Sutiya Kingdom

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The Sutiya Kingdom[1] was established by Birpal in 1187 in northeastern Assam, with the capital at Sadiya. The Sutiya are an indigenous ethnic group that spoke a Tibeto-Burman language, but now they speak Assamese language. According to tradition, Birpal at first became the chief of sixty families.

The most illustrious of the Sutiya kings was Gauri Narayan (Ratnadhwajpal), son of Birpal. He brought many other Sutiya groups into his kingdom. In 1224 Ratnadhwajpal defeated Bhadrasena, the king of Swetagiri. Then he went on to subjugate Nyayapal and marched toward Kamatapur, where he formed an alliance with the Kamata ruler by marrying a princess. Then he marched to Dhaka, and camped some distance away from the city. Though records exist of this expedition, there is no account of a war at Dhaka.

The hostilities with the Ahoms began in 1376 when the Ahom king, Sutuphaa, was killed by the Sutiya king during a friendly encounter. The simmering dispute often flared till 1522 when the Ahoms finally took Sadiya and killed the then king Nityapal. The Ahoms established their rule by instituting the position of Sadiyakhowa Gohain, the governor in charge of Sadiya. But the Sutiya had dispersed to frontier regions, and continued raids against the Ahoms. This finally stopped in 1673 when the Sutiyas finally accepted Ahom overlordship.


  1. ^ (Gait 1906:38–40). The term chutiya is an expletive in Hindi language. The tribal name is pronounced Sutiya and not Chutiya.