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POLITICO - HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE OF CODAVA LAND

To:

1.3.2006

 
 

The Chairman 
National SC & ST Commission of India, 
New Delhi – Lok Nayak Bhavan,
Khan Market NEW DELHI.

                                              

 

Sir,

 

Sub: Codava race- primitive ethnic tribal status- treating of: - in relation to – An audience- request for-

 

            I have the honour to lead this organization aimed at struggle for establishment of Codava autonomous Region i.e. CAR (Home Land) together with treating of Codava race to be a primitive ethnic tribe capable of being given all reservations and constitutional guarantee and it may not be an untrue statement if we be permitted to inform you that we have been relentlessly struggling during the past over 14 years by holding peaceful sathyagrahas, massive public rallies, seminars and public meetings in Codagu district of south west Karnataka and elsewhere including Bangalore and New Delhi. Already we have proved the truth beyond all reasonable doubts and with factual proofs regarding claim that Codavas belong to the only non-religious race with a primitive ethnic tag. Once again we have scheduled to hold a sathyagraha coupled with a seminar to be attended by stalwarts including Prof: Balmeer Arora of JNU and Prof: T.K. Oommen the nationally acknowledged social scientist on 6th and 7th of April 2006 respectively. A batch of 60 Codava and Codavathies (women) from Coorg attired in traditional Codava primitive ethnic costume sit in satyagraha on 6 April 2006 at Janthar Manthar, New Delhi and the seminar will be held on the following day in the Indian Social Institute at Delhi. The entire batch desires to meet you on 7 April 2006 at 3.30 in the afternoon.

 


CNC deligation met Dr. Dwarakanath the Hon,ble Chairman of Karnataka Backward Class Commission

 
 

            Therefore I request you to be kind enough to grant us an audience and receive the memorandum we intend to present before you regarding our struggle and our right for the things we cherish. 

            A line in reply is solicited most earnestly.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)

    
 

To:

1.3.2006

 
 

Sri. George Fernandes 
Hon’ble former Defence Minister of India, 
And NDA convener, New Delhi.

 
 

Dear Sir,

 

            I apologies for not having contacted you for a long time. I desire to meet you personally when I will be in Delhi during the last week of the month of March 2006 in order to complete preliminaries touching the Sathyagraha to be attended by 60 Codavas and Codavathies from Coorg in our traditional costumes at Janthar Manthar on 6 April 2006 and a seminar on the following day to be participated by renowned scholars at Indian Social Institute. We are for a long time struggling for our rights, constitutional guarantee for Codavas and Constitution of autonomous Codava Land and primitive ethnic tribal status for Codavas. I request your kind support and helping hand. 

            Therefore I request you to kind enough to visit the sathyagraha site as a guest and also to participate in the seminar as a guest speaker on 7 April 2006. 

           Your kind reply is solicited most earnestly.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava) Secretary general
Codava National Council

    
 

To:

7 April 06

 
 

The Chairman,
National Schedule Tribal Commission
Lok Nayak Bhavan, Khan Market
New Delhi.

 
 

A MEMORANDUM

 

Treat Codava’s as Ethno Linguistic As Ethno Linguistic Minority Tribes – A Historical background – Bringing necessary enactments, A case for:

 

Dear Sirs,,

 

            Codavas as an ethnic tribe and group of human individuals belong to a primitive tribe exclusively making Codagu-Coorg as their habitation. The race has its own legendary mixed with historical existence, its traditional Laws, language, heritage coupled with distinctive physical features. As though to identify the entire tribal race with a determinative track of land, the now a district Coorg gained its nomenclature from the Codava ethnic tribe. Codagu is a grammatical derivative of Codavas. The etymological background of the word “Codagu’ suggests that it is derivative of the words Kudunad or Kodimalainad meaning pyton place and the inhabitants of the pyton place or kodimalai nad are Codavas. In other words the tribes who made Kodimalai nad as their place of habitation called themselves as Codavas and they richly deserved to be classified as hill tribe people. What more the entire region is distinctive as it is a cradle of natural beauty interspersed with mountains terrain, rivers, rivulets and streams. Naturally every Codava has personified himself with the Mother Nature and the land and the people are inseparable through out.

           As until the dawn of states re-organization the land was a ‘C’ type state not to mention the fact that it perhaps was the ably administrated tiniest of provinces, more to the notion of a Nation state, with what followed next is history, with Coorg becoming merged into Karnataka. The Codava ethnic tribe the identity and the land become almost near extinct. What remains now is not even the shadow of a glorious past. What we see of Codavas is freak remembrance of such an erstwhile domineering human race. After Codagu became merged with Karnataka, the first and the only group that was hit are/were Codavas. Who until then was made Codagu as their exclusive habitation became scattered after the merger the Codavas who remain in Codagu just now, except perhaps numerically a few, are who are considering their economic background, education and unemployment. In reality 60% Codavas are living in conditions, which may conveniently be treated as below poverty line. 

           It is with this background and in order to alleviate the difficulties that large number of Codavas are suffering from, this organization took its shape and it is five years and a decade more CNC is struggling for the betterment of Codavas in all spheres, especially the land, language, customary laws and exclusive constitutional guarantee for the primitive ethnic group. What we demand now is constitutional recognition for Codavas as a primitive ethnic tribe and constitutional reservation on par with other tribal groups of the country. 

            It pain us to recollect a fact that the Government has been mislead by a handful of rich Codavas, retired top brass army personnel and characterless Codava politicians. These people felt ashamed to identify themselves with primitive ethnic tribe, which consequently made them, keep the Government with diabolic distorted information regarding Codavas. They might have imagined that people belonging to any primitive ethnic tribe to be short in stature, ugly half necked and with running nose. In other words the people who considered they to be Aristocratic Codavas who thought they are the sole representatives of the entire Codava tribes were/are in fact are imposters. They have had no basic qualities, which are expected of any normal Codava. With such a false belief and in order to make their status secure these people used characterize the numbers of Codava tribe to be very rich and influential and they have suppressed real truth so far. 

            Let us have a glance at Faktun, Usbeki, Tazik, Hazara and Turkmeni tribes of Afghanisthan, pustun, Qubaily, Baloochi, Mehasud, tribes of Pakisthan, Scotch tribes of Scotland, Gujjar Muslim tribes of Kashmir, Ispaniks of USA, Meena tribes of Rajasthan, Ladhaki Bhutia buddists and Darjiling gurkahas and several tribal groups of north eastern states i.e for example Naga tribes, Mizo tribes, Kasi tribes Jayanthiya and Garo tribes etc., are they not primitive tribal people and at Aristocratic, hygienic and dignified in their behaviour are they ugly, black, short and thicklipped curly haired human creatures? As has been thought of by these self proclaimed Codava leaders. Each and every individual such tribes are handsome with formidable physical features and better and handsome than Codavas. Are they ashamed of calling themselves as tribes? No, instead of they feel highly elated and the respective tribes have treated them as primitive tribes. A few of the said tribal groups have been recognized to be so even in UNO. Dravidian tribes are basically black and short in stature. Codavas are not Dravidian race, and they are not like other tribes of South India. Hence they cannot be compared with other tribes of the country, while accommodating Codavas in the tribal list under the constitutional provisions the very same yardstick as it has employed in relation to the tribal people of Negroid, Mangolaid and Dravidian race as their physical features, cultural heritage, religious belief, customary laws and genetic make-up are entirely different from those of Dravidian tribes. The basic characteristics of Codava as a primitive ethnic tribe is agriculture, pastoral economy, coupled with hunting and battle like that of any other primitive tribal groups elsewhere in the world and they are the common features amongst primitive ethnic tribal people. 

           Unwittingly the entire ethnic tribes of Codavas have been looked down upon and trampled underneath the feet of majority sects for the simple reason that Codavas are numerically insignificant, say infinitesimally insignificant. This perhaps is a serious slur on the very notion of democracy. 

            Large number of great scholars whose contribution to their respective subjects is considered to be land marks even have insisted the Government of India to recognize Codavas as having belonging to a primitive ethnic tribes. Take for instance weighty words of Prof. Balveer Arora, rector of JNU, New Delhi, Prof. Abdul Kalam, professor Anthropology University of Madras, Prof. L.G. Havanoor a permanent name in the annals of modern Karnataka and Prof. M.N. Panini of JNU have been advocating the immediate need of Codavas being treated as a primitive ethnic tribes with extraordinary individualistic special characters fit only to be called primitive tribes. The Avante Garde, national leaders like UPA and CMP Chairperson Smt. Sonia Gandhiji, former prime Minister Sri. H.D.Devegowdaji, His Excellency Sri. T.N.Charthurvediji, the Honorable Governor of Karnataka and Sri. B.S.Yediyoorappaji the Deputy Chief Minister of Karnataka and the legendary Jarkhand leader Sri. Shibu Sorain and such ones are convinced of the real fact and have assured CNC of doing their best to see that the demands we have been advocating all along are met. 

            Yesterdays Seminar at ISI, New Delhi and todays Sathyagraha at Janthar Manthar, New Delhi, is intend to attract the attention of the Government regarding our insistence Codavas for being treated as primitive ethnic tribes and the enactments in relation thereto and we are presenting this memorandum of demands to the concerned through the Hon’ble Chairman, National ST Commission, New Delhi in this day 7 April 2006.

 


Submitting a Memorandum to D.C regarding Tribal Status. 



Discussing with Visiting Member of NCST Mr. Budru Srinivasalu at Madikeri regarding Tribal Status.




Prayer to Ancestor and Codava Adam that is Our revered Guru Karona 




Kakkada Padnett Festival 


Puthari festival (Harvesting Festival) 




Puthari festival (Harvesting Festival)

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava) Secretary general
Codava National Council

    
 

To:

9 MAY 2006

 
 

THE NATIONAL COMMISSION FOR SCHEDULE TRIBES AS REPRESENTED BY ITS VISITING MEMBER SRI. BUDURU SRINIVASULU, FOR THE PURPOSE CAMP AT MADIKERI- CODAGU.

 
 

A MEMORANDUM PRESENTED ON 9 MAY 2006

 

Hon’ble Sir,

 

SUBJECT: TOUCHING THE DEMAND FOR TREATING CODAVAS AS PRIMITIVE ETHNIC TRIBALS UNDER THE CONSTITUTION OF INDIA.

 

           
·  The word Codagu has a misty past and so its natural inhabitants, the colorful Codavas, drenched in aboriginal tribal history, exuding natural aroma, living in the remnants of nature in its un spoilt beauty and for ever breathing with nature. Passage of time has brought in many changes. Education, interaction with other people and search of pastures have transformed Codavas considerably, but yet this racial, rather completely aborigine community, nurtures its primitive qualities and fosters its rustic social behaviour.

 


Submitting a memorandum to NCST Chairperson Urmila Singh at New Delhi regarding Tribal Status for Status.

 
 

        
·  Being one with nature is the soul of Codava culture, its heritage and its existence and more so it’s religious beliefs and never a ritualistic obedience to ideological faiths and philosophies. Religion is unknown to Codavas, but are not atheists. Codavas worship “Guru’, the supreme creator, (common ancestor) and beseech and bend in reverence before ‘Karona’ their respective lineal ancestor. Every Home has a common ‘Pombolak’, the hanging lamp, which one of them lights every day with a solemn wish that brightness shall dawn upon the clan and for ever.

 
 

           
·  Every Codava family, there are at least one thousand of them, has a distinctive clannish lineage and every such clan (okka/Khandan has a different name which every member prefixes to his/her name. Every linear male member of each Okka is obligated to identify himself with such of the clannish name, but the female member adheres to such a rule until she remain a spinster and at the marriage alter, practically she is deemed to have adopted the clannish name of her spouse. For every Codavathi her parental home is her “Thamane’ and the marital home is her ‘Baamane’. 

           
·  The institution of marriage once again is neither ritualistic, nor contractual, but absolutely customary. Unlike other communities, boy’s side goes to the family houses of the girl intended to be in order to seek the marital knot. Normally the party includes one elderly person of the boy’s family, one Arava, normally a person of a different clannish family of the neighborhood and one well-wisher. They seek the alliance and identical number if such persons of the girl’s family receive them at the door steps, guide them to Nellakki Nadu Bade which in actual fact is the sanctum sanctorum of every Codava family within the Aine Mane, the ancient and main family house and in their own way seek the marital alliance. Should an astrological birth chart is to be consulted; the intended boy’s birth chart has to be brought to the home of the bride and not otherwise. If the parties mutually agree for the alliance, the astrological birth chart takes a back seat. The marriage will be fixed. Even the customs touching the actual wedding ceremony has no religious aspect in any manner. Every transaction is traditional and as far as possible practical only, blessings being prime object. Even to date their practices are scrupulously followed regardless of the status of the persons involved. 

           
·  One significant factor is that the mother of the bride ties the sacred pathak ( a thing akin to mangala suthra) around the neck of the bride on the previous night of the day of wedding and the practice of groom tying is unknown. It is interesting to note that Codavas celebrate every new arrival in the family with much gaiety but with certain variations as between male and female children. Interestingly no purohit has any say in any Codava functions and rituals and happily every family function has Pandikari, (pork) as the piece de meal. 

           
·  Every Codava okka has one Aine Mane, the concentric abode of each clannish Codava khandan, and always without doubt is the power house of every such clan. Within the structure there is a Nadu Baade, the centrifugal foyer, which is also the place of worship, the place where policies are laid down and plans are drawn and there is a belief that it houses the departed souls, Karonas of the okka. 

           
·  FESTIVALS: Codava festivals are but five. First it is Edmeyar, Edmyyar 1, coinciding 14 of April every year, is the New Year day of Codavas. 

           
·  KAKKADA 18: Even though strictly it is not a festival 18th day of Kakkada month of Codava calender 3rd day of August every year will be celebrated as “mudd kool day on which day a porridge of a certain variety of some jungle shrub will be mixed with jaggary will be consumed immediately after rising under the belief that such leaves would have 18 types of herbal medicines. 

           
·  KAIL POLDU. On a day as may be decided by the villagers immediately after the agricultural operations come to an end, the Kail Poldu will be celebrated. All the arms, agricultural implements and such articles of ancient heritage of the family will be washed and arranged at a place and Pooja done. In other words it is type of Ayudha Pooja. It signifies that the Codavas are ready to go hunting since they would have abundant leisure. Such Ayudha Pooja are performed on different days in all the villages. 

           
·  PATHOLADHI: Codavas always on the 15th day of Pathalodhi of Codava almanac coinciding one of the days in the last quarters of the month of October offer meedi i.e. ablation to their departed souls. Every Codava offers meedi to the departed one before taking food every time. 

           
·  PUTHARI: Puthari is the festival of harvest. The removing of the first Kad/paddy grown and ready for reaping and would be ceremonially brought home and do Pooja. Puthari is celebrated with much gaiety. 

