Mech tribe

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"A group of Meches, Goalpara district"; 1911

The Bodo tribe (known also as Mech and being one of the scheduled tribes of India) belongs to Kachari tribal grouping. Mech is the name given to the Bodo tribe by others. They speak mainly the Bodo language, which, although a Tibeto-Burman dialect, has been influenced by the Indo-European Assamese language.[1][page needed]

Meches also known as Bodos migrated into India and gradually spread themselves into the whole of Assam, North Bengal and parts of East Bengal. It is said that, during their migration to India, they marched towards different group went along the river Brahmaputra and established themselves in the whole of Assam up to Goalpara district and parts of Jalpaiguri district and Cooch Behar district under the name of Bodo or Bara. Another group went towards the West along the foot of the Himalayas up to the river Mechi, bordering India and Nepal and settled on the North bank of the river known as Mechi or Mechia. Later they spread to Darjeeling Terai, Baikanthpur in Jalpaiguri district again marched further East and settled in the Dooars. It is said that, a group of Mech people, again moved further East, crossed the Sankosh River, and went towards Goalpara in Assam. Due to repeated floods in Dooars and eastern bank of Teesta river, a large number of families migrated towards Assam.[2][page needed]


More than a century ago the Meches used to practice ‘jhum’ cultivation, that is cutting and burning the jungles and then sowing different seeds in each hole made by dibblers and sowers. Short-staple cotton was their cash crop. They had no idea of cultivation with bullocks and the plough.[3][page needed]

Religion among Meches[4]
Religion Percent


  1. ^ Ghosh, G.K. (2008). Bamboo: The Wonderful Grass. APH Publishing. ISBN 978-81-313-0369-6.
  2. ^ Sanyal, Charu Chandra (1973). The Meches and the Totos: two sub-Himalayan tribes of North Bengal. University of North Bengal.
  3. ^ Hodgson, B.H. (2001). Miscellaneous Essays Relating to Indian Subjects, Vol. 1. Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-24505-0.
  4. ^ "Census of India - Socio-cultural aspects, Table ST-14" (compact disc). Government of India, Ministry of Home Affairs. 2001. Missing or empty |url= (help)