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ZOMITE’ KHUA MUH CIILNA (The First Zomi Exposure to the World) Gelh - Dr. G. K. Nang


Thu patna: 
Zogam pen Mikang kumpi in 1895 kum a kipanin hong uk uh hi. Kum 1914-1919 sung England leh Germany gam kido uh a, galpi khatna (First World War) kici hi. 1916 kumin London khuapi-ah gal vaihawm pawl (War Committee) thukimna bangin Kuli (Labor Corps) lak ding thukim uh hi. Tua pen gal sung a Kuli nasem ding ci lehang kitel pen ding hi. Tua hun lai-in Mikang kumpite in gam tampi uk (colonized) uh a, Mikang Kumpi gamah ni tum ngei lo hi kici liang hi. Egypt, Fiji, India, Malta, Mauritius, Seychelles, British West Indies, South Africa leh China gamte panin Kuli ding la uh hi. Egypt panin 100,000, India panin 21,000, South Africa panin 20,000 kila hi. China panin mi 50,000 la uh a, tua lakah 2000 bang si hi kici hi. Kawlgam pen India tawh kigawm hi a, Hindu, Shynteng, Khasi, Lusei, Meitei, Bihar, Orissa, Pathan, Bengali, Kumoan, leh Zomi zong la uh hi. Mikang kumpi in Zogam Ukpite tungah mi pia dingin a nget bangin Ukpite in nial ngam loin piak dingin thukim hi. 


Khamtung mi 3000 sung panin Zomi 1000 kila hi. A pai ding mite pen si dinga kipia ahi uh hi. Dahin kapin, innkuanpihte tawh khitui luangin a kimu nawn lo dingin kingaihsun uh a, sivui-in kivui-uh a, sa kigawh uh hi kici hi. Lawm ngaih neite ading bangin na diak ding hi. Mi tampi mah zong si takpi hi. Tua hun lai-in Zomite khuamuhna toi mahmah a, koimah puapial ngei lo, leitung dang a om cih zong thei lo uh hi. Zomite in Gunkhawm khang lamah mihing om nawn lo dingin ngaihsun uh a, Mizote in Silchar khang siahah mihing om nawn lo dingin ngaihsun hi kici hi. Kumpite in a paite pen Dolsing inn leh Zanglo piak ding ci-in kamciam bawl uh hi. Tedimah tawlkhat kisinna a neih khit uh ciangin inn lamah ciahkik sakin, Tedimah kituahkik uh hi. 

Zogam panin Capt. Fowler makaihna tawh kum 1917 May 27 ni-in Gunkhawm paisuk uh a, tua panin meileeng tawh Zangkung tung uh hi. India panin khamtung mite zong Syhlet (Chittagong) zui-in Akyap tawnin Zangkung pai-in Zogam pana pai khamtung mite tawh kisutuah uh hi. Zangkung panin Teembawpi tawh dingkhia-in Kolkata, Mumbai, Eden, Suez Canal tawnin France (Piantit) gam Marseilles khua kum 1917 August 15 ni-in tung uh hi. Amau pen France leh Belgium gamgi-a om dingin kiseh a, kidona phual panin tai 25 bekin gamla hi. Nisimin galkidona thau kap leh thaupi kap san ziahziah mu den uh hi. A nasep ding uh pen galsunga a liamte tawm ding, galvan suah leh kaihkhop cihte ahi hi. India Company 61 leh 62 ci-in ciamteh uh hi. Laisiam lo uh ahih manin a min uh leh a omna gam uh savun khat tungah gelhin a ban uhah bulhsak uh hi. A min uh a kisap ciangin a thei lo zong om a, a omna gam uh leh khua zong a gen thei lo om hi kici hi. Pu Song Theu leh Pu Thawng Za Kai cihte in kamphen uh hi. Zomite in misan, mivom, mikangte tawh na sem khawm uh hi. Marseilles panin Meaulte-ah kisuan uh a, tua panin Fricourt Salvage, tua panin Abancourt leh Rouen tung uh hi. Rouen panin Marseilles ah kilehkikin Taranto panin inn lamah ciahkik uh hi.