           
·  SANCTUM SANCTORUM: The prime structures of Codava heritage includes Ainmane i.e clannish (Khandan) central home & a temple, Kanni Kombare, is essentially a worship of a place of Codavas believed to be the abode of Guru (first Codava i.e. common ancestor) and Nellakki and Nadubade is essentially the worship place of Codavas and believed to be the abode of Karona the unknown ancestor of Codava clan. 

           
·  SANTUARY PLACE: Each clannish family has its own burial place and funeral place traditionally called as Thootangala and Kyakola which necessarily are believed to be the perennial sanctuaries of Codavas. 

           
·  MACHANIKAD: Machanikad is a special arrangement within amongst Codavas. Normally a track of land will be reserved and preserved as “Machanikad” for the girls (women) who have been given in marriage, if she dies due to some reason in her parental home (Thamane) and if the transportation of the dead body becomes an impossibility, to the marital home (Baamane) especially on account of atmospheric variations and such other reasons as hilly terrain, her dead body would be disposed off in the Machanikad only and never in the clannish thootngala or kyakola of her parental home i.e. Thaamane. Such system of reservation is found only amongst Codava race. 

           
·  KAIMADA: Every ainmane has an annex called Kaimada and it certainly is the permanent abode for members of the family who have died earlier. 

           
·  MARTIAL RACE: Codavas are martial by birth, by nature and by practice and naturally there is no single Codava family without at least one of its members joining Army. Every Codava aspires to join army, is inclined to join army and is at ease in army. 

           
·  MUNDH: It is also a sanctuary place for Codavas. It is a Supreme Court (Seat of Judiciary) martial art ground, war rehearsal place, auditorium, stadium etc., all in one. It is a multipurpose sanctuary place for Codavas. 

           
·  ALMANAC: Codavas have a typical aboriginal tribal almanac and it synchronizes with other solar calendars Codava almanac basically solar one. 

           
·  Ancient Codava land/Codava Nad (Codavasthan) 45 Codava tribal traditional administrative units under the classification called Naads and we have our own customary law, language which is ordinarily recognized as Codava Thakk, but unfortunately after Codagu erstwhile Coorg C state became merged with Karnataka, the majority communities who handled and mishandled the fortunes of Karnataka systematically have attempted to obliterate, erase and efface whatever is Codava. The Govt. of Karnataka systematically has infiltrated Kannadigas of older Mysore into the entire Codagu with a solitary intention of taking the advantage of all reservations and scrupulously have avoided to make mention about the existence of Codavas by resorting to most loath some, abominable and unscrupulous methods, in the result not a single Governmental paper mentions about Codavas. 

           
·  All these factors forced the forming of this organization some 15 years ago and ever since its inception we have been struggling for the resurgence of ancient Codava land, Codava autonomous region, ethnic tribal status and constitutional guarantee for our land, language, cultural heritage and economic and political freedom. We have held innumerable seminars, conferences, sathyagrahas and rallies within Codagu, in Bangalore and in Delhi. On 7 April 2006 we have held a seminar coupled with a Sathyagraha at Delhi and we are happy that we could meet the Hon’ble Chairman of National Commission for ST Sri. Kunwar Singh and your goodself. (Hon’ble Mr. Buduru Srinivasulu) at Lok Nayak Bhavan, New Delhi. We would like to remind you that you have agreed to visit Codagu in order to find first hand information regarding the tenability of our demands for tribal status, needless to add that the renowned socio political scientists and genius personalities including Professors L.G. Havanoor, the then the chairman of Karnataka first back ward Class commission,T.K. Oommen, former chairman of International Sociology Conference, Balveer Arora, former rector and former pro vice chancellor of JNU, M.N. Panini, sociologist of JNU and Dr. M. Abdul Kalam, Professor, Department of Anthropology University of Madras), to mention a few names, have vehemently justified the positive nature of our demand for treating Codavas as primitive As Ethno Linguistic Minority Tribes . It is time that the Government of India uses the very same yard stick which it employed in order to identify and consequently classify tribes among Caucasian, Negroid, Mangolyd and Dravidian races as (primitive) tribes even though there have been rich handsome, wealthy, literates and socially forward within amongst themselves, for example Meenas of Rajasthan, Negis of Uthar Khand, Meities of Manipur, Nagas of Nagaland, Mizo’s of Mizoram, Jayanthia, Kashi and Gharos of Meghalaya, Karbi and Bodos of Assam, Ladaki Buthias of Ladhak region and J&K and of late the Ghorkas of Darjiling hills of west Bengal, muslims of Lakshadweep, Lepchas of Sikkim and apply very same yard stick to Codavas in order to treat us as the members of primitive ethnic tribes. Even though to quote some examples people like P.A Sangma, (Gharo tribe) S.T. Sangliyana, (Mizo tribe) Bharath Lal Meena, (Meena Tribe), the legendary Jharkhand leader and an oxford graduate Major Jaipalsingh Munda is a Munda tribe, Dharmapal Negi (Kummohi tribe), Chokila Aiyer (Lefcha Tribe of Sikkim) former Prime minister of Nepal Mr. Surya Bahadur Thapa, former Chief Ministers of Sikkim Pawan Kumar Chamling and B.B. Gurang are among Gurkha Community have reached dizzy heights in their respective fields, who are the members of such classified groups. It has not hindered the Government of India to classify those communities as tribes. 

           
·  It is disheartening to inform you that as until the year 1956 we had our own system of Tribal republic under a primeval nomenclature Thakkame - Okkame and Desha Sabhe where is it now? Could we be permitted to pursue to inform you that the state legal system shall have no power to over ride the traditional tribal legal system in any manner as enshrined in United Nations charter. And the very same thing has happened with Codava ancient judiciary customary practices. Consequent to the calculated encroachment into the very existence of Codavas and the gradual infiltration into Codava society of the people and culture from plains of Karnataka through internal colonialism virtually as caused Codavas leaving Kodagu on account of the fact that Codavas have no opportunities are given to them in any Governmental employments and the causa causance been the reorganization of imported tribes, naturally MNC’s, NRI’s of other places and money bags from North India and underworld business tycoons have succeeded in grabbing almost every inch of Codava land. At least 80% of Codavas are poor and 60 % of them are BPL. This virtually has caused the exodus of Codavas from their own land and the Codavas who remain here being treated as refugees. Due to unemployment poverty is looming large among Codava youths so large number of boys and girls are migrating from this land to other places to eke out their fortune. Unless constitutional guarantee is made at once under 6th schedule, Article 371 and 8th schedule it is a certainty that future generation will have to know about Codavas from history books. 

Unless our demands are considered positively, we will have to imagine that the worst possible tragedy of the century in a nation, which has largest numbers of ethnic and tribal diversities, has occurred. 

Numerically we Codavas are not more than one and half lakhs and we have been habituating in hilly terrains from time immemorial. Unless constitutional guarantee is extended to us, we certainly will become a non-entity very soon. 

Considering all these and such other aspects, it is desirable that Codavas are treated as a ‘primitive ethnic tribe’ and classified so.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava) Secretary general
Codava National Council

    

 

 

ANNEXURES:

 

1. A Memorandum submitted on 7 April 2006 at New Delhi to National Commission for S.T. 

2. CD taken from the Delhi rally and memorandum submitted before the NCST. 

3. Reply from your office (NCST) thereto dated 12.4.2006 

4. The Paper presented by Dr. Abdul Kalam, eminent anthropologist, University of Madras. 

5. Coorg Gazetteer compiled by Rev. G. Richter year 1870. 

6. Booklet penned by Dr. I.M. Muthanna, the renowned Codava Historian 

7. The information paper presented by Prof. Balveer Arora, former rector and former pro vice chancellor of JNU, New Delhi, popular Political scientist of the nation. 

8. The great autonomy charter of Codava Land/ Codavasthan and charter of demands of Codavas by CNC. 

9. Newspaper clippings.

 
 

PERSONAL NOTES:

 

Things what I have noticed and experienced during my sojourn Codagu and Codava hamlets.

 
 

·  It was 2’ O clock in the afternoon. Smt. Jayamma, the Director of Karnataka Tribal Welfare department and myself were received by about 60-70 Codava and Codavathis (Codava women are called so) at the outskirts of the otherwise Cozi calm and picturesque Hilly city of Madikeri, the heartland the district of Codagu in Karnataka in full traditional costumes and the sounding of Dudi, an aboriginal drum conical in the center, banners, not to mention the fact that I was garlanded by the Secretary General of CNC. 
·  We were taken to Sudharshan guest house nearby. After food and brief rest we were ushered into the conference Hall by all those who were present at the time of our reception with the traditional dudi beat all along. In the conference hall we could watch the waiting members of the Codava traditional parliament and press persons. 
·  The actual deliberations started with a melodious invocation in Codava tongue by a traditionally dressed by Nandineravanda Nisha Achaiah. I learned that the invocation song was in fact an ode to the memory of departed Codava ancestors whom Codavas call under a nomenclature as : Karonas”. The traditional reception in the conference hall included the presentation of honey and a Odikathi by N.U. Nachappa Secretary General CNC in the name and on behalf of the Codavas in general and the Codava traditional parliament.(i.e The Codava temporal spiritual legislature). 
·  Mr. N.U. Nachappa the centre figure of the movement CNC presented a 11 paged memorandum in paragraphs together with nine classical documents and the same was read over and explained by him. After the presentation of the memorandum, I have noted down each and every representation so made and I have responded them with acceptable explanation and assured them that justice would be done and I have directed the director of tribal welfare department who accompanied me to collect base material evidence in order to prove the claim of Codavas for being classified as a most primitive ethnic tribal sect including the anthropological approach regarding Codava existence. No doubt I have convinced all those present in the conference hall and informed them that the needful act would be done and I had to remind them that I had visited the place within 32 days after a regular representation to the commission at New Delhi on 7 April 2006. 
·  Before conclusion of days; programme photographs were made of all those Codavas standing with me. At my instance photographs were taken regarding the physical features of, particularly the facial built including the structure of nose etc., Codavas and Codavathis. I have also taken the photographs the “pathak” a traditional trinket worn by married Codavathis.

 
 

Date 10 May 2006

MY VISTATIONS:

 
 

·  6. First we were taken to Mutlu village of Surlabbi Nad of Madikeri taluk a place off about 60 kms from Madikeri. (1) Mutlu village is in fact a hamlet of Surlabbi Nad an essentially Codava village. Mutlu village has some thing about 6 codava clans/okkas as is called in the Codava Parlance (Khadan) divided into 43 families are branches with about 300 people. 
·  I took the opportunity to gather first hand information by visiting some Codava families at random and it was “Pudiyathanda” “Bottolanda” & “Udiyanda”, “Odiyanda” Minnanda” and “Napanda” okka clans as may be properly explained. I was received the women folk of the respective families by handing over a copper vessel, chembu as is called filled with water and I was asked to wash my face and hands before entering the home proper. It is said that the just are received so by every Codava clannish families. 
·  While entering the hutment I could see a print photograph nicely framed of Bhagaban Sri Sathya Sai Baba fixed in the main walls. Even though the Codavas strictly are ancestral worshippers, there is no bar regarding the worship of deities and the people like Bhagavan Sathya sai baba and felt the gesture to be harmonious. I was directly guided into the kitchen even though very small and poor at once, I have had the good fortune of seeing the quality of the dish, the method how dishes one cooked and the type of the kitchen. We were offered honey (Then) and Morekoolu (curd rice mixed with honey) Noolput (noodles) and Kolikari a rustic broth) the preparation was rather different from such things consumed elsewhere and I could feel rustic nature in every thing offered to me. Their behaviour was open, with unmixed with Sophistry. 
·  After food we have had the opportunity to watch a tribal women dance programme to the tune “Bandira Bendukella” and dancing in a circle with clamper Thala and lamp upon a small tripod in the centre. If the first song was intended to receive guests and appreciate their visit home, the next song was “Thena Ten” (Ten-Honey) a folk tone explaining about Codava existence and their consumption of various varieties of honey. 
·  The folk dance by women was followed by at another fascinating folk dance. “Bolakat” Balopat and Dudikott paat by Codava tribal men in their customary costumes. 
·  As the entire transaction continued, I felt as though I was in the midst of the most backward and near pre historic tribes of India and I was happy all along. 
·  THE TOPHOGRAPHICAL FEATURES: The village Mutlu is almost in an abandoned state. The entire village, I have no reason to compare this human habitate to any other village or villages in India as the people are aboriginal and rustic. The place is a hilly terrain and better remembered nothing about the quality of the life these Codava tribes are lending in the village called Mutlu. They are extremely indigent (poor) unclean, but very harmonious and good at heart. I did not see one single structure in the entire village of the quality of any normal building elsewhere in Indian villages. A good majority of these structure are hutments with thatched roof. There absolutely as now water supply, electricity, schools, phone and other basic amenities are wholly absent. The main vocation is cultivating paddy, bee keeping, honey collecting, forest production collecting and pastoral economy. In order to supplement the family income they depend on handicraft like making cane articles. 
·  Some of the names of the persons whom I met in Mutlu village are Bottolanda Suma, aged 20 years, Pudiyathanda Pramila, aged 19 years, Pudiyathanda Shoba, aged 16 years, Pudiyathanda Chondamma, aged 38 years, Pudiyathanda Rani, aged 40 years, Bottolanda Saritha, aged 22 years (all ladies). Bottolanda Nanda Kariappa, aged 26 years, Pudiyathanda Prakash, aged 23 years, Pudiyathanda Lokesh, 31 years, Pudiyathanda Palangappa, 50 years, Udiyanda Suresh, 38 years, Udiyanda Mani, 38 years, Minnanda Nehru, 40 years, Pudiyathanda Govinda, 29 years, Odiyanda Sabu, 40 years, Udiyanda Ponnappa, 70 years, Pudiyathanda Somaiah, 60 years, Napanda Shambu, aged 50 years (all male members) enchant every Codava clans is identified with their respective clannish names such as Nandineravanda, Pullera, Badkada, Kaliyanda, Anjaparavanda, Ajjinanda, Kokkalemada, Badumanda, and Bachiraniyanda. The secretary general of CNC Sri. N.U. Nachappa is said to belong to a family generally identified as “Nandineravanda”.

