by Tame Ramya
The present paper intends to narrate some agricultural rites and rituals, specifically of jhum cultivation of the Nyishi tribe of Arunachal Pradesh, taking Kurung Kumey district as the case study. These rites form the part of ritual cycle and lingering as crucial in the community lives in relation to agriculture. Nyishis, the people belong to one of the major tribal groups of Arunachal Pradesh i.e. Nyishi are dependent on jhumming, wet-rice cultivation, and a cash economy for their subsistence needs. Indeed, for several households, the cash sector is crucial in enabling them to meet their subsistence needs in present day situation. Notwithstanding the extent to which Nyishis are dependent on an external economy, jhum agriculture is regarded as the dominant form of subsistence production within the community. This particular perception of jhumming is based on two factors: first, an understanding that jhum agriculture predates wet-rice agriculture and second, the continuing cultivation of jhum which has ensured the persistence of a religious and ritual life that remains organised around the jhum cycle.
Ramya T. 2016. Agricultural Rituals as the Ceremonial Cycle of the Nyishi tribe, Dera Natung Government College Research Journal, 1, 1-16.