Mai Ko Som Fai
Mai Ko Som Fai, the traditional religious festival of Tai community of Theravada Buddhist religion was observed with much enthusiasm at Kongmu Kham, Noi Chenam on January 31. Great numbers of devotees from neighbouring places and guest from Thailand join the celebration with great festivity at the Temple premises. The Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein also joined in the festivity and set on fire the stack of firewood early in the morning after observing religious customs and traditions.
This festival offered the devotees a primetime entertainment moreover this occasion also marked the end of the winter season and the beginning of the summer of the lunar year.
Mai-Ko-Som-Fai festival is a ritual ceremony held on the full moon day of Magha connected with the offering of fire. The traditional festival of Mai-Ko-Som-Fai holds special significance for all the followers of Buddhism as it is believed that Gautama Buddha pronounced his impending death on this day. This festival is celebrated with great solemnity paying homage to the momentous events of the last years of the Buddha's life. The word Mai-Ku-Som-Fai which is in Tai Khampti language means to set fire a stack of firewood.
A popular local dish of the Tai community known as Khao Ya-Ku or Khao Nam Pa, a mixture of rice, sesame seeds, yam, leafy vegetables, nuts and condiments is prepared for a community feast during this festival is yet another attraction of this celebration.
Performing rituals of Uposatha (observance day) and observance of the Pancha Silas (Five Precepts) by the Buddhist layman and ordained members of the Sangha were some other highlights of the festival.
On the momentous occasion, DCM Mein released the first edition of Tai Khamti Primer Grade-I published by Tai Khamti Heritage & Literary Society (TKHLS) in collaboration with Tai Khamti Singpho Council (TKSC), which has been brought out with an aim to jealously protect, preserve and promote the “vanishing” language and literature of the Tai Khamti community. He also released the Tai Khamti translated version of Daivadasakam, a 10 verses prayer which has been rendered in 100 languages and is “set” to enter into the Guinness Book of World Records. Tai Khamti and Tai Phake fonts were also released by him.