 
VILLAGE KALOOR OF MUTHNAD:

The next place we visited was at 12.30 noon, another God for shaken Codava hamlet called Kaloor with in the bounds and Muthnad. This village is no different from Mutlu or any such other villages. Even in this village we were received in the manner as done in Mutlu village. I took the opportunity to have a glance at the Kaimada of Karera Okka (clan) The Kaimada is believed to be a permanent repository of the souls of the persons of the respective clan and the soul of unknown karona ( i.e ancestors) of the respective clan. They offer oblations and Meedhi in Codava parlance and they light a small earthen lamp in the place. 
·  At a certain other place in the same village I was shown “Kormbekode” /”Korikode” The pre historic umbrella used by villagers during monsoon when normally they engage themselves in agricultural operations. This Kormbekode is modeled just in the stage of a shield with Konikal top large leaves arranged with in bamboo sticks on both sides. It is worn on the head. Myself and Mr. Nachappa experienced wearing Kormbe Kode and we have been photographed. 
·  In Kaloor village I was taken to a “mund” i.e that is a ground set apart for public purposes including Nyaya panchaayath. Martial arts, Stadium, celebrating festival dances and the like and the entire transaction would be Carried out underneath a centrally carried out a centrally spread large tree. Normally, the trees of the variety of Goli, athi, ala, arali being preferred. The villagers presented “a puthari Kolkali”; The chief participants are M/s Ailapanda Madappa, chandira Raja, and Nandalapanda Bojappa. It is a folk dance each participant with a cane in hand dances encircling the centrally located tree. We can see such munds in every naads in the district of Codava region. 
·  BALE BENGUVA: I was taken in a procession to the school ground where I could see some 6 numbers of stumps of plantain plants. The chief guest and the host would be asked to slit the stumps with a sharp odikathi. I did it and so Mr. N.U. Nachappa. I felt elated in the company of near stone aged tribal culture. No doubt I was treated with traditional sumptuous Kadmbuttu i.e rice pie and Pandikari i.e pork preparation. 
·  The tipical names some of the Codava were whom I come across are Nandalapanda Lalitha, 55 years, Karera Dechamma 64 years, Chennapanda Jaji, 55 years, Nandalapanda Susheela, 45 years, Karera Jamuna, 36 years, all are ladies. Kolumadanda Devaiah, 65 years, Ailapanda Mittu, 38 years, Karera Vasu, 58 years all male members. In Kaloor village there are about 70 different Codava clans are living. They are namely few Chennapanda, Karera, Ailapanda, Chandira, Kolumadanda, Napanda, Nandalapanda, Tulnadanda, Thambukuttira etc., about 1700 Codava tribes are living there.

 
 

CONCLUSION:

 
 

            The experience that I have gathered during the two days of my sojourn in Codava hamlets of Codagu district in Karnataka is dispassionately interesting, exotic, aboriginal and I felt living in and rubbing shoulders with those ancient tribes in their nature habitate. They received me well even the women folk without any hesitation shook hands with me they received me with brand and enchanting laughter in their faces and in their traditional dresses. Without any hesitation one can identify Codava especially their women folk differentiate between Codava and other by looking at their structure. They are different. Their culture is entirely different. Their food habits are still more different interesting to note that they relish mushroom, jackfruit seeds, bamboo shooks, honey and of course pandikari, and wild animals. They have a special taste for yam, barks of various variety of trees and green leaves. Codavas have their own almanac eerie judicial system. Customary law, language called Codavathak dress code typical only to Codavas, Namme nal i.e festival, their temple i.e ainmane, Sanctum Sanctorum, i.e Kanni kombare, Nellakki Nadubade, places of worship Thootngala, Kyakola, Mund and Kaimada etc., consequent to what I believe the tyrannical, reckless and rapacious attitude of the Government of Karnataka after the then C state of Coorg became amalgamated with Karnataka as ended up, or near that, in the near elimination of the very notion of the existence of Codavas, Codava culture, Codava tradition, language, their heritage, their traditional ancient administrative divisions called naads and all such things what is distinctively connected with Codavas. There is strong aspersion against Codavas by the ruling sections of Karnataka. I have ample proof that Codavas do certainly fulfill all the criteria i.e required them to be classified as primitive ethnic tribes. (1) They habitate in Codagu, called Codavunad or Codava Land i.e traditional occupation of a definite geographical area the nomenclature of which is a derivative “Codava” or “Codagu” in Kannada ( 2) They have had a distinctive culture which includes the whole spectrum of tribal life, i.e language, customary traditions i.e religious beliefs art and crafts etc (3) Primitive traits depicting occupational pattern etc., and (4) lack of educational and techno economical developments. 

            Strangely Codavas do not follow any religion. Codavas are essentially a non religious racial primitive tribes and nothing more than that I am happy to remember that Codavas still stand pasty nurture primitive habits, their ancient culture and are happy with their ancient beliefs and traditions. I am happy that I could watch at least one section of people who still live tribes, but unfortunately they are not recognized so. Unless Codavas are classified and recognized as a primitive ethnic tribe, and given constitutional guarantee to them. I fear that some day very soon this infinitesimally insignificant group of tribes will become a thing of ancient past very soon. 

            Throughout my visit Sri. N.U. Nachappa, Secretary General of Codava National Council, Sri. Pullera Kalappa, and Sri. Nandineravanda Achaiah members of Codava Parliament and Smt. Swathi Kalappa and Nisha Achaiah had accompanied me.

 
   

BUDURU SRINIVASULU
MEMBER
NATIONAL COMMISSION FOR
SCHEDULE TRIBALS
GOVERNMENT OF INDIA 
6TH FLO0R, 
LOK NAYAK BHAVAN, 
KHAN MARKET, NEW DELHI-110003

 
 

STATUS AND STATISTICS OF CODAVA RACE

 
 

            Numerically Codavas may not exceed 1.5 lakh persons habituating within Codagu (Codava Land) and elsewhere and gender wise presumably it is 50:50 except perhaps for the codavas residing at Western Ghats terrains Codava population is largely literate, a sizeable percentage for various reasons including financial drawback could not complete secondary education. One other reasons being the Government of Karnataka did not give the needed imputes for establishing primary, higher primary, high schools in the remote villages after amalgamation. One freak reason being good majority of localities situated hilly areas and that also has contributed for the backwardness. It is not a totally undeniable fact that the Govt. of Karnataka fixed standards for establishment of schools, with the population habituating in plain areas of Old Mysore and no special consideration was made for students hailing from hilly region of Codagu. 

            During British rule Codavas did attain special importance and naturally the people residing at townships started to imbibe the qualities of Britons the way Mizo’s, Ghurkas, and tribes of Meghalaya i.e Gharo, Jayanthiya and Kashi tribes did change their lifestyle to suit the ruling class. Added to it Codavas are well built and have extraordinary biological features. If we delve deep into the history we find otherwise already marshal race of Codavas we can exploited by a total outside Lingayath Raj who inducted them into his army in order to expand his power. It is an undeniable fact that Codavas wholeheartedly supported the rule of Britishers in order to avoid the tyrannical and rapacious rule of alien Lingayath Raj. Britisher’s did help Codavas attain new height. A negligible percentage of Codavas became rich landowners and many more got themselves educated in schools and colleges. Such people at any stretch of imagination may not exceed 2% of the Codava populace. Britishers did yeomen service to Codava cause by protecting almost all Codava customary personal laws, land rights, religious rights, culture and traditions. After India attaining Independence until Codagu became amalgamated with Mysore now Karnataka Codavas continued to enjoy all those things what Britishers had conferred on them. Unfortunately after amalgamation in the year 1956 every thing connected with Codavas took a U turn and things became bad to worst for Codavas. The Government of Karnataka relied on Codavas of creamy layer for all its responses towards Codavas. Logically the Codavas of creamy layer took upper hand and kept on misinforming and misguiding the Governments and all other Governmental organization regarding the actual status of Codavas. They have avoided mentioning about the prevailing poverty backwardness of a larger chunk of Codavas and total backwardness of Codavas who reside in backward areas completely cut of from media as well as outer world. The inevitable outcome in the Government and all the Governmental departments and Governmental organizations started to consider Codavas to have belong to a richer class totally. In other words this type of treatment as was focused by the negligible percentage of Codavas who on account of their richness misguided the Government has caused havoc to Codavas. To quote an example at random take for instance the entries in the revenue records normally used to be made in the name of the senior most leaving Codava of any given okka. (Khandan or clan) without ever mentioning the names about the other co owners of the land no matter even if such of the clan had members not less than 500 persons. When the large extent of such lands say about 50 to 100 acres, when actually was to be divided between the inheritors of each member was to get hardly 10 to 50 cents each. Without ever carrying to investigating to the real truth the Government authorities blindly considered Codavas to be filthy rich basing their statements on the revenue records which stood in the name of one single individual who used to be the pattedar of respective okkas.

 
 

STATUS OF CODAVATHI ON MARRIAGE:

 
 

            At the wedding altar a senior member of the bridegroom’s party would opt to undertake all the responsibility of the bride in his family until he dies and such a transaction is called as “Sammandadkuvo” in Codava parlance. 

            HER STATUS DURING THE DEATH OF HER HUSBAND per chance the husband dies during the life time of the Codavathi it is incumbent on the part of one of the brothers of the dead person and who remained a bachelor at the time to marry the widow. Should there be no such brothers, the widow should be married to one of the persons within the clan. The main idea behind such a scheme is that she would be given protection and respect until she dies as has been undertaken given by the Aruva at the time of the sammandadukovo during the marriage until she dies the “sacred pathak” tied by her mother on the previous night of the wedding should be with her only and it become a sacrilege if she breaks the custom. 

            MUYYAL- KOODAL: Codavas mutually help each other in all their respective activities be it is family matters, hunting and agricultural operations. The members of other families or clans “so motu” do join the family which is to celebrate wedding, go for hunting or agricultural operations without expecting any remuneration and in return the such of the families or clans would join all those families in their respective activities. Such a practice is called as Muyyal and Koodalu. 

           The main principle of Codavas is that we eat together and we die together and every Codava shall dedicate such a wish even at the start of meal and on completion of the meal, they say “Ungana” (let us eat) and “evana” (let us get up).

 
 

To:

21.5.06

 
 

BUDURU SRINIVASULU
Member
National Commission for Schedule Tribes
Government of India, 6th floor, 
Lok Nayak Bhavan, Khan Market, 
New Delhi-110003.

 
 

Dear Sirs,,

 

            I shall be failing in my duties if I fail to express our gratitude for the pains you took to visit Codagu (Codava Land) on 9 and 10 May in order to find facts regarding the demand of Codavas for being classified as “primitive ethnic tribe”, we appreciate you that you worked as a true social Scientist. 

           We are immensely happy that you visited several of Codava racial families in their natural habitate in order to find the veracity of our demands and I am so happy that those Codavas whom you have met have behaved too very much natural in their realistic behaviour with you. If anyone on account of their rustic background had caused you any displeasure please excuse the same. 

           Before concluding we hope and expect that your report will certainly uplift the Codava demands and I hope that the entire race will be classified as “primitive ethnic tribe” on the basis of your report.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava) Secretary general
Codava National Council

    
 

Copies forwarded to:

 

Sri. Kunwar Singh,
Hon’ble chairman of the National Commission for schedule tribes,
Government of India, 
New Delhi for favor of kind information and needful action.

 
 

A MEMORANDUM

 

To:

27.5.2006

 
 

The Hon’ble Minister for Social Welfare
Government of Karnataka,
Vidhana Soudha, II floor,
Bangalore.

 
 

Hon’ble Sir,

 

Sub: 1. Request for recommendation of Codavas to be included as “primitive ethnic tribal group” under the constitution of India.

2. To inform you regarding the visit of Sri. Buduru Srinivasulu the Hon’ble member of National Commission for ST New Delhi to Codagu on 9 and 10th May 2006 at the request of CNC on behalf of Codavas to classify them as “primitive ethnic tribal group”.- regarding.

 

           
            While we appreciate your efforts to alleviate the pains and pangs of the literally lesser known groups of people belonging to most backward ethnic tribes and minorities who hitherto have had no helping hand in the state cabinet, I hereby take this opportunity to inform your that Codava National Council took its birth and has been struggling for the classification of Codavas as “primitive ethnic tribe” during the past over 15 years and I am happy to had that we have been proceeding to the towards intended goal. 

           At this point I may inform you that a massive rally of Codavas was held at Delhi on 7th April 2006 in order to attract the attention of the Union Government and National Commission for tribal affairs. After a day long Sathyagraha we met the Hon’ble chairman of the National Commission for Schedule Tribe Sri. Kunwar Singh at Loknayaka Bhavan, New Delhi, presented a detailed memorandum regarding the same and invited the commission to make a visitation to Codagu in Karnataka in order to assess the first hand information and proof regarding our demands. 

           On being nominated by the National Commission for ST a single man committee headed by Sri. Buduru Srinivasulu did visit Codagu on 9 and 10 May 2006, needless to add that he toured extensively in Codagu, especially the exclusive Codava hamlets in order to find out the grouse of Codavas and have proof in relation thereto. The gentle man visited and talked to innumerable Codava families and it is heartening to note that the naturally rustic Codavas whom he met and had an opportunity to watch their living style and behavioral aspects from close quarters were to very much enthusiastic to give satisfactory replies to all the grilling questions posed extempore by Sri. Buduru Srinivasulu. 

           The Hon’ble member who represented the NCST was immensely happy that he could meet a class of people who by all standards can be classified as a “minority primitive ethnic tribe” with a racial background in their natural habitate. He could know the difference between the things that is the land, physical features, customary law, language, heritage, way of worship, wedding style, and festivals, sanctum sanctorum, etc., what is Codava and others. 

            I would like to inform you that we Codavas do certainly fulfill all the criteria i.e. required them to be classified them as “primitive ethnic tribes” (1) They habitate in Codagu i.e they have a traditional occupation of a definitive geographical area (2) distinctive culture which includes whole spectrum of tribal way of life i.e language, customs, traditions, religious beliefs, arts and crafts etc., (3) “primitive tribes depicting occupational pattern, economy etc., 

           Therefore, we hereby request you to be kind enough to make a recommendation to the ministry for tribal affairs, Govt. of India, New Delhi, to the effect that Codavas are the fittest case to be classified as a “minority primitive ethnic tribe” with a racial background and we insists that such a thing is imminently desirable and so be serving. We hereby enclose the papers mentioned hereunder in the manner of positive proof and grounds for our demands as being classified as “minority primitive ethnic tribe” for your kind perusal.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava) Secretary general
Codava National Council

    
 

To:

27.5.06

 
 

Sri. Balachandra Jarakihole,
Hon’ble Minister of Social Welfare
Government of Karnataka
Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore-1.

 
 

Hon’ble Sir,

 

            Please find herein enclosed a Memorandum together with other important papers touching the demand of Codavas for being classified as “minority primitive ethnic tribe” and which calls for your positive recommendation in that regard and I shall be much obliged if you are kind enough to give me an audience in order to explain about the need and necessity of such a thing at your earliest convenient date.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)

    
 

To:

9-8-06

 
 

The Social Welfare Minister,
Government of Karnataka
Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore-1.