Khua vot thuak zo lo leh dam lohna tuamtuam hangin mi 1000 lak panin 24 si a, France gama galkapte han (war cemetery) ah kivui uh hi. Hih a kivuina mun pen Marseilles khua hi dingin ki-um mawh hi. Hih han-ah India mi 1002 kivui hi ci-in kiciamteh hi. Tua a site pen Suan Thang, Zuan Pum, Kai Gin, Maha Peng, Gin Dam, Ngul Gin, Pau Pum, Son Neng, Thang Eng, Tut Lang, Tuang Pum, Vial Dam, Vum Dai, Gin Nang, Kam Nang, Go Kam, Sian Lut, Lang Za Khen, Kam Ngul, Tual Kim, Lun Kap, Khup Za Dal, Khoi Cin, Cin Khai cihte ahi uh hi.

Nasepna-ah kuh kalin, thahatin, thuman uh ahih manin Mikang kumpi King George V in London khuapi en dingin sam a, Capt. Fowler makaihna tawh Mang Pum, Thawng Za Kai, Song Theu, Kam Za Mang, Vung Za Kham, Thuam Pau, Vial Zen, Hau Za Nang, Hang Khaw Cin, leh Cin Kamte pai uh hi. Mikang pau a thei teng hi kha ding hi. Kum 1918 March 27 ni-in London khuapi sunga Kumpipa inn Buckingham Palace kici tung uh a, innpi sung teng etpihin, datsian (cinema) ensakin, uliante an nekhopna-ah kihelsak uh hi. Kumpi inn cing santali (duty) te pen khauh lua uh a, mit zong phia lo liang uh ahih manin milim kisa-in, milim lah mihing kisa hi ci uh hi. Zomi khat in zong santali (duty) ding khat a lim sa-in a khoih leh mihing ahih lam phawk pan hi kici hi. Kumpipa in “Haksatna khat peuh na tuak uh leh hong ko un, ahi thei bangin kong huh ding uh hi” ci-in Zomite tungah kamciam pia hi kici hi. Mikang galkap suak nuamte suak thei ci uh a, pawl khat in min pia-in tentan (training) zong nei uh hi. Ahi zongin inn lamah gal om cih a zak uh ciangin kuamah omsuak ngam loin hong ciahkhin leuleu uh hi. 

Hih Kuli lakna-ah Khalkha mite ut loin nial uh hi. Khalkha khua-ah galsim ding mi 5000 kikaikhawm uh a, kumpite lehdo uh hi. Khalkha leh Falam kikal lampi khaktan uh a, kumpite na do uh hi. Inn lamah kidona omin lo kho thei loin mipite haksa mahmah hi cih a zak uh ciangin ciah ding ngen uh a, an ngawl liangin a nget uh ciangin ciahsak uh hi. France gama Kuli dinga paite pen “Piantit Pai” kici a, “Piantit” pen Kawl pau hi a, France gam cihna hi. “France Gam Paite” cih ding hi. Lungleng khuangai-in a omna uh panin ciahkik ding pen kilawp lua mahmah uh ahih manin la phuak uh hi. 
a) Pian tui a gam lei aw e, sial zatam tuang a tunna,
b) Sial zatam pian tui ngak hen aw, I sau lam zong ta ni e.

Galkap taktak ahih loh uh hangin, galkapte mah bangin ki-uk a, gawtna kipia a, khasum zong kipia hi. Khasum pen mi khat in 10, 15, 20, 25 bang hi a, kam phente in 20, a site luang man 100, liamna tuakte 50 kipia hi. Zomite gamdang zinkhiat a khatveina hi a, a khua muh ciilna uh ahi hi. A na muhte uh vanleeng, teembaw, thaupi leh tuipi a muhte uh thupi sa-in gencim thei lo uh hi. A muh thute uh leh a tuah thute uh tangthu banging en belin nei uh hi. La zong tampi phuak uh hi. Khasum cih bang a kitheih cilna ahi hi. Hong ciah uh ciangin sum pua tek uh ahih manin kithupi ngaihsut mahmah a, nungak a deih peuhpeuh uh tenpih thei hi kici hi. Khua muhna hong kidang ahih manin Khristian a suah lawh zong tampi omin, Khristian hong khang tuam hi kici hi.

