LONGDING- Nginu Village situated in the Longding district of Arunachal Pradesh, is ready to celebrate Khakamgai Oriah.
Khakamgai Oriah is a prominent festival deeply rooted in the history of Nginu Village, it is a celebration of unity and tradition.
“Khakamgai” is an annual event that holds significant cultural and historical importance.
This festival occurs every year from October 12th to 14th, spans three days of vibrant celebrations with rituals.
The festival will commence with “Gangto,” the first day dedicated to sacrificial prayers with the symbolic act of sacrificing a Mithun. During this day, families come together to perform the ritual of “Haisah,” where two or more families jointly sacrifice a Mithun and share the meat. The surplus meat is prepared for a communal dinner, fostering a sense of togetherness.
the second day, known as “Lawdong” a pivotal ritual called ” Khu-lah” takes place where Young boys on the cusp of adolescence seek blessings from the eldest man in their respective “Paa” (Morong) to mark their transition into adulthood after which, they participate in the joyous beating of the “kham,” in tune (the longest musical instrument drum) alongside seniors and older men in a symbolic gesture of their newfound maturity, these boys visit the homes of young girls in the community, strengthening social bonds.
The culminating day, “Khakamgai,” is the centerpiece of the festival which is also the final day.
On this day, community members exchange bamboo rice beer, meat, and extend invitations to one another symbolising goodwill and camaraderie. It is a day filled with jubilation as relatives and friends come together to celebrate and feast.
As the sun sets on the 14th, representatives from the seven Morongs (Colonies), led by Chingja Colony, gather at Howchong (General Ground) to pay homage to nature, honour their ancestors, and seek blessings through folk dance,firing of local guns, and traditional songs (tai). This ritualistic gathering underscores the village’s deep connection to its natural surroundings.
Khakamgai Oriah has been celebrated since time immemorial, signifying the village’s reverence for nature’s blessings, particularly the Sathaw (White Local Paddy), and a hopeful outlook toward the future. This festival serves as a testament to the rich cultural heritage and unity that thrives within Nginu Village.
Writer- Pangkhang Pansa is a LLB Student and resident of Nginu Village