 
 

Dear Sir,

 

SUBJECT: Request for recommendation of Codavas to be included as “primitive ethnic tribal group” under the constitution of India.

 

            REF: 1. Covering letter addressed to Sri. Balachandra Jarakihole, Hon’ble Minister for social welfare, Govt. of Karnataka- dated 27.5.06. 

2. Postal Acknowledgement evidencing the proof of the above being served on your office dated 29th May, 2006. While inviting your kind notice to the subject cited above, I take this opportunity to register my surprise regarding the noticeably this regard, inefficiency and apathy on the part of your office staff by not placing the memorandum I had addressed to you before you for your kind consideration. 

Anyhow I once again place a true replica of the said representation with this letter for your kind perusal and we stick to our ground regarding the demands we made.

Therefore, please consider the matter involved as a thing of urgency presidency basis and see that the needful is done at once.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)

    
 

To:

9.8.06

 
 

The Social Welfare Minister,
Government of Karnataka
Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore-1.

 
 

Dear Sir,

 

Sub: A day long Sathyagraha on 18 Aug 2006 at Bangalore to demand “primitive ethnic tribal” status to Codavas and presentation of a Memorandum- regarding.

 

           I am certain to meet you in order to present a memorandum. Demanding the “primitive ethnic tribal” status for Codavas and I request you to be kind enough to grant an audience to us on 18.8.06 after 4 O’clock in the evening.

 
 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)
Secretary general
Codava National Council

    
 

To:

9.8.06

 
 

The Hon’ble Chief Secretary,
Government of Karnataka
Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore-1.

 
 

Sir,

 

Sub: Constitution guarantee, autonomy and primitive ethnic tribal status for Codavas – demand for – day long Sathyagraha in that relation on 18.8.2006 at Bangalore- regarding- seeking an audience.

 

           I take this opportunity to inform you that a batch of Codava enthusiast (including women folk) drawn from various places of Codagu would be squatting in a day long Sathyagraha near Gandhi Statue, Bangalore between 9.30 in the morning to 3.30 in the afternoon on 18 Aug 2006 in order to attract the attention of the Government and we have proposal to meet you in an audience at 4 O’clock in the evening immediately after the Sathyagraha. 

            We have proposal to present a memorandum in that connection to the Government. I take privilege to inform you that all the delegates in the party would be in the traditional Codava costume when meeting you. 

            Therefore we would be much pleased if you are kind enough to grant an audience to us and receive our representation besides listening our grouse.

 
 

Thanking you,
Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)

  
 

To:

18.8.06

 
 

Sri. Buduru Srinivasulu,
Hon’ble member 
National Commission for schedule tribe (N.C.S.T)
Lok Nayak Bhavan,
Khan Market,
NEW DELHI.

 
 

Dear Sir,

 

Sub: Codava tribal racial clans (Okka- Khandan) statistics of:

 

            I take it as a privilege to make available the statistics of Codava clannish family, Okkas – (Khandan) as we are called in the local parlance, and the number of Codava men (Codava) and Codava women (Codavathi) and the names of each clans (gothra as is otherwise called by Hindus) in order to further substantiate our demands for Codavas being treated as an exclusive primitive ethnic tribe with a racial back ground and I hope that I am able to convince you to the best of my knowledge, belief and information the particulars what I proposed to mention here under are true and believed to be true. I shall not for any single moment try to distract your approach or malign your understanding in any manner. The materials I proposed to supply are as under:


NAME OF NADOKKA NAMESMENWOMEN
1. SURALABBI NADNapanda210260
(Somwarpet Taluk)Gowdanda6080
 Muddanda8896
 Imudiyanda150155
 Thambukuttira160165
 Appuda7174
 Addanda7377
 Odiganda4560
 Medura129140
 Chamera101112
 Kocchera112106
 Ajjamakkada3337
 Sedumudira4452
 Motanalira6765
 Kannikanda200250
 Pudiyathanda6075
 Odiyanda152182
 Minnanda140138
 Sarkanda3039
 Kakera3437
 Cholachanda4753
 Bedakanda4340
 Hosoklura4042
    
    
2.MANIKERI NadNanneravanda5374
(Madikeri Taluk)Nandineravanda212240
 Aiyanda8998
 Chetranda85102
 Ponnachettira112122
    
3.PALERI NADAiyakuttira7481
Somwarpet talukOddachettira4550
 Ukkerianda3145
 Bijjanda6560
 Sabbuda2934
 Padiyattira4853
 Muddura6067
 Moolemanera2529
 Kotera7071
    
4.MUTHUNADChandira6569
Madikeri TalukKarera88102
 Kokkalera109113
 Siddanda6567
 Jaddamandanda4147
 Appura4345
 Tulunadanda4754
 Chennapanda113118
 Ailapanda99104
 Nandalapanda4763
    
    
5.PORAMALE NADAiyaraniyanda4554
(Madikeri Taluk)Badalera3334
 Pandira6064
 Pillanda3039
 Ammachimaniyanda2727
 Ponnappanda3231
 Nellapattira4346
    
6.BADIGERI NADNandira6671
Madikeri TalukShantheyanda8893
 Kalachanda114101
 Kalachettira4341
 Pandikuthira2732
 Madlanda3327
    
7.GADINADPasura8589
Somwarpet TalukUduvera8691
 Bakthanda3330
 Bachalira2729
 Mandeyanda4143
 Kibrera3739
 Bachinadanda5666
 Poreyanda3739
 Maruvanda3436
 Bairajanda2129
 Naganda4753
 Morkhanda4963
 Aarudda3535
 Cheekanda4147
 Motanalira6062
 Uddinadanda3031
 Geejaganda4647
 Kullodanda1923
 JATTIRA1220
    
8.AMMANJUTHINADBommanda6061
Virajpet TalukKongera2427
 Kechanda3038
 Monnikanda4043
 Kancherira6064
    
9.CHANGANADKadira3337
Somwarpet taluk`Ningerira1214
 Moodanda3033
 Bheemanda3131
 Motanda2932
 Pattimada1213
 Chettolira1418
    
10. EDAVANADHanchettira4547
Somwarpet talukSenera1212
 Settira1821
 Sadmaniyanda1716
 Daddera1517
 Mallajira2227
    
11.THAVUNADNapulira7075
Madikeri talukParavanda7180
 Dudranda8280
 Koleyanda6567
 Mapira7076
 Baloda4042
 Kottkathira6063
 Allangada3537
 Anjanda2427
 Mangerira1722
 Mudraniyanda3038
    
12.BENGNADKalmadanda100107
Madikeri talukAjjinanda7077
 Pattamada8087
 Cheeyabera3540
 Kipaadanda3330
 Bollarpanda4142
 Kunchettira4553
 Mepadanda2424
 Indanda2629
 Bacharaniyanda120136
 Kimmudira4041
 Bolandanda6363
 Baddira6470
 Apadanda3739
 Koopadira4560
 Palangetira3234
 Thotathammanda1921
 Byrettira6067
 Kekada4040
 Mandapanda4446
 Podanolanda4748
 Bodanda3129
 Poovadera2726
 Boppadthanda3132
 Chadiyanda2726
 Oddolera3536
    
13. KUYYANGERI NADKuttetira7371
Madikeri talukThelapanda7074
 Chowrira160165
 Vanchira7074
 Neravanda160179
 Ayyuda2426
 Mukkatira7068
 Acheda3032
 Mundotira4140
 Jabbanda4342
 Munjandira3944
 Mandaneravanda5557
 Podavada4044
 Paikera4143
 Poopanda4046
 Podeyanda3941
 Chowndira4546
 Chimmanda3945
 Chelmanda3843
 Mandherita3941
    
14.KANTHAMUNADKeekanda3142
Madikeri talukOlpuchira3336
 Porikera4548
 Kunjilanda4040
 Baduvanda8083
 Thirkacherira3031
 Madeyanda3131
 Ammatanda10199
 Bachettira7073
 Thirtera3738
 Kotera8889
 Almachanda6063
 Avaremadanda7777
 Kikkerianda3034
 Pandanda200220
 Devandira4049
 Pudiokkada6068
 Mukkatira4747
 Pothera2838
 Pothanda3031
 Kembadathanda4343
 Paleyanda6164
 Bonira1821
 Chindulira1723
 Bariyanda3134
    
15.NELLIAPUDIKERI NADKukkera7580
Somwarpet taluk 50%Sadera3037
Madikeri taluk 50%Achakalera2026
 Kadumanda4043
 Nandetira4244
 Thathapanda2125
 Changadamakkada2023
 Thondiyanda3748
 Paccharanda3939
    
    
    
16. PORENAL NADKechetira6063
Madikeri talukLakkapanda1819
 Madetira3031
 Coravanda4341
 Mukkatira6668
 Ajjiranda3038
 Changrandira3741
    
    
    
    
17.HOROOR MUDGERI NADPullera4151
Somwarpet talukJaggaranda4549
 Kechira3032
    
18.ULUGULI MODGERI NADDasanda4547
Somwarpet talukChikkanda3038
 Nagasettira4144
 Mollera130132
    
19.KAGGODU NADBollianda6062
Madikeri talukManduda3031
 Mandovanda3232
 Kannachanda2729
 Thennira4045
 Manjira2737
 Mukkatira6061
 Kolumadanda6667
 Kotera4447
    
20.NOORAKNADCholapanda3038
Somwarpet talukPutterira6166
 Kongetira7078
 Ballaranda4041
 Porimanda3039
 Mullanda3337
 Batra2726
 Adikera4049
 Boppattira3538
    
    
21.THALERI NADBalyandamada4560
Virajpet talukKaibilira7078
 Chimmanamada7377
 Madira6067
 Mukkatira200230
 Chimmunira7076
 Machamada200232
 Jokamada4546
 Thabbangada4348
 Thabbalera4146
 Thadiyangada4751
 Theethira200250
 Chindamada3841
 Noorera4043
 Poyilengada3237
 Bachira4560
 Bojjangada6062
 Mannera4348
 Mallamada4139
 Maramada5052
 Mayanamada6170
 Changulangada7578
 Mandamada4555
 Mundumada3850
 Andamada4038
    
22.ANJIGERI NADAjjikuttira260270
Virajpet talukChakkera265268
 Mandangada6063
 Kolera245240
 Ittira170172
 Kodaangada4045
 Bayavanda6063
 Pottengada4849
 Hottengada4747
 Banangada4052
 Mallanda5051
 Bananda5149
 Byranda3837
 Chodumada6069
 Kirundanda3840
 Kakamada7075
 Ganangada4042
 Gadanda4340
 Chendimada5058
 Mandachanda3839
 Guddamada3640
 Kallengada4153
    
23.MARENADArngipanera4043
Virajpet talukAnnira5059
 Mallengada70100
 Nellira150151
 Balyameederira7876
 Meederira6268
 Kuppudira7879
 Kayapanda7378
 Uluvangada5057
 Chonira4646
    
    
    
24.KURCHI THORENADAjjamada200199
Virajpet talukKaipalera4340
 Chettangada4446
 Chettanimada3939
 Chotteyandamada4041
 Kunhimada3941
 Manira4145
 Kattera6568
 Ipumada3838
    
25. PATHKATNADMachangada90100
Virajpet talukMachimada100129
 Puchimada85100
 Kandera7076
 Cheriyanda4143
 Chottekmada5349
 Kechamada4447
 Kottengada4347
 Kunhimada4039
 Kottanda4548
 Kechetira3845
 Muddiada6065
 Addengada7886
 Adengada100120
 Thirunellimada4052
 Cheniyapanda4547
    
26. BOTTIATH NADNellamada4140
Virajpet talukPuchanda4253
 Kookanda3949
 Atrangada4853
 Kuttandira3446
 Kadyamada120123
 Chottekalapanda3148
 Kokkanda4860
 Koppira6564
 Mukkatira4957
 Maneyappanda200250
 Kelapanda7887
 Chendira6058
 Chemmatira4155
 Madrira100120
 Jammada200220
 Matharanda8182
 Mookalera3746
    
27.KUTHNADImmandira6068
Virajpet talukAmmekanda6367
 Mullengada4248
 Mukalemada3436
 Kademada200221
 Kalengada220225
 Karthura3538
 Chandura3638
 Ballanamada4963
 Pandimada4066
 Theethamada4374
 Gummatira7071
 Theethimada7173
 Cheranda119126
 Namera6067
    
    
28.AIVATH NADKarthamada250260
Virajpet talukKalakanda7083
 Chennira3851
 Kallera3948
 Bollera100107
 Chottanda4765
 Chottangada8085
 Bottangada250260
    
29.THODANADPemmanamada4753
Virajpet talukMallangada88104
 Kattengada3751
 Allumada3839
 Dekamada3143
 Deyanda3341
 Deyira3347
 Gudiyangada2935
 Chattamada4256
 Kottangada4853
 Mallapanera3636
 Kachapanera3339
 Kallangada6069
 Kotraganda6365
 Kotramada6767
    
30. BERALI NADMookachanda4646
Virajpet talukBalladichanda120127
 Appanderanda8088
 Nambudumada6069
 Konganda170182
 Kanjithanda180187
 Kuppanda150157
 Kolathanda7072
 Kenjangada4042
 Mechanda7578
 Chemira6062
 Thathira3843
 Mangera3653
 Muruvanda9098
 Malanda7075
    
31.PERAVANADNanamanda3643
Virajpet talukNayada8083
 Mukkatira7076
 Chonamada2843
 Chendrimada200212
 Guddanda220225
 Puchimanda6061
 Pudiyanda3738
 Machettira5873
 Kambiranda200218
 Buttianda207214
 Boppanda8689
    
32.POONADAnnalamada7578
Virajpet talukCheyanda3846
 Keekanamada7079
 Keekira6068
 Kalimada140156
    
33.KANGALATH NADSannuvanda100106
Virajpet talukBolajira3846
 Appattira3647
 Kalapanda7078
 Koniyanda3536
 Benjanda3839
 Chiriyapanda100107
    
    
34.ARKERI NADParuvangada150156
Virajpet talukKokkengada140150
 Podamada135149
 Derapanda3540
 Devappanda3443
 Kayamada3738
 Thanachira2940
 Maaneppanda2636
    
35.KIRUNAL NADPullangada100117
Virajpet talukKodengada7073
 Alamengada100126
 Aramanamada120129
 Kopattira3132
 Kollimada8085
 Kokkalemada7076
 Malachira100123
 Cheppudira220221
 Ballimada5759
 Ponnimada5660
 Theetharamada6168
 Bachamada8085
 Bachangada3738
 Chettimada4039
 Chullimada3943
 Sullimada4646
 Cheeranda3639
 Chandangada2138
 Kallichanda15057
 Alemada100107
 Kiriyamada100117
 Macchiyanda4362
    
    
    
