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Important Tribes,Specialities and Constitutional Rights

Major Tribes,Region and​​ Distinguish Practice​​ 
Tribe is a social division in a traditional society consisting of families linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect. A tribe possesses certain qualities and characteristics that make it a unique cultural, social, and political entity. This post is about the major tribes in India. They are also known by the name ‘Adivasis’ in India.

Major Tribes in India: Arranged State-wise

  • Andhra Pradesh :​​ Bhil,​​ Chenchus​​ (Chenchawar),Gond,Dhulia.

  • Arunachal Pradesh :​​ Apatanis,​​ Abor,Singpho.

  • Assam :​​ Chakma, Chutiya, Garos, Khasis,​​ Gangte.

  • Bihar :​​ Birhor,​​ Savar

  • Chhattisgarh :​​ Mawasi,Agariya

  • Goa :​​ Dhodia, Dubia, Naikda,​​ Siddi,Varli.

  • Himachal Pradesh : Gaddis, Gujjars,​​ Khas,Lamba

  • Jharkhand :​​ Birhors, Bhumij,​​ Gonds, Kharia,​​ Mundas,​​ Santhals,​​ Savar.

  • Karnataka :​​ Yerava,Iruliga,​​ Koraga.

  • Kerala :​​ Nairs,Malai arayan, Moplahs,​​ Uralis.

  • Madhya Pradesh :​​ Baigas,​​ Bhils,​​ Bharia,Gonds

  • Maharashtra :​​ Bhaina,​​ Bhunjia,varlis

  • Manipur :​​ Angami, Chiru, Kuki, Maram, Monsang, Paite, Purum,​​ Thadou.

  • Meghalaya :​​ Chakma,​​ Garos, Hajong, Jaintias Khasis,​​ Lakher

  • Nagaland : Angami,​​ Garo,Nagas

  • Odisha :​​ Oraons,santhal,khonds

  • Sikkim :​​ Bhutia, Khas,​​ Lepchas.

  • Tamil Nadu :​​ Adiyan, Aranadan, Eravallan, Irular,​​ Kadar, Kanikar, Kotas,​​ Todas.

  • Telangana :​​ Chenchus.

  • Tripura :​​ Bhil,​​ Bhutia,chakma,namte

  • Uttarakhand : Bhotias, Buksa, Jannsari, Khas, Raji,​​ Tharu.

  • West Bengal :​​ Asur, Khond, Hajong, Ho, Parhaiya, Rabha, Santhals,​​ Savar.

  • Andaman and Nicobar : Oraons, Onges,​​ Sentinelese,​​ Shompens.

  • Little Andaman :​​ Jarawa.

Total population of Scheduled Tribes is​​ 8.6%​​ of the total population of country. The share of the Scheduled Tribe population in urban areas is a meager​​ 2.4%.​​ 

Constitutional Provision for Scheduled Tribes

  • Article 15(4) : Promotion of Social, Economic and Educational​​ interests.​​ 

This article empowers “the state to make any special provision for the advancement of socially and educationally backward classes of citizens or for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes”.

This clause has been especially incorporated to prevent any special provision made by a state for the advancement of socially or educationally backward classes of citizens from being challenged in the law courts on the ground of discrimination.

  • Article 19(5) : Safeguard of Tribal​​ Interests.

While the rights of free movement and residence throughout the territory of India and of acquisition and disposition of property are guaranteed to every citizen, special restrictions may be imposed by “the state for the protection of the interests of any Scheduled Tribe “.

(For example state may impose restrictions on owning property by non tribals in tribal areas.)

  • Articles 330, 332 and​​ 334​​ 

According to these articles seats shall be reserved for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in legislative bodies. There are provisions for reservations of seats in the parliament as well as legislative Assembly of every state (Article 330,332).




Other info

​​ festivals


Andaman and Nicobar Islands.



Traditionally hunter-gatherers



Andaman Islands


they use rafts, live in oval huts and are excellent swimmers.

Jarawas -means "the other people".



Andhra Pradesh, Orissa




Groups that are still dependent on forests and​​ do​​ not cultivate land but hunt for a living


Nagula Chavitha

Arunachal Pradesh

Abors/ Adi

Spinsters wear a 'beyop ‘It is special type of ornament consisting of five to six brass plates rightly fixed under their petticoats It becomes customary for​​ the​​ aged women of Abor tribes to wear yellow necklaces and spiral​​ earrings



Arunachal Pradesh




The Indian tribe where the woman must have 'black nose plugs' fitted as rite of passage


Dree and Myoko

Birbhum region in Bengal, Hazaribagh, Purnea in Bihar, Orissa

Santal or Saontal



Himachal Pradesh



Gaddis belong to the class of the shepherds and their job is to​​ look

Basakhi / Bishu ,​​ Patroru​​ Sagrand



after goats and sheep


Himachal Pradesh (also in parts of Rajasthan, MP,J& K,




semi-nomadic tribes and their main occupation is herding of goats, sheep and buffaloes


Jharkhand, Bihar, West Bengal and Orissa.


Kurukh / Oraon

Efficient, particularly in tea garden works,





Uraali Kurumas are an artisan tribe and their versatile skill in art and handicrafts are well known. They play flute and drum during festivals -experts in creating household utensils using cane.

Onam, Vishu and Puthar '






Madhya Pradesh








The Tiger is Worshipped by the Baiga Tribe that calls it “Jai

Baghesur - Practice endogamy. - women​​ expertise​​ in body tattoos - Baiga tribals became India’s first community to get habitat rights.





