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Encyclopedia > Kuki people

The term Kuki people refers to Zo ethnic entity that spreads out in a contiguous region in Northeast India, Northwest Burma (Myanmar), and the Chittagong Hill Tracts in Bangladesh. They are most prominent in Manipur, Nagaland, Assam and Mizoram. Kuki (or to be more precise Thadou) is composed of many different entities - Aimol, Anal, Baite, Changsan, Chiru, Chongloi, Chothe, Doungel, Guite, Haokip, Haolai, Hangsing, Kipgen, Koireng, Kolhen, Kom, Lamkang, Lenthang, Lhouvum, Lhungdim, Lunkim, Lupho, Lupheng, Lhanghal, Thangeo, Lhangum, Maring, Mate, Misao, Milhem , Monsang, Moyon, Purum, Singsit, Sitlhou, Tarao, Touthang, etc. Though the term Kuki can be thought of as been synonymous with Mizo and Chin tribes, predominantly Thadou speaking people refer to themselves as Kukis. Image File history File links Merge-arrows. ... The Zo people (or Zote) are an indigenous tribe, living mostly in the present-day Tonzaang and Tedim townships of Northern Chin State and the Kabaw valley of Western Sagaing division in the Union of Burma. ... An ethnic group is a group of people who identify with one another, or are so identified by others, on the basis of a boundary that distinguishes them from other groups. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... , Manipur   (Bengali: মণিপুর, Meitei Mayek: mnipur) is a state in northeastern India making its capital in the city of Imphal. ... , Nagaland   is a hill state located in the far north-eastern part of India. ... Assam   (Assamese: অসম Ôxôm) is a north eastern state of India with its capital at Dispur, a part of Guwahati. ... , Mizoram   is one of the Seven Sister States in northeastern India on the border with Myanmar. ...



The Kuki as an independent nation is well Interpreted by the great Kuki Uprising of 1917-19 against the British empire. The term Kuki referred to hill tribes of the elsewhere independent people whose settlement and power was well acknowledge and recognised . The British too recognised this Independent people who were spreading through out Northeast India. They are found in Northeast state of Assam,Burma(now called Myanmar) ,Chittagong hills track in Bangladesh, Lushai hills (now called Mizoram), Manipur, Nagaland, and Tripura. The Kukis, or Thadous, in particular were widely known as "war-mongers." They have been in minor ethnic wars with their neighbors, the Hmars in the 1960s, the Nagas in the early 1990s which predominantly was due to the ethnic cleansing propaganda of the NSCN (IM) militants, and the paites in 1997. The Kuki share the same culture, traditions, and genealogical affinity with their brethen of the Chin state in Myanmar and the Lushei or Mizo of Mizoram. // Nagas In India there is an ancient belief in a subterranean race of divine serpent people who dwell in patalas or palaces in the underground city of Bhogavati. ...


The Kukis have a rich culture and numerous tradition that are unique, interesting, and impressive.

Daily life

Rice is their staple food. They domesticated a number of animals. Of these, Se'l(mithun) is the most prized possession, while a dog is considered as a faithful animal. For other uses, see Rice (disambiguation). ... Trinomial name Canis lupus familiaris The dog (Canis lupus familiaris) is a domestic subspecies of the wolf, a mammal of the Canidae family of the order Carnivora. ...


Kuki festivals include: For other uses, see Festival (disambiguation). ...

  • Lawm Se’l Neh (a celebration by young people of the community after the season’s work is over)
  • Chang Kut( a celebration by the whole community after rice harvest)
  • Mim Kut (related to maize harvest and similar in content to Cha’ng Kut)
  • Sa-Ai (a celebration of a successful big game hunt of big animals)
  • Chang-Ai (a celebration of bounteous rice harvest)
  • Hun (an occasion of worship in ancient times)
  • Chawn le Han (hosting of this occasion involved feasting and holding of sporting events)
  • Ka’ngka’p (a game in which disc-liked seed is rolled) besides many others.