France gam pai a meetna 
  1. France gam paite hong ciah uh ciangin sum nei uh ahih manin a pai lote sangin nuntak nuam sa zaw uh hi. Leitung khua muhna bek hi loin sum thalawh ciilna zong ahi hi.
  2. Galpi khit ciangin nakpi takin Zogamah Khristiante khang hi. 1918 kumin Khristian 500 bek om a, Kum 1924 ciangin 4,046 pha ta uh hi. Khristian a tam zaw pen Tedim mite sung pan hi a, France gam paite hang hi kici hi.
  3. Zomite gal hang sa uh ahih manin Mikang kumpi in Zomite adingin galkap phuan uh a, “First Chin Battalion” kici 1921 kumin Kawlgamah kiphuan hi. Battalion thum dong kiphuan a, First, Second, Third Chin Rifles kici hi. Kawlgamah galkap kumpi a khan ciangin kiphiat kik hi
  4. France gam paite tung panin puansilh zia kithei ta hi. A puansilh uh pen Police puan tawh kibang khakhi puan, bombi sing, puan-ak bantawng, zian lukhu, puan khedap mawza leh ngalvial nei uh a, thupi kisa mahmah hi. Galpi khatna ma-in puan kisilh mel loin, pasalte in dialkaih tawh zum selin, numeite in puan them letmat li ding tawh a nuai lam sel a, a tung lam pen kai lihliah sak lel uh hi. Galpi khatna khit ciangin puansilh a kisap zia kithei ta hi.
A meet lohna
  1. France gam pai ding pen aana tawh kila hi a, ut lopipi mahin a pai uh ahi hi. A pai nuam lo Khalkha mite leh kumpite kidona-ah Khalkha mi 40 bang si-in khua 18 kihalsak hi. Hih pen “Anglo-Chin War” (1917) kici hi. Hih kidona hangin France gama Kuli nasem a om Zomite hong ciahkik uh hi.
  2. India lamah zong Manipur a om Kukite in France gam pai nuam loin nial uh a, kumpite lang pan uh ahih manin Mikang kumpi in galkap 100 sawlin simsak hi. Kukite in zong na do uh a, kum nih sung bang kido uh hi. Khua 86 kihalsakin, mi tampi kithat uh hi. Hih kidona pen “Anglo-Kuki War” (1917-1919) kici hi.
  3. Mikang kumpite in Zomi Kulite tungah a kamciam uh ahi Dolsing inn leh Zang lo pia lo hi. Capt. Fowler in a genna-ah Zomite in gal kidona a tawp dong sem zo loin gal a venh ma-in ciah uh ahih manin a kipia lo hi ci hi. 

Thukhupna: 
Khatvei Lusei nupi khat Kolkata pai hi. Vanleng tual pan a tuah khiat ciangin Kalate na tam mahmah hi. Pau dang thei lo ahih manin Lusei pau tawh hopih a, kua mah in thei lo hi. Nupi nu in zong “Mizo trawng pawh hre lo in va aa tak e” ci hi kici hi. Tua mah bangin Zomite in leitungah mi dang om ding cih zong a theih ma uh a France gam pai cih pen lamdang a sak ding mah uh hi. Niikten puansilh zong a silh nai lo minamte France gam pai cih mawk pen lamdang thu khat hi mawk hi. Nidangin sum kizang loin, van kilei ciangin van mah tawh kikhek cih danin kilei hi. Gan a lei nop uh ciangin buh seu tua zah, cih danin kilei uh hi. France gam paite hong ciah uh ciangin sum zatzia kithei ta hi. Puansialh zia a thei nai lote in puansilh ding ahih zia kiphawk ta hi. Nagate bang pen puan zong silh loin dialkaih bek mah tawh pai uh hi. Ahi zongin thatang hat uh ahih manin Mikang kumpite in pakta mahmah uh hi. Hih pen Zomite khuamuh ciilna hi a, “Uino mit keuh” a kicih mah bangin Zomite’ khuamuh ciilna ahi hi.


