Daniel D Nampui
SHILLONG, July 29: Enter any house in the Laskein Block of the Jaintia Hills in picturesque Meghalaya and there is a likelihood that you will be welcomed with a cup of tea. Now, one is permitted to ask as to how this is even remotely interesting and unusual and the answer to that is in the tea itself. As opposed to your run – of – the – mill brew, the residents of the villages in this Block will offer you what is known as Cha Khoo, which means Tea Rice or tea brewed from rice when translated into English from the local Pnar dialect.
To save people from the arduous task of wrapping their brains around the concept of actually brewing tea from rice, let me elaborate a little on this tradition that has been in practice for ages. The art of brewing Cha Khow was practiced in the Jaintia Hills area of Meghalaya even before the introduction of the now common tea into the Khasi and Jaintia Hills of the State by the British during the time they reigned over this, and many other parts of India. During those times, the practice of preparing Cha Khow was very common and widely popular among the people of Jaintia Hills. As time progressed and with the easy availability of tea leaves in the ensuing years, the art of preparing Cha Khow slowly slipped into disuse and is today an almost lost art.
Daniel D Nampui
TURA, July 29: The town of Tura has now become witness to a huge increase in the number of cases of theft that seem to be growing by the day. The main areas of incidence have been the Tura Bazaar area and its neighbouring localities, which time and again are being ravaged by groups of thieves. The sophisticated methods of theft point to the presence of highly specialized groups, most probably helped by some locals.
SHILLONG, July 28: Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) on Monday has directed all the porters (dajus) to register and obtain labour licenses from the authority concerned even as it maintained that it would soon act against illegal liquor shops operating in Iewduh market in the city.
The decision was taken during a meeting convened by the KHADC Chief Executive Member (CEM) Ardent M Basaiawmoit which was also attended by the Syiem of Hima Mylliem, Latho Manik Syiem on Monday.
TURA, July 28: Touched by the plight of 6 year old Chidam Marak, who last November had lost the use of his hands after a freak accident, employees of the State Bank of India (Garo Hills) on Monday made a contribution of Rs 37,700 to aid with the rehabilitation of the young boy. The employees of SBI met the Deputy Commissioner (DC) of West Garo Hills (WGH), Pravin Bakshi and handed over the cheque.
Meanwhile, after receiving a lot of criticism for their failure to come forward for an accident that could have been averted if proper fencing was in place near the transformer, the MeECL finally opened its tight coffers and made a contribution of Rs 62,000 to help in the rehabilitation of Chidam.
SHILLONG, July 28: Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) Chief Executive Member (CEM) Ardent M Basaiawmoit on Monday said that the Council will soon seek the assistance of the state government on the need to equip its Enforcement Staff with arms, security being the main reason.
Recently, five staff members of the Enforcement Wing of the KHADC were severely injured when a mob attacked and assaulted them during a regular checking drive against illegal businesses being run by non-tribal inside the Iewduh market.
“We will write to the government for its consideration on the need to provide arms to the officials of the Council’s Enforcement Wing,” Basaiawmoit told reporters.
TURA, July 28: Three alleged Over Ground Workers (OGW) of the proscribed Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA) were arrested by the Assam police on Sunday in Mankachar. The three were arrested on the basis of complaints of demand notes and extortion calls made by them to the traders of Mankachar. The arrested OGWs have been taken to Dhubri, where their interrogation is on.
According to police sources, the three were being tracked as they had made numerous calls to local traders from Assam and demanded money from them stating they were part of GNLA. They were arrested from the border village of Kakripara by the OC of Mankachar and his team.
TURA, July 27: Residents of New Bhaitbari, where the PWD Inspection Bungalow (IB) is located have complained that the property is being illegally encroached upon by one Jolbahar Sheikh, who has even started construction within the premises of the government property. According to residents of the area, the same person has also in the past tried to take over properties of locals, through force or threat.
Sheikh, according to them has contended that the property actually belongs to him and as such was given to the government for the benefit of the public, but now he wanted the same property back. He has also staked claim on lands belonging to the Darun-Uloom Madrassa, Bhaitbari Higher Secondary School among other properties within the area.