African Journal of
Plant Science

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Plant Sci.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0824
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJPS
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 780

Full Length Research Paper

Sacred groves and sacred plants of the Dimasas of North Cachar Hills of Northeast India

Pramod Medhi1* and Sachin Kumar Borthakur2
  1Department of Botany, Haflong Government College, Haflong-788819, Assam, India.   2Department of Botany, Gauhati University, Guwahati-781014, Assam, India.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 13 November 2012
  •  Published: 28 February 2013


The present paper deals with the rediscovery of 12 sacred groves, known as Dikhos, preserved by the Dimasa community of North Cachar Hills district recently renamed as Dima Hasao district of Assam, India. Located strategically, these sacred groves provide several important ecological services to the people of the district. In addition to the sacred groves the plants considered to be sacred by them are also included. Out of the 34 plant species considered to be sacred by the Dimasas, 13 species are related to worshiping, 21 species involved in naming of areas/villages and eight species are associated with the naming of the Clans (Sengphong that is, male clans and Jaddi/Zaluk that is, female clans). However, some of the species/rice landraces have been associated with more than one ways. The Dimasas, also known as Dimasa Kacharies, constitute the largest ethnic group in North Cachar Hills and linguistically belongs to the Tibeto-Burman group.


Key words: Phytoresources, sacred groves, sacred plants, Dimasas, North Cachar Hills, India.