Tokhu Emong 2015 Date, The Harvest Festival of Nagaland
Tokhu emong is the harvest festival celebrated by Lotha tribe or Lothas in Nagaland. It is a post harvest festival which is celebrated for 9 days with lots of fun and enthusiasm. Earlier it was celebrated some day in the first week of November every year with no particular date fixed. Later, in order to have unity in celebrations, 7th November of every year was fixed as the commencing day of Tokhu emong festival. In 2015 too this festival would be celebrated on the same date.
About Lotha Nagas
Lotha tribal people are renowned in Nagaland for their colorful dances and folk songs. Wokha is the home of the Lotha tribe and they are seen here more concentrated than in other parts of Nagaland. Majority of them are Christians. They gave up their practice of headhunting in older days and took up farming as their main profession. Tokhu emong and Pikhuchak are two main festivals of Lotha nagas which are celebrated with much pomp and splendor.
Tokhu Emong – Time to Celebrate the Hard Labor
This is the time when the harvest is done and the granaries are full of harvested crop. Lothas take out time from the toils and sweat of everyday and settle down to enjoy the fruits of one’s hard labor. The entire village takes part in the festival bringing every household to the place of celebrations.
This festival is also famous for socializing with one another. During this festival people come closer to one another by showing their gratitude towards each other. They forgive and forget their past hardships and try to renew the relationship. Thus an atmosphere of light-heartedness prevails during the celebrations. They exchange gifts.
There is a noted ritual observed on these days. People share meat dishes with one another as a symbol of love for each other. If any person gives 10 to 12 pieces of meat to a person, this means he cares for his friendship. The receiver also reciprocates with him by giving the same number of meat pieces to him to value the relationship. They also invite all friends and relatives for love feast in their homes. Thus the festival is the season of give and take for Lothas.
The main features of the festival are the folk dances, songs and feast with foods and drinks. People celebrate in their own way by dressing up in colorful dresses. They sing and dance with great energy. They have a feeling of unity and brotherhood in their hearts and enjoy the event to their heart’s content.