‘Bhuvaneshwari R‘ writes : ” I was very pleased to go through this article. I am myself a Badaga and very proud to be one with such unique and distinct features. I have been in northern and western India till my 10th and did my later education in Cordite Factory Higher Secondary School.
I was very pleased to meet so many Badaga people, especially friends, there. Badaga friends were more helpful compared to any. I had visited my friend’s houses and they treated me with so much hospitality. I know about 7 languages but badaga is the one I love the most.
The words I love the most in badaga are : ‘Habba’ and ‘Hatty’. I really miss my badaga friends. Thanks for the website through which I could express my views and thoughts and I am especially thankful to my parents for giving me birth in such a great culture “.
Thank you Bhuvaneshwari for your email.Such letters are, always, a source of inspiration – Wg Cdr JP
Badaga dance is all about grace and style. It is a wonderful sight when a group of ladies dance together. During the funeral, the ladies of the parental village [hatti] of the deceased woman, dance going around the cot [kattalu] to the music provided by the 'host' hatti musicians.
Wg Cdr Bellie Jayaprakash, the 'All-in-One' of this site. Started as a hobby but now an obsession.
Namaskara - Greetings [Namasthe - Vanakkam],
Ollengay Iddhaya? - How are you?,
Ninna Hesaru A'ena? - What is your name?,
Maduvay aagi buttava? - Are you married?,
Nee a' hattigha koodidhe? - You are married to [the boy/girl from] which village?,
Appara Santhosha - Thank you very much.
Aakkaday - That side,
Eekkaday - This side,
Horasu - Outside,
Baa - Come,
Bannay - [I] will come,
HOnay - Will go,
Hadadha'ya - Is it there?
KaaNay - Missing
English Translation of the above poem by Bellie Jayaprakash
Even when I was down with poverty and sat at the front court yard,
Even when the near and dear ones despised and deserted,
My mother who gave birth, cared for and brought me up,
Did not blame me and did not reject me- her son, as bad
Even when I toiled as a Cooli with a bent back,
Even when I sat down with my looks dulled and dirty,
Even when I wore patched up old clothes,
My mother never said that I was down ; never rejected me as poor!
Even when I entered the stables and cleaned the dung,
Even when I sat on the rock and tendered the cows,
Even when I lifted loads to earn so as to suppress the hunger,
My mother never found any fault ; never scolded me as ignorant.
Some Badaga Proverbs [Dhoddaru Shloka]
1.Akka Ghandana koda dhukka hegile, Makka maria buttu baa ennana (When
sadness is shared with elder sister’s husband, his advise is to
come to him) 2. Aandama ellade Haandi Beya, Ullama ellade Gulla
beya 3. Kiviga elladadu kombuga aeththaga 4. Guttige [Kuttige?]
bathavu arai aaga beda, kunna thammanu mella aaga beda 5. Kumbala
kaaya [Kumbakkeya] saaki handiga kottenge (Growing pumpkins only to feed wild boar) 6. Gumboonda Mola edda enge [like a hare jumping out of the bush -element of surprise] 6a.Eragi holaga mola hugga enge [ like a rabbit getting into a wheat field -destruction by deceit] 7. Sadiga madi elle 8. Saththu biththa kaaye 9.Saththaduga hinde etha holae eana? (After death, how does it matter where you go?) 10.Saththa Koyee, baththa mukkirava ? (Can a dead hen feed on grains?) 11. Gollaru mada kattida enge 12.
Ghandu gundu, hennu helavu 13. Ghandu kulidu ketta, Hennu thirigi [hisithu] ketta (The boy wasted his life by idling/lazying around
(sitting), the girl wasted her life by smiling (turning around) at strangers 14. Ghanda thoorile, kandamanu thoorina [when the
husband neglects, everybody follows] 15. Ghanda ebbane buddi elle,
buddi bappane ghanda elle (Wisdom did not come when husband was alive, when wisdom came husband was not there) 16. Gana ellade
sande aaga, sangadhi ellade daari sameya (Evening does not end without gossip, way does not end without some news) 17. Koyigu
kothigu maake (Like a hen and a cat [always fighting]) 18.Koy(iy)a Kaethaa maasu arappadhu (Do you ask the hen [being
killed for dinner] for grinding the chilli paste?) 19. Kona neeruga baggiravo, neeru konaga baggiravo [Will the bull bend to
drink water, or, water bends for the bull? -Implying
impossibility] 20. Kothi aatta, eliga prana sangada (The antics of a cat are matters of death to a rat) 21. Kothi kaala baase
denge (Like the cat licking its leg) 22. Savi kanda kothi attalu hathidenege 23. Koduva cooli nodu, kathuva olaya nodu [keep a watch at the wages being paid (and hence get work done) and keep a watch at the burning embers in the kitchen] 24.Kodalia kaavu, kolava kedu maadira 25. Kotta hennu nela arige 26.Kotta saalava kaeyade ketta, bithida holava nodade ketta (Suffering
