Great Andamanese Tribe
Five members of the Great Andamanese tribe, a Particularly Vulnerable Tribal group (PVTG), have tested positive for COVID-19. The Great Andamanese are one of five PVTGs that reside in the Andamans archipelago and this is one of the first cases of COVID-19 infection among the endangered PVTGs of the region.
Tribes in Great Andaman
- The Great Andamanese, who number just 74, speak Jeru among themselves. The five PVTGS residing in Andamans are Great Andamanese, Jarawas, Onges, Shompens and North Sentinelese.
The four major tribes of Andaman are as follows
- Great Andamanese – Strait Island is the part of North and Middle Andaman district which is the home to Great Andamanese tribe, Fewer than 50 Great Andamanese are alive today.
- Jarawa – South Andaman and Middle Andaman Islands is inhabited by the Jarawa tribes, there are only 300-400 people of this community alive today.
- Sentinelese – North Sentinel Island is part of North Andaman region which is home to the Sentinelese tribe, only 50-100 tribes are alive today.
- Onge – The Little Andaman Island is home to Ongetribes, these tribes are fewer than 100.
- The Andaman tribes including the Sentinelese are Negrito, where the Nicobar tribes are Mongoloid. Seafaring, Hunting, Forest dwelling are the predominant occupation of these tribes.
What are PVTGs?
- There are certain tribal communities who have declining or stagnant population, low level of literacy, pre-agricultural level of technology and are economically backward. They generally inhabit remote localities having poor infrastructure and administrative support.
- These groups are among the most vulnerable section of our society as they are few in numbers, have not attained any significant level of social and economic development.
- 75 such groups have been identified and categorised as Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs).