A trek to the Mythical world of Idu-Mishmi :Life After Death
By Jon Pebi Tato
ROING: The team of expedition successfully concluded one of the state's toughest journeys to a place, far away in the Dibang Valley District, The team comprised of the Indian Army Jawans and few Civilians. The expedition trek to one of the Mythical worlds of the Idu-Mishmi tribe has now become closer to the real world. The team accomplished the trek within the span of two weeks from 1st September to 17th September. While others Mundivagant over social media, the team cracks the hard nut in their own indigenous land leaving no stone unturned.
Why on News?
Athu-Popu has always been one of the most mysterious topics within the folktales and beliefs of Idu-Mishmi's mythical world. The journey had to be accomplished one or another day. One of the prominent lady from the state Mrs. Tine Mena who is also the state's first woman Everester participated in the trek along with the team.
Tine Mena on 9 May 2011 became the first woman from Northeast India & Arunachalee woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest. The Team SPACE while on the conversation with the Lady Everester was humbly welcomed and given all the information required.
The Legend of Athu-Popu
ATHU-POPU, The sacred place for the Idu (Mishmi) tribe of Arunachal Pradesh. The Idu (Mishmi) tribe believes in life after death, according to their mythology, after death the soul of a person makes a journey guided by their shaman to attain the new life and ATHU-POPU is the place where the departed soul takes rest in their journey towards the eternity. At this sacred place, a big mass of stone stands alone, and it is believed that the priest SINERWU once cried on this scared stone on getting the news of his mother’s death. The stone still bears the impression of the priest’s palms and his tears, as believed. There is also a wild paddy field near ATHU-POPU, believed to be cultivated by the departed souls on their onward journey.
Athu Popu is located approximately 290 kms from Roing and holds a very significant place in local Idu Mishmi culture. It is located 3500 meters above sea level at Kayala Pass in the Indo-China border with approximately 120 Kms from Maliney. Maliney is the last village with a motorable road with a distance of about 200Kms from Roing the headquarter of Lower Dibang Valley.
Life after Death: A journey to the Mythical world
The Everester mentioned her trek to the mythical world as a journey to Life after Death, The phrase has a root in the mythical tales of the Idu-Mishmi.
The team of the Indian Army and the civilians started their expedition on 1st September 2021.
The space media has no ownership on the photographs, the permission has been granted by the Everester Tine Mena, thus The Mishmi Hills Trekking company owns the copyrights©
The joint trekking
team of the Fifth Gurkha Regiment and members of the local Idu Mishmi
community was flagged off by the Deputy Commissioner of Dibang Valley Minga Sherpa
and CDR 117 Mountain Brigade, Brigadier Deepak Gau in Anini on 1st September 2021.
The team left for the Athu-Popu on 3rd September 2021 with full enthusiasm. With Boots on their feet, walking sticks in their hand, hats over the head, and few bags filled with items needed for the journey the team set off for the journey to the mythical world of Athu-Popu.
The Senior members of the team namely Buge Mena and Risa Miso lead the way while the rest followed vivaciously. Crossing the tropicals jungles and fresh streams the team kept walking. The photographs below shows how Mena and Miso led the team strenuously.
The Team walked arduously for several hours and crossed the final hanging bridge before camping at Awali.
The first camp was set up at Awali.