PenThrill’s 88th publication ‘Haolong, a Konyak Folktale’ released

Minister CL John during the book launch of “Haolong- A Konyak Folktale” written by Ngemnyu Konyak at the White Owl Book Lounge at Chümoukedima on May 24.

Minister CL John during the book launch of “Haolong- A Konyak Folktale” written by Ngemnyu Konyak at the White Owl Book Lounge at Chümoukedima on May 24.

Morung Express News 
Chümoukedima | May 24

In the absence of institution such as the village council, or worship place like Churches and other related Institute in the olden days, CL John, Minister of Forest, Environment & Climate Change and Village Guards, on Friday said, “the ‘Haolong’ in Konyak was considered as an important and vital institution in their respective villages and localities.”

He was addressing the book launch of “Haolong- A Konyak Folktale” written by Ngemnyu Konyak at the White Owl Book Lounge at Chümoukedima on May 24. In the institution of 'Haolong', he went on to explain that, “people gathered for worship as well as to offer prayer to seek blessing, organised various types of gathering, meeting and function, utilised and operated as means for communication by collecting and gathering important information and announced and proclaimed to the citizens in their respective villages and beyond.”

Citing its importance, he commended the author for taking the initiative to courageously publish such a valued book to preserve their forefather's and ancestral culture as well as custom. “Our historical background would have been extinct and lost forever without any historical record,” he added. 

CL John further encouraged the younger generation “to retrospect on our ancestral historical background, while moving towards the pattern of fast-growing scientifically high-tech era.”

The author, Ngemnyu Konyak, who hails from Yuching village, said that she wrote the book in memory of her late grandfather while asserting the lack of written record and history and the need to preserve and pass it down. 

Stating that writing this was important for her village and the Konyak tribe as well as the Nagas as a whole, she elucidated that the book is dated back to the years when Nagas believed in animism and the existence of the spiritual world. 

In her publisher's note, Vishü Rita Krocha noted that, “Folktales are important because it tells our story and captures the hopes, fears, dreams and details of everyday lives.” “It tells the story of our origin, our history and culture, and also describes where we live, what our values are and ultimately who we are,” she added while emphasizing on the need to preserve these stories. 

Folktales, she also remarked, “have enchanted people for centuries and it still continues to do so.” Towards this end, she also underscored that, “what's important for us is that we capture the charm that each tale has and give it to our children, for them to also experience the magic of stories as it were.”

In writing Haolong, she said, the author has taken the first important step in preserving our culture especially that of the Konyak tribe. 

She further underlined that in the process of preserving our culture, it is important to remember that stories are an indispensable part of it as they form the very basis of our culture. 

In this regard, she urged young people, especially young aspiring writers to make a conscious effort in collecting and documenting as many stories as possible wherever they go. 

Chibeni Merry, Asst. Professor, Tetso College said that the book, Haolong gives a miniature view of Konyak mythical beings, while it is also educational in terms of traditional beliefs and culture. Haolong is the 88th publication of PenThrill Publication House.

Highlights of the event included invocation by Rev Dr Pongsing Konyak, Former General Secretary, NBCC, while Rev S Yoko, Pastor, KBBC, said the dedicatory prayer. W Lily Konyak gave the welcome note while Tinglei, Music Director, KBBD presented a special song and Viphirianuo Seyie chaired the programme.