by not asking the loan to be returned, nor looking after the planted[with seeds] fields) 27. Kai yoge kannaadiya beethindu neerunamoga nodidha enge (looking for the reflection of the face on thewater when there is a mirror in the hand) 28. Kai eelu aaga guddili masiya [the implement not bend as per the shape of bones in the hand] 29. Kaiga bandadu bega elle (What came to the hand did not reach the mouth) 30. Ketta arasa buda beda mikka
kannava eda beda 31. Kulidhu athamaga kulidhu avvu, niddhu athamaga niddhu avvu (Cry sitting with the one who cried sitting
with you, cry standing with the one who cried standing - pay in the same coin- –
proper and equal reciprocation 32. Kuradaga hagalu ena er uena (How does it matter whether it is day or night for a blind
man?) 33. Sandhe jaamana meiyu, saaku hoththu bandha nattan uhoga (The evening rain and the guest who had come with a hessian
cloth[bag] covering will not go easily) 34. Sappodu saare, Haagottudoora 35. Chiikkavanaalayu Sivana buddi (Even though he is veryyoung, has lot of wisdom like Lord Siva) 36. Ollitha ethi hollava
thallu, olagodho ellava gellu (Take only the good leaving behind the bad and win all in this world) 37. Hallana neeru hattaleyu
baavi neeru hechu 38. Thaaya palichileyu neera pallicha beda (Even
if you [have to] show scorn to mother, never do it to water [the
source of life]) 39. Kasa aaleyu rusi maadi thinnu (Even if it
is rubbish, eat it after making it tasty) 40. Natta maneye
hattaleyu, ghanda mane hesara ethu 41. Kicha muttile attira (If
you touch the fire, it will burn you) 42. Hottiya kitcha beethale
kettara 43. Aaru kaasuna sambuva aaleyu, aranmaneya gelacha
maadu 44. Adhista mooru p(b)aala, harakke aaru paala 45. Kitcha
thindama karia Hedana (One who eats fire, excretes charcoal) 46.
Nanga belli holladale thattana koda horatta ena 47. Ghandana
ollithundhu undia dhottadhu ekka beda 48. Maneya nududhu mandhaga
hogu 49. Maathu hetchi mane ketta, bithu hetchi hola ketta 50.
Aadindu holae maathu, agadundu holae mannu [Agadhale mannu, Nudidhale
maathu] 51. Hanja theedhara(theegira) maathu niddara 52.
Thandeya koddamana paadhava hidi 53. Thindhu santhosha aappadhuna,
nodi santhosha aagu 54. Avvaiya halladha nodile magava nodudhuga
mane enaga 55. Huttone anna thamma, hoppane dhayada kaara 56.
Sandhe aappile endhu hoga beda, baaga aappile endhu era (oraga)
beda 57. Kathu potti, hethu baradi 58. Ethu elladhamaga edha
elle, makka elladhamaga mane elle 59. Nangaga bandhale allu
thundhu, Ooruga bandale opedha kai 60. Hasanooru haala
kudipadhuna, Neelagiri neera kudhi 61. Moladha kanna neera, bettai
kara aradhaneya 62. Hadadhe endhu hatta maada beda, kette endhu
kaeda thora beda 63. kette endhu kaeda thora beda, baddendhu bava
thora beda 64. Sikkanuna badakku batta baiyilu 65. Niri
chikkira, hari chikka 66. Huttu daridharaga kottu dhandodhu
daara 67. Thale thatty nela nodi nade 68. Aandama illade aandi
bethadava, ullama illadhe gulla bedharava 69. Hitta andhu kondu,
battaya nidhu kondu 70. Balla beethu baddiga hoga beda 71.
Arasana makkaga hurikallu muthu 72. Aeye pyla moyae nodu 73.
Anai koodi halla, theni koodi batha 74. Thitta thevara otha
beda 75. Anna thammana agala maada beda 76. Thaaya maatha kethu
nodadhey nyaya hadadheya, thandhya maatha kethu nodadhey handhi
hadadheya 77. Madi buddu maaruga sedhara, hennu buddu nattaga
sedara (Madi buddale maaruga, ele buddale meduga) Added :- 78.
Badagava makka huttu , Badegega Athu AAgha Beda 79. Hothu Banda
Kathiya , Ooruna ebba Kathe othara 80. Badavaga Badukku Bandale,
Thinguva Beesiluna Kode Hidithana 81.Bendhamana Hunna, Nondhama
Ariyakku 82.Usara Kotta Kothi , Nosala Nakkira 83. Thalaiyamana
Maathu, Mundhuga Uppu – Hinduga Bella 84.Appana Maathu,
Aneya Bala 85. Bae Aadileyu Bae ga Kedu, Seegi Aadile yu Bae ga
Kedu [A word play-pun- on Bae which means both the mouth and crop
[vellamme] 86. Mundhileyu Mookku Hagga, Hindileyu Kaal
Kanni 87.Akka Ellade Natto, Avare Ellade Uttavo
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The beauty about Badaga community is not only the unique customs specific to the community but the steadfast belief with which atleast some of them are followed by Badagas. One of them is the loud chanting of ‘Athikkodhu – EAY AH HOW – on certain but specific occasions. It is said that in earlier days [hundreds of years back], when the Badaga villages [hattis] were separated by thick jungle forests , 'athikkindu Hoppadhu ' - traversing the forest with loud athikkodhu chant - kept the wild animals away.