 Mekathanda5557
36.EDENALNADMukkatira121127
Virajpet talukPuggera120128
 Chendanda200215
 Ichanda5055
 Ulliyada7075
 Mandepanda250260
 Coluvanda150159
 Mundachalira100107
 Mookonda7072
 Allapanda150153
 Chembanda100115
 Ajjinikanda200205
 Chomeyanda9697
 Porkovanda7075
 Balliamanda4047
 Thathanda5057
 Balekuttira4547
 Bollachanda7074
 Kundachira7577
 Kundira7079
 Kundranda5051
 Machapanda5556
 Chotteyanda2028
 Balluda1520
    
    
    
37.UMMATH NADInanda200209
Virajpet talukMadapanda5056
 Kollira7078
 Pandiyanda7076
 Pudrimada5053
 Mukkatira100111
 Kavadichanda6061
 Kunjanda4048
 Mandeda8089
 Chillavanda5059
 Devanira7073
 Baduvamanda6064
 Nellachanda5051
 Nellamakkada100121
 Mookovanda6067
 Kuttanda200212
 Machimanda101121
    
38.BOTOLINADAmmanakuttanda7073
Virajpet talukPattada150155
 Vaterira7078
 Puliyanda200207
 Chokanda5558
 Chovanda5053
 Ammanichanda7578
 Konerira7072
 Achapanda7071
 Bolliapanda3738
 Poreyara3029
 Karthachira5053
 Karnanda7073
 Kuppachira6567
 Keethiyanda150161
 Kottianda4047
 Chandapanda7076
 Battakalanda6061
 Kanathanda7075
 Kabbachira8081
 Kaalamanda6664
    
39.BEPPUNADAmmeyanda6067
Virajpet Taluk 50%Ammandira5059
Madikeri taluk 50%Mathanda200213
 Kallira7075
 Palanganda200207
 Ichodiyanda7076
 Berera5558
 Kongiranda5053
 Kangira5556
 Ballatikalanda100112
 Kodira200223
 Palachanda100121
 Cholanda5055
 Allapira5055
 Ballachanda300320
 Mukkatira500499
 Mandetira150165
 Ichettira200221
 Mevada8085
 Mullera5658
 Moolera5758
 Poolanda7075
 Kotera6669
 Maddanda6055
 Buduvanda7055
 Ballianda7877
 Changanda6769
 Charmanda3945
 Codanda250271
 Chappanda6665
 Kuimanda6971
 Alamanda100111
 Nayakanda250258
 Kumbiyanda6068
 Koothanda200221
 Kullachanda7579
 Chonanda6568
 Ponjanda100105
 Palecanda200243
 Poyetira6065
 Changulanda150155
 Pemmanda100102
 Maletira250260
 Kuliayakanda5558
 Annerkanda7578
 Chathanda5055
 Kethanda6564
 Cheeyandira6062
    
40.BYRANADMacharanda150155
Virajpet talukMukkatira100103
 Kethira5557
 Kethiyanda6766
 Mekerira6769
 Machetira7678
 Uddapanda6668
 Charimanda7578
    
41.KADIYATHNADKarineravanda120125
Madikeri talukNambiyappanda7578
 Chonchira6065
 Palengada7075
 Palera6065
 Bepadiyanda7578
 Ithichanda100101
 Mukkatira150161
 Kadira5558
 Biddanda300340
 Palandira100107
 Balliatanda7579
 Bellathanda7576
 Cheriyatanda5060
 Mundyolanda100121
 Bolakaranda120127
 Bovveriyanda125130
 Vallanda7580
 Pattacheravanda150155
 Moodera120125
 Kannanda150165
 Thothiyanda5040
 Chenanda160170
 Meriyanda130135
 Cheyyanda6065
 Kolira2935
 Cheruvalanda8090
 Kummanda7578
 Nadikerianda150168
 Annadiyanda7075
 Macchanda7572
 Marichanda6050
 Choyamadanda5558
 Nidumanda6067
 Patrapanda100105
 Appaneravanda150155
 Bolthanda100121
 Elthanda7072
 Bollanda7578
 Bollachettira100115
 Padeyanda6656
 Naaliyanda100109
 Vanjanda6665
 Kaddaniyanda5051
 Badumanda150155
 Myndapanda5560
 Nerpanda5556
 Battiyanda5653
 Chavanda5056
 Mandathanda6065
 Periyanda7573
 Chottera101100
 Kochamanda6564
 Ponnachanda6065
    
42.PADINADBattira5557
Madikeri talukPonnolthanda150165
 Apparanda270280
 Padiyanda5055
 Allaranda6068
 Kaliyanda278279
 Kalyatanda170176
 Bachamanda8083
 Anjaparavanda150157
 Nambadammanda6567
 Udiyanda120125
 Bidderianda5658
 Apperiyanda6162
 Boliyadira7077
 Kodimaniyanda175180
 Karthanda6163
 Natolanda100105
 Madanda100116
 Aiyaneravanda4345
 Mechiyanda7072
 Karavattira6063
 Badakada6065
 Kambeyanda7578
 Ketolira100106
 Areyada200212
    
43.NELJI NADChettiyaranda5556
Madikeri talukMukkatira7578
 Appumaniyanda6570
 Mekmaniyanda6769
 Baleyada8084
 Bayada5560
 Manavattira300350
 Kotera100120
 Badanjettira5657
 Cheeyakapoovanda150155
 Mundanda200220
 Appachettolanda120125
 Monnanda110108
 Moovera175180
 Maadeyanda7880
 Mandira100111
 Tholanda100108
 Napaneravanda7677
 Paleyada6866
    
44.BALLATH NADKaravanda6066
Madikeri talukChirotira5559
 Pebbattira6566
 Machuda5056
 Thekkabottolanda7580
 Bottolanda150153
 Appachira7577
 Chengettira5556
 Nuchimaniyanda100117
 Thapanda6668
 Pemmudianda7673
    
45.NOORAMBADA NADKulletira170173
Madikeri talukKeletira100105
 Chokira7076
 Ajjetira100102
 Kuttanjettira8089
 Kanambira6568
 Kundyolanda100109
 Kandanda101108
 Biddatanda125120
 Thirodira7673
 Kallengada6568
 Chicholiyanda5558
 Shivachaliyanda7678
 Katumaniyanda6567
 Ballanda5553
 Kondira7069
 Boppera6567
 Bollepanda7880
 Kanganda8588
    
  5941862984

Men: 59418
Women: 62984
Total: 1,22,402
 

 

            As Hindus are identified on the basis of 7 Gothras, Codavas are identified by their traditional clannish families and branches. Picking at random I take for instance my own clannish name I belong to Nandineravanda clan. In fact Nandineravanda clan has atleast 100 or near about that branches and each of the branch is identified with the very same clannish name. The entire Nandineravanda clan has but one Ainmane i.e. Nucleous clannish home (temple), Kaimada, mundh, thootngala, and kyakola (burial yard). Each and every Codava clannish family has its own Ainemane, Kaimada, Mundh, tootngala and kyakola and the like as my clan has. Nandineravandas are one clan and there shall not be marriage alliance within amongst the members of the Nandineravanda family as we belong to same blood group. There is no another Nandineravanda clan. But there are quite a few exceptions to the rule every Naad has one Mukkatira clansh family of any given Naad has nothing to do with Mukkatira clan of any other Naad, so goes the Kotera clan as such marriages between the Mukkatira clan inter alia and Kotera clannish family inter alia of different naads. Now I have every reason to believe that I have presented the correct picture regarding each clannish Codava families and I hope the particulars I hereby gave do not deviate from the real truth there is no hindrance or obstacle in accepting the same for all practical purposes of the commission. 

I once again fervently request you to be kind enough to recommend the case of Codavas for being treated as “Primitive ethnic Tribe” under the constitution of India. Codava resides within the 45 exclusive Codava Naads, which has a conglomerate, shall be considered as “Codava land”. The traditional habitation i.e. home land of Codavas. 

We herewith enclose a map and names of Codava traditional home land comprising of 45 ancient naads, the habitation the habitation of Codava clannish okka i.e khandan and bounded as on the South by Brahmagiri mountain Range on the North by Kadamakal mountain range, on the East by the compliance of river Cauvery the life line of South India and its tributaries and other streams and on the West by the grand summit of Thadiyanda Mol mountain. This exactly is heartland where Codava civilization flourished, where the very notion of Codavame (codavism) bloomed, where Codava culture, heritage and Codava ethos took shape and every thing what is Codava world is nurtured in from ages. 

It is here our venerated ancestors lived in unity and it is here where they have left behind marks of valour and every thing theirs the legacy we have received from our patriots is invaluable and much beyond our conception.

 

 Thanking you, 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)
Secretary general
Codava National Council

    

 

To:

  

 Sri. Buduru Srinivasulu,
Hon’ble member 
National Commission for schedule tribe (N.C.S.T)
Lok Nayak Bhavan,
Khan Market,
NEW DELHI.
 

 Dear Sir,

 Sub: Codava tribal racial clans (Okka- Khandan) statistics of:

 

            I take it as a privilege to make available the statistics of Codava clannish family, Okkas – (Khandan) as we are called in the local parlance, and the number of Codava men (Codava) and Codava women (Codavathi) and the names of each clans (gothra as is otherwise called by Hindus) in order to further substantiate our demands for Codavas being treated as an exclusive primitive ethnic tribe with a racial back ground and I hope that I am able to convince you to the best of my knowledge, belief and information the particulars what I proposed to mention here under are true and believed to be true. I shall not for any single moment try to distract your approach or malign your understanding in any manner. The materials I proposed to supply are as under: 

As Hindus are identified on the basis of 7 Gothras, Codavas are identified by their traditional clannish families and branches. Picking at random I take for instance my own clannish name I belong to Nandineravanda clan. In fact Nandineravanda clan has atleast 100 or near about that branches and each of the branch is identified with the very same clannish name. The entire Nandineravanda clan has but one Ainmane i.e. Nucleous clannish home (temple), Kaimada, mundh, thootngala, and kyakola (burial yard). Each and every Codava clannish family has its own Ainemane, Kaimada, Mundh, tootngala and kyakola and the like as my clan has. Nandineravandas are one clan and there shall not be marriage alliance within amongst the members of the Nandineravanda family as we belong to same blood group. There is no another Nandineravanda clan. But there are quite a few exceptions to the rule every Naad has one Mukkatira clansh family of any given Naad has nothing to do with Mukkatira clan of any other Naad, so goes the Kotera clan as such marriages between the Mukkatira clan inter alia and Kotera clannish family inter alia of different naads. Now I have every reason to believe that I have presented the correct picture regarding each clannish Codava families and I hope the particulars I hereby gave do not deviate from the real truth there is no hindrance or obstacle in accepting the same for all practical purposes of the commission. 

I once again fervently request you to be kind enough to recommend the case of Codavas for being treated as “Primitive ethnic Tribe” under the constitution of India. Codava resides within the 45 exclusive Codava Naads, which has a conglomerate, shall be considered as “Codava land”. The traditional habitation i.e. home land of Codavas. 

We herewith enclose a map and names of Codava traditional home land comprising of 45 ancient naads, the habitation the habitation of Codava clannish okka i.e khandan and bounded as on the South by Brahmagiri mountain Range on the North by Kadamakal mountain range, on the East by the compliance of river Cauvery the life line of South India and its tributaries and other streams and on the West by the grand summit of Thadiyanda Mol mountain. This exactly is heartland where Codava civilization flourished, where the very notion of Codavame (codavism) bloomed, where Codava culture, heritage and Codava ethos took shape and every thing what is Codava world is nurtured in from ages. 

It is here our venerated ancestors lived in unity and it is here where they have left behind marks of valour and every thing theirs the legacy we have received from our patriarch invaluable and much beyond our conception.
The names of the following 45 Naads 

 

 1. Suralabi nad
2. Manikere Nad
3. Paleri Naad
4. Muthnad
5. Poramalenad
6. badigerinaad
7. Ammanjuthinad
8. Gadinad
9. Changanad
10. Yedavanad
11. Thaavunad
12. Bengnad
13. Kuyyangerinad
14. Kanthamunad
15. Nellipudikerinad
 16. Porenalnad
17. Orrormudgerinad
18. Ulugulimudgerinad
19. Kaggodnad
20. Nooraknaad
21. Thaavalagerimundnad
22. Anjigerinad
23. Marenad
24. Kurchithorenad
25. Pathkatnad
26. Bottiathnad
27. Kuthnad
28. Aivathnad
29. Thodanad
30. Beralinad
 31. Peravanad
32. Poonad
33. Kangalathnad
34. Arkerinad
35. Kirnalnad
36. Yedenalnad
37. Ummathnad
38. Botolinad
39. Beppunad
40. Byranad
41. Kadiyathnad
42. Padinad
43. Nelajinad
44. Ballathnad
45. Noorambadanad
 

 

To:

01 Nov 06
Camp:Delhi

 

 The Hon’ble Chairman 
National Commission for Schedule Tribes Govt. of India, 
Lok Nayak Bhavan, Khan Market,
New Delhi.
 

 Dear Sir,

 Sub: Codavas by race – primitive ethno linguistic tribals status for Codavas- demand for-

 

            We are abundantly happy that the commission has visited Codagu (Coorg) to ascertain the first hand information and proof regarding our claim and insistence for Codavas being treated as having belonging to a primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal group and we are grateful to you for having collected required materials that may eventually become a bed rock of future amendments of law in that regard. 

We are once again in Delhi to hold a Sathyagraha against the much-publicized Suvarna Karnataka celebration since we believe that such a celebration would become meaningless unless our demands are favourably considered. We once again request you to do the needful in the matter and please see that our goal is achieved. The entire future of existence of Codavas as a primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal group rests in your hand and we believe that the commission will not fail us. 

As a matter of sheet courtesy we are here to meet the commission with a solitary intention of expressing our gratitude for the help done and expecting the recommendation to be in our favour. Special thanks are due to Sri. Kunwar Singhji the Hon’ble Chairman for National Commission for schedule tribe (NCST) Govt. of India, New Delhi and Sri. Buduru Srinivasuluji the Hon’ble Member of the NCST Government of India, New Delhi.

 

 

Thanking you,

 

 


Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)
Members Codava Parliament
(Codava Temporal Spiritual legislature)


 

To:

23.11.2006

 

 The Hon’ble Chief Secretary 
Government of Karnataka, 
Vidhana Soudha,
Bangalore-1
 

 Dear Madam,

 Sub: Primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal status for Codavas- inclusion of – regarding.

