For those living in mainland India, I am about to narrate a true story that has rarely been shared candidly which could cause discomfort to many, and sound unpalatable to others…yet truth must prevail at some point. Let me therefore try and honestly recount the harsh historical realities in perspective.
Belho’s collection is possibly the largest private collection of Naga artifacts. “It started with my father, late. Raneilie Belho, who was a collector of all kinds of stuff” he says. “His collections included some rare memorabilia from the Second World War, which he had to eventually surrender to the then Deputy Commissioner when Nagaland got its statehood. My father was also an artist himself. He had a vast interest in woodcarvings. In his later years, we set up a small art gallery in our front yard where a few wood and metal-carving artists worked under his supervision. What was heartening is that, even with a modest gallery, Government officials would regularly visit with state guests’.