Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Madhya Pradesh

The People


Kinship terms used by different castes and groups are almost the same all over the state except with little difference in their pronunciation.

 Kutumb (means family) is the smallest unit that shares the common rituals and the mores of the clan. All the members of the family unit are bound by a kinship tie. Patriarchal system prevails in the state. Hence, the elder son inherits the father's right and property. The tribals are no exception to this practice. The position of a wife in a Kutumb depends upon her husband; that of the mother is recognised in relation to her children. Sex, age and supporting capVillage Sceneacity of an individual are the deciding factors which govern his role in the family.

 Without a male child a family is considered incomplete. Widows and divorced daughters of a family are accepted as liabilities. Separation from a Kutumb in the same village or town is not encouraged. It is contrarily taken improper if somebody ventures to break the ties with a joint family. Among the Bhils, no sooner a boy and a girl get married, the couple is separated as a part of convention.

Then there are ways in which people are linked through ritual acts. One of such kinships is the kinship of ritual brothers and sisters, known as gurubhai and gurubahen, which is acquired through a common teacher. This type of kinship is regarded more serious in the dharma sambandha- the relation sanctioned by religion. The duties attached to this form of kinship are mostly the same as performed in real kin tie.

Community Law

On the birth of a child or the death of a person there is always the community law that works to keep the perpetuality of rites and rituals. It is the social system wherein the caste has to submit without questioning. The importance of the Panchayat is obvious in relation to customs and traditions. It is the Gunia or Waddai or Gaita or Badwa, whose strange ways of ritual performance sometimes create an atmosphere of awe, holds a final word among the Adivasis. The unlettered rural audience has to bow heads before all such things which are thrust upon through this institution. Only in certain cases the Panchayat happens to do away with evils of some age-old practices.