Tharu

Tharu

Who is Tharu?

Tharu are largely populated indigenous peoples in Nepal, who have settled over 20 different districts alongside whole Terai and inner Terai, the southern plain lands of Nepal. According to the latest national Census 2011, the population of Tharu is 1,737,470. They have a distinct language, culture, rituals, culture, customs and lifestyles. They are rich in folklore, literature, language. Culturally and linguistically, Tharus are divided into different subgroups. Culturally, the Tharus of Jhapa, Morang and Sunsari district are known as Morang Kochila, the Tharus living in Udayapur, Saptahari and area west to it are called western Kochila, those living in central and mid-western Terai are called Kotharia, Dangaha (Dangoura, Dangaura) and those living in the far western region are known as Rana Tharu of Kailali and Kanchenpur. Tharus are rich in cultural heritage and have their own special costumes, unique ways of living, language, religious belief, which make them different from other indigenous communities in Nepal. 

According to eminent sociologist, Dor Bahadur Bistha, Tharus were migrated from southern desert alike plain land called Thar, thus they were called Tharu. Their settlement areas have been famously known as Tharuwan or Tharuhat region. They celebrate a number of rituals and festivals, of them, Maghi, a festival of new-year, take place mid-January. It is celebrated with much fanfare for three-days, during the festival, special dance, sacrifice animals and chicken. This festival is also celebrated as Mukti Diwas (the day of emanicipation). Previously, this used to be the day when the Kamaiyas and Kamlaris (bonded-labor) used to get break from their daily chores to make new agreement with their master.

Tharu are largely populated indigenous peoples in Nepal, who have settled over 20 different districts alongside whole Terai and inner Terai, the southern plain lands of Nepal. According to the latest national Census 2011, the population of Tharu is 1,737,470. They have a distinct language, culture, rituals, culture, customs, unique ornaments, and lifestyles. They are rich in folklore, literature, language. Culturally and linguistically, Tharus are divided into different subgroups. Culturally, the Tharus of Jhapa, Morang and Sunsari district are known as Morang Kochila, the Tharus living in Udayapur, Saptahari and area west to it are called western Kochila, those living in central and mid-western Terai are called Kotharia, Dangaha (Dangoura, Dangaura) and those living in the far western region are known as Rana Tharu of Kailali and Kanchenpur. Tharus are rich in cultural heritage and have their own special costumes, unique ways of living, language, religious belief, which make them different from other indigenous communities in Nepal. 

According to eminent sociologist, Dor Bahadur Bistha, Tharus were migrated from southern desert alike plain land called Thar, thus they were called Tharu. Their settlement areas have been famously known as Tharuwan or Tharuhat region. They celebrate a number of rituals and festivals, of them, Maghi, a festival of new-year, take place mid-January. It is celebrated with much fanfare for three-days, during the festival, perform special dances, sing songs in mother tongue with different intonations and do sacrifice animals and chicken. On the very day, Tharu communities choose Badghar, the chief of their customary institution for another one year. Thru Badhgar, the customary institution, Tharu’s overall rituals, festivals, and various development activities are regulated and performed.

Tharus have over 50 different clans and they have slightly different slangs and tones in speaking their mother tongue. They are animists and belief that there exist forest goddess—Bandevi and deity. They have been living alongside the banks and make living fishing, while Tharus living in the hilly region do farming and animal husbandry. 

Language:

The mother tongue of Tharus have been divided into two categories—Rana Tharu and Dangaura Tharu languge, which belongs to Indo-Aryan language family. Numerous of books, literary books, documentary films, radio programs, have been published in both the language.  According to the latest national Census, of their total population 1,737,470, as many as 1,529,875 Tharus speak their mother tongue both Rana Tharu and Dangaura Tharu languages.

Tharu language speaking countries:

Besides Nepal, Tharu language is also spoken in India as well.

Tharu-Dangaura language speaking countries:

Besides Nepal, Tharu Dangaura language is spoken in India.


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