 
  • 1. Inviting your kind notice to the subject mentioned above, may I be permitted to request you to do the needful in the matter pressurizing the Secretariat of the social welfare ministry to forward our representation dated 27.5.2006 and 09.08.2006 demanding primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal status for Codavas to the ministry of tribal affairs, Government of India and National Commission for Schedule Tribes, Govt. of India, New Delhi which eventually will facilitate Codavas to get constitutional guarantees as are enshrined in Articles 340, 342, 371 and 6th schedule. Sources close to the NCST suggests that a nod from (your side) i.e. Ministry of Social Welfare, Govt. of Karnataka is awaited. In fact the NCST is ready to do its part favourably. If the information what we have gathered from our talks with the concerned NCST when we had an audience immediately after “Codavas” having held a “Sathyagraha” in New Delhi on 1 Nov 2006 could be remembered, the National Commission has already addressed a communication to the Government of Karnataka (Social welfare Ministry.) As such it would be more appropriate if you put in your hand in the matter. 

  • 2. Please find herein enclosed the resolutions that have been passed in the annual “Codava National Day” celebrations held on 21.Nov 2006 at Madikeri, Codagu re-dedicating ourselves go ahead with all our demands and true replicas of communication we have received from the office of the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India for your kind perusal. At this juncture I would like to inform you that the resolutions adopted by the enthusiastic participants in the “Codava National Day” celebrations include a demand for Autonomy, i.e. Codava Autonomous Region (CAR) protection to our land tenure, customary personal law, cultural heritage and language under Article 371 and 8th schedule of our constitution and of course a demand for treating Codavas to be belonging to a “primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal group” and for the purpose of this letter I would like to restrain myself to the demand for treating Codavas as having belonging to a primitive ethno linguistic minority tribe. It may not be exaggeration if I be permitted to inform you that the NCST has visited Codagu on May 9th 2006 in order to ascertain the truth or falsity of our demands and the commission is immensely pleased to know the exact picture first hand. 

    I request you to ask the social welfare ministry to forward our representation to the National Commission for Schedule tribal and Ministry of tribal affairs, Govt. of India, with a favourable note.
 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava)
 

Encl: 

1. Resolutions passed on 1 Nov 2006
2. A text presented by Prof. Balveer Arora, renowned Political Scientist, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.
3. Memorandum submitted to the National Commission for Schedule tribe, Government of India 9.5.2006.
4. Covering letters forwarded to Minister of Social welfare, Govt. of Karnataka.

 

 

To:

1 Dec 2006

 

Sri. R.G. Agwani, IAS,
Hon’ble Principal Secretary
Department, Ministry of Social Welfare,
Government of Karnataka
Vikasa Soudha, Bangalore-1.

  

Dear Sir,

 Sub: Primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal group – Codavas- inclusion in the list.

 

            I am abundantly happy to reciprocate the sentiments that you have expressed when we met you in a delegation on 23 Nov 2006 at Vikasa Soudha, Bangalore and we certainly are impressed by the way you treated our subject with utmost clarity. In fact the entire delegation mistook you for an experienced social scientist on listening you while you authoritatively discussed about Codavas and on your suggestion regarding your wish to entrust the matter to the institute for social & economic change, Nagarabavi, Bangalore to seek an anthropological survey and statistics about Codavas from it, we met Dr. G.K. Karanth, Professor and Head Centre for Social change and development, Institute for social and economic change, Nagarabavi, Bangalore on 24 Nov 2006 and he too was ready to take up the task but on your direction in that regard. 
As directed by you we have also met Sri. Shivappa, Director of Tribal welfare department at Krishi Bhavan Building, Bangalore and informed what all things we have discussed with you. He expressed his inability to concede our request for anthropological survey touching Codavas on the ground that there is lack of infrastructure and funds for such a subject even though the Government of India has proposed such a scheme what funds just now his department has for tribes cannot be diverted to the anthropological survey as desired by us. 


Therefore, I hereby request you to be kind enough to take pains to take up the matter as though the thing in hand is your own personal and please see that all such things are carried out in order to save one ancient racial tribe from total extinction it always is it would be judicious if you will put in a word to Dr. G.K. Karanth the professor and head Centre for social change and development, Institute for social and economic change, Nagara Bavi, Bangalore, India at your earliest. 

I propose to trouble you once again on 6th December, 2006 in this connection. A line in reply is solicited most earnestly.

 

 

 

Thanking you,
Yours Faithfully,
(N.U. Nachappa Codava)

 

 

To:

1 Dec 2006

 

 

Prof. M.N. Panini,
Renowned Social Scientist,
J.N.U.,
New Delhi.
 

 

 Sir,

 

 Sub: Codavas as a tribe – anthropological survey- regarding.

 

 

            I am extremely happy to recollect the prophetic words that you have suggested regarding the claim for Codavas being treated as a tribal group and I am immensely happy that your suggestions to get an anthropological survey done is getting shape. As suggested by you I have met Sri. Dr. G.K. Karanth Professor and Head, Centre for social change and development, Institute for social and economic change, Nagarabavi, Bangalore, India and discussed with him about the subject. Myself and the entire Codava race would be grateful to you for the help already you have done and the things as are found needful to be done in future. 

I request you to take up the initiative and help us in all manner. I shall be meeting you once again within or about a months time.

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava)
 

 

 

To:

1 DEC 2006

 

 

 Dr. G.K. Karanth,
Prof and Head,
Centre for social change and development
Institute for social and economic change,
Nagarabavi,
Bangalore, India
 

 

 Sir,

 

 Sub: Codavas as a tribe- anthropological survey - regarding.

 

 

            I would be failing in my duty if I refused to express my gratitude to you for having open heartedly discussed with us regarding the feasibility of conducting an anthropological survey about Codavas. I find it to be an appropriate act if I be permitted to inform you that Prof. Panini of JNU, and Sri. R.G. Agwani Prl. Secretary, Ministry of Social Welfare, Government of Karnataka had asked me to meet you in this regard earlier. 

In reality Codavas as a tribal group with a racial background are on the verge of near extinction and it would be desirable if you take initiative to avoid such an eventuality by conducting a correct anthropological survey on Codavas and unless you give a green signal I fear that the aspirations of Codavas to be classified as an ethno linguistic ancient tribal group with a racial background will remain a distant possibility. I shall be meeting you personally in this regard on 6 Dec 2006 once again. A line in reply is solicited most earnestly,

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava)
 

 

 

To:

1 DEC 2006

 

 

 Smt. Malathi Das, IAS
Hon’ble Chief Secretary,
Government of Karnataka
Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore-1.
 

 

 Dear Madam,

 

 Sub: Codavas & Codava subject.

 

 

            I take honor to the tasks whatever have transpired when myself and a delegation of Codavas met you in an audience on 23 Nov 2006 and I am happy to express my gratefulness to you for having readied yourself to help us in securing an ethno linguistic tribal status and all rights that are guaranteed under constitution of India to Codavas. 

Before I conclude may I be permitted to request you to do all such things whatever Codavas as a ethno linguistic tribal group just now requires before you laying down the office and it would be a landmark support to Codava cause. Codavas will remain exceptionally thankful to you for the same.

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava)
 

 

 

To:

November 7, 2007

 

 

 Prof. K.C. Belliappa 
Vice-Chancellor, Rajiv Gandhi University (Central University), 
Rono Hills, Doimukh, Itanagar Arunachal Pradesh-791112
 

 

 Dear Sir,

 

 

            I am happy to announce that we chanced to meet each other at the place of Mr. Brijesh in New Delhi and the assurance you made during our conversation still reverberates in my mind. I feel it is my duty to inform you that the national commission for schedule tribes has directed the tribal welfare department Govt. of Karnataka Bangalore and also the Director, Tribal Research Institute, Udakamandalam (Ooty), Nilagiris District, Tamilnadu regarding our persistent demands for assigning ethno linguistic tribal minority status to Codava Race and has required them to make comments along with the respective recommendations vide its letter No.RL-IV/Department/Karnataka1/2006 dt.05.01.2007 within 15 days from and no positive action in compliance with that direction thereof have been made this long believably for a solitary reason that an anthropological survey about Codavas as to be conducted preparatory to the intended recommendations to be made. What information could gather from close quarters suggests an undeniable fact that the lack of funds with both the institutions has played the mischief. I had also met Mr. Agoni, the then Principal Secretary of the Department of Social Welfare in that regard only to be informed through the Government of Karnataka had no enough fund for the purpose and he had asked to me to get an anthropological survey of Codavas through private agencies which would farm the sheet anchor factor for our desired goal to be considered positively. Once again lack of funds played havoc at that time since we too had no sufficient funds with us to spare for the purpose. Now that we have a Codava Genlteman, perhaps the only one in India, to head a central university and I take pleasure to congratulate you on your becoming the Vice Chancellor of Rajiv Gandhi Central University, Arunachal Pradesh. 

I am happy to announce that we chanced to meet each other at the place of Mr. Brijesh in New Delhi and the assurance you made during our conversation still reverberates in my mind. I feel it is my duty to inform you that the national commission for schedule tribes has directed the tribal welfare department Govt. of Karnataka Bangalore and also the Director, Tribal Research Institute, Udakamandalam (Ooty), Nilagiris District, Tamilnadu regarding our persistent demands for assigning ethno linguistic tribal minority status to Codava Race and has required them to make comments along with the respective recommendations vide its letter No.RL-IV/Department/Karnataka1/2006 dt.05.01.2007 within 15 days from and no positive action in compliance with that direction thereof have been made this long believably for a solitary reason that an anthropological survey about Codavas as to be conducted preparatory to the intended recommendations to be made. What information could gather from close quarters suggests an undeniable fact that the lack of funds with both the institutions has played the mischief. I had also met Mr. Agoni, the then Principal Secretary of the Department of Social Welfare in that regard only to be informed through the Government of Karnataka had no enough fund for the purpose and he had asked to me to get an anthropological survey of Codavas through private agencies which would farm the sheet anchor factor for our desired goal to be considered positively. Once again lack of funds played havoc at that time since we too had no sufficient funds with us to spare for the purpose. Now that we have a Codava Genlteman, perhaps the only one in India, to head a central university and I take pleasure to congratulate you on your becoming the Vice Chancellor of Rajiv Gandhi Central University, Arunachal Pradesh. 

Now time has come that such a survey is done as early as possibly so that Codavas too may imagine of being classified as an ethno-linguistic tribal minority group which eventually would crash open the Codavas in all the spheres of the Governmental activities. 

May I request you to carry out your assurances in arranging an anthropological survey of Codavas as promised by you and please see that the long felt need of Codavas becomes a reality and the Codava generality will always be obligated to you and forever the same. Is it not better to strike the iron when it is hot?

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava) 

 

 

To:

October 15, 2007

 

 

 The Chairman
National Commission for Scheduled Tribals, 
Loknayak Bhavan, Khan Market
New Delhi.
 

 

 Sir,

 

 Sub: Seeking an audience on 1 November 2007 – a request for.

 

 

            While we take pleasure to inform you that as many as 60 enthusiastic Codavas and Codavathis drawn from various parts of Codagu/ Coorg would be squatting in a sathyagraha at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi on 1 November 2007 followed by presentation of a detailed memorandum seeking primitive ethno linguistic tribal status for Codavas in Karnataka to the commission and we would be much pleased if you may receive the party in an audience after 4 ‘O clock in the afternoon of 1 November 2007 and listen our grievances. A line in reply is solicited more earnestly. 

Therefore, we request you to expedite the matter and please see that Codavas are classified as ethno-linguistic minority tribal at your earliest.

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava)
 

 

 

To:

----

 

 

 The Ministry of Tribal Affairs, 
Government of India 
NEW DELHI.
 

 

 Sub: CODAVAS – qualifications for being treated as “Primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal group” and the necessity of – a recommendation.

 

 Dear Sir,

 

 

            Inviting your kind notice to the subject and reference cited above and the information what I have gathered after meeting Codavas a people inhabited in Codagu/Coorg in Karnataka with an uncommon social behaviour, living style and food habits coupled with never heard of purely non-religious racial background, at random in some of the God forsaken distant villages with predominantly Codava populace, I feel it to be my duty to inform the commission about the facts which I have found and which as I have felt. As regards the topographical features of the habitations of Codavas. It entirely is a mountainous region and naturally the people are sturdy and well built common with hill tribes. 

On 9th & 10th May 2006, Shri. N.U. Nachappa, the Secretary General of Codava National Council, which has been spearheading a movement/struggle for “autonomy”, self determination, constitutional recognition for Codavas to have been belonging to an infinitesimally insignificant tribal minority with an exclusively non-religious racial background primarily inhabiting in Codagu/Coorg rooted earth from time immemorial, took me to a few of the remoter villages at my insistence. 

As a prelude to the commissions visiting Codagu for the fact finding purposes a delegation of Codavas headed by the Secretary general of Codava National Council had visited our commission (NCST) in New Delhi on 7 April 2006 in order to appraise of the matters involved and the commission had to visit Codagu at the instance of the ministry of tribal affairs, Government of India. 

At my discretion and with short notice I could visit some of the Codava families at random at Mutlu, Kalur and Surlabbi villages. To quote a few examples, I was taken to the home of Minnanda, Bottolanda, Udiyanda and Pudiyathanda clans of Codava race at Mutlu village of Surlabbi Naad, in Somwarpet taluk. Even though each of the families have never been allowed to keep in readiness, they have received me well. I was heart of my hearts impressed by their rustic simplicity, most congenial attitude towards guests and their respectability. I was served with ordinary and simple traditional food whenever the Codava people have had. They talk to me in their own native tongue with out any sort of ego or make believe fashion. This has been the case with all other families I paid visit in the said villages. I wonder how still these people are capable of maintaining true to letter their traditions and customs as was being practiced from time immemorial by the race. I am yet to see one other such group of people wedded exclusively to their racial background. I had the opportunity to watching a unique folk dance by Codava men and women and they are termed as “Bolakaat” and “Ummathaat” respectively at Mutlu village. 

When I visited Kaloor village of Muthnaad in Madikeri taluk, I have had an opportunity to watch from close range the absolutely non-religious but traditional rituals special only to Codavas. The place was generally termed as “Mandh” a fairly spacious play ground with a large tree at one corner, underneath the Codavas in their absolutely rustic costumes with the folk dancers holding thin canes in their right hands and circumventing the tree stepping and dancing to the tunes of such ones lined up in between the “Dudis” a type of rather lengthy drums conical in between. Even while they song “Puthari Paat”, Codava Folk songs sung in festivities, but I found the rhythm and tone to be rather monotonous and impressive in its own style. 

Thereafter I could have a look at a ‘Kaimada’. I remember it belonged to “ Karera” clan of Codava race, which made Kaloor in Madikeri Taluk their traditional home. Kaimada is believed to be the sole repository of departed souls of each clan. The Kaimada occurs on the right side of the clannish house. I took the opportunity to gaze at a mock. “Baalebenguva”, slitting of Banana plants placed in a row. I too cut the banana stems in the manner as Codavas did. It was just near a school. 

