[Assam] Myths, realities & stereotyping of the NE

Ram Sarangapani assamrs at gmail.com
Mon May 21 07:05:27 PDT 2007

Dear Dr. Sashanka,

Thanks for the into. Oh! I was just pullimg your leg, but I am quite
certain that you knew all about the 'kurur pitha' story or at least heard of
it somewhere or the other.

But now that Himen da has told us that the Naga story is in reality a myth,
it goes to show how we have all been fooling ourselves, all these years.

As far as Menaka is concerned, I really do not fault her that much. Why?
Obviously, it must be some gung ho person/s from the NE who has told her
about this, and she believed this to be true.
Until Himen da told us, we (at least most of us) thought this to be true. So
who is to be blamed here?

Now, many of us have heard that they eat dogs in Bangkok, snakes in China,
and snails (escargot) in France, rattle-snakes in Texas.
And if you make up stories about these, I doubt if any of the locals in
these places will really care.

This is always the case with such stories - the "stangeness" and "intrigue"
keep these stories alive for generations. And then there is the
"stereotyping" that both C'da and I hinted which is often the case.

Here are a few myths, realities, and stereotypes concerning the NE:
It will be interesting to find out how many of us believe what is what:

Assam is the land of lahe-lahe
Assam is the land of bandhs
The Assamese language is an offshoot of Bengali (or the other way around)
Assam is the most corrupt state in India
Assam is well-known for the occult, Ojhas and Bez
The Nagas were head-hunters
Parts of Assam are actually a part of greater Nagalim
The word 'Chai' comes from Assamese 'Sa'
The name 'Digboi' comes from the British sahibs ordering Assamese labor
to  'dig boy' for oil

Of course, there are many others in this category - often fed by ignorance
and stereotyping by others, and quite often by Assamese who came across
these by NOT correcting the myths when possible.

>I am not against taking non vegetarian food but truly I am concerned >over
the humane method of killing the animals for food

And that is a very good cause. We can all agree that animals are sacrificed
on a daily basis in Kamakhyya Temple - and this is TRUE.

That could be a noble cause for you to follow up. The daily ritualistic
sacrifice of animals in this fashion, and in day & age is one of the worst
examples of animal torture and for absolutely no reason at all.



On 5/21/07, Dr. Sashanka <sashanka_2000 at yahoo.co.uk> wrote:
> Hi to everyone,
> Thanks for the concern and the discussion about the "IN ASSAM DOGS AND
> Let me make it clear, I am an Assamese and with a full name Dr. Sashanka
> Sekhar Dutta. I write it short as Dr. Sashanka not to hide or of shame to
> focus that I am an Assamese. I have shortened the name for the shake of
> people who always make fun of pronouncing the whole name in wrong way which
> I don't like and I don't think I should correct them repeatedly. Anyway even
> after making it short I am still called as Dr. Shashank not as Sashanka
> pronounced in Assamese. I am staying in Delhi for last 4 years for my
> project works and trying to move to Assam to give something possible from my
> side to my homeland.
> Secondly by profession I am a veterinarian (Manoj Daa, you know I am
> sure?) and associated with some welfare activities and one project is
> related to Animal Welfare.
> Coming to the main point, I sent the link & the text mainly for three
> reasons…
> First to feel the cruelty behind killing the dog or pup live
> Second, to cnvey the message... does anyone have the right to say like *"IT
> HAPPENS DAILY OVER THERE"* like in all places of Assam and in every
> household this dish is prepared everyday. If it would have happened, no
> stray dogs have been seen in the streets of Assam and I am sure everyone
> will agree with me, Assam is also suffering from thousands of Rabies case
> every year where dog is one of the major carriers besides cats & other
> canine family, bats etc.
> & Third, this is to create some awareness among the people to stop cruelty
> as much as possible. Thanks.
> Another thing to make clear, I am not against taking non vegetarian food
> but truly I am concerned over the humane method of killing the animals for
> food. Practically it is not possible that everything will be perfect but as
> we have started concerning about the welfare sector, may be animals,
> children or any thing, we should start thinking for the less cruelty to
> them.
> Thanks.
> Sashanka
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