Pángpat (Wild Cotton) found in Hmar Hills

Pangpat-Hmar

Pángpat comes from two Hmar words, ‘Pang’ which is the name of a tree and ‘Pat’ meaning cotton. Pángpat is also sometimes referred to as Patpui. It is said that the Hmar village of Patpuihmun in Manipur got its name from this wild cotton tree because there used to a lot of such trees within the village areas.

A freshly extracted ‘Pángpat’ from its cover is silky and soft – best for pillows. Until recently, it used to be the only material for making quilts and pillows by the Hmar community living in the Hmar Hills of North East India. However, the introduction of another cotton plant in the 70s and the rampant cutting down of such trees by villagers for various reasons have resulted in Pángpat becoming a rare commodity these days. One can still find a few wild cotton trees here and there in Hmar Hills, but few people care to harvest the cotton now.

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