tribes - Andaman nicobar Islands
The Great Andamanese
There are about fifty or so members of this tribe left on the Andaman islands. At one time they used to be largest in population amongst the various tribes. Strait Island now serves as home to these tribals. In olden days they used to hunt fish, crabs, dugongs and turtle eggs, as well as other sea food. Nowadays their lifestyle and eating habits have changed a lot, more in tune with the others, but earlier they used to live as hunters and gatherers. They also eat pork and the Andaman water monitor lizard.
They are said to be one of the most primitive tribes in India. Right now, they are restricted to the Dugong Creek in Little Andaman Island. These tribals belong to the Negrito race. This semi-nomadic tribe is used to eating only forest produce. But after their resettlement, they’ve adjusted to eating rice and curries.
The Onges are excellent fishers. They leave to fish in their homemade canoes and crafts. Currently, they number about a hundred. The Andamanese government has provided them with proper houses, a school and many other facilities.
The Jarawas are a protected lot under the government. They used to inhabit the Western coasts of South and Middle Andaman islands. There are more than 350 people of this primitive tribe left on the islands. In their settlement now they have a reserved area – five km into the sea – where they can fish and hunt.
They are a very fearsome tribe. Many Indian and foreign travellers have been victim t their arrows. But we can’t blame them as it is us who are invading their land. The government has provided them with hospitals, schools and shops now. And slowly there are getting accustomed to a new life in the cities.
They live on the North Sentinel Island. This 60sq.km-island houses the world’s only Paleolithic people surviving today. They rarely have any contact with the outside world. They are considered as an off-shoot of the Onge-Jarawa tribes, which have acquired a different identity due to their habitation in an isolated island. They do not leave this island under any circumstances. And so, very little is known about them, too.
They live on the Great Nicobar Island. This tribe belongs to the Mongoloid race. The Mawa Shompens live near the coasts and the rivers. They only communicate with the Nicobarese people. The bigger group of Hostile Shompens live near the Alexendra and Galathia river areas and on the east coast of the area in the interior of the island. The Campbell Bay in Great Nicobar is a place for the Shompens to interact with civilized people.
The white sandy beaches, blue waters, and coral reefs with lot of marine life including dolphins, turtles and fish are a great way to spend your evenings. It’s an ideal location for scuba diving.
The best way to enjoy underwater life is to go Scuba diving. Beginners as well as experienced divers can find a lot of places to dive. Different colours and varieties of corals can be seen here.