Home Continuity and change Keeping head above water: The Irulars of Pichavaram

Keeping head above water: The Irulars of Pichavaram

Ethnographic film (2018) (11 min.)
Authors: Sashi Sivramkrishna, Naresh Allika, Priya Kumar, R. Manimohan and S. Velvizhi

Among the many communities who eke out a living in the pristine waters of the Pichavaram mangrove forests – located on India’s east coast in the southern state of Tamil Nadu – are the Irular. They are a tribal people who have lived a nomadic life over generations based on earnings from hunting snakes for their skin and catching rats from paddy fields to working as day labourers in paddy and groundnut cultivation. All this changed when the former chief minister of Tamil Nadu, Mr M.G. Ramachandran gifted an acre of land to twenty-one Irular families in this region.

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