A couple of days back, a video surfaced on social media platforms that shows villagers from Nagaland pulling a heavy truck that had fallen off the main road out from the depths of the valley.
Before long, the Nagaland truck video, reportedly shot in Kutsapo village of Phek district, had spread like wildfire on social media platforms. Initially shared by MLA Mmhonlumo Kikon, it was soon able to accrue millions of views, with netizens marvelling at the show of unity by the villagers who banded together to beat the odds. It was pointed out that their show of unity rivalled ents, who are known to lift heavy objects in groups.
Shedding some more light on the incident, N. Bhavani Sri (IAS), a Sub-divisional Officer posted in the remote district, says that one should not be surprised at the communal integrity shown by the Kutsapo village residents, as it is quite common there. "Even though the video went viral on social media, it honestly does not come as much of a surprise as the community is very connected in this region. If one family is in trouble, the entire village community will pitch in to help."
According to Phek district officials, the truck, half loaded with ginger, fell around 100-120 feet off the main road on the 26th of December. There were altogether 8 people in the vehicle when it went off the road, and only the driver sustained minor injuries.
As per the villagers, the Nagaland truck went off the road as it is too narrow and can be treacherous at times. It belongs to a person from the nearby Old Phek village and was being brought to transport ginger to Dimapur. You will notice that in Phek, almost all the villages grow ginger. However, since it was a day after Christmas, and festivities were underway, an immediate attempt to pull out the vehicle from the gorge was not made.
The next few days we spent in fun, frolic, and merrymaking. During this time, a football tournament was also held in the village. Immediately after its end, however, the villagers got down to work.
The ginger owners from the village recovered their respective sacks from the truck, making it a bit lighter ahead of the 'rescue mission'. Next, announcements were blared in the microphone, urging able-bodied youths aged above 18 to volunteer for the mission.
The VCC then convened a meeting to figure out a rescue plan. As per the plan that was hatched, the Naga villagers prepared 4 wild heavy ropes weighing 100 kilos and tied them to several points on the truck. Next, they cleared the jungle area to make their task a bit easier.
On January 8, the villagers of Kutsapo village prayed collectively for a miracle and the rest, as they say, is history.
"The villagers said they took only 30 minutes to pull out the gargantuan vehicle; of course, this was made possible by the incredible unity and crowd mobilization in the village," Bhavani said.
Inside Northeast was also informed that Kutsapo happens to be the first village in Nagaland where a Village Development Board (VDBs), first conceptualized by former Chief Secretary and Padma Shri awardee A M Gokhale, was set up. It also happens to be the first that has captured the nation's attention with its unique show of unity in adversity.
By: Rana Pratap Saikia
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