Shillong: Reopen for tourists on the 1st of September, after a long closure because of the pandemic, Meghalaya tourism has a reason to cheer. Meghalaya's iconic Kongthong village in East Khasi Hills district, popularly known as the 'Whistling Village', has been nominated for the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) 'Best Tourism Village' award along with two other villages in the country.
Taking to Twitter, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma announced, "Meghalaya's whistling village Kongthong is selected for entry to the UNWTO World Tourism Organization' Best Tourism Village' along with 2 other villages in the country."
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also congratulated the Meghalaya Chief Minister for the achievement. Sitharaman informed on Twitter that in Kongthong village, people compose a tune for calling a person instead of names.
"Congratulations Meghalaya on Kongthong being selected 'Best Tourism Village". @SangmaConrad. The village in which people compose a tune for calling a person in the place of names!" Sitharaman tweeted.
Traditionally, in the Kongthong village, every time a baby is born, the mother composes a lullaby for the newborn, giving them a unique identity instead of their regular names.
In fact, every resident of Kongthong village is assigned two names, a regular one and a tune name. The tune names are called 'jingrwai Iawbei' in the village.
The village has a population of around 700 and has one school for kids. In 2019, Rajya Sabha MP from Bihar Rakesh Sinha adopted the village and had suggested a UNESCO tag for the village.
The two other villages that have been nominated for UNWTO 'Best Tourism Villages' award include Pochampally in Telangana and Ladhpura Khas in Madhya Pradesh.