Kurumba (tribe)

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Kurumba man.jpg
Total population
88,750[1] (2011 census)
Regions with significant populations
Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu
Kurumba language
Animism, Hinduism
Related ethnic groups
Dravidians, Tamil

Kurumbas (or) Kurumbar (Tamil : குரும்பர்)(Malayalam : കുറുംമ്പർ)(Kannada : ಕುರುಂಬ)[2] are a designated Scheduled Tribe in the Indian states of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.[3] The Kurumbar are one of the earliest known inhabitants of the Western Ghats, who are engaged in the collection and gathering of forest produce, mainly wild honey and wax. The members of this community are short, have dark skin, and have protruding foreheads.[4]

Kurumbar believe in Hinduism. The main deity of the tribe is Lord Shiva under the name of Bhairava. They also worship animals, birds, trees, rock hillocks, and snakes, along with the other Hindu deities.

There are several divisions of Kurumba: Jenu, Betta and Alu. Each of these divisions speaks their own Dravidian language. Jenu Kurubas are primarily found in the northern part of the Nilgiris, in the Mysuru district of Karnataka.

Kurumbar are one of the six ancient tribal groups in Tamil Nadu. They live very much in tune with Nature. Hunting and collecting forest produce are the two main means of living for the Kurumbar tribe. However, the restrictions to protect native forest and wildlife have forced them to find work outside the forests.

File:Kurumbar ritual, Tamil Nadu


  1. ^ "A-11 Individual Scheduled Tribe Primary Census Abstract Data and its Appendix". www.censusindia.gov.in. Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 2017-11-03.
  2. ^ State wise Scheduled Tribes TAMIL NADU
  3. ^ "List of notified Scheduled Tribes" (PDF). Census India. pp. 26–27. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 November 2013. Retrieved 15 December 2013. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ பழங்குடியினர் மொழிக்கான அகராதி தயாரித்த ஆசிரியைகள்: அரசு அங்கீகரிக்க சமூக ஆர்வலர்கள் கோரிக்கை- The hindu Tamil News - 20 september 2016