The Gutti Koya tribes people have a unique tradition of erecting stone memorials in the forest on the border of Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh to honor the passing of their three most significant service providers: the physician, the priest, and the village leader. These stone memorials serve as a tribute to these individuals and their contributions to the community.
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The Gutti Koya tribe people in Ramchandrapuram Village, located inside the forest on the Andhra Pradesh-Chhattisgarh border, have erected stone memorials as a tribute to their three most important dignitaries: the physician, the priest, and the village leader. These stone memorials symbolize the gratitude and appreciation of the Gutti Koya tribe people for the valuable services provided by these individuals. The physician, priest, and village leader played significant roles in serving the tribal community in Ramchandrapuram Village, which is situated in the Kunavaram Mandal of the Alluri Sitarama Raju District.
About Gutti Koya Tribe
- The Koya population is primarily found in the states of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Odisha.
- They have their own language called Koya, which belongs to the Dravidian language family.
- One of the most important festivals celebrated by the Koya community is the Sammakka Saralamma Jatra, which takes place once every two years on the full moon day of the Magha Masam (January or February). This grand festival is held in Medaram village in the Mulug taluk of Warangal district.
- The Koya people traditionally practice the Podu form of shifting cultivation, which is also followed by other tribal groups in forest areas. However, this practice has raised concerns regarding the balance between economic survival and environmental sustainability.
- While the Koya community holds Scheduled Tribe (ST) status in Chhattisgarh, they have not been granted the same status in their migrated states such as Telangana.
- They are a matrilineal society, and their villages are headed by women.
- The Koya people primarily earn a livelihood through animal husbandry and the collection of minor forest produce.
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