(Last Updated on : 26-02-2011)
Kuramwar community is described as the shepherd caste residing in the southern part of India. People belonging to Kuramwar community are quite identical to the Telugu Kuruba and Tamil Kurumba. Kuramwar caste is an important caste of south India. Kuramwars are regarded as the representatives of ancient Pallava tribe, whose kings dominated the southern part for some time. Kuramwars have several indigenous customs and marriage rituals that they follow religiously.
The marriage rules of Kuramwar community are quite interesting. In their caste if any girl reaches her adolescence stage while still unmarried then she is expelled from the caste. Her parents too faces penalty for re-admission into the community. It is believed that in the past, such a girl was sacrificed to river goddess. She was kept in a small hut on the banks of the river until flood came that swept her away. Offerings were also made to river goddess. In their marriage ceremonies, prior to the wedding the father of the bridegroom observes some marks on the hair or head of the proposed bride. Some of the marks are believed to forecast future prosperity or despair to the family in which she is going to make her entry. Thus, the groom's family remain cautious while selecting the appropriate bride.
Among the people of Kuramwar community, marriages can be celebrated only for four days in a year. These days are the fifth day of the fortnights of the month of Phalguna
, tenth day of second fortnight of Phalguna and third day of the month of Baisakh. At the wedding ceremony, the bridegroom and the bride are made to seat together under a shelter and they throw coloured rice at one another. A miniature swing is put up and a doll is placed as an imitation of a child. After that the bride takes the doll and gives it to the groom saying that she will now cook food. After some time the boy returns it to the girl saying that he has to go to tend the flock. This proceeding symbolises the cares and responsibilities associated with a married life.
In Kuramwar community, divorce is not allowed. Further, if any girl returns to her father's house, the husband cannot force her to return back to his house. Kuramwars observe several festivals. They worship Lord Ganesha
on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi
. They also worship Mallana Devi, who guards their flocks. Kuramwar caste also makes blankets.