Kharia people

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The Kharia are a tribal (adivasi) people living in Jharkhand and Odisha states, India. In the late 20th century, the population of Kharia people were around 300,000.

The Kharia comprise three tribes, the Dudh Kharia, Dhelki Kharia, and Hill Kharia. The first two speak who speak an Austroasiatic language, Kharia, but the Hill Kharia have switched to an Indo-Aryan language, Kharia Thar. There has not been any language development efforts made for Kharia Tar.

The Hill Kharia live in different states of India. In Odisha, the Hill Kharia are mainly found in Jashipur and Karanjia Blocks of Mayurbhanj district. A few villages are also found in Morada block. In Jharkhand, they are concentrated in East Singhbhum, Gumla, Simdega districts. Though widely found in this district, Musabani, Dumaria and Chakulia Blocks are the blocks where they live in large numbers. And in West Bengal, they are in West Midnapur, Bankura and Purulia districts. The majority are in Purulia.

The Hill Kharia are also called Pahari (meaning “Hill”) Kharia, Savara/Sabar, Kheria, Erenga, or Pahar.[citation needed] Outsiders call them Kharia but they call themselves as Sabar. They are called “Pahari (Hill) Kharia” because they live in the midst of forest and depend upon forest produces.

There are several gotras (clans) among the Hill Kharia such as Golgo, Bhunia, Sandi, Gidi, Dehuri, Pichria, Nago, Tolong, Suya, Dhar, Tesa, Kotal, Kharmoi, Digar, Laha, Saddar, Sikari, Rai, Khan, Dolai, Sal, Alkosi and Khiladi. Golgo seems to be dominant one because in every village that clan is spelt out first whenever their clans were asked.

Further reading[edit]

  • Mukhopadhyay, C. (1998). Kharia: the victim of social stigma. Calcutta: K.P. Bagchi & Co. ISBN 81-7074-203-X
  • Dash, J. (1998). Human ecology of foragers: a study of the Kharia (Savara), Ujia (Savara), and Birhor in Similipāl hills. New Delhi: Commonwealth. ISBN 81-7169-551-5
  • Sinha, A. P. (1989). Religious life in tribal India: a case-study of Dudh Kharia. New Delhi: Classical Pub. Co. ISBN 81-7054-079-8
  • Sinha, D. (1984). The hill Kharia of Purulia: a study on the impact of poverty on a hunting and gathering tribe. Calcutta: Anthropological Survey of India, Govt. of India.
  • Banerjee, G. C. (1982). Introduction to the Khariā language. New Delhi: Bahri Publications.
  • Doongdoong, A. (1981). The Kherias of Chotanagpur: a source book. [Ranchi]: Doongdoong.
  • Vidyarthi, L. P., & Upadhyay, V. S. (1980). The Kharia, then and now: a comparative study of Hill, Dhelki, and Dudh Kharia of the central-eastern region of India. New Delhi: Concept.
  • Biligiri, H. S. (1965). Kharia; phonology, grammar and vocabulary. Poona: [Deccan College Postgraduate and Research Institute].

External links[edit]