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Arunachal Pradesh

Arunachal Pradesh

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Arunachal Pradesh One of the most sparsely populated states of India, covers an area of 83743 sq. Kms. This region acquired an independent political status in January 20, 1972, when it was declared as Union Territory under the name of Arunachal Pradesh. The state of Arunachal Pradesh Bill was passed by the Parliament in 1986 and with effect from February 20, 1987 Arunachal Pradesh became the 24th state of Indian Union.

It is a land of lush green forests, deep river valleys and beautiful plateaus. The land is mostly mountainous with the Himalayan range along the northern borders criss-crossed with ranges running north-south. These divide the state into five river valleys: the Kameng, the Subansiri, the Siang, the Lohit and the Tirap. All these are fed by snow from the Himalayas and countless rivers and rivulets.

The weather and the climate of Arunachal Pradesh are quite distinct from the rest of the country. The climate of the State is dominated by the Himalayan system and the altitudanal variations. The climate is highly hot and humid at the lower altitudes and in the valleys covered by swampy dense forest particularly in the eastern section, while it becomes exceedingly cold in the higher altitudes. Average temperature during the winter months range from 15 to 21 degree celsius and 22 to 30 degree celsius during monsoon.

Between June and August the temperature may go up to 40-42 degree celsius.The rainfall of Arunachal Pradesh in amongst the heaviest in the country. The annual average rainfall in Arunachal Pradesh is more than 350cm. 

are 26 major tribes and a number of sub-tribes  inhabiting   the  area.  Most  of   these  communities  are  ethnically similar, having derived from original Mongoloid stock but  their  geographical isolation from each other  has   brought  amongst  them  certain distinctive characteristics in language, dress and customs.

Broadly, the entire population may be divided into three cultural groups based on their socio-politico-religious affinities. The Monpas and Sherdak Pens of Tawang and West Kameng districts follow the lamaistic tradition of Mahayana Buddhism. Culturally similar to them are Membas and Khembas who live in the high mountains along the northern borders, Khamptis and Singphos inhabiting the eastern part of the State are Buddhists of Hinayana sect. They are said to have migrated from Thailand and Burma long ago andstill using ancient scripts derived from their original homeland.

The second group of people of Adis, Akas, Apatanis, Bungnis, Nishis, Mishmis, Mijis, Thangsos etc. who worship the Sun and the Moon God, namely, Donyi-Polo and Abo-Tani, the original ancestor for most of these tribes. Their religious rituals, largely coincide with the phases of agricultural cycles. They traditionally practise Jhuming or shifting cultivation. The third group comprises Noctes and Wanchos in the Tirap district . These are hardy people known for their structured village society in which the hereditary village chief still plays a vital role. The Noctes also practise elementary form of Vaishnavism.

Festivals of Arunachal Pradesh

Festivals form an essential aspect of the socio-cultural life of the people of the state. As a matter of fact, festivals are the mirror of the people's culture. Since agriculture is the mainstay of the population , naturally, the festivals celebrated by the people are closely connected with their occupation. Such festivals are celebrated at a larger sale for thanking the Gods for their providence and for saying a prayer a prayer for a bumper crop. Throughout the year festivals are celebrated by some tribe or the other. Some of the important festivals are Solung, Mopin, Losar, Boori Boot, Dree, Nechi Dau, Khan, Kshyat-Sowai, Loku, Longte Yullo, Mol, Nyokum, Ojiale, Reh, Sanken, Si-Donyi and Tamladu.

Animal sacrifices are a common ritual in most of the festivals, particularly in the non-Bodic tribes. The festivals have been firmly blended with the lifestyle of the people of Arunachal Pradesh. For some communities like the Mijis these are occasions to bring all people together who might otherwise be scattered in far flung villages. This serves as a reminder of the richness of their cultural heritage.

The spring time festivals are celebrated during the period from January to April by the different groups. In the celebration of these festivals, the religious rites and the sacrifices are generally performed by their priests assisted by some select male members.

The Losar festival of the Monpas, which is their new year, is celebrated for five days. On the eve of the festival people clean out their homes to usher in the new year and to discard the old. The dirt and the grit of the old year is considered to symbolise ill health. During the five days of the festivities prayers are offered for prosperity and good health; the festivities include the hoisting of religious flags atop their homes; visits to he homes of friends and relatives; oly uddhist sriptures are read in ervery home and butter lamps are lit in houses and the campuses.

Appeasement of the dieties who conrol the peace and prosperity of the people is the thought behind the six day celebrations of the Reh festival, essentially associated with the Idu Mishmis. The festival comes to an end with great fanfare and the priest dance performed during the six days is its speial attraction. The Wanhos celebrate their most popular estival, Ojiyale during March-April, for a period of six to twelve days interspersed with prayer, song and dance. Villagers exchange bamboo tubes of rice beeras a mark of greeting and good will. Pig's skin is offered to the village chief as a mark of respect.

Another important festival is Tamladu, essentially celebrated by the Digaru Mishmis tribe. During the festival, prayers are offered to the God of Earth and the God of Water for protection against natural calamities. The supreme- Lord Jebmalu, is worshipped and welfare of human beings, the standing crops and domestic animals.