Three occasions, when this loud chanting takes place, come to mind immediately,
1)During “Hethay Habba’ – both when from every village the devotees go to Hethay temples at Beragani and Peddhuva [as well as when the Hethay deity from Hethai Gudi is taken to ‘Madi Halla -river’ for change into new dress once a year].Also, and whenever a hatti temple deity is taken on procession during habbas in hattis],
2) During weddings when the bride and groom are brought to the ‘Madhuvay Mane – wedding house' and the newly weds are taken to the temple and
3) On funerals when the widow is brought for ‘olay Kattodhu’ and the ‘akki eththuva ‘ procession starts from the ‘dhodda Mane’ to ‘saavu hanay ‘ where the corpse/body is kept before being taken for burial.
This loud ‘chanting /cry’ is made from the bottom of the stomach by a few leading the procession and repeated by the rest following them.
I have given the ‘live’ recordings of this unique chanting (recorded during a wedding [the band playing in the background] at Thambatty
That is a lot of hits for a website [weblog] on BADAGA that is focused on a small community of the Blue Mountains - the Nilgiris, in the southern part of India. Is it due to...
the urge to know the unknown about ourselves....
to sift the truth from fiction....the satisfaction that we have a very unique history.....the mystery about the mistaken migration.....the traditions that are still steadfastly followed.....the great language that has survived for centuries without a script...
The simple fact that this site's motto of 'Proud to be a Badaga ; Proud to be an Indian' has become an accepted norm...
You all, my dear friends, have made me bow my head in gratitude.
Proud to be an Indian and proud to be a Badaga, indeed.
Hope to say - 'thanks a million' soon...
Wg Cdr Bellie Jayaprakash, is the 'All-in-One' of this site. He says that he started this site as a hobby but now it has become an obsession.This website crossed the milestone of 100,000 visitors on 8-3-2010, 150,000 visitors on 20-4-2011, 200,000 visitors on 6-4-2012 , 250,000 on 22-1-2013, 300,000 hits on 6-1-2014, 350,000 on 6-1-15 and 400,000 on 13 -11-2015. Feel humbled but proud
Do you feel very strongly about any issue concerning Badaga Community? Have the urge to pour your heart out ? Feel free to express yourself without any inhibition and send them firstname.lastname@example.org
Save the TIGER
Tiger is HULI in Badaga Lanuage
Read any Indian Newspaper
Read any Indian Newspaper. [ In all Indian Languages]
Bhuvaneshwari R writes :- This website is one of the best I have seen. Didn’t think I would find so much detail about our culture.
The history of origin of Badagas is quite fascinating. Photos are also really great.
Really good to see someone do an effort to spread awareness.Thank you…
Welcome, one and all!, Baarivi, Ollengay Iddhara?
Ninna hesuru aena?- what is your name?,
Nee Ae hatti? - which is your village?,
Appana hesuru? - Father's name?],
Maduvey aai buttava?- [Are you] married?,
Ganda,Elliya gelcha gheedhana?- where is [your] husband working?,
Here's a question that was posed to the Dalai Lama:
"What thing about humanity surprises you the most?"
His answer is : "MAN - Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices his money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he doesn't enjoy the present,
And as a result he doesn't live in the present or the future. And he lives as if he's never going to die and then he dies having never really lived".
The ‘HARD FACT’
The Nigiris, the famous tourist hill station, known as 'Naakku Betta' to the native Badagas, is indeed a Nature's gift and piece of Paradise on earth.
Unfortunately, the district does not offer many if not any job opportunities to the increasingly aspiring and educated youth. They have to go down to the plains like Coimbatore, Tirupur etc. And, in the bargain, many Badagas have relocated to the plains on a permanent basis.
Another unfortunate fallout is, with the falling price for unprocessed [green leaf] tea, Badagas have been selling their tea estates ['Thotta' to them], usually small holdings of a couple of acres as a sort of distress sale. The outsiders mainly from big cities are always willing to grab a piece of 'Paradise' as their holiday vacation destination.
Added to the misery is the exploitation by the 'middle men' who literally make a 'killing' in both selling of plots/houses in the plains for huge prices or buying the land [small tea estates] for a song.
Over a period of time and after a lot of discussions, I have identified VEDA PROPERTIES, owned by a Badaga, to be one of the transparent and reliable concerns who can offer very good services. They have tied up with many reputed property developers.
Veda Properties can help in buying/selling plots and built houses both in the Nilgiris and in Coimbatore districts including the much sought after destinations like Veerapandi, Peria Nayakkan Palayam, Vada Madurai, Thidialur etc
hat is more, Veda Properties have agreed to offer special discounts to the readers of our website www.badaga.co.
If interested in special discounts please contact email@example.com. This is a FREE service for a fair deal and an initiative to prevent exploitation.
Bird or Flower?
Hakkilu Hoo [Bird Flower] found in the Nilgiri Hills