(Last Updated on : 29/06/2011)
The North East Indian Tribes include Adis, Apatanis, Angami, Ao, Rengma, Nyishi, Garo, Khasi, Jaintias, Lushais, Kukis, Bodo, Mishing, Karbi, Bhutias, Lepchas, Nepalese, Riang, Trippera and Tripuri. Whenever talking about Indian tribes the North East Indian region comes to mind at first.
North East Indian tribes reside in the states of Arunachal Pradesh
, Manipur Tripura
. These states include a geomorphologic location which can be largely divided into the hills and valleys of North east India. As such a careful study of the North eastern Indian tribes shall include an overview of their lifestyle, origin, the area they inhabit, their customs, traditions and the festivals they observe.
Origin of North East Indian tribes
North East Indian tribes can be largely associated with the ethnic groups of Indo Mongoloids, Tibeto- Burmese and proto Austrioloids which represent the Asio- Austric culture on Indian hilly regions. The trends of these ethnic groups are visible in the looks as well as the traditions which are followed by these communities. They provide a cultural bridge between India on one side and South-East Asia, China and Inner Asia and Burma on the other by ethnic and linguistic angles. Their existence can be traced back to the pre-historic times.
Types of North East Indian Tribes
North East Indian tribes constitute a major part of Indian tribal community and largely scattered over all the states of North East. Starting from the tribal community found in Arunachal Pradesh which recognises at least 25 types of tribes, it includes 16 major tribes in Nagaland and even more in other states of North east India. Among the major tribes which are often found in India some are prominent like the tribal groups of Garo tribe
, Khasi tribe
, Jaintia tribe, Adi tribe
, Apatani tribe
, in Arunachal Pradesh, Kuki tribe, Bodo tribe
and Deori tribe
in Assam who are scattered in the entire North Eastern region of India. The people of Bodo tribe comprise 5.3 percent of the total population of Assam. They are largest ethnic and linguistic group of Brahmaputra Valley. Tha Garo people are tagged as the second largest tribal community of Meghalaya. Adis are one of the major tribal communities of Arunachal Pradesh. They are very democratic in nature. The tribal region of north east often witnesses some tribal groups who have migrated in all the states of North east not with standing the manmade political boundaries. One such Tribal group is the Kuki tribes who are available in all the parts of North eastern states. Along with the Garos and Khasis these are the next popular group of north east Indian Tribes.
Culture of North East Indian Tribes
North East Indian tribes can be separately marked for their cultural trends which are marked by their festivals, customs, dances, art and other social occasions that are observed by these tribal groups. Each tribe can be categorised separately by the dress they wear, jewellery, and the dances they perform. Socially these societies follow three types of lineage system which include the matriarchal, patrilineal as well as patri-matrilineal societies. Along with separate festivals these tribes vary on language as well as each tribe has its own language. Regarding religion these tribes are usually followers of Christianity
while religions like Buddhism
are also followed in parts of North East India.
Occupation of North East Indian Tribes
These tribes are primarily engaged in agriculture and farming is their biggest occupation. Along with agriculture the tribal community of North east depends largely on weaving and rearing of woolly animals. The women community mostly engage themselves in the job of weaving which are sold in the markets.
Festivals of North East Indian tribes
Some of the festivals celebrated by them are Nyokam, Sekrenyl, Ngada, Ka Shad Suk Mynsiem, Ka Pom-Blang Nongkrem, Ka-Shad Shyngwiang-Thangiap, Ka-Shad-Kynjoh Khaskain, Wangala etc. The North East Indian tribes are lively people and enjoy dance, music and drama. Some of the major dance forms are Ponung, Rekham Pada,Ajima roa, Mi Su'a and Chambil mpa.
Thus North East Indian tribes represent the most colourful trend of India. The tribal life of India represents a completely separate string of Indian community.