Category Archives: Bastar

“The greater part of Bastar is a tilted peninsular plateau, varying in elevation between 284 and 1,200 m. […] The principal rivers of the region are Indravati and Sabari, both tributaries of the Godavari in the south, the largest of the rivers flowing from west to east in the region. Winter nights can be extremely cold and most Adivasi homes get by with a fire to sleep beside. Summer is hot, sometimes sufficiently so to cause stands of sal trees to dry up and die. […] Most agriculture is rain-fed, depending upon the south-west monsoon.” – Madhu Ramnath, Preface for Woodsmoke and Leafcups (HarperCollins India, 2015), pp. xviii
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=20305

“Bastar, a part of Dandakaranya in ancient time, is both a district as also a division in Chhattisgarh. Till 1997, it was a single district division in Madhya Pradesh. Bastar today is a division with five districts namely Bastar, Kanker, Dantewada, Narayanpur and Bijapur. This is a heavily forested, tribal-dominated area. The entire division is a notified scheduled area.” – Uma Ram (Professor & Head Department of English, Kakatiya PG College, Chhattisgarh) in “Issues in Tribal Education in Bastar, Chhattisgarh” (Folklore Foundation, Lokaratna, Volume IV 2011)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=14683

“Bastar, the land of tribes and about 70% of the total population of Bastar comprises tribals, which is 26.76% of the total tribal population of Chhattisgarh. […] The tribes of Bastar region are known for their unique and distinctive tribal culture and heritage in all over the world. Each tribal group in Bastar has their own distinct culture and enjoys their own unique traditional living styles.” – Visitors information, Chhattishgarh State Government (District-Bastar, 2017)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=25751

“Chhattisgarh is rich in its cultural heritage. The State has a very unique and vibrant culture. There are over 35 big and small colourful tribes spread over the region. Their rhythmic folk music, dances and dramas are a treat to watch and also provide an insight into the culture of the State.” –  Culture & Heritage | District DURG, Government of Chhattisgarh
https://durg.gov.in/culture-heritage/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=7922

“People are poor and are rapidly losing control of natural resources like forests that they have depended upon for generations. This exacerbates the poor status of health in that area.” – Healthcare worker Sulakshana Nandi quoted by Rajni George in “Lord of the jungle and the magic potion” (OPEN Magazine, Profile, 25 July 2014)
https://openthemagazine.com/features/india/lord-of-the-jungle-and-the-magic-potion/#all
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=20340

“The homeland of the Muria, Muria Gond, Hill Maria, Bison-horn Maria, Halba, Dhurwa, Bhatra and Dorla tribes, it differs from other tribal enclaves in that there were, concurrently, other diverse traditions from surrounding civilisations and those who ruled the area. For Bastar has a history as varied as that of the rest of India. […] Unlike other tribes who lived in splendid isolation, those of the Bastar region had constant interaction with the ruling powers.” – Bastar Folk Art – Shrines, Figurines And Memorials by Michel Postel and Zarine Cooper; reviewed by Nanditha Krishnan in “When tribes co-exist with kingdoms” (The Hindu, 6 February 2000) 
https://www.thehindu.com/thehindu/2000/02/06/stories/1306032k.htm
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=16409

“A quick survey of edible plant foods in some villages in Bastar yielded a list of more than 300 species. However, those that were regularly eaten were far fewer, many species having slipped out of traditional diets as ‘there was not enough time’'”. – Madhu Ramnath in “Within the world of food collection” (india-seminar.com, Contested Cultures, February 2018)
www.india-seminar.com/2018/702/702_madhu_ramnath.htm
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=24941

“[Brahma Dev Sharma] realised it was best to ask the tribals what they needed and make plans accordingly rather than thrust one’s own ideas upon them.” – Vijay Lapalikar in an obituary titled “Mahatma of the tribals”, describing B.D. Sharma’s contribution to the emancipation of the tribals, his “dogged fight against the usurpation of tribal resources by the government and private entities.” (The Indian Express, 28 December 2015)
https://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/mahatma-of-the-tribals/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=22132

“Bastar bronze is unique because of the casting technique and because each craftsman brought his own vision and desires to the figure unlike say, the Chola bronzes which followed an established model [Yet] their ‘living tradition’ is slowly moving to the realm of ‘folklore’.” – Cornelia Mallebrein, Guest-Curator of the exhibition titled “Street Parade of the Gods”), interviewed in “Tribal tryst” (The Telegraph, 22 July 2012)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=16409

