Purum is a Kuki-Chin language spoken in the Kangpokpi District of Manipur (the then Senapati District). Because of a rapid fall in the population, intermarriage
with speakers of other languages and language contact with the dominant Manipuri language, the Kuki-Chin language is now a critically endangered language. The
area of study is presently confined only to the Purum Likli village, which is 40Kms away from Imphal and is under the Saikul sub-division of the Kangpokpi District.
According to the Manipur Census 2001, the total population of Purum was 571, but the figure has dropped in the recent times as claimed by the local villagers.
The Purum Khullen village has a mixed population of Kom and Purum speakers and the many Purum speakers in this village are now shifting to the Kom language. The
other languages that are spoken in this area are Kuki, Nepali, and Manipuri. Manipuri is now the most dominant language that speakers in this area are now shifting
to for all purposes. G.A. Grierson (1908) had included Purum in the Old Kuki-Naga group whereas; Robert Shafer (1974) classified it under the Old Kuki branch of
the Kukish section of the Burmic Division. The traditional occupation of the Purum community is Jhum cultivation and rearing domestic animals. The literacy rate
of the community is 84.62% against the 76.94% of Manipur. In Purum Likli village, male literacy stands at 89.77%, while the female literacy rate is 80.37%. The
entire community of Purum Likli has converted to Christianity.
Data collected from the 3 field trips:
2500 words; 250 sentences; 1 story. Word sound segmentation and the phoneme inventory are completed.
View of Purum Likli Village
Field Assistant with Informants