Various theories about the migration of the Lothas along with the other Naga tribes has been put forwarded by various important Scholars of the past and the present, yet it has been all based on verbal explanations that has been passed on from one generation to another rather than expressed in written manuscripts and since we don’t have the records, it is our part to create one, based on what our ancestors, scholars, researchers and elders are putting into perspective.
These theories might not be cent percent precise but we can’t overlook them as unsubstantiated because if we do, then our history would be lost and thereon our ethnicity and civilization. Being a Lotha, one should preserve what we have today so that the younger generations ahead of us will keep our history alive and the Lothas as a whole would remain united and bonded by the culture and history that we leave behind.
THEORIES OF MIGRATION :
1. THE LOTHAS MIGRATED FROM CHINA
The Lothas started moving out from Eastern part of China , passing through Malaysia, Indonesia and Burma enroute. After many long years of movement, they reached a place called ‘ Khezakhenoma’ located between Manipur and Chakesang ( The present day Phek), where they settled for a short period of time. From Khezakhenoma they moved towards the present day settlement of the Lothas (Wokha) where they finally settled.
Courtesy : Shri HOKISHE SEMA, Former Governor
“ The Emergence of Nagaland”
2. THE LOTHAS MIGRATED FROM MANCHURIA
The Lothas migrated form Manchuria, passing through the foothills of the Himalayas and reached
Manipur via Burma. From Manipur, they moved out and settled at the present day place.
Courtesy : Mr. T. Phillips
“Growth of Baptist Churches in Nagaland”
3. THE LOTHAS MIGRATED FROM LENKA
A. The Lothas ancestors lived in a place called Lenka, situated east of Naga (Nagaland). During the course of migration the lothas has been split into two groups. The first group after reaching the Brahmaputra Valley settled there and the second group went towards the mountaineous region of the present day Nagaland.
B. The Lothas, Sangtams, Rengmas and the Sumis have a common ancestor and had dwelled mutually as one in their past. But at some stage in their course of migration from Lenka, the Sangtams decided to go separate ways from a place called Mao.
C. The Lothas along with the other Naga tribes reached Kohima and they settled at a place called Lezama. This is the place where the semas parted with the other Naga tribes and the Lothas with the Rengmas settled at a hill called Themoketsa ( the Lothas called this place Honoyonton). Here the rengmas parted ways from the lothas.
One group of lothas went towards Doyang passing through villages like Shaki and Phiro. The other group moved towards the hilly region of the present Wokha and settled at a place called Longchum,( near Niroyo Village).
Courtesy: J P Mills
MIGRATION STRUCTURE :
1. MANCHURIA- MONGOLIA- CHINA- LENKA
2. LENKA- KONGO (HIMALAYAS) WEST BENGAL ( Via the Kikho river, presently called Bramaputra) – SINGAPORE- THAILAND – BURMA – MANIPUR
3. MANIPUR- SUNGMAE – SUPOKYANPHITSULONG (KHEZAKHENOMA)-
MORAKYANKEY-MAO ( Here the Sangtams parted with the other Naga tribes)
4. MAO-KOHIMA-LEZEMA(Here the sumis parted with the Lothas and the Rengmas)
NERHEMA- – CHECHEMA- TERKHONYU (Honoyonton by the Lothas)
(Here the Rengmas parted with the Lothas)
THE LOTHAS IN THE FINAL STAGE OF MIGRATION SPLIT UP INTO TWO GROUPS,
viz., 1. PHIRO (forms the LOWER RANGE & MIDDLE RANGE )
2. TIYI LONGCHUM (forms the UPPER RANGE)