Another is the Khan festival, an occasion for the reunion of the people. Besides the usual festivities, the significance of the festival lies in the ceremony whereby the priest ties a piece of wool around everybody's neck. The belief is that the enchanted thread will bring good luck to each of them.

Sangken festival, is an occasion to bathe the images of Lord Buddha ceremoniously. Thsi also heralds the new year and people sprinkle water on each other as a sign of merriment. One of the groups celebrate Mopin for wealth, prosperity, good health and universal happiness. Smearing of rice powder on each others' faces marks the beginning of the festival which is celebrated for five days. The Mol festival of the Tangsas is also celebrated for three days to welcome the new year.

Arts & Crafts of Arunachal Pradesh

Bamboo and Cane handicrafts produced in Arunachal Pr

Arunachal Pradesh has a rich tradition of Bamboo and Cane Handicrafts and also Wood Carving and Carpet Weaving. The products reflect the rich and varied culture of the tribes inhabiting this enchanting State and the products featured are representative of the wide range of Handicrafts produced in the State.

Handloom forms an integral part of the culture and tradition, which is reflected in the State’s apparels. Some of these are unique Handloom products in artists weaving and design. Most of the Women folk of the state have been engaged in Handloom sector  treated as primary occupation. A wide variety of crafts such as weaving painting, pottery, smithy work, basketry, woodcarving etc. are found among the people of Arunachal Pradesh. 

The Department of Textile & Handicraft(s) has been set-up to develop  this sector to uplift the economic condition as well as to provide self employment opportunity to the Weaver and artisan of the  State through various Development Schemes/Projects.

Wooden Carving

Wood Carving

The unique, and artistic indigenous wood carving articles are available of Tirap, Upper & West Siang, Lohit and Tawang.

Flower Vase - Wooden Carving

1.  It is practiced by very limited artisans / craftsman of the above mentioned districts, both passed out trainees form the Deptt. Craft center as well as traditional artisans.

2. The main raw-materials used are locally available wood.

3. Traditional Male and Female Wooden figure are depicted as main subject, warriors / head hunters are popular in Tirap District Wood Carving, originally such wood carvings were used to decorate “MORANG” (Youths Dormitory ) & modernized as decorative collection items where as different types of Wooden Musk and goddess figure are depicted as main subject considering the cultural & religious value, which are popular in the district of Upper and East Siang , Lohit & Tawang.

4. Being promoted through Govt. Craft Centres with provision for training. Passed out trainees are engaged as production worker in departmental promotional schemes.

Traditional Ornament Products

Beads ornaments of various types are found in all over Arunachal Pradesh . However weaving or decorating small beads ornament are predominatory found in Tirap District. The unique beads ornaments and grass necklece products are mainly available in Tirap & Changlang districts which signify higher cultural and Traditional value.

Necklaces

The Beads ornaments making practiced by women folk , the main raw-material used in "GRASS BEADS" of very higher quality normally imported from other country .

All type of ornaments viz. Necklace Wrist band, Waist band , Head gear, earring are made with beautiful geometrical pattern used both by male and female.

Being promoted through Govt. Craft Centres while provision for training and passed out trainees are engaged as production worker.

 "GRASS NECKLACE" making practiced by female folk of Wangcho tribe of Tirap District. The main raw-material used in a kind of reed , grown near stream and river side during September to February. The skin of the reed is of golden colour when the plant is natured .  This trade is a seasonal activities and not yet covered under Govt. programme except production scheme. A good demand exists for this items both in national and international market.

Traditional Wangcho Bag

Practiced by women folk of Wangcho tribe of Tirap District. Major raw material is cotton yarn and acrylic yarn purchased from market, combinedly wooven in a colourful geometrical pattern. It is popular for its durability, intricate design, colour and weave like carpet . The weavers are being engaged now to produce more of such items with modified design and different utility like ladies and gents waist coat , dress etc.

Round Cane Murah

Cane & Bamboo

The traditional Cane Bamboo product are mainly available in the Districts of East Kameng. Papumpare, Changlang, Upper and Lower Subansiri, East and West Siang, Lohit and Dibang Valley which represents high premium on design, quality, local technology and focus cultural indentity. The famous cane cap & head gear are available for different tribe of the State. While carrying Basket, Marketing Basket, varieties of design & utility product viz. Cane chair, Cane Table, Cane Racks, Cane Cradle, Cane Murrah , Designer Cane Tray etc. available in different marketing outlet in the State as well as out side the State.

Woolen Carpet 2

Carpet

The carpet making is one of the important occupation in the districts of Tawang, West Kameng, Changlang, Upper Siang. The women folk are engaged in this trade. The Arunachal Pradesh’s carpet has been acclaimed to be of National & International repute by considering the quality of carpet weaving in different motive and design. The items produced are wall hanging , cushion pad, telephone pad, floor covering etc. These are being promoted through Govt. Craft Centre with provision for training. Passed out trainees are engaged as production worker in the industry.

