The Boundaries of Manipur – Naoroibam Indramani

Contd. from 13 January 2019: On 15th February, a party went across the Manipur river to try and discover if there was route to march along and to select a suitable stream up which to take the boundary. A stream called the Yangkai which flowed into the Manipur river on its right bank, about 600 yards below the mouth of the Yangdung, was chosen. It was a small stream and of no importance except that it formed part of boundary.

On 16th February, Mr.Carey, Captain Longe and the Manipur party started west on that day.

On 17th February, Lieutenant Trydell with half his men left on that day. The remainder, with half of the Manipur party and Lieutenant Baillie in command, remained in camp on the Manipur river. Lieutenant Baillie and sepoys went on shooting regularly. Due to attacked by dysentry Mr. Dent sent his two Surveyors on with the party.

The Burma escort started at 8.30 A.M. and marched west across the Manipur river and then uphill for a very steep climb of 3,108 feet in about two and half miles to the top and then along the ridge for about a quarter mile, where boundary stone No. 5 was placed at one of the headwaters of the Yangkai and the Chika stream. The former flowed west into the Manipur river. The branch of the Yangkai rose a little east of No. 5 pillar quite close to which was a small pond, the Chika, which flowed west and was lower down known as the Tui Ta rose immediately at this point. Camped on the Tui Ta, which was quite a small stream. Length of march was three and half hours, coolies were taking five hours and height was 3,900 feet.

On 18th February, marched uphill to a height of 4,800 feet and then down again to another camp on the Tui Ta. The boundary followed the course of this stream up to the camp, there was small plain three-quarter mile in lenght and quarter mile wide at the northern end of which ran a small tributary from the west. The boundary was made to take the course of this stream up to the of the hill. This small level piece of ground was known as Kungs and was covered with long reedy grass. In this valley were several fine wild apple trees which were in blossom and its height was about 3,735 feet.

On 19th February, crossing the boundary stream, the route taken proceeded up a steep hill on to the range known as Lentang. The boundary stream ran up to the highest point, which was a trangulation station 5,250 feet, called, like the range, Lentang. Here was placed No. 6 pillar. This hill was covered with very fine pone trees. There was a curious conical slab of stone about 10 feet high by 5 feet at the base, tappering off to tow at the top, near it were two stones that look as if they had been placed for seats. There was a branch road just about one mile before arriving at this site leading north to a village called Taklang inhabited by Sokte Chins. This village was visible a little further along the road, it was quite small and situated on a hill about 8 miles off. The road was regularly used by Chins and Nagas, being the route to the salt-spring at Chibu.

On 20th February, the Commission halted while parties went out to survey. The height was 2,950 feet. On 21st February, the column marched back along their old route for half a mile and then down to the Tui Vai. There was tine camping-wound on this river but there was no grass. The valley here was about quarter to half mile wide throughout and the hills on either side were small and not steep. Height of the camp was 2,285 feet.

On 22nd February, the route went south over the low hills near the right to some memorial stones. It was well about one and half yards deep and about one and half yards in diameter, with steps about 1 foot in diameter with its sides supported by sticks. The Chins took the salt water from this well. The Commission camped at the junction of the Sum Tui and the Tui Vai. It was at its junction with the Tui Vai about 12 yards wide scarce. Height was 2,305 feet.

On 23rd February, the route on that day led west across the Tui Vai and then up over some small hills. About a quarter mile from the river, on the bank, another stone was found lying on the ground, with some obliterated writing on it, near a sort of plateform made of stones. This stone was meant to represent the boundary between Lushai and Manipur, and was probably erected by the Manipuris in 1872. The route taken was made by the party and was circuitous and in places very steep, ascending 1,600 feet, dropping down 550 feet and up again 400 feet, the last two being in quarter mile each. The boundary from the mouth of the Sum Tui Nui ran up the Tui Vui, i.e. south for about 2 miles to the mouth of the Chining and then west up it to its source on a saddle on the top of a ridge over which the route ran. On this saddle at the source of the Chining which flowed east and the Salam which flowed west was placed No. 7 pillar.

On 24th February, the Commission halted while parties went out surveying.

On 25th February, marched to a camp on the Tui Mong. The road was good but in parts steep. This river, which also formed the boundary flowed south-east into the Tui Vel and joined it about 250 yards below the Salam. The valley where the camp was made was smaller than that of the Tui Vai or tui Vel. The water in the stream was now scarce, but more was obtained by digging holes. The camp was confined.

