Guwahati: Ali-ai-Ligang, the spring festival of Mishing ethnic community of Assam, was celebrated on Wednesday in the traditional spirit of brotherhood and harmony on the first Wednesday of the Assamese month Giinmur Polo (February-March).
As the name of the vibrant five-day festival
Ali-ai-Ligang suggests cultivation and harvesting, paddy was
sowed ritualistically in agricultural fields across the
state by men and women dressed in their traditional colourful
`Ali` means root and seed, `ai` is fruit and `Ligang` is
to sow. After the ceremonial sowing of the paddy seeds, the
young boys and girls of the tribe danced `Gumrag` to celebrate
A grand feast was a major part of the celebrations, which
also mark new year (Anu Ditag) for the Mishings, with the
partaking of delicacies prepared with dried fish and pork
washed down with Poro Apong or rice beer.
During the festival the trees are respected with the people
refraining from cutting them down and there is also no
ploughing, fishing and burning of jungles.
The Mishing tribe is part of the greater Tani tribes
mostly found in the upper Assam districts and neighbouring
Arunachal Pradesh as well as Tibet.
Migrating to the plains of Assam from Arunachal, they
settled on the river banks preserving their language and
culture living in harmony with other Assamese speaking people
of the state.