Te_44Te_44a

Te_44b

HMA/TE/TIB/44

Date: Earth Dragon year, 10th month, 20th day, Sunday (1928)
Lines: 11
Script: ’khyug ma tshugs

Transliteration

  1. sa drugs zla ba 10 pa’i tshes 26 res za 1 la thags kha dhar col pa rtsos pa’i bster gen migs dmar dang (kun dga’) rigs dzin rtsos gen tshe dbang brten ’dzin rtsos pa’i brter lung pa
    ’drags zhan lhan ’rgyad kha thun tshigs drub
  2. slo slang rgyur med gi gen ’rgya (yi ge) bris ’don la | rang yul ’drags zhan rnam nas | tshugs lung pa dang rtses las lung pa dang gyis slong lung pa dang tshogs rnam san tsham ’bud nas dngul bru rnam kyid sa med pa chod pa yin |
  3. gal srid phyugs po dbul po ’drags zhan su zhigs gi am 1 dang ’bru zo gang dhal nas kyid pa ’byung tshe bha dngul 100 ’rgya dang | dbul por rnams san tsham dhal nas tshugs rtses les gi ling yul 3 la las rton las tshem so ’dugs las
  4. ga la ’ang ’dro sa med pa chod pa yin | su zhig gi gen rgya gal nas las la dro pa bshar tshe bha gong sal nang zhin chod pa yin | yang mo han sman su bha la tshong pa rnam nas yul ’am bhid rung tsha rter sa med pa chod yin yang lung
  5. mi su zhigs gi tsha rter pa byung na bha gong sal nang zhin zhus phran med pa brton rgyu chod pa yin | gong ’don ’de la mi gal sham sal | (signatures follow)

***
11. rtags lha rtags | rter lung mi kye pho {spy}mo pho rang mo rang spyi lags kor gi rtags | kyid kyab srin dul rtags | tshe ring yang phel rtags |

Summary
An agreement, set down in writing so that there should be no change in the resolution reached as a result of a general consensus among the people of Te, both mighty and weak, who are led by their headmen Mingmar, Kun dga’ rig ’dzin and Tshe dbang bstan ’dzin, who are themselves led by the secretary (khar dar < Nep. kharidār) Col pa of Thak. It has been decided that members of our community, both mighty and weak, shall not lend money or grain to Tshug, Tsele, Gelung or beyond the boundary to Tshognam. It has been further decided that:

  • if anyone, whether rich or poor, mighty or weak, should violate this [agreement] by lending [as much as] one half-rupee or one zo ba of grain there will be a fine of 100 rupees;
  • poor people may not cross the Tshognam border to do any sewing work or labour in any of the three villages of Tshug, Tsele or Gelung.

It has been decided that if anyone does go to work in violation of this written agreement, the fine shall be as stated above.
Furthermore, it has been decided that traders shall not give salt either outside or inside the village, to Mohanman Subba, and that anyone who does give salt shall be fined as stated above without any excuses.
The document is signed by one representative of each of the 48 estates of Te and the three headmen.The text concludes by stating that the pho rang mo rang—subsidiary households— are included in this agreement by virtue of the paper being “circulated from hand to hand” (lags kor < lag skor) and signed on their behalf by one male and one female representative.

Commentary
The Thakali subba Mohanman Serchan held the salt monopoly until 1928, and later became the Warden (spyi khyab) of southern Baragaon (see Introduction). The nature of the injunction against giving Mohanman salt is not clear, but may be connected with the contract for the exploitation of the Tshaurong salina, near Te, that Mohanman secured around this time (see HMA/Te/Tib/01, commentary). The context of this document can only be understood from Nepali documents of the same period in Te’s archive: a protracted dispute between Te and Gelung over an area of pastureland called Ngolak that straddles the boundaries of these two villages as well as those of Tshug and Tangkya. For a summary of the dispute, see The Navel of the Demoness, Chapter 3. The dispute was eventually settled around 1932. The secretary (or clerk) Colpa is presumably an influential Thakali who was supporting the Tepas against Mohanman. A Thakali named Colpa from the settlement of Taglung is known to have been a contestant for the customs contract that was secured by the Serchan family in 1860, but this clearly cannot be the same individual.