On 26th February, marched uphill along a spur and then on to the top on which was placed No. 8 pillar. The boundary ran along the Tui Mong up to this pillar and then down one of the sources of the Tangha and up a ravine to the top of a Lunglen. Height of No. 8 pillar was 4,000 feet. From here the route dropped down steeply to the Tui Kui and followed its course for about three-quarter mile. On its right bank camp was made amid fine bamboos averaging about 60 feet in height.

(1) Description of the southern boundary line and pillars :

The Boundary Commission was assembled on January 27, 1894 and it started the demarcation work of the boundary from the spot where Tinzin river flows i.e., the south-east corner of the border of Manipur. On 9th February, 1894 the party of the Boundary Commission reached Tinzin Chaung, known to the Chins as the Tui Sa, starting on the east from the point where the Tinzin Chaung enters the Kabaw valley in latitude 23° 49’30” from the hills on its west up along the course of this stream in a general north westerly direction to one of its sources called the Kenzoidung or the Kenyoidung. The Commission placed the first boundary stone at the uphill of the headwaters of the Kenyoidung and the Commission placed the 2nd boundary pillar on a knoll where the Kukio-tang and Tang join. The Tang was formerly known as Letha range which was the watershed between the Manipur and Chindwin rivers and the Manipuris called it Dimpi. These two pillars was being placed the boundary so far decided and on for 155 yards. to No.2. The magnetic bearing from No.2 to No.1 was 101 to, its position was latitude 23° 56’10”, longitude 93° 57’32”.

From the place where No.1 pillar and No.2 pillar were placed, south-west along the Tang for about 4 miles to the source of the Yangdung stream at which point selected to place No. 3 pillar. Its position was latitude 23° 56’0″ longitude 93° 54’12” on a knoll free of angle on the watershed. No. 4 pillar was 86 yards downhill. The No. 4 boundary pillar was placed at the head of the Yangdung stream. From here in a southerly direction down the Manipur river for about 600 yards, and then westward up the Yangkhai stream to its source, at which point, on a saddle on the top of the range of hill immediately to the west of the Manipur river was placed boundary pillar No. 5 in latitude 24° 0’5″ and longitude 93° 44’87”.

After camping at Tui Ta, the party crossed the boundary stream and proceeded to the range known as Lentang. The boundary stream ran up to the highest point, which was a triangulation station 5,250 ft., called like the range, Lentang, here the boundary pillar No. 6 was placed. The boundary stream flowed its course in westerly direction till its junction with the Tui Vai, which was few hundred yards south of the Chibu salt spring. From here to the south up the Tui Vai and Tui Vel for 2 miles and then westwards up the Chining stream to its source at which point was placed No. 7 pillar on a saddle on the ridge between the Tui Vai and Tui Vel at latitude 23° 57’10”, longitude 93° 33’58”, then westwards down the Salam stream to its junction with the Tui Vel, and down that river for 250 yards in a northerly direction to its junction with the Tui Mong and up that stream to its source on a knoll on which was placed No. 8 pillar. At this point rised sources of four streams-Tui Mong, Tui Lak, Tui Kui and Tangha, when down this latter stream the boundary ran for about 21/2 miles and then up a precipitous ravine to the summit of the triangulated point Lunglen.

(2) The reasons why this line was selected in preference to others :

The orders of the Government of India were that the line was to be in the latitude of Permbeton’s line and drawn so as to exclude Lenacot from Manipur – With these orders in mind, starting from Tin Zin, a river line was selected instead of a range of hills because these latter are so ill-defined in this neighbourhood. The Tui Sawas selected instead of the Tui Pu (which is probably Pemberton’s boundary, namely, the Nunsailung) because this line included to Burma the two Thado villages of Haulkan and Hinazan, which for about 40 years have payed tribute to the Kamhow tribe. From the Kengyoidung source of the Tui Sa the boundary was made to run along the Tang for about 4 miles because there are no suitable rivers till the Yangdung is reached which flows north-west into the Manipur river. Having survived at this point, some difficulty was experienced in selecting a line to the west because the large rivers all runs north and south while it was essential to the interest of Burma that the line should take as

to be contd.

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