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Tribal Village Visit

Tribes of Ooty_Breeks

 

The Irula inhabit the northern districts of Tamil Nadu, a state in noutheastern India. Located not far from the city of Madras, they live in a tropical area subject to monsoon rains. Their language, Irula, is related to Tamil and Kannada, which are southern Dravidian languages. In the Tamil language, the name Irula means “people of darkness.” This could refer to their dark-colored skin or to the fact that all important events traditionally took place in the darkness of night.

 

Living in caves, they used to hunt and procure forest resources. They were descendants of gypsies. Subsequently they began to live in huts made of bamboo and slowly learnt the art of cultivation. Irulars had to look on helplessly when licensed contractors were going on a deforestation spree. Due to scarcity of bamboos, they began to build huts with soil and stones. When the hills were occupied by the people of the valley, Irular drew back to interior woods.

 

Kokode/Arakode valley houses several Irula tribal villages, and it is a unique experience to visit their households and see their lifestyles.