Scheduled Tribes in Karnataka
- 12 Feb 2020
- 4 min read
Why in News
Recently, the Lok Sabha passed the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Second Amendment) Bill, 2019.
- It seeks to include the Parivara and the Taliwara communities in the Scheduled Tribes (ST) category to ensure they get a reservation and other benefits provided by the government.
- The Siddi tribes of Belagavi and Dharwad would also be included in the category apart from those living in the Uttar Kannada districts of Karnataka.
- The Bill was passed in the Rajya Sabha in 2019 and it will amend Part VI of the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order, 1950, that specifies the tribal and tribal communities which are deemed to be Scheduled Tribes.
- Part VI of the order contains the list of Scheduled Tribes in Karnataka.
Parivara and Taliwara
- It is estimated that the population of the Parivara community at roughly 2.58 lakh and that of the Taliwara community at 8.6 lakh.
- It added that most people from these communities live in Mysore, Chamrajanagara, Mandya and Tumkur districts and a “thin population” resides in Udupi, South Canara and North Canara districts of Karnataka with a majority of them employed as coolies, engaged in collecting firewood, husbandry and the cottage industry, thereby leading a life of lower status.
- The study states that the communities’ life cycle rituals, language, lifestyle, the standard of living, physical features, socio-economic and educational status and their geographical isolation are similar to that of Beda, Nayaka and Valmiki which are already included in the ST category in the state of Karnataka.
- As per the government, Pariwara and Taliwara are socially, politically, economically and educationally backwards.
- The Siddi community is also known by different synonyms such as Habshi and Badsha.
- It is believed that they are of African origin because they clearly show the Negroid racial strain in their physical features.
- Descendants of Bantu people of East Africa, Siddi ancestors were largely brought to India as slaves by Arabs as early as the 7th Century, followed by the Portuguese and the British later on.
- When slavery was abolished in the 18th and 19th centuries, Siddis fled into the country’s thick jungles, fearing recapture and torture.
- At present, the Siddis are living on the western coast of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka states. In Karnataka, they mainly live in Dharwad, Belagavi and Uttar Kannada districts.
- In India, the Union government in 2003, classified Siddis under the list of Scheduled Tribes.
- They are included in the Centre’s list of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups
- Previously they depended on hunting and gathering but at present, their main source of livelihood is labour and agriculture.