Re: Brewing and Drinking in tribal (Adivasi) culture
Drinking Habits among Tribes of Jharkhand
Respected members of jharkhand yahoogroup,
I had gone through the postings by Mr. Kiskuji, Mohantiji and Venkatji on drinking habits of Tribes. In some contexts I personally agree with them, but I have some different thinking also.
I don't know about the drinking "traditions" of Indian Tribes other than the Munda, Santhal, Ho, Oraon Tribes of Jharkhand. HADIA (ILI, DIYANG, BODOY, RASI etc) is considered as a part of Culture and FAITH in Tribes of Jharkhand. In every festival, pooja, rituals, wedding ceremony etc, the HADIA is offered and accepted.
Here I am not taking about the Converted Tribes. Church has different systems of faith and rituals. They are not supposed to consume HADIA or MAHUWA or any other LIQUOR. But this doesn't mean that the converted tribes don't consume HADIA. In fact, my observations say if the converted tribes don't consume more HADIA than the Sarna Tribes, they are not behind them too.
As far I know, HADIA is supposed to be made with Rice and a type of juice of the roots of a plant (called ILI RANU in Mundari). This has no HEALTH HAZARDS. The MUNDAS are supposed to prepare one "TAPAN" (a pot with volume approx 2-3 litre) for one puja or one festival. No external "accelerators / ingredients / additives" other than "ILI RANU" is to be added. And this "TAPAN ILI" is supposed to be consumed by the Pahan or Pujari, the head of family and housewife, and other villagers who have not taken meal / food on that day. Means at least 8 persons will consume that TAPAN sharing 3000/8 = 400 ml per person maximum. And 400 ml pure HADIA has no effect on senses.
This liquid has excellent effects of COOLING and RELAXATION in body. It can also kill hunger. Most of the Adivasis (may be more than 95%) are depended upon Cultivation or Labour. These Adivasis do the works which need Muscle Power, which heat up the body. They do not work in AC rooms / spaces. After doing physical work, they need a drink which cool their body and give relaxation. And HADIA is probably the only chief and best drink for this purpose. Probably this is why HADIA reached up to BAZAR with great success. And no one can deny that this HADIA is better than any other "THANDA" available in modern society. All the branded cold drinks PEPSI, MIRINDA, COCA COLA come many steps later. That is why now the main stream community people (generals) have also started drinking HADIA.
It is a well accepted truth that everything has both positive and negative effect and impact on society and humanity depending upon purpose, place and limit of using. You name anything, any scientific invention like computer or internet or mobile etc. These inventions are now used for destructive purposes also. Similarly HADIA has negative impact on tribal society. Hadia has come out from Pujas, rituals of tribals and reached to the BAZAR. With time people have demoralized and misinterpreted the faith and culture of Adivasis. People say, "YE TO HUMARI SANSKRITI HAI, ISILIYE PITE HAIN."
Yes, I accept some of the Traditions / Cultures of Tribes needs to be refined. But big question is why and how to do and where to start? We have no control on self, no control over family, how can we control an entire community? There is no doubt that Tribes drink excess HADIA. This needs to be restricted for use in puja and rituals only, and not to allow to be sold in BAZARs. But the big question is how and who will do this?
Government and Police can never do this. Arey bhai policewale khud pite hain, corrupt hain, wo kya control karega? You tell me the names of Public Servants, MLA, MP or Ministers who don't consume liquor. All of you know that liquor has now become a mandatory drink of Parties arranged by ministers or bureaucrats.
This HADIA might be obstruction for the development of Adivasi community, but above this the role of developed community, the public servants, private sectors, businessmen and the government is the main cause of the poor conditions of tribes.
If you try to reform the tribal culture, then they will certainly ask "Kya aapko humari Adivasi Sanskriti mei hi burayi nazar ati hai?" Because even today I can say that this Adivasi culture is much cleaner and more refined than any other developed or cultured community in India. You name any community which has no social / cultural evils. If you wish to ban HADIA or MAHUWA, then firstly you have to stop any other commercial branded "LIQUORS" (the ENGLISH) available in market including the Cigarate, Bidi, Gutkas etc also.
And, I know this is an impossible task and NO GOVERNMENT and POLICE can do this. Even if you try to ban these liquors on paper, though you cannot stop the consumption. Instead this will lead to the 2 No. activities like Smuggling, black marketing of HADIA, MAHUWA and other Branded liquors. And the pocket of POLOCEWALAS and BABUS will become heavier. You just come to Gujarat and see, here liquid (liquor) is banned, but the locals say that "SABSE JYADA DARU IDHAR HI BIKTA HAI."
This is very easy to point out the faults of others, very easy to say ki Adivasi Hadia / Daru pike barbad ho rahe hain. No doubt this is a fact. But why don't we see the wider facts also. Social Reform yun hi nahin hota, khaskar tab jab aapka poora SYSTEM gadbad hai to ye imposible hi hai. Bhai, kis kis ko sudharenge aap? There are N number of problems in the tribal community, mainstream community, in the Government System and all the problems are interrelated and depended upon one another. Kahan se shuru karenge aap?
This is very easy for me also to type my views on Laptop. But I know the ground realities of Adivasis better than the 80% of the elite members of this group, because I belong to the remote village beyond your imagination. Forget about implementation, if you can tell me a solid PLAN for development of Adivasis, I will certainly appreciate. ADIVASI community ko uplift ya develop karna hai, ye to sabko maloom hai, parantu KAISE karna hai, ye sabse jyada important hai. Adivasi community ke poor conditions ke liye sirf HADIA hi responsible nahin, balki ye to shayd 10% jimmedar har, 90% to kuchh dusre wajah se hai.
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