"Poverty" & "Tribes"
Malai Malasar tribes of Topslip
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These tribes live in deep forest koomatti tribal settlement in ulandi forest range. I contacted Moopar (head) and his associate Sedukkan. Condition of these tribes is pathetic and distress.  Most of the men/ women in this village, I see are sick and undernourished.  Serious help they need.

Topslip is deep forest situated near Pollachy of Coimbatore district in Tamil Nadu (India). If you visit this forest it is sure you will find elephants wild and domesticated. Apart from elephants, wild boar, bear, wild buffalos, panthers can be seen, and if you are lucky tiger too. 

Population: 108 (28 families) = (29 men + 30 women + 49 children).

Education level: 2 women and 10 men are educated up to 5th standard. Mostly all children go to school. School facility is available at Topslip 35 kms from the settlement. 


Occupation and income resource: Mainly collection of forest produce, turmeric, ginger, honey. Average income per family is Rs. 2000/- (US$ 45/-) per year. Honey season is 2 months a year. Government has banned to sell forest products except honey. As far as income source is concerned, it is meager, even the forest gather they have is banned from sales so for them income source is negligible.

Meeting general expenses they gather forest produce and sell has been banned by local Government without providing alternate source of income. By selling honey for inadequate earnings, how far they can survive. Their human right is at risk and nothing has been done yet. They were naked as they had nothing to hide; we gave them clothes to increase living cost. If, we want to make them as us first thing to give source to earn so can uplift standard of living.

      Moopar Salvarajan pleads Will anyone listen to his plights!!!!!


1.  Health condition is very bad in the village many of them have joint pain due to weakness; lung cancer, dental problem, undernourishment and suspect TB among men and women. There is neither help from the Government nor any doctor visit for treatment. Only some times Mr. Thangaraj from Karur (an independent social worker) visits us without proper facility for check up. Mr. Thangaraj is an independent social worker without proper fund does what best he can do. Mr. Salvarajan requests urgent medical help.

2.  For Government medical facility they have to go to Topslip 35kms from the village. Believe it or not it is true!!!

3.  Ration shop 10kms away from the village. That too most of the time they do not have money to buy.

4.  They live in intense poverty and have no employment. Natural traditional sourcing is banned by government. 2 women and 10 men have educated up to 5th standard and are without employment. They request forest department and Government to help them to come out of this pitiable life. Or give independence to sell minor forest produce so can earn for living.

5.  Terror of wild animal attack. One of the children was attacked by tiger and tiger killing pet dogs is normal.  Request electric fencing to cover their village for protection.

6.  Mr. Salvarajan also pleads village children are unable to study further for want of birth certificate. School too is 35kms from the village with boarding facility.

7.  Forest department has provided shelters have tin roof. In summer tin roof heats so much that impossible for them to stay in home.

click the picture to view traditional dance
kummi attam
Kummi attam (traditional dance) of this tribe. They dance in all occassion

Moopar (head of 28 families) Mr. Salvarajan
click this picture to view explained (language Tamil) by Mr. Sedukkan of employment and food crisis.

Topslip forest has many wild animals
sure you can see elephants if you visit

Wild turmeric
High medicinal value plant


Little information of Malai Malasar tribes


These Dravidian tribes are very much attached to their social tradition and systems are abided by all village. Society has important role to deal with the disputes. They are traditionally hunter gathers. Speak poor (early stage) language of Tamil and Malayalam mix. Possess good knowledge of forest medicine but keep them secret. These Malasars religiously attached to spirits and worship Vana Devata (forest god). Yearly two times they worship in the same time they also punish the god for any unwanted happening in the village by getting rid of the deity and change the place of idol. That way even God is accountable. During rituals they get in contact with spirits for communication and dance. Main traditional dance is Kummi attam (Similar to this dance also is popular in Tamilnadu and Kerala) view the clip by clicking woman with child photo. Women too participate in all social gatherings and rituals. Traditionally, marriage with other community is discouraged. Cross cousin marriage is most common among them. Marriage with mothers brother is also permitted, widow marriage is accepted. Divorce and separation is discouraged in such case society interferes to settle the issue. Premarital relation is also there.


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