TRIBES OF NORTHEAST INDIA
Northeast India is undoubtedly one of the most culturally diverse regions of the world. It is well known to shelter a variety of tribes living in absolute peace and harmony. This part of India is famous for its indigenous and immaculate culture and traditions. The advancement in technology has not blemished the deep-rooted native ideas of the inhabitants of Northeast India. They worship their identity and embraces it without any hesitation. Let’s have a quick look at the different tribes residing in Northeast India.
Bodo tribe is said to be the warrior tribe and includes a good number o people from Assam. It is one of the largest ethnic group of tribes residing in the Brahmaputra valley. Bodos are peace-loving folks who invented rice cultivation, tea plantations, poultry farms, etc. Being non-vegetarians, rice is the prime food they consume and therefore, their favorite drink is Mai(rice wine). Their main occupation is weaving and silkworm rearing. They are also skilled craftsmen who make fantastic art pieces out of bamboo. Their mother tongue is the Burmese language. The festivals celebrated by the Bodos are Baishagu, Hapsa Hatarani, Janai, etc.
The Kuki tribe is the migrant ones who speak ‘Kuki’ language. They can be found anywhere in India. They primarily belong to Manipur usually having homes built close to each other on the hilltop. They practice the cultivation of dwarf cotton and yarns. Kuki men wear the colorful jackets and the women wear anih-san. They follow Christianity and Judaism. The Kukis enjoy smoking and is an agro-based community. The prime festival celebrated by them is the Mimkuut festival.
The Adi tribe is settled in Arunachal Pradesh. This tribe is further divided into small groups or sub-tribes. They have their own village council. They are adept at making cane and bamboo items. The women weave clothes for the tribe. Men wear helmets made from cane, bear and deer skin. Old women wear spiral earrings and yellow necklace. Tattooing is a common fashion here. Fishing is practiced by the people here. Popir is the indigenous dance of the Adi tribe.
The Nishi tribe has got its origin from the Indo-Mongloid stock. They are inhabited in the Subansiri district in Arunachal Pradesh. They have unique culture and lifestyle. They plait their hair and tie them on the forehead. The men wear sleeveless shirts with a mantle of wool fastened around their throats and waists. Women wear a sleeveless mantle of striped or plain cloth. A ribbon is tied at the waist and the ornaments include beads and pendants. They depend on slash and burn cultivation of rice. The Nyukum festival is the major festival celebrated around the month of February.
Being the second largest tribe of Meghalaya, the Garo tribe is settled around the Garo hills of Meghalaya. Currently, they follow Christianity. They speak the Garo language. The distinctive feature of this tribe is that the women inherit the property of their fathers. A man shifts to the bride’s place after their marriage. This tribe has great lovers of music and dance. Jhum cultivation is the prime occupation of the tribe. The Garo men wear turban and the women wear blouses with a cloth tied around their waist. Wangala is the major festival celebrated with full gaiety to mark the harvest season. Liquor made from food grains is consumed. The main cultivation crops are rice, ginger, millet, banana, vegetables, chilly and cotton.
Northeast India has enriched culture and traditions galore. This region makes you familiar with India and its native identity. The different tribes settled in this part of India have advanced with rapid changes in technology but they are connected with their roots. Visit Northeast India to derive heavenly pleasure of traveling and getting yourself acquainted with a variety of people and their respective cultures!