Bastar art and the Hindu-isation of the tribal myth – Chhattisgarh

Niranjan Mahawar, 75, is a self-taught ethnologist of Chhattisgarh. He spent almost five decades in southern Chhattisgarh to study the life and art of the Bastar tribes. […] Today, Mahawar — who was made famous in a series of interviews … Continue reading

Posted in Bastar, Central region – Central Zonal Council, Colonial policies, Commentary, Crafts and visual arts, De- and re-tribalisation, History, Misconceptions, Modernity, Music and dance, Names and communities, Press snippets, Storytelling, Success story, Tiger, Tribal identity, Worship and rituals | Tagged | Comments Off on Bastar art and the Hindu-isation of the tribal myth – Chhattisgarh

Resilience of indigenous culture in the face of assimilatory processes and modernisation: Reflections on tribal identity in Bastar District – Chhattisgarh

Excerpts from interviews on the occasion of a major exhibition in Museum Rietberg, Zürich (Switzerland), The Telegraph, Sunday , July 22, 2012 “The Bastar bronzes are usually considered handicrafts and not high art. But these bronzes have an aesthetic value and … Continue reading

Posted in Anthropology, Bastar, Central region – Central Zonal Council, Colonial policies, Crafts and visual arts, Customs, De- and re-tribalisation, Economy and development, Figures, census and other statistics, Gadchiroli, History, Literature and bibliographies, Misconceptions, Modernity, Names and communities, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Quotes, Tiger, Worship and rituals | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Resilience of indigenous culture in the face of assimilatory processes and modernisation: Reflections on tribal identity in Bastar District – Chhattisgarh

Evidence suggesting a Gondi-Harappan link (Indus Valley civilisation, 2500 B.C.–1750 BC): Pictographs deciphered with the help of a proto Dravidian tribal language – Karnataka

The sentence emerged after a set of 19 pictographs from a cave in Hampi were deciphered using root morphemes of Gondi language, considered by many eminent linguists as a proto Dravidian language. Eleven of the Hampi pictographs resemble those of … Continue reading

Posted in Archaeology, Bastar, Crafts and visual arts, Cultural heritage, History, Homes and utensils, Languages and linguistic heritage, Names and communities, Organizations, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Southern region – Southern Zonal Council, Tourism, Worship and rituals | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Evidence suggesting a Gondi-Harappan link (Indus Valley civilisation, 2500 B.C.–1750 BC): Pictographs deciphered with the help of a proto Dravidian tribal language – Karnataka

Tribal education in the a heavily forested areas of Bastar: The traditional ‘school’ was in the ghotul – Chhattisgarh

Mrs Uma Ram, Professor & Head Department of English Government Kakatiya PG College, Jagdalpur, Bastar, Chhattisgarh Bastar, a part of Dandakaranya inancient time, is both a district as also a division in Chhattisgarh. Till 1997, it was a single district division in … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Adivasi / Adibasi, Assimilation, Bastar, Central region – Central Zonal Council, Childhood and children, Community facilities, Constitution and Supreme Court, Customs, Education and literacy, Figures, census and other statistics, Government of India, History, Literature and bibliographies, Misconceptions, Modernity, Multi-lingual education, Names and communities, Organizations, Quotes, Rights of Indigenous Peoples | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Tribal education in the a heavily forested areas of Bastar: The traditional ‘school’ was in the ghotul – Chhattisgarh

Bastar Dasara in Jagdalpur (July – October): Ancient customs and modernity – Chhattishgarh

In the heart of Bastar, where the beauty of the jungle holds sway, is a Dasara celebration unchanged by the passage of time | Read the full story and view more photos here >> She’s attired in a shocking pink sari tied till … Continue reading

Posted in Bastar, Central region – Central Zonal Council, Customs, Dress and ornaments, Figures, census and other statistics, Government of India, History, Modernity, Names and communities, Press snippets, Seasons and festivals, Storytelling, Success story, Tips, Tourism, Women, Worship and rituals | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Bastar Dasara in Jagdalpur (July – October): Ancient customs and modernity – Chhattishgarh