Indian is the Land of over 500 tribes, consisting of 9% of the total population. Linguistically the tribes of India are broadly classified into four categories, namely Indo – Aryans, Dravidians, Tibeto-Burmese &Austric. There are some four hundred tribal languages, which mean that most of the Tribes have their own languages. However in majority cases, these languages are unwritten ones. The major portion of tribal habitat is hilly and forested. Tribal villages are generally found in areas away from the alluvial plains close to rivers or streams. Most villages are ethnic in composition and smaller in size. Considering the general features of their Eco-system, Traditional economy, supernatural beliefs and practices, the tribes can be classified into many sub groups.
North East Tribes
-India’s Northeast region is an untouched territory, which is yet not explored completely. Decorated with majestic mountains, lush green vegetation and wild rivers, the region comprise of a large number of tribal groups and tribes. However, each tribal group follows its own distinct culture and speak different languages.
The entire Northeast India is home to a several ethnic group, who have inhabited this region since antiquity. The Northeast Indian tribes are known for their distinctive culture, ancient language, hand-woven dress and handicrafts, all of which are distinctive and most appealing too. Some of the prominent tribes of the northeast India include Nagas, Khasis, Jaintias, Mizos, Boros, and Cacharis.
Embark on North East India Tribal Tour with us and explore some tribal villages of incredible states of Northeast India. Our Northeast India Tribal Tour will take you on a lifetime journey where you can witness the rich culture, ancient traditions and lifestyle of the tribal people of North East. We will take you to discover the tribal villages of all the seven states of India’s northeast region.
-Tribes of Arunachal Pradesh form the major part of demography of Arunachal Pradesh. The state of Arunachal Pradesh which shares its borders with Assam and Nagaland in the south, Myanmar in the east, Bhutan in the west and Peoples' republic of China in the north covers an area of 83,743 sq kilometres. It is one of the largest states of north east which provides habitation to at least twenty tribal groups who are scattered in the huge state of Arunachal Pradesh. This north eastern state is often known for the Mc Mohan line which marks the international border of India with other countries of China, Myanmar and Bhutan.
Tribes of Arunachal Pradesh largely includes the tribes like Adis, Apatanis, Buguns,Hrusso,Singphos,Mishmis,Monpas,Nyishi,Sherdukpens, Tagins, Khamtis, Wanchos, Noctes, Yobin and Khambas and Membas.
-Tribes of Nagaland include a major part of the Nagaland community. The state of Nagaland which is surrounded by Assam in the west , Arunachal Pradesh and parts of Assam in the north, Myanmar in the east and Manipur in the south, is well known for its tribal community which is scattered not only within the boundaries of Nagaland but also in parts of surrounding seven sisters. The origin of the tribe residing in Nagaland can be traced within the Indo Mongoloid Race. The state of Nagaland is one of the smallest state of India covering an area of 16.579 sq. kilometres with almost two million people as its total population.
Tribes of Nagaland includes Naga’s, Zeliang Naga’s, RengmaTribes,Angami Naga’s, Ao Naga’s,
Tribes of Nagaland are primarily engaged in agriculture. While almost 80 percent of population is engaged in agriculture which are located at the hill slopes and receives sufficient amount of rainfall. The tribes keep parity in selecting the crop which depends on the setting of the crops. The tribes of Nagaland largely include the hilly tribes who are responsible for farming.
-Tribes of Meghalaya represent the inhabitants of Meghalaya who reside in the foothills as well as within the mountain ranges of Garo, Khasi and Jaintias. The origin of these tribes can be traced from the Tibeto- Burman race and Proto AustroloidMonkhmer race. While the Garos can be traced as the descendents of Tibeto- Burman race, the Khasis and the Jaintiyas are claimed to have belonged to the Proto AustroloidMonkhmer race. Along with this there are a number of tribes like the Bhois, Khynriams and the Wars who reside in the northern, southern and central parts of Meghalaya.
The Tribes are distinctly marked for their social structure. The society is exceptionally maternal in which the women carry their parental lineage. The society is matrilineal where the inheritance to parent's property goes along with the women and the men are responsible for mental and material life of the family. Largely the tribal groups follow Christianity though the state follows all the three religions namely Hinduism,Buddhism as well as Christianity.
- Tribes of Tripura largely constitute thirty one percent of its total population who represent themselves through their culture and traditions. While largely located in the mountainous areas of Tripura, these tribes vary from region to region. Tribeswho inhabit a major part of Tripura, largely resemble the Tibeto- Burman origin. The territory is inhabited by 19 tribes who are enlisted as scheduled tribes under the Constitution of India. These tribes include Bhil, Bhutia, Chaimal, Chakma, Garo, Halam, Jamatia and Khasia. The Kuki including seventeen sub-tribes - Lepcha, Lushai, Magh, Munda, Noatia, Orang, Riang, Santhal, Tripuri and Uchai.A mong these the dominant tribes are Tripuri, Riang, Jamatia, Chakma, Halam, Noatia and Magh and so on. Largely Tripura is inhabited by Tripuri ,Reang, Chakma, Mog, Halam and Murasin.
