the silence of Delhi
  • Political pandemonium: opportunity ...
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #2: Gallery
  • Puthiba Haraoba @Tripura : Gallery
  • Prof Irabanta in the galaxy of Aerobiologist
  • The Naga question
  • Judicious Selection Of Candidates
  • Your financial health
  • Youth Street News 2017 Calendar released
  • Voter Awareness Activities: 11 MLA Election
  • Rijiju blames Manipur govt for eco-blockade
  • Thang-ta fights for recognition
  • Incomplete idea of India as a Nation
  • Unfulfilled promises Who should be blamed
  • Gaan Ngai @ Ragailong #1: Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Significance of Gaan-Ngai festival #1
  • Milk hygiene practice in India
  • Goa International Youth Football Fest
  • 4th WIM Cup 2016 at Goa
  • Fresh impetus to Naga talks
  • Pulling up sleeves before election
  • The public: more than mere numbers
  • Reinterpreting Anglo-Kuki War, 1917-1920
  • Chinglen Nongdrenkhomba #1: Gallery
  • Gaan-Ngai: Zeliangrong Fest :: Flash
  • Gaan-Ngai: Zeliangrong Festival :: Articles
  • Blockade and bandh bonanzas
  • Tangkhul Welfare Society Mumbai - Stmt
  • Model Code of Conduct: Discretionary Fund
  • Binalakshmi Nepram meets Thant Myint-U
  • From goods trucks to passenger buses
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #1: Gallery
  • A Hymn for Goddess Emoinu
  • All about Gaan-Ngai : Gangmumei Kamei
  • Follow The Code And Go To Vote :: Poem
  • State level Manipuri Pony Show
  • Model Code of Conduct : Republic Day
  • Verdict of the Court says guilty
  • Khoupum Valley & Cave #1 : Gallery
  • Manipur Press Club day : Gallery
  • Prof. Gangmumei Kamei: Personal Tribute
  • Thought on current situation in Manipur
  • My maiden sojourn of enchanting NE #1
  • My New Year :: Poem
  • Transformation of govt into governance #3
  • Fresh proposal for tripartite talk
  • Discussion on Manipur today & tomorrow
  • Painting Competition - Voters Day
  • Requisites for a fresh start
  • Prof Gangmumei Kamei Funeral: Gallery
  • Points On Election Manifesto in Manipur #1
  • Clean Rolls For Fair Poll : Poem
  • Can BJP deny Okram Ibobi a 4th term
  • Every day is a New Year's day
  • Foundation Day of Manipur Press Club
  • PG Course in Plastic Surgery at Shija
  • Election Expenditure monitoring measure
  • Board for issue of Disability Certificate
  • ILP System Demand- Photos from 2012
  • Workshop on Digital Payment Systems
  • KNLF merges with UKLF
  • Fmr. Minister son convicted in murder case
  • Priyanka Rajkumari #2 (Photos) :: eRang
  • Khunung Eeshei/ Ema Emoinu #3 : Radio
  • New Year picnic @Sekmai #2: Gallery
  • Daylight Robbery In Manipur
  • Ibobi lost control over his own creation
  • NABH certifies Shija Hospitals
  • CEO Notice on Poll Model Code of Conduct
  • Promotion of payment through Digital mean
  • Condolence for Prof Gangumei Kamei
  • Highway siege hits fuel prices
  • Parties spar over crisis
  • Recalling the Oja in Prof Kamei
  • When election subsides major issues
  • Pana Polo Exhibition #2: Gallery
  • Assembly Election : Poll Schedule
  • Wild edible plants & indigenous fruits
  • Possible reasons for creation of new district
  • Who says there is no hope for Manipur
  • New Year message for 2017
  • Shillong Lajong FC : Complete Team List
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand : Timeline
  • New Year picnic @Singda : Gallery
  • Diana Khumanthem- IAS candidate: Gallery
  • UNC prez judicial custody [Jan 2]: Gallery
  • 'Goals for Girls' USA visited Andro Team
  • New Year picnic @Sekmai #1: Gallery
  • Online 2017 Manipuri Calendar :: Tools
  • A brand new year! :: Poem
  • Featured Front Page Photo for 2016 #6
  • New Year 2017 eve -Shopping: Gallery
  • Manipuri Calendar for 2017 : Download
  • Maphou Dam @ Mapithel Hills : Gallery
  • Miss Manipur 2016 #4 : Gallery
  • Ethoi Oinam - Actress Profile :: eRang
  • Journalists protest [Dec 27] : Gallery
  • 60th CC Meet Final #2 : Gallery
  • Manipur Sangai Festival : Photos from 2012
  • Moirangthem Rajen : Akademi Award
  • Landscape of Manipur #3: Wallpaper
  • 60th CC Meet Semifinal #2 : Gallery
  • 60th CC Meet Semifinal #1 : Gallery
  • Police personnel ambushed : Gallery
  • Honour to police killed : Gallery
  • Imas from Nupi Lan: Gallery
  • Diana Khumanthem (IAS candidate)
  • Manipur Phone Directory :: e-pao Tools
  • SPONSORED ADS