Silchar: The dawn of the new year brings in new hope for Kaguiluang, the Naga colony, located in the very heart of this town. Its residents, 1200 in number, have resolved to pull themselves out of the ignominy of years of infamy and live with honor and dignity. As Selailung Gangmei, president of the Kaguiluang Development Society said, “Our colony has been known as the destination of cheap country liquor where even lumens and rogues, particularly after dusk, made a beeline to sip, howl and brawl.” Assam University student, Kalrui King Dehengmei, rued, “We never invited our friends and classmates to social meets and cultural programs due to disquiet atmosphere.” This has to end.
English poet rightly says, “Old order changeth, yielding place to new.” Every member of the colony has resolved to discard all that was bad and welcome all that is good,” said Kalrui King. And truly, a new beginning has begun in the colony with a total break on sale and consumption of liquor. Those doing brisk business with beverages have alternative sources of income to support themselves. In this crusade for better tomorrow, Kaguiluang Women’s Society led by Jeluna Mahingmei has played a great role to change the mindset of their people.
The doors of the colony will now be open for cultural and social bodies which will definitely add verve and color to the life inside the punji. In fact, the development of society, women's body and students’ organization of Kaguiluang have together been trying for the last 27 years for change. But, the lead was taken by Rongmei Naga Youth Association in 1992. Their traditional cultural festivals Gaan-Ngai, Ring Ngai, Maliang Ngai, Nanuti Ngai, and Napkewpai with colony participants have so long been an indoor celebration. From now, all these festivities will be exposed and showcased to the lovers of culture and tradition, said Lungthou Pamei, vice-president, Kaguiluang Development Society.
A notification has also been circulated and hung up by the Society cautioning “If anyone violates the consensus decision of the colony, action will be taken against him as per dictate of the apex body.” The district and the police administration have also been taken into confidence. The drive is not only against liquor, but also against drugs, narcotics, and heroin as well as other vices. The Society’s focus will be on health and education. How this Naga colony came up? In 1888, 15 Nagas from different places came here and formed the punji.
They have another side of the story to be proud of. The literacy is 72% which is reflected on a good number of employees engaged in private and government jobs. 3 doctors, 5 engineers, 2 advocates, 15 school teachers, 15 state and defense employees, 7 Assam University and 350 school and college-going students form part of the colony life. Kaguiluang Development Society is hopeful their initiative will receive good wishes from all communities.