All during my stay in Codagu and visitations to the some of the remote villages what I have noticed is that the Codavas still foster their ancient racial tribal traits, their behaviour is racial and their appetite is also rustic. The Codavas have their own body language and one can easily identify any Codava or Codavathi by simply looking at their physique, nose and their some what regimented behaviour. They have their own costumes, the prominent amongst which are ‘Kuppya” a bottomless long coat to the level of knees “Chale” a broad cummerbund read in color and head gear called “chawk vasthra” meaning striped red head cover tied at back and with a rather loosened tip on the back. Codava women are called codavathis even though, as in the case with others, I could watch a few of them in negligee, but a good majority of them are wore saris with a knot just besides the right shoulder. The frills are on the backside some also wore ‘mande vasthra’ a veil on their head with a long loose tail.

 

 

 8. MARRIAGES: TYPE OF MARRIAGE CEREMONIES

 

 

            (1) Kannimangala: The Codava marriages are strictly non-religious. There is no custom akin to any other Hindu weddings. In the case of Codavas the sacred marital thread, i.e. ‘pathak’ with a locket with a serpentine and peacock impression is tied around the neck of the bride by her own mother and never by the husband to be. The ritual is carried out on the previous night of the wedding ceremony. The ritual is done to the accompaniment of sounding of Dudi and folk songs. The actual marriage ceremony is very much simple. The newly weds are seated side by side, the groom in full white colored Codava costume and the bride with identical costumes with a veil draped round her head. The brider attire includes red sari, ‘pathak’ and veil on her head. Thereafter elders bless the couple in a queue and the last item is mutual exchanging of the floral garlands each other followed by non-vegetarian food, pork being the piece de meal. 

2) Kemikuthi Mangala: Lower portion of earlobes. Ear piercing (pok) ceremony. And it is celebrated when the boy attain the age of 12. 

3) Nari Mangala Every Codava who has hunted a tiger would celebrate Narimangala or Tiger marriage and all the proceedings connected with the normal wedding would be held. Now of course the practice is absolate. (4) “BUD MANGALA” There is a strange type of primitive marriage apart from the regular traditional marriages. A married man at times would be permitted to retain a concubine from amongst the codavthis and such a woman would be ushered into the family house with a little bit of ceremony and the actual wife would receive her and such a marriage is called Bud Mangala. 

5) Koodavali Mangala: Any widower or widow is entitled to contract a second marriage by the Koodavali system no exhaustive ceremony involved in Koodavalimangala. 

9.CEREMONIES connected with birth: A conch will be sounded when baby girl born and gun shot proclaims birth of a male child on the day of a naming ceremony the new born would be made to handle bow and arrow signifying to future martial life. 

10. FESTIVALS: Codavas have but two major festivals and they are ‘Keil Poldu’ and ‘Puthari’. “Keil Poldu” is generally is celebrated as a carnival after the cessation of agricultural operations in between August and 3 September annually. The Kail Poldu festival essentially as agro-martial in nature. All the agricultural implements will be cleansed and will be placed in a row conspicuously together will all the weapons kept idle during the agricultural operation in the Nellakki Nadu bade a common Ayudha Pooja will be offered. Thereafter firearms, sword, bow and Arrow and other weapons will be sermonizingly carried to Mundh where test fires and target shootings will be carried out. Youngsters would be asked to slit the banana stems remain scenting the remains of the martial and tribal trait. The Kail Poldu ceremony would culminate with youngsters being assigned the responsibilities for the future. 

Puthari marks the beginning of the harvesting season and Codavas ritualistically bring home the new paddy. Crop with gaiety, glamour and serenity. It occurs one of the days between 15 of November and 15 of the December every year. The other 2 minor festivals are Kakkada pudnett (“Kakkada 18” ) on 3 August every year marking the 18th day of every year of Kakkada month of Codava almanac. 

“Karanang Kodpo” Codavas seldom forget their ancestors and with an intention to propitiate the departed souls, they give oblations on that day. Karona is the ancestor of any particular Codava clan. This always will be observed during the month of October and the later of the month of April every year. Edmyar one is the New Year day in Codava almanac and Codavas follows solar calendar. They have distinctive names for each of the months, uncommon with other almanacs. 

11. WORSHIP: Codavas are ancestor worshippers. Common ancestors of all the Codava clans are respectfully addressed, as Guru and the unknown 1st ancestor of every racial clan of Codavas is the Karona of the respective clan. Codavas worship ‘Guru’ and ‘Karona’. Each and every utterance during the worship and prayers included the mentioning of sun and moon strongly none of the Hindu gods are deities have any recognition with in amongst Codavas. 

Ainmane i.e. Temple and temporal seats.: Every clannish racial Codava family has a separate clannish house called ainmane which in essence is their temple and so the temporal seat of every respective clan. 

Sanctrum Sanctoram: There is one ‘Kannikombare’ with in the ainmane and is known to be the nieche for ‘guru’ and ‘Nellakkinadubade’ which is the central of every ainmane is the place set apart for the worship of clannish Karona. Kannikombare occurs at the farthest corner of ainmane on the left side and ‘Nellakki Nadubade’ in the central hall of every Ainmane. The main doorframe has carvings of sun and moon and so the customary piche kathi, dager has in lay works of sun and moon. 

Method of worship: one of the clan members may be it is a man or women starts his or her day with ablution and lights the earthen dware lamp and respectfully touches the wall just behind the lamp with both hands and touches his forehead. The lamp will be placed on the western side of the Nadubade. The worship would do his prayers facing towards west. From Nellakki Nadu Bade a Codava or codavathi proceeds towards Kannikombare and does similar worship in the name Guru. After worshiping Guru and Karona they come out and do Namaskaram to the Sun. Every Codava or Codavathi does such prayers at evening fall but do pranamas to the moon every evenings. Except lighting of lamps other rituals are followed by each and every inmates of the house supposing a clannish family member who resides elsewhere comes to ainmane he should worship in the manner as is mentioned above. Every meal consumed by Codavas always preceded with meedhi- offering of oblations to the dead ones. These do not stop there. Even before consuming traditional beverages includes offering of one drop from the pan as meedhi or oblation. One significant factor to be remembered is that every function, be it is a marriage or ceremonies connected with the death, cradling of new born and all the festivals, has Kachangall (traditional home breaved liquor), Pandikari (pork preparations) and hunting (Kad jaathi botera kari) one requirement for being the hunter is that he should bring home a catch. The preparation that would be made of the prey is a necessary part of Codava culinary. 

12.Almanac & Calendar: Codavas have their own almanac, edmyar being 1st month and meenyar the last. Kaimada, Thootngal, kyakola, machanikad and Mundh are the sacred spots of every Codava property. “Kaimada” being the final repository of every departed Codava souls, thootangala is the crematorium. Kayakola is the burial ground of Codavas. There is one more grave yard called as machnicad should a Codava women given in marriage dies while she happens to be at parental home, considering the hazards of carrying the dead body to the marital home, and more than that the burial or cremation of such one in the parental grave yards, there is a space set apart for the last rites such women called machanikad. Codavas bow in reverence to all these spots. Mandh is a space with in the respective property of each Codava clan reserved to be the seat of clannish judiciary, and stadium for martial arts and such activities is called Mundh and Codavas being a martial race have a tendency to show high respect to Mundh. Mundh is also a stage of folk arts and a stadium for folklore games. There are 42 ancient different varieties of folklore martial arts and games and types of martial arts with in amongst Codavas. They includes pariyakali, Shaktikol and Pallikali and all these games rally round martial in character. 

13. Koodal Muyyal: every respective Codava clannish family take the assistance of every other such Codava clannish families in the agricultural operations, hunting, wedding, festivities and all such other activities in the village within amongst members of each clan and mutually help each other. Every activity or function of any given Codava clan would be held with such mutual help in totality, Codavas do not believe in retaining laborers. This necessarily is a facet of rustic village republic and socialism at the grass roots. 

14. Language: Codavas have their own rich ancient mother tongue being spoken to from time immemorial and one cannot expect a Codava or codavathi speaking in any other language or languages with a fellow Codava or codavathi except Codava parlance. Codava language essentially is a dialect and is a living spoken language. 

15. Customary personal law: Codavas normally go for redressal of their disputes in the Mundh if the dispute be as between clans and of general public importance and the disputes with in the clannish circle would be settled before the Nellakki Nadubade. The oath taken at these places has the character of regular judgments, awards and decrees of any law courts normally one who losses the dispute would be asked to apologize and contrite and pay a nominal fine and it always is called ‘Tappadka Kettuva.” 

CONCLUSION: These things what I have watched from close quarters and what I have carefully studied during my stay in Codagu converged to a single inevitable deduction that Codavas belonged to a “primitive enthno lingual tribal minority racial group” with exceptionally ethnic characteristics which they still cling to and foster those qualities. They commonly reside within a definable compact area comprising of ancient 45 traditional revenue naads, revenue segments, spreading the entire regions of Madikeri and Virajpet taluks and half of the Somwarpet Taluk of Codagu district of South west Karnataka. The total population of Codava tribal race is Men: 59418, Women: 62984, Total: 1,22,402. 

Codavas by natural deduction constitute of a very small group of people retaining all the ancient traditionally tribal character with a racial background and they definitely belonged to a living race, but endangered existence. Unless Government takes necessary steps to retain and develop their existence. Such a thing becomes more important when the entire government is saturated with major and mighty communities. Codavas in a way make a good subject for socio-anthropologists from across the world. 

Codavas have all the qualifications to be treated as “Primitive ethno-linguistic minority tribal group”. 

They fulfill all the qualifications as are needed to be judged for being treated as “Primitive ethno-linguistic minority tribal group”. And to make the job easier. I take privilege to quote Mr. R.C. Varma from his “INDIAN TRIBES” through the ages published by Publication division, Ministry of information and broadcasting, Government of India, to explain the above opinion as “ Tribal are notable for their adoption to their physical environment. They have a symbiotic relation with the natural setting. They have unique love for their homeland, its forest, hills, rivers etc., They have an integrity of spirit deeper than conscious reasoning. It is very difficult to understand their love for their homeland, which amounts to mystical identification with nature. They are peace loving and their feelings are true. All this, in a way not subject to analysis, is a part of their religion, which is known as animism. The natural setting is joined with their own spirit in mystical communion. Their love for nature and the solidarity of tribe and expression in various forms of arts, dance and rituals. They have natural gifts of various handicrafts, hunting skills and martial arts. (Page No.2). 

At present the term “Tribe” according to western writers, generally means an ethnic group, geographically isolated or semi isolated, identified with one particular territory and having distinct social, economic and cultural traditions and practices. In the Indian context the term has undergone further change, particularly in post -independence period. 

There is no religious bar for specifying a person as member of a schedule tribe. However in case of schedule castes the position is different. No person professing a religion other than Hinduism or Sikhism can be deemed to be a member of schedule caste. 

The CRITERIA ADOPTED for specifying communities as the schedule tribes include 

i) Traditional occupation of a definite geographical area.
ii) Distinctive culture which includes whole spectrum of tribal way of life i.e. language, customs, traditions, religious beliefs, arts and crafts, etc., /Gastronomy that is art of good eating also one of the tribal character. 
iii) Primitive traits depicting occupational pattern, economy etc.,(Page No. 9) 

Therefore, it is desirable and more deserving that Codavas inhabiting in Codagu of Karnataka state be treated as “Primitive ethno-linguistic minority tribal group”. And a constitutional amendment looks very imminent and so all the reservations made available to them. Unless Codavas are classified as “Primitive ethno-linguistic minority tribal group”. I fear that it would amount to a great irreparable injustice to a section of people historically deserving for the same and in a nation, which is known to be the largest democracy besides being the largest nation with ethnic diversities in the world.

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (BUDURU SRINIVASULU)
Member, 
National commission for schedule Tribe (NCST)
Govt. of India, Lok Nayak Bhavan, 
Khan Market, New Delhi.
 

 

 

To:

5 Feb, 2008

 

 

 Dr. C.S. Dwarakanath, 
The Hon’ble Chairman 
Karnataka State commission for backward class No. 332, 2nd floor ,
Daru Salam Complex Queen’s Road, Bangalore- 52.
 

 

 Camp: at Gonicoppa, Codagu.

 

Dear Sir,

 

 Sub: Caste based census operation to be started by Karnataka state commission for Backward class inclusion of Codavas by race in the list and an anthropological survey about Codavas to be carried out by the Hon’ble commission- a SEMINAR touching the subject and also regarding Codavas identity as an ethno linguistic Tribal Minority Nationality – constitutional protection of – sought for.

 

 

            As we discern deep into the question of excruciating delay in achieving any of our desired goals and in the manner as we wanted even in spite of the fact that this organization has been struggling incessantly all during the past seventeen years in the manner of sathyagrihas, massive public rallies, conferences, seminars, larger and small sized public meetings and roadside congregations and village level non violent bytaks and also meetings at Delhi and Bangalore and meetings at all levels in state craft, we have been at squire one still and the prime stumbling block on our path as we have deduced is the lack of recognition of Codavas as having been belonging to an ethno linguistic minority national tribe with a bucolic racial back ground and the Government of Karnataka at once looks to be at the dock just now. Unless that be the cause we believe that we could have been living in “Codava Land” which might have been designated as an Autonomous Region long back and our other below mentioned 5 demands would have been granted as desired. 

Now that you have evinced interest in knowing about our race, our land, language, heritage, and our cultural background and at once martial and rooted to mother earth and Codavas are agro-pastoral community, a class of people, we request you to be kind enough to look into the matter with a perspective vision and please see that an anthropological survey about Codavas and include Codavas under the classification of an ethno linguistic national As Ethno Linguistic Minority Tribes exclusively with a rustic background in the Census that this Commission is known to be thinking of on the basis of castes and communities of the people of Karnataka. 

We seek permission to take advantage of your self being a known social scientist and whose contribution to the subjects are irreconcilably is weighty and inform you that the welfare state theory and the governance could go hand in hand in a democracy if only there exists the relevant documentary evidence, at least the remnants of the existence of such a thing evidenced by the periodic Census report. Unfortunately for us the mention of Codavas as having been belong to such and such a race or community or tribe. Still more strangely none of the reports make mention about our language ( i.e. Codava thakk) and about the pre historic and historic heritage markers including our religious faith (we do not have a religion as is thought to be), our traditional clannish (Khadhan) concentric Okka houses which we respectfully call as “Ainemane” (L£ï ªÀÄ£É) ‘Mandh’ (ªÀÄAzï) which otherwise is also the seat of justice besides being the central arena of Codava activities and the like. Codava customary personal laws, festivities and rituals are unique and special only to Codavas. i.e. Puthari, Kailpod, Kakkada Padnett, Edmyar and Karonang Kodpo ceremony. The failure of the Governments to give proper guidance and instructions to find out and to record the existence of such things in the enumeration work that has caused the mischief and as denied justice to Codavas all along. The life of Codavas rallies round such factors as Ainemane, Kaimada, Kanni Kombare, Mundbade, Kyakola, Thootungala, Machnikad and Mundh, Puthari, Kailpod, Kakkada Padnett, Edmyar and Karonang Kodpo ceremony. etc., 

We take courage to remind you that the Census operation should include make mention about each Codava clannish family, Ainemane, Kaimada, Kyakola, Thootungala, Machnikad and Mundh. Every clannish family has Ainemane, Mundubade, Kannikombare, Kaimada, Thootungala, Kyakola and Machanikad separately and so the conglomeration of several such clannish families have one Mundh in a village. 

