The Lotha Tokhu Emong festival @ Shillong, 2011

User Rating:  / 0

The Lotha Tokhu Emong festival @ Shillong, 2011

The Kyong Ekhae Ekhung Shillong joins the rest of the Kyong (Lotha) Naga community in celebrating the “Tokhü Emong” festival on the 7th of November 2011 at Naga Community complex,Nagaland House, Shillong. The Lotha Tokhü Emong was celebrated with Mr. C. Pankathung Tsanglao, Zonal Director, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan,Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Govt. of India,as the chief quest.

In his speech, he urged the younger generations to utilize their precious youth judiciously and be responsible in creating abetter & progressive society. He also stressed on the need to preserve, uphold and maintain the cultural values of our forefathers’ such as honesty,generosity and most importantly the culture of hard work that has been an integral part of theLothas passed down for generations from our ancestors. The celebration was attended by a host of dignitaries from the other Naga communities along with well wishers and friends of the Kyong. It culminated in the evening with a Grand Feast hosted by the Kyong Community.

The festival of the Kyong (Lotha) community,Tokhü Emong is the harvest festival of the Kyong(Lotha). With the harvest done and the granaries full, the people now take a respite from the toil and sweat and settle down to enjoy the fruits of one’s hard labour. This celebration marks an end of one full year of their hard work and toil. This festival signifies a time for forgiveness, strengthening the bond and extending new friendships both within and outside the community. Tokhü Emong is celebrated in the 1st week of November every year and it stretches over to 9 days. Earlier, no particular date was fixed. However, in order to carve unity and uniformity among the ranges,Kyong (Lotha) elders decided to celebrate it on a fixed date - the 7th November, every year. During this festival, the entire village takes part in the celebration. Every household has food and drink prepared for the feast. Friends, families, neighbors are invited to each other’s house and this continues for days. The main features of the feast are community songs, dances, feast, fun and frolic.Everyone attires themselves in their beautiful traditional dresses and costumes according to their social status. There is an air of gaiety and light heartedness everywhere. Gifts of food and drinks are exchanged during the festival. Among friends, the amount of cooked meat given denotes the depth of friendship and ties.

This festival also provides the occasion to offer prayers for the departed souls. The family that has lost members during the year performs his/her last rites. Young couples engaged during the year are happily married after Tokhü, it is also the time for renovating the village gate, cleaning wells and repairing houses. Amongst all this the most beautiful aspect of this festival is that past errors are forgiven, new ties are formed and bondsof closer intimacy are created and above all it’s a time for offering praises to God for the bountiful blessings throughout the year and praying for a more prosperous year ahead.

This premier festival of the Kyong (Lotha), the “Tokhü Emong” is celebrated everywhere, especially the student communities pursuing their studies in the major cities of the country. But,most prominently the Tokhu Emong is celebrated every year at Wokha District , inhabited mostly by the Kyongs. Wokha District is situated 80 km from Nagaland’s capital Kohima towards the North-West. If one goes from Dimapur, it will take around five and half hours to reach Wokha. The best way of reaching Wokha is to take local taxis, availableon a regular basis from both Dimapur and Kohima.

The best season for visiting Wokha is in November, which is also a time for celebration of the aforesaid festival. Getting a chance to visit Wokha during this time, will not only get you the real taste of the Tokhü Emong celebration but you will also experience the way of life and the nature of the Kyong as an individual and as a community. Hospitality, generosity and kind-heartedness which holds a common feature in the lives of the Kyongs, is shown and exhibited during this festive season. Anybody who visits Wokha and gets a chance to interact with the kyong will always carry a lasting memory of good times that they spent with them and will fill their heart with this amazing experience which is something to cherish in life.

Renjamo p. Ezung

Add comment

Security code