There are different musical instruments to enhance these festivities.

  • Kho’ng-pi (big drum)
  • Kho’ng-cha (small drum)
  • Dah-pi (gong)
  • Pe’ngkul (trumpet)
  • Gosem (bagpipe)
  • Theile (flute)
  • Theiphi’t (whistle)
  • Se’lki (horn)
  • Lhe’mlhei( a peculiar mouth instrument)

These instruments were useful not only for raising the festival spirit, but also for adding solemnity to certain serious occasions.


The folklore of the people abounds with the heroic adventures of Galngam le Hangsai, Chemtatpa, Lengbante, Jamdil, Sangah le Ahpi etc. The poignant romances of Khupting le Ngambom, Jonlhing le Nanglhun, Changkhatpu le Ahshijolneng, Khalvompu le Lenchonghoi; and folktales, such as Chipinthei le Mailangkoh, and others, represent the rich variety of the Kuki culture. This article does not cite any references or sources. ...

Customs and traditions

The land of the Kukis is blessed with rich customs and traditions. Sawm, a community center for boys – was the center of learning in which Sawm-upa (an elder) did the teaching, while Sawm-nu took care of chores, such as combing of the boy’s hair, washing of the garments and making the beds, etc. The best students were recommended to the King’s or the Chief’s service, and eventually would become as Semang & Pachong (ministers) in the courts, or gal –lamkai (generals) in the army. Lawm (a traditional form of youth club) was an institution in which, boys and girls engaged in social activities, for the benefit of the individual and the community. It was also another learning institution. Every Lawm has lawm-upa (a senior member), To’llai-pao (overseer or superintendent), and Lawm-tangvo (assistant superintendent). Besides being a source of traditional learning, Lawm was also useful for imparting technical and practical knowledge to its members, especially with regard to farming methods, hunting, fishing, and sporting activities such as- Kung – Kal (high jump, especially over a choice mithum), Ka’ng Ka’p, Ka’ngchoi Ka’p (top game), Suhtumkhaw (javelin throw using the heavy wooden implement for pounding-de-husking-paddy) and So’ngse (shot put). The Lawm was also a center where the young people learned discipline and social etiquette. After harvest season, ‘Lawm meet’ is celebrated with a Lawm-se’l (on the occasion, a mithun is slaughtered for the feast) and, as a commemoration, a pillar is erected. The event is accompanied by dance and drinking rice-beer, which sometimes continues for days and nights. This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... A tradition is a story or a custom that is memorized and passed down from generation to generation, originally without the need for a writing system. ... Farming, ploughing rice paddy, in Indonesia Agriculture is the process of producing food, feed, fiber and other desired products by cultivation of certain plants and the raising of domesticated animals (livestock). ... This article is about the hunting of prey by human society. ... Fishing is the activity of hunting for fish by hooking, trapping, or gathering. ...

The Kuki male traditionally wore his hair in the form of a Tuhcha (long hair rolled up in a bunch at the nape). His clothing consisted of a Boitong-Sangkhol (a half-sleeve jacket) and a Pheichawm (short lungi). They are renowned hunters and reputable warriors. Their hunting kit consists of Se’llung-bawm (a leather waist-pouch for pellets), Se’lki meiloupai (an animal’s horn for storing gunpowder) and a knife. Watchful waiting on a machaan for the game also did a favorite past time hunting. Often, many kinds of traps and snares are also set. The fishing equipment consists of Len (fishing net), Bawm (basket trap), Ngakoi (fishing hooks). Ngoituh (a method of using dams and baskets in a flowing river), Ngalhei (draining out water) and Gusuh (a method of temporally stunning fish by using toxic herbs) were also common methods of catching fish in small streams. The Kuki men took great pride in big-game hunting and a killing of big animals was followed by somber celebration. The Kukis believed that the big game hunted in a man’s lifetime would accompany him in his after-life journey-the spirits of animals would clear the onward path for him. It was therefore believed that a man was not complete unless he was also successful in big game hunting; he would not be entitled to partake in Lalju, a special drink meant for those who have killed big game. Smokeless powder Gunpowder is a pyrotechnic composition, an explosive mixture that burns rapidly, producing volumes of hot gas which can be used as a propellant in firearms and fireworks. ... This article is about the tool. ... Fishing with a cast net. ... Different hook types Different hook sizes (not to scale) Fishhook redirects here. ... This article is about structures for water impoundment. ... Four styles of household basket. ... For other uses, see River (disambiguation). ... Herbs: basil Herbs (IPA: hÉ™()b, or É™b; see pronunciation differences) are seed-bearing plants without woody stems, which die down to the ground after flowering. ... For other uses, see Fish (disambiguation). ...

