TODAY -

The history of Anals in the context of ethnic violence

L Wolring *

A traditional Anal Dance presented by 'The Anal Lenruwl Taangpi, Imphal' on Oct 19, 2007 at Kuki inn, Imphal
A traditional Anal Dance presented by "The Anal Lenruwl Taangpi, Imphal" on Oct 19, 2007 at Kuki inn, Imphal
Pix : Jinendra Maibam



The Anals were first settlers of Chandel District since BC. The historical ethnic violence prevailing today in Manipur state is the same condition as it was done in 18th century. The Kukis came to Manipur in A.D. 1840 and reached Khangbarol village in Chandel District in 1854 AD and they have killed many innocent Anals in their attempt to occupy the Anal land as they repeatedly do that at the present situation. The Churachandpur District is also the original land of "Hmar" or "Pakan". Most of the Shingphos of Manipur have surrendered to the Kukis. Their names are ending with "Te" like – Paite, Ralte, Zoute, Simte, Sukte, Gangte, Mate and Baite etc.

THE "ANAL" IS NEITHER OLD KUKI NOR NEW KUKI

Sir Alexander Mackenzie says in his book (The North East Frontier of India), pp. 83 & 146 that the Old Kukis were reported in 1853 to be four clans, viz., Khelema, Ranthai, Bete and Lamkron. The New Kukis (of 1851-52) were of three tribes – Changsen, Thado and Shingshon. They inhabited "Kuki Country", a portion of the Barail mountains which is one side of the head-waters of the Lanting and Dhansiri take their rise and go off towards the west and north. And on the otherside, Chuline, Makho and Jhiri Rivers flow towards east and south, a tangled mass of forest-clad hills comparatively low ridges thrown off from the present range upon which the broad conical peaks of Angoolo and Laishang rise up nearly 7,000 feet above the sea level. It helped us to understand that the Anal is neither reported to be Old Kuki or New Kuki even in Kuki country.

In Manipur, a god of waters (Sea King) appeared in the form of Python-man called Wangparel who married an Anal-woman WL. Shanghra of Anal Khullen village in A.D. 15 and to whom a male child was born and he became the first King of Manipur (A.D. 33-154). The name of the said King was called "Nongda Lairen Pakhangba". The word "Lairen" or "Python" is simply interpreted in Sanskrit language as "Nag or Naga or Snake". The Anals of Manipur are not real snakes but the Snake King ruled over them and converted all the Anals to the Naga tribe. This historical event proves that the Anal became Naga more than one thousand years ahead before the arrival of the Kukis in Manipur.

According to Shri L. Joychandra Singh in his book "The Lost Kingdom (Royal chronicles of Manipur) page 5 para I stated that in the year Sak 1479 (English Era 1557-58), King Chalamba conquered the Naga villages of Anan, Moirang, Thingnong and Engthi but died in 1484. His son King Mungyanba also conquered the Naga villages of Chakpa, Cherang, Sakang, Anan, Kabui, Shama, Thingnong, Engthi, Torang, Lanhang, hooitok and Tongal in Sak 1495 (English Era 1562-63). In the year Sak 1600 (English Era 1678-79) during the month of August, King Paikhomba attacked and conquered the villages of Anan and captured 30 men as captives. It was during the reign of Raja Charairongba arrested 23 Anan Nagas and convicted then in the year Sak 1626 (English Era 1704-05). These historical records of Ancient Manipur Kings proved that the Anals were original Nagas for thousand years before Kuki came to Manipur in 1840.

Some people who have read the book "The Lushai Kuki Clans" might have believed J. Shakespear's note, "Anal is one of the Old Kuki Clans of Manipur" is not an innate occurrence. But it is an attempt to absorb the Anal tribe into Kuki Group. The meaning of "old" proves that the Anal is an old tribe of the first settler. In the book "Report on the Eastern Frontier of British India" – by Capt. R. Beileau Antiquarian studies in Assam, Gauhati 1966, page no. 58, Para no. 60th – stating that "Anal is one of the tribes belonging to Nagas". And also G.A. Grierson states in his book "Linguistic Survey than the other dialects of the Kuki-Chin group.

Moreover, Capt. Rajendra Singh in his book "The Anals of Manipur" pp. 18 & 19 states that in the wake of Naga insurgency, the underground movement gathered momentum in the Anal area in 1961. The so-called 10th battalion of the Naga Army operated in the present Chandel District while the 11th Battalion was in Tangkhul area and the 12th Battalion was in Mao area. In this present situation, Chandel District is an area of NSCN activities as the area is occupied by the Anals and other Nagas from time immemorial.

