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tv   Doc Film - Absurdistan - Indias Crazy Northeast  Deutsche Welle  October 2, 2017 9:30am-10:00am CEST

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maybe the stories they're in will get a rewrite. of the story of the russian revolution. from the perspective of writers thinkers and i want to guard a state. what did it feel like to live in times of revolution and the people. and to the russian art revolutionaries. nineteen seventeen the reluctant starting october twenty fifth t w. it's one of the most fascinating and all known regions on earth for a long time it was sealed off from the rest of the world plagued by rebellions on terror and foreign is needed special permits to end to the region.
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but now peace is gradually returning and visitors are welcome again to a place where contrasting cultures collide sometimes with observed consequences. it's a world with a huge diversity of animal life breathtakingly beautiful landscape and numerous idiosyncrasies. the north east is linked to the rest of india via a narrow corridor and only because the former british colonial rule has wanted it that way it was a purely political decision. this region of india has more in common with its
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neighbors bhutan china myanmar and bangladesh. the facial features of the people for example. you know call us chinese and they're costing. you know that the way to their attitude was are a little bit different this young woman lives in one of the seven northeastern states also known as the seven sisters and together they form an area slightly smaller than germany with a population of around fifty million people around the smallest state is home to around one million most of the inhabitants belong to the mizo ethnic group they prefer to live soley amongst themselves it didn't work out you know so we have the option of joining me in mar and india that's the only option we have if we have we would have an option too and that too distinguishes them from the rest of india which is dominated by hinduism and the neighboring countries where buddhism and
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islam a more prevalent. one of the people here is the chief minister of ms around once he led a violent rebellion for an independent state now he is a man of peace he and the other mizo people accept the central indian government as long as it in turn respects their culture and faith there are more than two hundred different tribes all with their own languages and traditions among the other major tribes here other nagas in the state of nagaland. they to attend church on sundays namely the baptist church the naga people have been baptist since their ancestors came into contact with american missionaries the nagas take their faith seriously just like they took their natural religion and customs in the past some of those customs were very bloodthirsty such as head hunting quite literally.
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the old now goes up proud to call themselves the last living head hunters it's been more than sixty years since and his fellow fighters regularly attacked neighboring villages and returned with severed heads. and do i regret it i know and that's just what it was like our enemies qatar hats off to if they got their hands on us. we did it to demonstrate our strength from. that one tattoo for every three heads. has several including on his face. his wife i'm not remembers those times well and how she trembled when her husband went off to fight him and now i'm glad i was always extremely relieved
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when my husband returned with the other five times and they carried the heads of their enemies and trophies and afterwards we had large celebrations with the village chief. this is the current village chief he only knows about this headhunting tradition from stories he inherited the job of chief from his father nothing happens in the village without his consent he's advised by the village elders that's one of the customs that survived just like the chiefs favorite hobby smoking opium that's not allowed in india and isn't exactly christian either but never mind. india india is the country we belong to we have a different identity. we feel like. we speak our own language.
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we have our own customs our own history and we have no grounds to be ashamed of that. and then the chief leads us to the edge of the village to show was the grisly legacy of his ancestors. below the tree tops there's a kind of mass grave it's impossible to say whether the skulls are those of enemies or their own people. chris sharon number one question. it was the custom at the time to leave the bodies out in the wind. usually below tree. we only learn to bury our dead and when we became christians. they look. at them and. it took some time until our zing in the other naga has learned to
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forego violence after the end of british colonial rule they fought for their own state they achieved partial independence nagaland as a federal state within india now there's peace but other parts of northeast india are anything but i do like. money poor a neighboring state is in crisis it too is home to many nagas but they are in the minority here they're fighting for more rights the indian security forces are fighting back these confrontations often end with fay tallaght is. a memorial service for eight victims naggers who were killed during demonstrations and are now honored as martyrs their coffins have been on public display for five hundred and forty nine days.
