An Elephant on the Loom in River Island Majuli

by admin

Aparadox surfaces in a serene enclave of Majuli, the sprawling river island on the Brahmaputra in Assam. The women of the Mishing tribe, whose farms on the chaporis face relentless raids by wild elephants, weave intricate motifs of the modern-day mammoths onto gamochas. This heirloom, deeply embedded in Assam’s tradition, serves as a versatile cloth–from daily-use towels to esteemed gifts.

As wild herds frequently visit their low-lying riverbank farms, the woven designs mirror a centuries-old harmony between humanity and the island’s diverse wildlife. Nirumai Pegu and 60 fellow tribe members, predominantly weavers, cultivate vegetables and staples like paddy and mustard on these flood-prone riverbanks called chaporis, adhering to ancestral farming routines.

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