The First Zomi Exposure To The World

Gelh - Dr.  G. K. Nang

            The Zomis were first exposed to the world as labor corps during WWI (1914-1918). The recruitment for labor corps was launched by the War Committee in London in 1916. The recruitment of Labor Corps was on voluntary basis to the British government but it was compulsory recruitment by the order of the Chin Hills Superintendent to the chiefs to supply certain number of labor corps from their respective jurisdictions. They reluctantly joined the recruitment offering themselves to die in a foreign land and with no hope of returning alive. Indian Labor Corps included the following tribes: Hindu Mohammedans from the United Province, Shyntengs and other tribes from the Khasi Hills, the Lushais, the Nagas, the Manipuris, the Santals from Bihar and Orissa, the Pathans from the North-West Frontier, the Burmans and Chins, the Bengalis and Kumaons.

Out of 3,000 from the Chin Hills, 1,000 came from the Zomis of northern Chin Hills leaving Tedim on May 27, 1917 to Gunkhawm and proceeded to Yangon by train led by Capt. E.O. Fowler (Vum Kho Hau 1990:152). Those Zomis from India went to Syhlet in Chittagong, to Akyab and then to Yangon meeting their friends from the Chin Hills in Yangon. Leaving in a Ship from Yangon to Kolkata, Mumbai, Eden, Suez Canal the group reached Marseilles in France on Aug 15, 1917. Their position was on the border of France and Belgium about 25 miles away from the war zone. Their duty was to pick up the wounded, loading and unloading of military supplies. They worked with whites, blacks, Indians and Nagas (Gin Za Tuang 1973:43). They were in 61 & 62 (Burma) India Company. Their place of duty was started in Marseilles to Meaulte Farm, then to Fricourt–Salvage, moved from 3rd Army to Abancourt, then Rouen, and back to Marseilles until repatriation from Taranto.

Due to cold weather and illness 24 of 1,000 Zomis died. Suan Thang, Zuan Pum, Kai Gin, Maha Peng, Gin Dam, Ngul Gin, Pau Pum, Son Neng, Thang Eng, Tut Lang, Tuang Pum, Vial Dam, Vum Dai, Gin Nang, Kam Nang, Go Kam, Sian Lut, Lang Za Khen, Kam Ngul, Tual Kim, Lun Kap, Khup Za Dal, Khoi Cin, Cin Khai were buried in a foreign land in the war cemetery in France.

            Upon the invitation of King George V the following persons Mang Pum, Thawng Za Kai, Song Theu, Kam Za Mang, Vung Za Kham, Thuam Pau, Vial Zen, Hau Za Nang, Hang Khaw Cin and Cin Kam met the King led by Capt. E.O. Fowler on March 27, 1918 in Buckingham Palace, London (Gin Za Tuang 1973:43).

            They returned home after one and a half years in France due to the “native insurrection” at Haka in November of 1917. The Haka people who refused to send their men to France revolted against the British colonial rule. In 1917 they raised an army of 5,000 and sieged the Haka camp. They cut off the road between Falam and Haka. The relief column of the British party was attacked by the Haka party on their way to Haka in which there were thirty or forty casualties and 18 villages were burnt. This was called the “Anglo-Chin War” 1917-1919 which resulted in the withdrawal of the Labor Corps from France (Laura Hardin Carson 1925:226-231). On hearing the war at home the Zomi Labor Corps demanded for release. After a strong demand they were allowed to return to their homeland. It was known as “Piantit Pai” (A trip to France, Piantit–Burmese term for France). They expressed their excitement to return home in a song.
(a)  Pian tui a gam lei aw e, sial zatam tuang a tunna,
(b)  Sial zatam pian tui ngak hen aw, I sau lam zong ta ni e.
                             (Gin Za Tuang 1973:44)  
(a) Oh land of France, the land  where unending worries amounted,
(b) Let all worries remain with France as we found our way home again. 
                              (Translation is mine)

