Nagaland: Land of Festivals
From Guwahati to Dimapur then to Kohima and finally, Naga Heritage Village at Kisama, about 10 km from the state capital Kohima which assures unity in diversity for 10 days and gives back a true sense of nationalism and never allowed me to think that I belong to different ethnic group and culture 2500 km away. After traveling almost every part of India, I realized Nagaland is far better than many of states in north India in terms of human development, emotional well-being, and gender equality. In the way to Kohima to Dimapur, flora and fauna of Nagaland can be visualized and sensed through the semi-cold air from the vicinity, along with that one can enjoy fresh pineapple being sold around the way. Kohima which is near about 350 km far from Guwahati is totally different, excess urbanization and industrialization haven’t touched this place yet, the economy is mostly dependent on agriculture and tourism. Although tourism is in a palpable stage, but still, it is attracting tourists from various corners of the world. This year Nagaland is celebrating its 16th Hornbill festivals, its diverse performances by different ethnic groups and local cuisines by different local tribes are a special attraction. This festival was a life experience for me and provided a new base to understand the world within a world which is away from my world. On 2nd Dec when I stepped at BOC station at Kohima, I realized the beauty and diversity of place, one side there was World war memorial which was depicting the struggle of various soldiers and on other hand beautiful school girls dressed in western attires were reminding my last visit to Birmingham. After 15 minutes of driving we reached Naga heritage village where hornbill was going on, it was truly amazing to see people from different nationality and ethnicity. Dance performance by various tribes of Manipur, Nagaland, Assam, Andhra Pradesh and Punjab was symbolizing unity in diversity. After capturing memories of various incidences we moved back to Kohima, where we explored the market. The market was mostly organized and maintained by beautiful women of Nagaland, which was differentiating Nagaland from another part of India.
Apart from entertainment and mental peace Nagaland trip gave a sense of unity and made me realize that development and well-being are not only governmental investments, it’s more of individual spirit and mutual respect. If Love and equality between both gender are there, then growth will surely happen and take society at the higher place.
I’ll suggest every Indian to visit Nagaland once in his/her lifetime.