Documenting the cultural practices of the Hrangkhol tribe of Barrak valley, Assam
Assam is the face of North-eastern India and its cultural identity. All states of North-eastern India – Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Meghalaya and Tripura – are connected with this state. It is connected with the neighbouring states with nature, bio-cultural diversity, ethnic identity, linguistic similarity, dress pattern and cuisines. The study area, Dima Hasao (previously known as North Cachar Hills) was taken as the base area for writing brief reports about four Tribes: Hrangkhols, Zemes (Naga), Dimasas and Hmars. This area has been chosen because 68.3 % of its population is the Tribal population – the highest percentage in the state of Assam. Secondly, it is an isolated and difficult area where usually the Government officials and in many cases scholars also do not want to come and explore the dimensions of nature and culture.
The Hrangkhols belong to the Kuki Chain. They are few in number in the Dima Haso district and are known for their distinct cultural identity and consolidation. Though almost all of them are now converted to the Christianity, they still maintain the major rituals and dress patterns including the ornaments. They are proud to be associated with the Hrangkhol identity.