The Kuki women traditionally wore their hair in two plaits braided around the head. They wore a Nih-San (a red slip) underneath a Po’nve (a wrap-around), which was worn from above the chest. The ornaments included Bilba (earrings), Hah le Chao (bracelets and bangles), Khi (necklace), and occasionally Bilkam (a type of ring-shaped earring worn to stretch the earlobes). Cha’ngsuh (grain-pounding), Cha’ngse’p (winnowing), Ponkhon (cloth-weaving) and looking after domestic animals were some of the daily chores of the women folk. The woven designs of the Kuki women are unique and appreciated the world over. Cha’ng-ai, the place of honor for a good harvest was given to the lady of the house. This formed the highest honor accorded to the Kuki woman. The men folk occupied themselves with cane and bamboo crafts and house building. They were blacksmiths and also engaged in carpentry and other such like jobs. The manufacture of guns and gunpowder were a very specialized profession among the men. Twi-cha’ngsu (water mill)’ and Chotle’p (a sea-saw mechanism), are some of the ingenious methods used for pounding rice with minimum use of human energy. Sawh and Ke’ngke (noise creating instruments) functioned as the scarecrow and were placed in the cultivated fields. Twisawh was another inventive contraption, which used running water from a stream making continual sounds to scare away birds and pests from standing crops. Pairs of earrings for sale at a roadside stand in Costa Rica An earring is an ornament that is worn in the ear. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Bangles in Laad Bazaar, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India. ... For other senses of this word, see necklace (disambiguation). ... On the ear of humans and many other animals, the earlobe (lobulus auriculæ, sometimes simply lobe or lobule) is the soft lower part of the external ear or pinna. ... The word grain has several meanings, most being descriptive of a small piece or particle. ... Wind winnowing is a method developed by ancient cultures for agricultural purposes. ... Tweed loom, Harris, 2004 Woven sheet Weaving is an ancient textile art and craft that involves placing two sets of threads or yarn called the warp and weft of the loom and turning them into cloth. ... For other uses, see Bamboo (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Blacksmith (disambiguation). ... A carpenter is a skilled craftsman who performs carpentry -- a wide range of woodworking that includes constructing buildings, furniture, and other large objects out of wood. ... This article is about the video game. ... A watermill is a machine constructed by connecting a water wheel to a pair of millstones. ... Scarecrows in a rice paddy in Japan For other uses, see Scarecrow (disambiguation). ...

Laws and government


With regard to governance, Semang (cabinet) is the annual assembly of a Kuki village community held at the Chief’s residence represents the Inpi (Assembly). In such an assembly, the Chief and his Semang and Pachong (cabinet members and auxiliary of Inpi) and all the household heads of the village congregate to discuss and resolve matters relating to the village and the community[citation needed]. Masouleh village, Gilan Province, Iran. ... A community is a social group of organisms sharing an environment, normally with shared interests. ...