- Tribes of Mizoram have inhabited the region since its origin. While the history of Mizoram cannot be traced very easily, it is often believed that the region was originally inhabited by the Mongoloid and other tribal groups who migrated from China and other parts of extreme north. The state of Mizoram which is located in the extreme southern end of north eastern India, share its national borders with Tripura, Assam, and Manipur while its international borders with Myanmar and Bangladesh. This small state of India has great scenic beauty with rolling hills, valleys, lakes and rivers. Like other states of seven sisters Mizoram too is largely populated with the tribal population of India. The state of Mizoram covers an area of 888, 573 sq kilometres with English and Mizo as its official language.
Tribes of Mizoram largely include four types of tribal communities. The tribal people of Mizoram largely include the Chakma tribes, Pawi tribes, Ralte tribes and the Kuki tribes who travelled from upper regions of the continent. Chakma tribes are the most important tribal group of Mizoram who practice a combined religion of Hinduism, Buddhism and Animism. The Chakma tribes, who range for about eighty thousand within the state of Mizoram, are largely influenced by the Indo Aryan culture which is reflected within their language. Largely they speak a language which is closely associated with Bengali. Along with Chakma tribes the area is inhabited by other tribes which include Pawi tribes and Ratle tribes. Pawi tribes are named after the place where they largely inhabit instead of the name of the clan which is the usual trend of the Tribal community. Ralte tribes are another tribal group which inhabit in Mizoram. This group is largely settled in the Lushai villages located in the northern provinces of Aizawl. Himar is the most significant group among them who immigrated to the hills of Mizoram and got settled. Along with is the Kuki tribes are also found in the region that inhabit in the hilly regions of the land.
- Tribes of Manipur are one of the most distinctive features of the state which are scattered over an area of 22,347 sq km, surrounded by Nagaland in the north, Mizoram in the south, Assam in the west and Myanmar in the west. With its capital at Imphal, Manipur is one of the most colourful states of India which has a moderate temperature. Manipur includes a wide area of 14, 365 sq km of area under natural vegetation which is about 64% of total geographical area. Broadly this area covers four types of forest which provide livelihood to its local tribal community.
Tribes of Manipur which represent a unique feature of the land include at least 29 communities that originated from Tibetan-Burmese tribal group of Mongoloids. The tribal community of Manipur is quite enriched that has travelled from all the surrounding areas of Assam and Meghalaya. The state of Manipur is largely inhabited by four types of tribes along with other tribes. This includes the Meities and Pangals who inhabit the lower regions of the valley, while the hilly regions of Manipur are mainly populated by the Naga tribesand Kuki tribes. Along with these tribal community of Manipur include 29 more tribal communities which are Aimal, Anal, Angami, Chiru, Chote, Gangte, Hmar, Kabui, Kachanaga,Kairao,Koirang, Kom,Lamgang,Mao, Maram, Maring, Mizo, Monsang, Moyon, Paite, Purum, Ralte, Sema, Simte, Sabte, Tangkul, Thadou, Vaipha and Zou.
- Chhattisgarh has constantly been identical with tribes and tribal culture. More than one third of the state population is of tribes, and the majority of them reside in the densely forested areas of the eminent Bastar region. Chhattisgarh is famed for its incomparable picturesque splendour and distinctive rich ethnicity. The tribes of Chhattisgarh follow unique lifestyles and have impressively maintained their culture and traditions for ages. Chhattisgarh offers a perfect destination for you, if you are hunting for a distinct tribal culture of India.
Chhattisgarh is home to several ethnic groups with Gonds of Bastar being the most prominent in the midst of them. Other major tribes of Chhattisgarh region include the Baiga, Korba, Dhurvaa, Bison Horn Maria, Halbaa, Bhatra, Muria and Abhuj Maria tribes. Each tribal group of Chhattisgarh has its own distinctive culture and traditions. Their lifestyles differ from each other and each ethnic group has their own costumes, customs, traditions, eating habits and even worship different form of god and goddess. Conclusively, Chhattisgarh has a great prospect for tribal tourism and is the most remarkable tribal destination in India.
- Orissa is a traditional dwelling place of several tribes who endorses its antiquity. The tribes continue to inhabit Orissa's remote areas in the deep forests and hilly interiors. Immersed in obscurity that revolves around ethnic lifestyle, the Orissan tribes continue to be a source of deep interest for numerous tourists, alongside anthropologists and sociologists. Tourists flock to Orissa to find the unusual charm of this comparatively unsung state.
