Kongthong Whistling Village in Northeast India
Kongthong is a village where people usually do not use the entire tune but only whisper when they call each other in the village. However, when they are out in the fields to work, they only just use their special tune to communicate with each other, the duration of which is not more than a minute is used.
The nearest airport is Umroi Airport at Shillong. The nearest Railway head is Guwahati. From Guwahati, you have to reach Shillong either by shared sumos and car, or you can hire a cab According to the Legends, Once a man went alone in Jungle for timber, climbed a tree to get rid of the thugs who was following him then he started calling his friends by whistling and making sounds so that the goons get unaware of him. Thereupon he was rescued by his friends.
The grace of the village is under highlight of several peoples after the name quoted in the parliament when Rajya Shaba Member " Prof Rakesh Singha" toured at the village on 14 Aug 2019.
He appealed that the village to be included in intangible cultural heritage of UNESCO as he is concerned that the unique cultural practice could be disappeared if not included in Intangible Cultural Heritage of UNESCO.
ABOUT THE VILLAGE
Kongthong a small village is nestled in the Khat-ar Shnong area on way to Sohra in East Khasi Hills, district of Meghalaya 60kms to the south from Shillong in India is a must-visit for its panoramic view, unique culture and virgin beauty. There is no signboards to guide you, you will find a lack of road connectivity giving you an offroading feeling. It takes around 4 hr from Shillong to reach this place.
The village resides a population of around 650 residents, magically those 650 inhabitants have their own unique tune composed by their mother. When a person dies, the song dies. Nobody uses the same tune even after death.
They are always in touch with nature. They believe god is unseen but he is there taking care of the world. They have extreme love and respect for nature.
One more different practice of this village is earlier people here were uneducated so during those times if somebody purchased or sold their land it was difficult to keep a record of it. They used to follow a different system wherein they used to erect a stone in the presence of members of village durbar and the parties selling and buying land. The stone would stand as evidence to both the families that the land is sold to a particular family and can't be taken back. They call it 'Mausakhi' in Khasi, mau means stone and sakhi means evidence.
Apart from these practices, the village has a football pitch, a place for community gathering where they perform their festival and cultural dance. Village has no hospital or police station but a dispensary and school till grade 8. The crime rate here is 0 making it safe to live here. People here are very simple, gentle, polite, warm and extremely hospitable.
WAY OF COMMUNICATING
The village is also known as "Whistling Village" as every individual there has their unique caller tune. They call this tune "Jingrwai Lawbei" which means mother's love song. In Kongthong village, when a child is born mother hums whisper a tune for the child which they are inspired by birds. As the child grows this tune becomes his caller tune, and he is called by that tune. Also, each and other inhabitants know each other's tune.
"Jingrwai Lawbei" is like a secret code for every individual in this village which cannot be copied. If a person is somewhere far which cannot be seen with eyes, this tune is used to communicate among each other and the person understands that he is needed somewhere and responds. The person calling might have something to speak or need to come with them or they just want to know if he is there or no. Nobody can respond on behalf of anybody.
With a very practical theory that high-frequency sound travel longer distance in less time, people of Kong thong have been following this culture since decades now.
Take days out of your busy city life visit this beautiful place, living there would give you experience which no other part in the world would give you.
EXPERIENCING AT KONGTHONG
Kongthong is an amazing place. The best thing you can do here is to understand and know the villagers and their lifestyle. Listen to the people being called out by whistles.
Apart from that, being tucked away from the rest of the world, the village is untouched and pristine. You can definitely find this place to be serene and totally away from the maddening crowd of the city. Enjoy this serenity and nature around you.
You can also indulge in activities like kite flying, swimming, hiking and bird watching. Listen to Khasi fables around bonfire while enjoying Khasi dishes.
BEST TIME TO VISIT KONGTHONG WHISTELING VILLAGE
At Meghalaya, you can never actually predict the weather. But usually, October to April has clear skies and best weather. You can make a week-long plan if you want to visit the important places of Meghalaya.
Kong thong also serves as a perfect weekend destination for you.
HOW TO REACH KONGTHONG WHISTELING
From Shillong, the place is around 55 km. You can hire a car from Shillong to reach here. To reach Kong thong, you have to trek from the last point on the motor able road. The village is not connected by proper roads and can only be arrived by a 10 km trek.
Since then the practice of whistling and making sounds to communicate has been evolved. It soon became a maternal practice for mothers when they started giving distinctive sounds to their kids which becomes their identity when they grow elder.
The nearest airport is Umroi Airport at Shillong. The nearest Railway head is Guwahati. From Guwahati, you have to reach Shillong either by shared sumos and car, or you can hire a cab
According to the Legends, Once a man went alone in Jungle for timber, climbed a tree to get rid of the thugs who was following him then he started calling his friends by whistling and making sounds so that the goons get unaware of him. Thereupon he was rescued by his friends.