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so my nephew and others took to the street to protest against an unjust law. the police opened fire and shot and for them it is. the signs read stop discrimination the nodders are protesting against a law that curtails their old property rights. at least the protests now while noisy remain peaceful the music played here is very different. is another state in the northeast there was unrest here too but it is being overcome not least thanks to this group there most likely india's best known classical music ensemble on their way to rehearsal they want to create peace through music in the beginning i did it more for therapy. i felt it was good for
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the young people who were involved to get out of this hole darkness that was. and come into something beautiful like creating music. that was fifteen years ago choirmaster neil had just returned from studying in england when he found his home in a state of near civil war but the idea of starting a chamber choir at just that time was not that far fetched. it's very much ingrained in us. for example i grew up being exposed to music. when i was in grade. and began singing in school in church so so that i think it's the same for everyone here in this predominately hindu. and when you look at the culture of. hindu culture is they don't have the singing culture of
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a christian community which is you go to church and that's where you are you saying you know even the american singers most of them started into. soprano every issue is one of the bass but nobody here has as and graces although the choir has won many awards including first prize on the television show india's super talent performances with cheering fans and big orchestras followed. to round off the choir rehearses a new composition a mix of indian film music classical music and pop as if to show that contrasts can also result in harmony and no more summits in.
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the neighboring village also has western influences to get there we have to cross this bridge it's made of the roots of huge rubber trees the locals call it the living bridge nobody quite knows how old it is probably way over two hundred years it's unlikely though it'll last that long again the number of tourists crossing it is growing all the time. they're on their way to a difference even bigger attraction to be found in the middle of the rainforest close to the border with bangladesh. the cleanest village not just in india but in the whole of asia. a major travel magazine gave mali known this title what's striking about the place is what's absent there's no garbage lying around. instead there are many trash baskets
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. the most important mission for the five hundred residents is to keep their village clean. we are out every day to clean the streets the tourists create the most dirt they carelessly throw their plastic away we were raised very different like. you haven't quite yet they're proud of their squeaky clean image garbage free streets aren't exactly something india is known for what's the difference in mali non tourist guide ricky has answers even the youngest in mali known learn where to put garbage and when not we start from school and then we stop at home and then in the church the user teachers. like even the small kids here. they have to take a spontaneity since we are very small every like one plastic troll in the ground
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even the elder will come to slap us. the people of mali known don't want to lose their title there's competition from surrounding villages they too are paying more and more attention to cleanliness. the name of the state of means land where the clouds live but mega lion has another unofficial soubriquet the land of women because the kazi tribe which is dominant here values women more than men. miles in ram is one of the many villages where women rule the roost it's also the wettest village in the world it has the greatest amount of precipitation. but it's currently the dry season there's dry straw outside the houses it's made into brooms
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it's a booming business in this area and it's entirely in the hands of women. they are in charge of property in the kazi tribe and they pass it on to their daughters when qazi women marry their husbands move in with them their children get the woman surname. i think it's logical women carry children around for nine months so they should have our name i think it's good that we have the say. but not when it comes to politics that's men's work even among the kazi everywhere else the men play a subordinate role in public life. some work on the fields or they work in areas requiring a lot of physical strength but otherwise i don't know. that
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. the parents tend to want girls. completely the opposite of the rest of india where female fetuses are often aborted because of their sex. that it would be unthinkable among the kazi. they care a lot about educating their daughters. what happens if a cause a woman marries a man from a different tribe. now that i did. then he should still take my name and accept that my daughter will inherit everything in the future and i wouldn't accept anything else. in the larger kasi towns there are now men protesting against this but here in this village there's no sign of protest the men and these teenagers have accepted that they play
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second fiddle. they're. already sisters introduce this system here it's just how until this man. but because the men aren't blindly obedient to their women. i'm divorced my wife didn't have children so i left her. life isn't easy for kasi women either the monsoon rains are around the corner then the village will flood when the water recedes they'll be a lot of repair work. the women in northeast india have to be robust not least in the largest state in the northeast. she's robust in quite a bizarre way an undated daughter is the hottest woman in the world the chili queen as she calls herself because she holds the world record in eating spicy food she