Cradled in the untainted nature with endless expanse of captivating hills, meandering streams, cascading waterfalls, astonishing caves and verdant valleys, Orissa's tribal regions are feast to the eyes. Jeypore, Baliguda, Kothagargh, Rayagada, ChatikionaAnkadeli are few of the places to visit.
Activities around the jungles are main source of income for the Orissa's tribes. Hunting and fishing continue to be the main source of occupation of a large section of Orissa tribes; however some of the superior tribes such as Santhals, Mundas and Gonds have involved themselves in agriculture, harvesting and crop cultivation.
–There is also no dearth of tribal communities that throng the state of Bihar as a whole. In fact all the tribes of Bihar are quite a lot in number. According to the anthropologists who have surveyed the whole of the tribes of Bihar have inferred certain salient features common among them.
Needless to say these tribes of Bihar are not different from the non- tribal members of the region, each one of them are quite exclusive in retaining their own identity and stature. Cultural exuberance of these tribes of Bihar state are emphatically depicted in its various elements, including its house decoration, art works, dance, festival, musical melodies etc. Most of the tribes of Bihar reside in mud houses with thatched roofs. There are baked tiles for roofs.
The most important festival for the tribes of Bihar is Sarhul, which commemorates the blossoming of Sal trees. Each and every tribal communities of Bihar fete this festival in the early days of spring time. Sal trees are worshipped in the sacred orchard. Different tribes have different ways of feting this festival. However, each one of these tribes of Bihar worships the 'spirit' of the Sal tree to try to find its blessings for a good harvesting.
The list of the total number of Tribes in Bihar is as follows:- The list of total number of tribes of Bihar is as follows: Bathudi, Binjhia, Birhor,Birjia, ChikBaraik,PahariaKorwa.
-With the knock of modernization in India, finding the old culture, traditions as well as the ancient people is not an easy job. However, there are still some states in India where one can refresh himself and have a glimpse of the old Indian people and their simple lifestyle. One such Indian state is Gujarat. Apart from unspoiled beaches, medieval edifices and rich Indian culture and tradition, the state is well acknowledged worldwide for its tribal life.
Explore the sizable population of tribals in Gujarat with us in Gujarat Tribal Tour. Our tour will allow you to meet different tribes of the state and closely witness their lifestyle, culture and traditions. Our travel package will give you a chance to slip into the lifestyle of Gujarat.
– Tribes of Madhya Pradesh have preserved very remarkably their distinct way of life in small isolated communities and the main tribes are the Gonds, Kols, Bhills, Murias, Baigas, Korkus, Kamaras, Marias and Oraons.
Traditionally, the tribals were semi- nomadic, some living solely on what they could hunt, others relying on shifting cultivation.
In the last hundred years the Baigas have been forced to abandon shifting cultivation and to move from the axe and hoe agriculture to the Plough.
Over the centuries, tribal territory has gradually been nibbled away, and everywhere their way of life is under threat. The Gonds, the largest of the tribes, managed to maintain their independence and retain their so – called primitive ways until the last century. From 1200 AD there were as many as 4 Gond Kingdoms. One had an initiation ceremony centred on eating wild orchids. Today one of the biggest threats to the tribes comes from that symbol of modernization, irrigation & dams.
- Tribes of Rajasthan constitute 12% of the total population. The main tribal communities of Rajasthan are Bhil tribe andMeena tribe. The major concentration of these tribes of Rajasthan is found mainly in the foothill of Vindhya, Aravalli mountain ranges. Each and every tribe of Rajasthan have contributed with their unique customs and rituals, thereby making whole Tribes of Rajasthan quite enriched. Their styles of making houses, festivals, costumes all bear witness to the cultural exquisiteness of the tribes of Rajasthan.
The early history of the tribes of Rajasthan depicts that during the invasions by Hunas, Aryans, Sakas and Kusanas the tribal communities survived the attacks and maintained their cultural and traditional heritage. In order to maintain their livelihood, these tribes of Rajasthan carry on cultivation, while there are quite a number of tribes of Rajasthan state who have developed acumen for business and commercial activities.
- Tribes of Uttarakhand mainly comprise five major groups namely Jaunsari tribe, Tharu tribe, Raji tribe, Buksa tribe and Bhotiyas. In terms of population Jaunsari tribe is the largest tribal group of the state.
