“The Chakma’s : Origins, Settlements, and Religion during 1200 A.D.”

From the book is very clear that we (Chakma’s) have been in Assam since 1200 AD and after that we went to Burma in order to expand our territory by invading Ava, then to Chittagong Hills Track and after that we finally came back to our country(India).

The Chakma Peoples are one of the Mongolian offshoots belonging to the “TAI DYNASTY”. The Tai’s came to the Upper Assam from the “GUKKWANG VALLEY” via Burma in around 1200 AD. Sakkapha, Suhungmung etc, were our well-known Kings while we settled down in the Upper Assam (Sivsagar).We were known as Ahoms/Ashoms and after us the name of Assam has been coined. At the same time and following “Sankerdev” we became Hindus and accepted Bengali for the Royal and Official Language.

The Tai defeated the Kachari ruler of Dimapur and the ruler of Maibong. Extending our area of expedition we invaded the Akyab (Burma) and after that we conquer Ava.Chakma, Tongchongya etc are of Tai tribes and Chakma’s became the rulers of the area ranging from Rakhiang to the Ava. But after sometime the King of Arracanese vanquished the invading Tais and took us for his captive. And under such circumstances we forced to embraces/accept Buddhism’s as our religion.Though we couldn’t forget how much we used to enjoy our festive days like Bihu etc , yet we were debarred from returning to our home-land , Upper Assam. Since we were not allowed to come back to our home-land then some of our Chakma got married with Mogh (Murmur) girls and started our new settlement there.

In 1414 A.D. Jalal-ud-din, Wazir (Nawab) of Bengal paid a visit to Mahekgiri, the Chakma ruler of Rakhiang (Araccan). In 1666 A.D. Dhabana, Chakma ruler, surrendered to the Muslim General Shayestha Khan. Hence reaching the reconciliation the whole of Chittagong Hills Track excepting the Chittagong town and small patches of reserved land along Nizampur Road was given back to “Dhabana” by the Mughal Ruler. This area had been claimed by the Chakma’s, Tuikuk and Bengali peoples. In 1715 A.D. the Mughal Governor Mir Juml empowered the Chakma ruler Fatesh Khan to exact taxes on his subjects.

Again Tuikuk, Murung and Muro came to the Chittagong Hills Track via Tripura around 1500 A.D. to escaped from the strong hands of the Tais who successively attacked on “Cacharis”. On the other hand the Mogh, Khiang, and Khumi reached Araccan and Chittagong Hills Track from Burma in around 800 A.D. The enmity that arouse between the Sailos on one side and the Palian, Thangluah, Rivung , Rokhum and Zadeng on the other side resulted emigration a large number of Lusei people to the Chittagong Hills Track from the Lusei Hill (Mizoram) in around 1756 A.D.
Again about 1480 A.D. Bawm, Tlanglau, Pangkhua immigrated to the area under the leadership of the grandfather of Vanhnuaithlirha.

Chakma,s in Mizoram with valid passes:

So far as the authentic record is concerned the Chakma’s who first came into Mizoram were those who had been brought in by Lt Col Tom Lewin and his party. We were engaged for various works like carrying goods, clearing forest for footpath. Due to close and strict observance of the North-East Bengal Frontier Act “No Chakma had entered Mizoram without having proper and valid pass for entry during the British Rule”.

After India got her independence those of us who had permanently settled in Mizoram were given the right to vote . However,in the first District Council Election in Mizoram (1952) no Chakma was elected to represent the tribe in the Council. In the election Mr Tuikhurliana has been elected from “Chawngte -Tlabung Constituency”. Hence the Government of Assam has chosen “Mr Medhi Chakma” as “Nominated Member” for representing the Chakma peoples. In 1957 election Mr Medhi Chakma was elected from “Tlabung Constituency” as the area was dominated by the Chakma’s. In the mean time Chakma (We) became undisputed majority in the Uiphum range which has been clearly learned since the creation of Pawi-Lakher Regional Council.We were having regular Regional Council Member from among ourselves especially from this Uiphum range.

The elected Chakma often hold important position and assignments in the Regional Council. Henceforth, the Chakma’s were even known by the commoners living in Pawi-Lakher Region. With the implementation of the North-Eastern Reorganization Act in 1971 the Pawi-Lakher Region was divided into three Districts namely —

1. Pawi Autonomous District
2. Lakher Autonomous District
3. Chakma Autonomous District

As a result of this the cases and affairs relating to Village Council (Administration), Local Administration, etc of the District have been dealt with by the Chakma Autonomous District Council.

Reference: Chakma’s Settlement in Mizoram by C. Chawngkunga .

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