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has no problem chewing up the hottest chillies. she likes to show her visitors her certificates and video footage of her most spectacular stunts. here she can be seen on british television eating fifty chiles and rubbing another twenty five in her eyes. the result is cult status not hospitalisation. how does she do it. when i was five i got an inflamed tongue my mother heard somewhere that chilies would help so she rubbed them on my tongue for days since then i've been immune to the spice. and indeed to took the world record with a chilly variety that only grows in northeast india and was considered the hottest of them all until recently the boot. is five hundred times as hot as tabasco
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sauce growers like these two men like this chili plant but they're also in all of it. you know somebody. it is so hard it goes is also run away from you have it. while the ghost chili is still an insider tip in the rest of the world there's one plant from asylum that is popular around the globe the tea plant whose leaves are popular the world over the hot and humid climate is ideal for this plant but strenuous for the millions working on the plantations. t. workers are demonstrating at the side of the street for higher wages their own hunger strike inspired by peace campaigner mahatma gandhi one of them is deepak
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mondal a social worker and the son of tea workers. the company. makes the money government itself. handling like twenty got in but those people having just then these people who are working on. the workers go out onto the fields in the early morning and work hard until the afternoon they earn around fifty euros per month that's just enough for the bare minimum of food out people to want to get anything from this garden whatever this that are useless. last quality. good quality that goes from there brought for the businesses and they want. the people who they want to
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get in the good quality to even the best. most plantation workers are social outcasts their ancestors came from central india they were recruited there because the locals refused to work for these wages twenty three year old vishnu has to feed a family of five from his meager pay he's a hindu and hopes he'll be reborn into a better life. thank. you to both of you everything's great determined it's come on i can't change anything about them save me julie coeval. but vishnu and his wife have a wish that their childrens karma is better than their own. i hope they'll find a better job. one person who managed to get out is how munt his parents worked on a tea plantation to like them he works in the fresh air but his tastes of freedom
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he works in kasi ranga national park for animal lovers it's one of the most fascinating places in the whole of asia. i've always been interested in animals and that's why you're trying to become a national park guide. amount is particularly familiar with the most popular park inhabitant the indian rhino there are more of them here than anywhere else in the world the marshy grassland is ideal for them not long ago they were threatened with extinction poachers sold their homes to other countries. outside but. much is being done for their protection oh the numbers have doubled in the past twenty years to two now thousand. nat's why more and more tourists come from where you
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make a. the indian rhino is more than just a tourist attraction many people in the northeast feel a connection to these animals the director of the national park explains why. independent so they are the use i think they're starting things long. there ought to be people and that can be correlated with eastern time but i know it's not an aggressive manual but if we did it with the car we were near to the car the new research and we were able to get out. the rhino principle we won't hurt you as long as you leave us alone has been adopted by some wild groups in the northeast . where this report started it's home to one family living on the edge of a mountain village it's not just any old family it's the biggest in the world for some it's the peak of absurdity because it turns on its head much that is accepted
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in the area. as iona is having breakfast with some of his wives he has thirty nine in total and ninety four children. once grandchildren great grandchildren and spouses are counted the family has almost two hundred members. zoner sets the rotor the wives cook the daughters and daughters in law clean. the men make furniture and the profits feed the family. so i own a base is the right to take multiple wives on the bible. or that the bible says love thy neighbor and i take that very seriously i love all my wives
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that's christian and then my own. dayana sees him self as a kind of profit he says he got permission to be polygamous from god himself he assures us he hadn't intended to marry this many women he just struggles to say no . i'm all these women came to me and wanted to marry me and they proposed i couldn't reject them. what do the other villages say. some are glad that their villages achieved international fame thanks to zona. but the local clergyman aren't happy about the polygamist cult. going one out so i mean you're wondering that when i think this violates human rights particularly women's rights the government should forbid it. and indeed what psi owner
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is doing isn't allowed in india but the authorities don't want to start a battle with the family they fear an uprising they've had enough of that in the northeast. not far away in miserrimus capital people are celebrating the biggest festival of the year the spring festival it's a mix of heat and dances christian songs traditional costumes and modern technology . it is like all of north east india a world of soup and absurdities but also a world of everyday jollity. it's also a world of contradictions in the past these often lead to violence now they mostly blow over. and some.
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