R. Brown observed in his book "Statistical Account of the Native State of Manipur and Hill territory under its rules, 1893' that the stone (Patha) as landmark erected by the Anals can be found as standing even today on the hill sides in Burma, the Lushai hills, and South East Manipur. For example, Thanlon in Churachandpur District is the word derived from the Anal dialect. The word "Than" means grave and "Lon" means hill so the meaning of Thanlon" means "Grave-Hill". This proved that the Anals were the first settlers in Thanlon Sub-Division of Churachandpu District. And also, the Zote village situated just opposite of Aizawl in Mizoram is the old village of Anals as it has an evidence proof supported by one of Anal Folk songs which is still sung by Anal cultural dance group. It reminds us that the Anals were one of the major offshoots of the Indo-Mongoloid people. And their historic events have contributed greatly for day-to-day historic events of the Manipur State.

NON-RELATIONSHIP BY BLOOD

Non-relationship by blood means – not having co-existence between the Anal-Naga and the Kuki-Chin through all the bygone times. Referring to the history of Manipur at a glance, King Kiyamba was noted for military and civil administrative achievements. He made military expedition to the east in order to make eastern boundary of Manipur with annexation of Kabow valley to Manipur bounded by the Chindwin River. And also, he sent military arbitrators to the South-Front line of Manipur where inter-tribal feuds intensified the aggressive role of the Awa (Burmese) King.

At that time, there were seven features of tribal folks in the South-Front line of Manipur namely Pawite (Pwois), Sukte (Chhawhte), Ralte, Kelki, Lungting, Adang and Pholkong were recognized as "Anan Hao" and "Chaba thakpa nanba Anan Hao". The Kuki proverb says "Mikhou kaphatle mi anette kanet, yuongkhou kaphatle yuong anette kanet". It is meant that the Kuki community is not serious minded of dirt and cleanliness about eating and drinking in the olden days. These two groups were fighting each other through all the bygone times. Today, their names are changed to the Kuki-Chin and the Anal-Naga.

The Anal Naga people are first settlers of Chandel District and their brethren namely Maring, Lamkang, Moyon, Monshang, Tarao and Chothe tribes are also first settlers of Chandel District.

May I take this opportunity to appeal to my brethren Nagas and Kukis in Chandel and Manipur to remember that the world today is troubled. People everywhere are seeking the solution to their problems and longing to know what is the real meaning of life and the destiny to which it leads. The world ever remains as a big house of sickness, suffering and death. Fear, hatred and distrust within the hearts of every mankind. Earthquakes, famines and disaster multiply on every hand. Despair grips the hearts of millions. Leaders of men labour in confusion, disorder and bewilderment. Despite of all the religious, social and governmental organizations for the welfare and security of people in this present world, we still have sin, sorrow, poverty and woe. We could not buy a friend, character, peace of mind, a clear conscience, or a sense of eternity.

In a hundred ways man dies by the machines and weapons of his own invention. Thousand perish by the accidents. The time has come when a deceived person believes that he is right when he is wrong, or thinks a thing is wrong when it is right. Satan is the master of such trickery and deception. It seems there is no security everywhere in this present world. The whole world lieth in wickedness – 1 John 5:19. Jesus Christ was betrayed by one of His own disciples. The deposed Iraqi president Saddam Hussain was betrayed by none other than one of the members of his families and was captured without firing even a single shot. It is because of love of big prize money for the head of Saddam. Missionary Paul said, the love of money is the root of all evils but according to the new gospel, love of money is the very root of all success.

God said, "Nevertheless I have this against you that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place unless you repent." – Rev. 2:4-5. Jesus said, "Thou shall love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself." Matthew 22:37-39.

As we professed as Christians or followers of Christ and became as a neighbor, let us adjust ourselves as neighbours and respect each other's original history, rights of land and peaceful way of life. Let the love of God be within our heart and house. Joshua said, "Choose you this day whom ye will serve… but as for me and my house, we will serve Lord." – Joshua 24:15. Let us all join Joshua to serve the Lord and live peacefully.

Lastly, in the conflict between good and evil, between love and sin, between Christ and Satan, we are all involved. The present feelings of our human heart for just livelihood are not a safe guide in taking decision to determine our destiny. In my conclusion, though our present life is full of pride, arrogance and rebellion, God is still lovingly, tenderly and patiently speaking to us:

Look unto me and be ye saved – Isaiah 45:22

Come unto me, I will give you rest – Matthew 11:28

I am extending my special gratitude to Dr. Mono T Inbung of Chakpikarong Khupi, Chandel District, Manipur for guiding me, Mr. S. Wurngam, Former CEO, Chandel District Council for providing valuable book in preparation of this brief history.


* L Wolring wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was posted on December 30, 2012 and updated on Dec 31 with a date correction for 1854 AD.

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