(Last Updated on : 28/01/2011)
Tribes of Arunachal Pradesh form the major part of demography of Arunachal Pradesh. The state of Arunachal Pradesh which shares its borders with Assam
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. The state of Arunachal Pradesh is one of the largest states of north east which provides habitation to at least twenty five tribal groups who are scattered in the huge state of Arunachal Pradesh. While the state of Arunachal Pradesh 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
Tribes of Arunachal Pradesh largely includes the tribes like Adi, Apatanis, Buguns, Hrusso, Singphos, Khambas and Membas, Mishmish, Monpas, Nyishi, Sherdukpens, Tagins, Kamtis, Wanchos, Notchets and Ypobins.
Along with this there are tribes like Adi is one of the important tribes of the Siang Frontier Division. the Adis are divided into different groups, such as Padam, Minyong, Shimong, Pangis, Pasi, Asing, Bori, Bokar, Karko, Ramo, Milan, Tagin, Gallong, Tangam and Pailiba.; the main concentrated areas of the Khamti are sixteen villages of Lohit district
of Arunachal Pradesh. They are believed to have migrated from Burma. In Arunachal Pradesh they are the only tribes who have a script of their own; The Nocte tribes are distributed over the Tirap river valley which includes the Tirap and Changlang district
. The Nocte tribes of Arunachal Pradesh profess Vaishnavism
. They are famous as salt producers; The Singhpo is a minor tribe in North-East India. They are found in Tirap district and some parts of the adjoining Lohit district
of Arunachal Pradesh. They are Buddhist by religion. The Singphos are of the Mongoloid racial stock with well-built features. The dialect used by them is Singhpo which belongs to the Tibeto-Burman branch of the main Sino-Tibetan family; the Tangsa is one of the major tribes of Arunachal Pradesh. They are mostly found in the hilly areas of Changlang district situated in extreme eastern region of India. Tangsa means the children of hill. It includes a number of sub-tribes also; another important tribe of Arunachal Pradesh is the Aka tribes. The Hrusso or Aka tribes have a rich history linkage. Their popular belief is that they were related with the Ahom Kings. They are mainly traders and also use black paints in their faces; mainly cultivators, the Apatani tribes produce paddy and fish in large numbers. Round `nose plugs` and facial tattoos are the identifying traits of ornamentation especially amongst aged Apatani women. The economy of Apatani tribes is stable; The Tagin tribes of Arunachal Pradesh reside in the Upper Subansiri district. Polygamy is prevalent amongst them; The Mishmi tribes can be divided into three most important groups namely- Idus or Chulikatas, Digarus or Taroan and Mijus or Kaman. Their women are expert weavers; The Monpa tribes of Arunachal Pradesh are simple, gentle, having a robust cultural heritage. They follow Buddhism. The Wancho tribes inhabit the western part of Tirap district, bordering Nagaland. `Head hunting` was usual practice with them in the primitive times. Their society is divided into four classes - the Wanghams (chiefs), the Wangpana, the Wangaue and Wangaas. They are proficient in wood carving mainly; the Nishing tribes are the biggest groups of people inhabiting the Lower Subansiri district
Social life of Arunachal Pradesh
The societies are `casteless` in Arunachal Pradesh. For better administration they form their institutes and also select leaders according to their age for distinct social functions. The experienced leaders of the tribal groups are revered for their position in the community. All the tribes follow `endogamy` and strictly observe the rule of `clan exogamy`. With the societies of the tribes of Arunachal Pradesh, polygamy is endorsed and practiced by all.
Festivals are an integral part of all the tribes of Arunachal Pradesh thereby mirroring the cultural exuberances and artistry. The tribal people of this region are adept in making baskets, smithy work, weaving, pottery, wood carving, and painting.
Thus the tribal life of Arunachal Pradesh has been largely representative which include a number of traditions.