Traditional Carving

Painting

Tangkha painting in one of the most artistic craft, it is prevalent mainly in Buddhist dominated area like Tawang, West kameng, Upper Siang Districts. The motif of the painting is mostly religious subject along with traditional value.

Handloom

Arunachal Pradesh can be called store House of Handloom designs as its 20 major tribes and more then 100 sub-tribes has got   unique and appealing Handloom designs.  The products are , Skirt (Gale), Shirt (Galuk) , cotton shawl, side bag, curtain cloth etc, in different pricing pattern according to the quality, traditional value, motive and design.

Adventure in Arunachal Pradesh

Arunachal Pradesh is endowed with thick evergreen forests with numerous streams, rivers and gorges and hundreds of thousands of species of flora and fauna covering more than 60% of the total area. The five rivers of the state namely Kameng, Subansiri, Lohit, Siang and Tirap wind their way through the sylvan green of the hills. Its rivers are ideal for angling, boating and rafting and its terrain is suitable for trekking, hiking and holidaying in a serene atmosphere. The upper reaches offer an ideal landscape for promoting adventure tourism of all kinds and is best suited for the tourist, looking for such opportunities. 

In addition, four major trekking routes have been identified by the Government namely - Pashighat-Jengging-Yinkiong, Bhalukpung-Bomdila-Tawang, Roing-Mayodia-Anini and Tezu-Hayliang.

The first trek starts from the plains of Siang and leads through the thick forest area. The route is a photographer's delight and also a promising tract for catch and release Mahaseer angling.

The second route passes through the Tipi orchidarium to Bomdila. It crosses the crest of the Sela Pass at 14,000 ft. above sea level which runs through a small ridge and along a placid lake called the Paradise Lake. All through the way, the Kameng river roaring down the hill provides excellent scope for angling, trekking and hiking.

The third trekking route located in the Dibang valley district with its highest peak at Mayudia (2443 mtrs.) on the way to Anini, has a picturesque beauty with a unique topography, floral and faunal diversity and a favorable natural setting. The main tourist trekking spots are Mehao lake sanctuary and boating in Salley Lake.

The hills in the Tezu-Hayuliang route are rich in flora and fauna. A large number of migratory species of birds visit this region from the Sino-Himalayan area during the winter. The route is ideal for hiking, trekking and bird watching.

Wildlife in Arunachal Pradesh

Arunachal Pradesh is home to a very rich mammalian wildlife population as the wide variety of altitudinal and climatic conditions have given rise to different forest types which create corresponding natural shelter , food etc. to varieties of wildlife. It has two National Parks and four Wildlife Sanctuaries. It is home to many rare and highly endangered species of Wild life like Mishmi, Takin, Hoolock Gibbon, Musk Deer, Bharal, Hisbid Hare, Flying Squirrel and more than 500 species of birds.

Namdapha National Park amongst them has perhaps the widest diversity of habitat of any of South Asia's protected areas. It is unique, with it's elevation varying between 200 to 4500 mts. and has all four large cats, the tiger, leopard, clouded leopard and snow leopard in addition to lesser feline species like the Golden cat and marbled cat

Seven species of primates i.e. Hoolock Gibbon, Slow loris, Assamese macaque, Rhesus macaque, Pigtailed macaque, Stumptaile macaque and Capped langur are found here.

All the three goat antelopes found in India i.e. Serow, Goral and Takin are found here. Arunachal Pradesh is the only place in India where Takin is found.

Among the large mammals, Mittan, which is a cross between the wild Gaur and domestic cattle, buffalo and elephant are all found in the plains and adjoining hills.

The other high altitude animals include Himalayan Black bear, Red panda etc. The Musk deer is found in some areas of the state while the bharal has been reported in the western part of the state.

Among the smaller mammals a large number of rodents(squirrels, porcupine and rats), civet, mongoose, linsang, shrew and bat species are found here.

More than five hundred bird species have been recorded in Arunachal Pradesh, many of which are highly endangered and restricted to this state , e.g. White winged wood duck, sclater monal, temminck's tragopan, Bangal florican etc. This state has the highest number of species of pheasants with some ten species at different altitudinal levels. Arunachal Pradesh is equally rich in reptiles, amphibia and pisces. Pythons and snakes of all colours and descriptions are found in the forests all almost all the levels upto the temperate zone.

The invertebrate faunal communities are found in the dense and evergreen forests of Arunachal Pradesh. Numerous species of butterflies, moths, beetles and all other kinds of small creatures make Arunachal Pradesh a paradise for Entomologists and Naturalists. Arunachal also has more than 500 rare species of Orchids

WILDLIFE SANCTUARIES : Pakhui Wildlife Sanctuary , Itanagar Wild life Sanctuary , Dr. D. Ering Memorial Wildlife Sanctuary , Mehao Wildlife Sanctuary , Kamlang Wildlife Sanctuary , Eagle Nest Wildlife Sanctuary , Kane Wildlife Sanctuary

NATIONAL PARKS : Namdhapa National Park (Tiger Project) , Mouling National Park , Sessa Orchid Sanctuary , Dihang-Debang Biosphere Reserve