              They were impressed by the war, the planes, the ships and the guns. It was undoubtedly an immense exploration for the Zomi boys. They had endless tales of their experience and adventures. On their return they brought enough money to pay for the bride they want to marry. Their world view was completely changed and some even changed their belief to Christianity. It was the first exposure to the modern world for the Zomis after meeting with English King in London. The King praised the Zomi labor corps for their commendable service and told them that their good service would be remembered (Pau Za Gin 1972:4). There were positive and negative results of Labor Corps in France.

Positive results:
  1. Economically the people who went to France were better off than those who did not. They were not only exposed to the world but they earned money which was unknown in the past (Vumson 1986:134).
  2. It promotes Christian growth among the Zomis. In 1918 there were 500 Christians in the whole of Chin State and by 1926 the Christian population reached 4,046 and most of the Christians come from the Tedim area in the north (Lian Sakhong 2000:253).
  3. The British government had recruited the returnees from France into regular army to form the “First Chin Battalion” soon after WWI. The officers of the First Chin Battalion like Major Son Kho Lian (1962) and Lt.Col.E.K. Kim Ngin (1988) became prominent and influential leaders in the Zomi Baptist Convention (Lian Sakhong 2000:252-254).
  4. Modern dress has been introduced among the Zomi people as the Labor Corps returnees adopted short pant for the first time. Following this experience Zomis adopted western dress as more and more young Zomis joint military service (Gin Khan Khual 1998:57).


Negative results:
  1. E.O. Fowler did not fulfill his promise to grant each a house of teak and land of 25 acres on their return in Kalay valley saying that they did not fulfill their term of service. They came back on hearing the Chin revolt at home in 1918-1919 (Tonzang Jubilee Laibu 2004:103).
  2. In Indian Territory, the Kuki people in Manipur refused to send their men to France. As a result the British forces of 100 rifles were sent to subdue them. The Kukis defended themselves from the attacked. The combat took two years from later part of 1917 to 1919 in which 86 villages were burnt. It is known as “Anglo-Kuki War” 1917-11919 (Vumson 1986:135-137).


References.
  • Carson, Laura Hardin. 1927.  Pioneer Trails, Trials and Triumphs. New York: Baptist Board of  Education. Unpublished.
  • Gin, Pau Za. 1972.    “Tedim Gam Tangthu a Tomin” (Short History of Tedim Area). Universities, Rangoon Chin Literature and Culture Annual Magazine. Rangoon: Magazine Committee
  • Hau, Vum Kho.1990. History of the Zoumi Chin Race. Rept. (First print 1947). Edited by Tualchin Neihsial. Lamka, Manipur: Zougam Research Publications.
  • Khual, Gin Khan. 1998.“I Zo Ngeina Puante” (Zo Dress) in ZOLUS Journal, NO.3. Yangon: The Zomi Literature Upliftment Society.
  • Sakhong, Lian. 2000. Religion and Politics. Uppsala: Uppsala University.
  • Tonzang Jubilee Laibu. 2004. Ed. Hang Khan Pau. Tonzang: Tonzang Jubilee Celebration Central Committee.
  • Tuang, Gin Za. 1973. Zomi Innkuan Laibu. (History of Zomi Family). Tedim, Chin State: Author.
  • Vumson, Suantak. 1986. Zo History. Aizawl, Mizoram: Author.
Source - Zonet.

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Item Reviewed: ZOMITE’ KHUA MUH CIILNA (The First Zomi Exposure to the World) Gelh - Dr. G. K. Nang Description: Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Cinpu Zomi
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