Therefore, we take this opportunity to request you to look into the matter and examine the possibility of instructing every Census enumerator to make mention of above matters besides mentioning about every Codava individual in the Census enumeration work and if only such a thing is done the Census becomes complete. 

We are ashamed to inform you that the exclusively self centered treacherous Codava traitors who have had links with Governmental set up and who have commanded considerable influence over Governmental authorities have played perfidy and backstabbed Codava generality, what more the government believed them and the net result is that Codavas have lost their identity and recognition as has been mentioned above. It is for you to correct such a mistake, mischief and injustice. We also request you to conduct an anthropological survey regarding Codavas along with the census operation as requested above. 

May we be accorded permission to inform you that the very semblance of Codava race would eventually be erased from the memories unless your honour concedes our request for separate CENSUS and so the anthropological survey of Codava race and all that what is Codava. Believe us, it would become the bedrock for our struggle towards achieving our desired goal as are mentioned above. 

We only wish that your Census report and anthropological survey as desired by us would become a scientific milestones for all times to come.

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava)President, CNC. 

 

 

Enclosures herewith are copies for your kind perusal:

1. Memorandum submitted to the National commission for schedule Tribal, Government of India, New Delhi. 
2. Text on Codava rights presented by Prof: Balveer Arora, the renowned political scientist and the former Rector and pro-vice Chancellor of Jawaharalal Nehru University, New Delhi. 
3. Our 6 demands have been enclosed herewith. Members, Codava Parliament.

 

 

 

To:

October 16, 2008 
Camp: Delhi

 

 

 Smt. Urmila Singh
Hon’ble Chairperson, 
National Commission for Schedule Tribals (NCST)
Loknayak Bhawan, Khan Market, New Delhi.
 

 

 Dear Madam,

 

 Sub: Ethno Linguistic Minority Tribal Status for Codava Race – reg.

 

 Ref: 1) Your letter bearing No.RU-IV/Department/Karnataka-1/2006 addressed to The Director, Tribal Research Institute, Udhakamandalam, Ooty, Nilagiri Dist. TN., dt.05.01.2007 

2) Your letter bearing No.RU-IV/Department/Karnataka-1/2006 addressed to The Secretary, Tribal Welfare Department, Govt. of Karnataka, Bangalore dt.05.01.2007, sub: letter from Sri. N.U. Nachappa Codava, President, Codava National Council, Madikeri (Karnataka) reg. A demand for linguistic tribal status for Codava community.

 

 

            Inviting your kind notice about the subject and reference cited above, may we be permitted to inform you that we have held one more sathyagraha in order to reiterate and reassert our demands and that the commission has already done a fact finding visit to our place on 9 May 2006. A report has already been prepared by the then the member Sri. Buduru Srinivasalu and the same is in the process of final touches. We have already placed all positive evidence before the commission and furnished all such other documents in relation thereto and we expect the commission to finalise the issue as early as possible. 

Therefore, we request you to expedite the matter and please see that Codavas are classified as ethno-linguistic minority tribal at your earliest.

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   (N.U. Nachappa Codava)
 



 The Honourable Chief Minister,
State of Karnataka,
Vidhana Soudha,
Bangalore - 01.
 

 

 Respected Sir,

 

 Subject: Ethnolinguistic tribal minority status to Codavas-regarding.

 

 Reference: memorandum submitted to Union Government which in turn sent a communication  letter No. 16016/01/10 C  & LM-II Dated 25th November 2010 to the Karnataka  State government for  its say.

 

 

            1.  This is in continuation of the memorandum submitted by us, to the Union Government of India, seeking Ethnolinguistic tribal minority status to Codavas under Article 340 -342 of Our Constitution which has been referred to the Government of Karnataka for its say. 

2. We are in receipt of a communication vide No. 16016/01/10 C & LM-II Dated 25th November 2010, from the Ministry of Tribal affairs Union Government of India, New Delhi addressed to the Principal Secretary Social Welfare Department, Government of Karnataka. 

3. This detailed memorandum virtually is yet another piece of request that we make seeking your recommendation to the Union Government. This organisation i.e Codava National Council, has contemplated a score of years of its existence and relentless struggle for our demand for 'Codavaland Autonomous Region' under the 6th Schedule of Our Constitution, and hand in hand with it, we are also demand for the assigning of the Ethnolinguistic tribal minority status to Codavas by race under Article 340, 342 of Our Constitution. 

4. Without any hesitation we take pleasure to inform you that, Codava race is as old as human society and we have made Kodagu as our place of habitation all during the past several centuries. It may not be an out of place act on our part if we are permitted to inform you that Codavas by race are martial in character and we have all the characteristics that may be expected of from the groups of people living in clusters and whose living style is eerie. We have our own living spoken language, our own dress code, food habit, wedding pattern, rituals, physical features, cultural heritage, customary personal laws, folk legal systems, method of worshipping sanctum sanctorums, clannish system of society and social behaviour. Added to it, each and every Codava is an agriculturist by heritage and Codava race in essence is an agro pastoral community exclusively. Each and every moment of any born Codava has an unique behaviour intricately connected with most ancient aboriginal tribe. One other major qualification is that Codavas normally opt to join military service. 

5. Codavas are classical examples of joint family system and we have around 842 segments traditionally bearing clannish names unconnected each other. Any Codava is identified by his clannish(i.e vokka/kula/clan/khandan)family name and marriages within the clan is prohibited, Unlike any other Hindu rites, it is mother who ties Mangal Sutra called as sacred ‘pathak’ around the neck of the bride on the following day. We have important distinctive festivals yet again connected with martial art and agriculture, We have our own Calendar and Almanac. Edmyar 1,Codava new year, Kakkada Padnett is the start point of agricultural operations , Kail poud, Karanang Kodpa ceremony and Puthari is our harvest starting festival. 

6. Before we close this representation, we have felt it proper to mention a comparative study of some other communities with Codavas, which have been classified as tribals under the Constitution across the country. 

7. The main criteria used by the Union Government to include a community in the Scheduled Tribe list are: 
• Traditional occupation of a definite geographical area; 
• Distinctive culture which includes a whole spectrum of tribal way of life i.e. language, customs, traditions, religious beliefs, etc; 
• Primitive traits depicting occupational pattern, economy etc; 

8. We Codavas fulfill all the criterion. The prime criteria for being treated as a tribal group, each such group must bear certain characteristics intricately connected with tribals. Aristocratic background of any human group, their advanced literary achievements, beautiful body structure, and possessing vast landed properties should never be treated as minus points. For example a good majority of Adi tribals in Arunachal pradesh have extensive landed properties; to quote one example Mr Gegong Apang, Ex Chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh has 30000 hectares of valuable tea plantations, he belongs to Adi tribe. Yet another example may be about Mr P A Sangma, he has an aristocratic background and he belongs to Gharo tribe of Meghalaya and almost all Gharo tribals have high educational achievements and so the Mizo tribes of Mizoram are one other tribe which have highly literary achievements besides owning vast tracts of land and our North Bangalore Former MP and retired Police Commissioner Shri S T Sangliana is an unique example of Mizo Tribe. To quote a few more examples, Gond Tribals of Gondwana region of Madhya Pradesh, Meena tribes of Rajasthan, Lepcha tribes of Sikkim, Munda tribes of Jharkhand, Uchalya tribes (known as criminal tribes) of Maharastra - Karnataka border land, Badagas of Ooty, Negi (Kummaon tribes ) of Uttarkhand, and Muslims of Lakshadweepa. Enough if we pick a few names at random to mention about as how the tribes which they belong. 

9.The first name we pick is Parliament Member Mr Judev of Chattisgarh is of royal heritage and he is a Gond tribe. Mrs Urmila Singh the Chairperson of NCST, belongs to Gond tribe. The list includes Mr Barath Lal Meena, a top ranking IAS Officer in Karnataka, and Mr Prabhu Dayal Meena, Sr IAS Officer, Government of India Service both represents Meena tribes of Rajasthan. Ms Chockila Iyer, a former Foreign Secretary is another Exemplary Lepcha tribe of Sikkim. Why is not the legendary Major Jeypal Singh Munda, a doctoral degree holder from Oxford and a prominent personage of Nehruvian era was he not a tribal? The Badagas of Ooty and Negis / Khumaon of Uttarkhand are natural tribals, each and every persons mentioned here and a great number of other persons hold extensive landed  properties besides being each of them having good and noteworthy physical features, eventhough they have been treated as criminal tribals, almost all members of Uchaliya tribes of Karnataka - Maharastra border are very handsome, always well dressed , such being the case, with actual tribals, the muslim residents of Lakshadweepa even though they do not bear single characteristics to be treated as tribals, have been classified as tribals. Simply for reason, that they reside at a place, strategically and logistically sensitive area. Late Mr  P M Sayeed, former Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha, is but one example of tribal muslims of Lakshadweepa and who has scaled to dizzy heights. Atleast 50 members of the Parliament belongs to Royal lineage in actual fact represents such tribal groups and so the Valmikis of Karnataka( for example  Raja Amaresha Naik, Raja Madana gopal Naik, all are royal heritage from Karnataka belongs to Valmiki tribe) Their physical features, the affluent society which they belong to and extraordinary physical features of these have not prevented them from being considered as tribals. 

10. But whenever the question of Codavas to be classified as tribals arise, the Government has always entered into deep slumber eventhough we fulfill all such characteristics required of from any group to be treated as primitive ethno linguistic tribals.For instance, Gujjars of Rajasthan, they are around 8 crore numerically do not bear any tribal characteristics, are to be classified as tribals, only on account of their overbearing political background. 

11. Codavas are numerically very minute, we do not have any political lobby and consequent upon large scale influx into our motherland we are becoming very insecure politically, psychologically and also personal holdings. added to it our population is in the verge of extinction. 

12. Therefore, we request you to recommend the inclusion of Codavas by race in the ethno linguistic tribal minority group under Article 340 and 342 of Our Constitution and  Unless such a thing is done by you, you may please know that, Codavas soon be a clean forgotten class. Please try your level best to reassert the notion that BJP has been a Codava friendly political party by recommending our case positively to the Union Government. Every Codava will remain grateful to you for ever.

 

 

 Thanking you, Yours Faithfully, 
   N.U.Nachappa Codava,
President CNC 
Codava National Council,
P B # 12, Madikeri - 571201. 
Codava Land,
Karnataka, India, South Asia.
Mobile number 09448721200. 

Website: www.codavanationalcouncil.com                            
e-mail: codava.national.council@gmail.com 
Members Codava National Council
 

 

 

Post script

 

 

I. As regards Codava custom ,tradition and heritage this memorandum would be incomplete if we fail to make mention of Codava system of marriage activities related obituaries, naming ceremony of new arrivals, celebrations connected with main festivals, Puthari, Kail pold, Kakkadapadnet, Edmyar 1 i.e Codava New Year and offering oblations to the first Codava, the Karona, i.e ancestor and departed Codava souls, called as Karana kodpa, and Meedi Beppa Ceremony  added to these things the clannish Aine mane, the nucleus of each Codava Clannish families. In other words, these Aine Manes are both the prime original and Central temporal seats being their temple. Within every Aine Mane is housed Kanni Kombare and Nellakki Nadubade the sanctum Sanctorum of Codava Worship and Belief. 

II. The Codava race doesn't believe in supreme God head as do other religious faiths, but instead they worship original ancestor of each such clannish families and they call him as Karona, they offer oblations which they call as Meedi. Surprisingly, the Meedi consists of exclusive non vegetarian food especially 'pork' which they call as 'Pandi Erchi' and 'Kall' the intoxicant, no Codava Function is complete without serving pork and lard. 

III. One unique feature is that  the mother of the bride to be ties the sacred knot called 'Pathak' around her neck on the night prior to the actual wedding ceremonies. Interestingly Brahmin purohit has no place in the marriage celebrations of Codavas and other religious functions of Codava race. They ceremoniously sing Mangalapat, Dudikott pat and Valagathat to the beatings of the Dudikott during weddings, one other interesting factor is Codavas even in cremations of dead ones, Codavas have their own exclusive practices of the dead man would be attired like a bridegroom with a clean shaven face and turban on. Last journey of the dead man would be accompanied by the dirge i.e ' 'Chavu patt' until it reaches the graveyard where the mortal remains of the dead person would buried. 

IV. The Codavas by race are essentially is martial race and their physical features are typically only to them. A normal Codava male would be very sturdy, sports,mush and so the Codavathis, Codava woman has good physical features besides being beautiful. Codava implements Odikathi, Peechekathi, Gejjethand (Gejjethand, ( a long walking stick fitted with Gejje(bells), is gejjethand and it is the sole property of the head of the clan. Before his death he would transfer it to his successor, the next 'Koravakar' or head of the clan who would succeed him. Gejjethand goes with the office of the Koravakar) and fire arms, no Codava family is without this arms including guns. The Puthari festivities are unique and martial at once. Puthari dance is unique only to Codavas. Woman folk also dance which they call as Puthari Kolat and sing Paat. Any Codava woman may be identified by their dressed, especially sari with Palloves tied at the rear. The Codava Aine mane, Mandh, Kaimada, Patti, Vaade and their grave yards called Thootungala, Kyakola and Machnikad are the Codava land Heritage markers. The Baptism ceremony of new born male is once again very special with the Codavas. 

V.Codavas besides being martial in behaviour, are also agro pastoral and they deeply rooted to mother earth. Cryptically saying Codavas are one of the most ancient aboriginal group of human individuals having made Codagu as their place of habitation. They are localized to that district and the name of the district is also is derivation of the name of the Codava race. Considering their living style, food habits i.e gastronomy/art of good eating, social behaviour, customary personal laws, rich folk legal system and their still being practiced cultural activities, besides their closeted habitation within a narrow track of land, Codavas are fit only to be treated as the most primitive ethno linguistic minority tribal group under the Constitutional provisions. The unrest just now prevailing within amongst Codavas at large will become subsided if they are treated as ethno linguistic minority tribals