This article has been extracted from
THE IMPERIAL GAZETTEER OF INDIA , 1908.
OXFORD, AT THE CLARENDON PRESS.
Note: National, provincial and district boundaries have changed considerably since 1908. Typically, old states, ‘divisions’ and districts have been broken into smaller units, and many tahsils upgraded to districts. Some units have since been renamed. Therefore, this article is being posted mainly for its historical value.
(Burmese, Legya). — A large State in the eastern division of the Southern Shan States, Burma, lying between 20° 47' and 21° 36' N. and 97° 19' and 98° q' E., with an area of 1,433 square miles. It is bounded on the north by Mongkiing and Mongnawng ; on the east by Mongnawng and Mongnai ; on the south by Mongnai, Mongsit, and Mongpawn ; and on the west by Mongpawn and Lawksawk. The country is hilly and broken, the Nam Teng, an important affluent of the Salween, running north and south through the centre of the State. The early annals of Laihka are largely legendary. Its history in the years following the annexation of Upper Burma is briefly referred to in the article on the Southern Shan States. The country to the east of the Nam Teng is only now gradually recovering from the ravages caused by the troops of the Linbin confederacy in 1886.
The greater part of the rice cultivation of the State is low-lying, and irrigated by the Nam Teng and Nam Pawn and their tributaries. The Taungthus work taiingyas on the hills in the south-west of the State, and small gardens near their villages. Laihka is chiefly noted for its ironwork. Iron ore is found in the south-west corner near Panglong, where it is worked into all kinds of domestic and agricultural implements. The population, which in 1881 was estimated at 30,000, had been reduced by 1887, in consequence of the attacks of the Linbin confederacy, to something like 100.
In 1891 it was estimated at about 9,000, and in 1901 was found to be 25,811, or almost what it was before annexation. Of the total in 1901, 21,197 were returned as speaking Shan, 1,877 Taungthu, 1,532 Palaung, and 1,008 Yin. The State contains 531 villages, the Sawbwa having his head-quarters at Laihka near the Nam Teng, an old fortified post of some importance, with a population in 1901 of 1,150. The head-quarters of the Assistant Superintendent in charge of the eastern division are at Loilem near the Taunggyi-Kengtung road. The revenue in 1903-4 amounted to Rs. 24,000 (mainly from thathameda) ; and the chief items of ex- penditure were Rs. 10,000 tribute to the British Government, Rs. 6,000 spent on officials' salaries and administration charges, Rs. 6,000 paid into the privy purse, and Rs. 2,000 devoted to public works. |