Legal system

The legal system – arrangement of a girl’s marriage, bride-price, and the Chief’s administrative system, relief for widows and orphans – are elaborately and systematically defined in the Kukis’ way-of-life. Traditionally, polygamy is not permissible. Capital punishment was never in practice. The maximum penalty was ‘bultuh’ (stockade in which the guilty was kept outside the village and provided food until death). This reflects the high ethics of the Kuki people. Marriage is an interpersonal relationship with governmental, social, or religious recognition, usually intimate and sexual, and often created as a contract, or through civil process. ... A widow is a woman whose spouse has died. ... Orphans, by Thomas Kennington An orphan (from the Greek ορφανός) is a person (typically a child), who has lost both parents, often through death. ... The term polygamy (many marriages in late Greek) is used in related ways in social anthropology, sociobiology, and sociology. ... Capital punishment, or the death penalty, is the execution of a convicted criminal by the state as punishment for crimes known as capital crimes or capital offences. ...

Judicial process

The Kukis also practiced Twilut, a judicial process of judgment by going under water. Twilut is a phenomenon in which the litigants are subjected to go under water to determine the culprit. It is an ultimate and decisive recourse for cases where the normal processes of trial by court does not reach a conclusive end. In the event of resorting to twilut, certain customs are strictly adhered to. The chief and elders of the community call upon the thempu (magic-medicine man/priest) to conduct the proceedings. For instance, in a boundary dispute, the two litigants are brought into the presence of the public. The ‘thempu’ then recites rituals, which includes the invocation of ‘Pathen’ (God), followed by the litigants being submerged in the water. The culprit becomes immediately apparent because she/he cannot remain underwater at all. Of the two litigants, the defaulter would be in absolute agony, experiencing extreme sensations of being inflamed from within, and therefore emerge to the surface. In contrast, the innocent person able to remain under water, quite normally. The judiciary, also referred to as the judicature, consists of justices, judges and magistrates among other types of adjudicators. ... Categories: Move to Wiktionary | Law stubs | Legal terms ... Look up trial in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Medicine man is an English term used to describe Native American religious figures; such individuals are analogous to shamans. ... This article is about religious workers. ... A ritual is a set of actions, performed mainly for their symbolic value, which is prescribed by a religion or by the traditions of a community. ...



It is know that the Kukis were in possession of some documents, inscribed on leather, known as ‘Savun Lekhajo’l’ (scroll). These scrolls were lost in the passage of time and along with this, the Kukis also lost their script. Therefore, there is no known Kuki script. Today, the Roman script forms the basis for Kuki literature. Modern leather-working tools Leather is a material created through the tanning of hides and skins of animals, primarily cattlehide. ... For other uses, see Scroll (disambiguation). ...


The academic and Kuki National Organisation spokesman Seilen Haokip has written a number of articles and books about the Kuki and tribal relations in northeastern India.[1]


Although the existence of formal learning institutions is not available, the Kukis were not unfamiliar with astronomy and astrology. They were able to study the stars and the phases of the moon and could forecast for themselves certain aspects of nature, particularly rainfall, drought and the seasons[citation needed]. For other uses, see Astronomy (disambiguation). ... Hand-coloured version of the anonymous Flammarion woodcut (1888). ...


  • http://www.kukiforum.com
  • http://www.zokuomthawn.tk

Zale'n-gam: The Kuki Nation


  Results from FactBites:
Kuki (disambiguation) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (100 words)
The Kuki is an ethnci group of people who live in Mizoram and Manipur in northeastern India.
Kuki language is the Shinlung language of the Kuki people.
Kuki is a 1963 novel by Gábor von Vaszary.
Groping For IdentityBy Dr. (2658 words)
Of the old Kuki group, the Kom, Anal, chiru etc. may be viewed to be far removed from the Chin-Kuki ethnic affiliation with reference to the non-R group of tribes in linguistic point of view.
People identified themselves willy-nilly either as Chin or Kuki or Lushai in order to be accepted in Military services before India and Burma got independence.
We, people who are in aggregation are of one stock, Every body under the heaven is born of a Cave (Khuul) and Born of the same mother.
  More results at FactBites »



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