A farmer from Longsa village achieves ‘Mera Nuja’
Longsa (Mokokchung), Sep. 22 (EMN): “Mera Nuja,” an accomplishment bestowed upon a farmer that marks the entry into the wealthy elite in a village according the Ao Naga tradition, was hosted by a retired teacher at Longsa village in Mokokchung district on September 22.
A retired teacher Imkongtemjen Jamir (71) and his wife Yangernungla (67) informed that in order to achieve the honour they had performed another task called “Kimang Nuja” by inviting relatives to partake in the harvest by cultivating the biggest jhum field.
“I have completed that task 25 years ago, and today I have achieved the final task “Mera Nuja” to leave a legacy of hard work and display of wealth which brings honour and respect. This task was meant to challenge the upcoming generations to inculcate and uphold the rich heritage of our forefathers and to be hard working farmers,” Jamir said.
It may be noted here that such practices have become rare among the Ao community today. However, Longsa being one of the revered villages, which still uphold its custom and tradition rigidly, has kept the practice alive. There are more than ten farmers in Longsa village today, who have achieved the task and entered into the wealthy elite.
It may be recalled that the last farmer to host “Mera Nuja” was in 2013. After a gap of seven years, Imkongtemjen Jamir, who is also the head GB of Longsa, has achieved the honour.
Jamir, who is conversant with Ao customs and practices, stated that while hosting the “Mera Nuja” all the villagers are invited to partake in the harvest along with a feast. It was on such occasion, the clan’s men and women would sing songs for bringing honour and pride to the clan and his family.
The harvest should be done on that day itself, he added.
“It is customary to give meat to every person, who partakes in his harvest,” he said. Jamir informed that he had cultivated more than five acres of jhum land and sowed 10 tins of rice seed without use of pesticides, which yielded him approximately 12,000 kg of rice this year.
It is expected that the harvest could be the highest ever to be achieved by a lone farmer in Mokokchung district till date.
The septuagenarian stated that after retirement from government service, he had dedicated 25 years in jhum cultivation in order to teach the youngsters to be self-sufficient instead of depending on a few kg of government relief rice every month.