Ras-Nawa (means ceremonial eating of honey)

Madhya Pradesh(Bastar)


Traditionally they are economically homogenous and strive to work as a collective. They have mixed-sex





where adolescents are sent to practice premarital sex, sometimes with a single partner and sometimes serially. They have an omnivorous diet, with liquor playing a key role in their​​ society.














The Warli people are famous for their beautiful and unique style of painting which reflects the close association between human communities and nature






Bhawada , Kali Puja


Kuki / Khongjo


Lawm Se' Neh
















Garo Tribes

The Garos are one of the few remaining matrilineal societies in the world. The individuals take their clan titles from their mothers.

Traditionally, the youngest daughter inherits the property from her mother.​​ Sons​​ leave the parents' house​​ at

puberty, and are




Wangala (also known as Hundred Drums, Wanna, Wanna Rongchuwa)​​ is​​ a harvest festival celebrated



trained in the village bachelor dormitory




Khasis follow the unique culture.

The property of the Khasis is passed on from the mother to the youngest daughter. Music plays an important part in the life of Khasis. After marriage the groom​​ comes​​ to live at the brides​​ house.

Nongkrem , Shad Suk Mynsiem

















Lushai tribes have developed expertise in swimming and hunting. That they are good archers are apparent from the fact that they can nicely​​ handle​​ 'Sairawkher'. It is a bow made locally that is discerned by its utility of clay shots instead of arrows.







Chapcharkut/ Mimkut / Palkut

North West India. (Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra and Rajasthan )

Bhils (the bow men of Rajasthan)

They form the largest tribe of the whole South Asia The name Bhil is​​ mentioned​​ in the great epic called Mahabharata and Ramayana. The Bhil women offered ber to Lord Rama, when he was


Baneshwar fair



through the jungles of Dhandaka, searching Sita







Lepchas or Rongkip

The lepcha hut is made up of bamboo just five feet above the ground




Tamil Nadu ( Nilgiri Hills)

Badagas / Baduguru

Thundu (a white piece of cloth) forms an integral part of the attire of Badaga women and as a cultural item, is presented to visiting dignitaries as a gesture of good will.

Hethai Habba







TN (Nilgris)







Kotas, also Kothar or Kov

The Kotas are the only artisan tribe of the Nilgiris. They practiced​​ pottery,​​ blacksmithy, goldsmithy, tool making and carpentry.

Interestingly, they were also musicians that performed at the ceremonies of the Todas and Badagas.(tribes









Chakmas / Daingnet people

The women are experts in weaving. They wear an ankle length cloth around the waist which is also called 'Phinon'

and also a

Bizu Alphaloni Buddha Purnima



'Khadi' wrapped above the waist as well as silver ornaments



Different religious practice of Tribal Groups.​​ 

Indian Tribal Religion​​ 

Indian tribal religion is the most primitive type of religion found in human society. The important characteristics of an Indian tribal religion are discussed as following.

  • Mana

Mana is a force different from physical force which acts in all kinds of good​​ and bad and control the disturbance. Mana is a supernatural power which is used to control many natural phenomena is man life. According to Maxmullar, Mana is an attempt to define some natural phenomena is term of some impersonal power. In tribal religion​​ Mana is the force applied to natural and impersonal things like​​ mountains, rivers, thunders​​ etc

  • Bonga

Bonga is a type of Mana.​​ Ho and Monda​​ tribes use this word and says that it is a mysterious and impersonal power at the back of some natural calamity. These calamities are flood epidemics, heavy rains, storms etc. everyone tries to be safe from these activities and they perform bonga.

  • Animism

Animisim is the belief that material things have life. In Indian tribal religion animism is the important characteristic of people. The tribal people have beliefs in supernatural power at the back of heavy rains, big trees, mountains and other flood and storms. They want to please these power, and they perform different type of worships.

The most important type of animism is the ancestral worship which is found is​​ Sanathals and Oraons.​​ These tribes worship various deities specified for different jobs. One God is responsible for crop, other for animals and a deity presiding raina.​​ That is common in korawa tribe.

  • Animatism

Animatism is the most wide spread idea is tribal people as compare to animism. According to animatism there is some impersonal power behind every material thing besides living things. In Indian tribal religion materials like bones, stones and feathers are​​ worshiped to bring peace and prosperity. For example is Bihar tribe stones and feathers are considered to have magical power. The stones are considered as the children of earth mother. So, animatism is the faith is material things have living soul.


Naturalism is the faith on worship of nature. The​​ Gar tribe of Assam​​ worship sun and moon while the​​ Monda people​​ practice worship to sun god. Besides it many other tribes worship rivers, mountains, trees, stars and other natural objects.

Immortality of Soul​​ 

They have faith that the soul of died person remain in the body and for this purpose there observed the funeral rites twice. The second time rite is considered more important than the first time. The living soul of the dead person requires food etc. for a sufficient period of time. Among​​ Naga and Nikobar​​ islands the skull of a man is placed in wooden statue believing that the soul of the person would pass from the skull to the wooden statue and skull to the wooden statue and make it able for worship​​ and they made every effort to fulfill all its needs.

In south India in kerela the statue of a dead body is worshiped only once is a year. In Naga tribe the soul of the ancestors are worshiped at the time of sowing and need of rain.

Totem and Taboo

Totem is the faith of Indian tribes in a particular kind of animal or object having close relation with that family. The tribe associate with that animal in different ways and the animal is worshiped. They are considered​​ themselves as the descent of that animal. So, Totem is the belief is a specific animal have close connection with a family is India tribes.

Killing and eating of that animal is a taboo for the particular family. The animal is worshiped and respected everywhere. The people of the same Totem do not contract marriages because they think that there exists blood relation among them. Every sacrifice is made for pleasing and worshiping of the animal.