(Last Updated on : 20/09/2010)
Bhilala tribe is a small caste largely found in the central region of India namely Nimar and Hoshangabad District
. They are also distributed over the adjoining regions of western India. Bhilala tribe is considered as a mixed caste that originated from the alliances of immigrant Rajputs
with the Bhil tribe
of the hills of central India. They speak a language that is also known as Bhilala. This language is a sub-group of Bhil language, belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages
family. Bhilala tribal family principally work as farmers, field labourers, farm servants as well as village watchmen. They grow different types of crops like millet, maize
, and barley.
In Bhilala tribal societies, there exists a head man, Mandoi, and he is responsible for solving any sort of domestic disputes within the village. These people believe in the existence of connection between the living and dead. In their society, male descendants inherit the family property. Several Bhilala families claim themselves to be Rajputs. They do not intermarry with the rest of Bhilala caste. The caste is divided into exogamous groups several of the names indicate the totemistic origin or are derived from animals and plants. The celebration of Bhagoria festival of this tribal community and other tribes of adjoining areas is considered unique. It is their annual festival and celebrated with great enthusiasm and fun. During the celebration of this festival a man gets a chance to choose his bride. The groom's family have to a pay a certain amount to the parents of the bride.
Bhilala tribal people are experts in handling arrows and bow. In fact, bow is regarded as a characteristic weapon of this community. The costumes of Bhilala tribe are well known for their vibrant colours and embroidery. Among the Bhilalas, tattooing is very common. Dance, drama and music form an integral part of the culture of Bhilala people. They are highly religious worship several Hindu gods. Each family of the community has their own guardian deity. They are superstitious too and have a strong belief for taboos and curses. They bury the dead. Another aspect of Bhilala tribe that is Pithora paintings is very popular. The themes of these paintings are the myths that are associated with their origin.