Art & Culture Minority Issues

Chin-Kuki-Zo Tribes: The Background of Ethnic Conflict in Manipur

The Manipur Chief Minister resorted to social media to charge a “unnatural growth” in the population of the state’s “Chin-Kuki-Zo” tribes, posing a perceived danger to indigenous communities and national security. 

About Chin-Kuki-Zo Tribes

Chin TribeKuki TribeZo Tribe
Ethnic CompositionMajor ethnic group in Myanmar’s Chin State, recognised for its distinct culture and language.Heterogeneous group in Northeast India, known for its various subtribes.A diverse ethnic group in Northeast India, Myanmar, and portions of Bangladesh.
Geographical DistributionPrimarily in Myanmar’s Chin State, with considerable numbers in Indian states such as Mizoram.Located primarily in Northeast India, but also in Chin State, Myanmar.It lives in northeast India, specifically Mizoram and Manipur, as well as sections of Myanmar and Bangladesh.
LanguageThe Chin language belongs to the Kuki-Chin subgroup of the Tibeto-Burman family.Kuki-Chin languages include several dialects with unique characteristics.Mizo-Kuki-Chin languages are various dialects within the Tibeto-Burman family.
Culture and TraditionsVibrant music, dancing, and festivals commemorate Chin National Day.Rich oral traditions and folk music are celebrated, as are festivals such as Chavang Kut.Chapchar Kut and Mim Kut are celebrated via rich oral literature and spectacular festivals.
LivelihoodPreviously engaged subsistence agriculture; now has varied livelihoods.Historically practiced shifting (Jhum) agriculture; presently involved in a variety of activities.Historically, shifting (Jhum) agriculture was used; today, multiple livelihood patterns exist.
ReligionPredominantly Christian, with some traditional animistic beliefs.Predominantly Christian, with old animistic customs.The predominant religion is Christianity, with traces of traditional traditions.
Socio-Political OrganizationAdvocates for cultural identity and rights, such as the Chin National Front.Promotes Kuki identity through active organisations such as the Kuki National Organisation.Promotes Zo identity, such as Zomi Council and Mizo Zirlai Pawl.

Issues with migration

Manipur’s Chin-Kuki-Zo tribes contribute to the state’s strife for a variety of reasons. 

  • Various tribal tribes have long demanded more recognition and autonomy for their ethnic identity in Manipur.
  • The Chin-Kuki-Zo tribes of Manipur have substantial land ownership and control difficulties. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

And get notified everytime we publish a new blog post.