Tribes of Uttarakhand represent the ethnic groups residing in the state. Every district of Uttarakhand has more or less a moderate percentage of tribal population. In the state of Uttarakhand, the main concentration of tribal population is in the rural areas. As per records, around 94.50 percent of total tribal population resides in rural areas and the remaining percentage of tribal population lives in urban centres. It is said that officially Uttarakhand is the home of around five tribes. These tribes of Uttarakhand have been scheduled in the Constitution of India. Historical records suggest that the tribes of Uttarakhand are earliest settlers of this region of North India. In the past, their main concentrations were confined to remote hilly and forested areas. The tribes of Uttarakhand have retained their age old traditional ways of living. They represent the distinctive culture and traits of a primitive life. Their traditional norms and socio-cultural practices determine their ethnicity.
Jammu & Kashmir
- Jammu and Kashmir can be authentically stated as the most sublime and out-of-this-world locale amidst the Himalayan splendour. With its incomparable, bounteous and breath-taking beauty, Jammu & Kashmir as it is lovingly called by fellow countrymen, holds within itself much more clandestine elements than just wintry places and snow and greenery and birch. Jammu and Kashmir is an abode to quite a number of tribal communities, who have settled down in every nook and corner of this hilly countryside. The tribal people and their places, the tribals and their customs, their cultures, their means of communication, or simply their culinary arts, makes the tribes of J&K stand out from the rest of Indian tribesmen. In order to know more about the lives and culture of these tribes of Jammu and Kashmir Valley, eminent anthropologists of the Indian subcontinent have thronged the region with lots of curiosity and enthusiasm. Indeed, since historical times, it has been acknowledged that Kashmir Valley have been endowed with gifted rulers and sovereigns, who had paid much attention and had patronised their nomadic and communal tribes, who were later to swell up into historical characters themselves.
Just like many other Indian tribesmen, most of the tribes of Jammu and Kashmir have accepted rice, wheat, pulses as their staple food. The clothing line of Jammu And Kashmir tribes are quite down to earth and uncomplicated in format. Clothing constitutes of a 'short coat' or a hanging shirt with pyjamas, which also goes up to the knees and gradually, becomes tight at the ankles. Both the male and female tribes of the state do however believe in wearing remarkable and strikingly beautiful clothes. The usual trend is that the turban of the males on the head is in general balanced by a 'kamarband' at his waist. With a shawl or dupatta thrown over the head, these Jammu and Kashmir tribeswomen put on a tight-fitted top or sweaters over Pyjamas, which bear resemblance to the dress of male members of the regular tribal community.
Tribes of Andhra Pradesh have added grandeur to the region with their rich heritage of culture, innocent lifestyle and age-old ethnicity. In other words, customs, rituals, fairs, festivals of these tribes of Andhra Pradesh have drawn the attraction of all the anthropologists of the country& foreigners who have conducted surveys on them with enthusiasm and vigour. In Andhra Pradesh presently there are 32 lakh tribals, 50 lakh nomads and other backward people in Andhra Pradesh. Their habitat spreads along the coastal and mountain strip of the Bay of Bengal from the Srikakulam district to the Khammam districtand Godavari districts right up to the north-eastwards to the Adilabad region.
Maximum tribes of Andhra Pradesh are settled in the hilly and forest regions of the state. In the manner of making houses, too, these tribes of Andhra Pradesh have also left their marks of exuberance and artistry. Their physical stature is short and stout. They have long heads, well-defined thick eye brows. Protruding mouth and snub noses are also among their physical characteristics. The general colour of the skin is whitish and the hair is black and crinkled.
-A blend of culture, religion and ethnicity is represented by the tribes of Karnataka. The tribes of Karnataka have built their settlements in several hilly and mountainous areas. As far as the languages are concerned, the tribes of Karnataka state converse with each other in different languages. Kananda language is the main language. Today these tribes of Karnataka speak in in other languages like Malayalam, Hindi etc.
Following the tradition of most of the tribes of the whole country, these tribes of Karnataka too have taken diverse religions. Although Hinduism is the most prevalent religion, there are only a handful of tribes of Karnataka who have adept to religions like Islam and Christianity.
Several other tribal communities of Karnataka possess their distinct tradition and ethnicity. They communicate in their local dialect and they also maintain their own tradition. Some of them are also reckoned as being originated from the warrior race. Coorg and Kodavas are known for their cultural and traditional distinctions among the tribal communities. The tribes of Karnataka are also known for their costumes, cultural habits, folk dances and songs, foods and their way of celebrating different festivals and occasions. The long list of the tribes of Karnataka state includes Bedar tribe, Toda tribe, Hakkipikki tribe, JenuKuruba tribe, KaduKuruba tribe, Kattunayakan tribe, KondaKapus tribe, Sholaga tribe etc. Among several tribal communities of the state of Karnataka, this Bedar tribe is worth mentioning which is far famed in several names, namely, Beda, Berad, Boya, Bendar, etc. Another tribal community of Karnataka is the Hakkipikki tribe. The birth of this Hakkipikki tribal community has rich history, which also establishes a relation with the famous Ranaprathap Singh.
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