There are a variety of views about Badagas (and their origin) – their classification based on clans is one such.
Unless, a clear and correct picture about Badaga Origin is established, a true picture may not emerge.
The following views are that of one educated Badaga Thoreya who strongly feels that both researchers and others have not given a correct picture about Theoreyas and have always shown them in a degrading terms by not including them with other Badaga clans. – Wg.Cdr.JP
Ravikumar Joghee is a Baduga Toreya from Bamudi Ooru (near Nedugula). Son of Prof. R. Joghee, first Badaga principal at Govt Arts, Ooty (before Prof. Kulla Gowder) and JD of collegiate education before he retired. He is a Co-Founder of a tech start up based at Bangalore. His ancestral roots are from Ebbanad (and Kengamudi due to minority marginalisation).
Bamudi Ooru is surrounded by many clans of Badugas in hatties like Kottanalli (Haruvas), Sundatti (majority clan), Nedugula (wodeayru and mixed clan), Selakorai (Badaga majority clan), etc. Bamudi has patronised with lands to build Kottanalli and Sundatti. I am surprised to see new historical facts like we are indigeneous, etc which I feel is against our roots. Every Ooru has our Devva habba traditions which invoke our ancestors and roots. Educated jobless youngsters are taking the community for a ride in the name of history. We are clear our ancestors are from Old mysore regions—Tagadur, Thayur, Ummaturu, etc which is similar to Jakkatha as per Paame book. Irony is other clans near our ooru whom we have patronised with lands to settle are indigenous against our roots of old mysore roots.
As I belong to Badaga Toreya clan of Badagas, it is my duty/fundamental right to defend/raise voice in order to safe guard our clan and badagas at large. We feel we all are one and take liberty if any one portrays th other in poor light in public domain. Hope you understand. We wanted the majority clans to support us in our endeavour to solve the common challenges we face in the region collectively. Social media is a powerful tool. I am seeing lot of youngsters writing at will, probably misguided by few elders, which needs to contain. I also wrote to Prof. Paul Hockings on the some of the factual errors in his book. I think he has made his research study based on the majority clan facts and ignored the minority ones like us. One Lakshmanan of Ketti was the major source of information for Hockings research.
Here is the Baduga majority clan and Baduga Toreya clan story as prevalent in Todhanadu Seemey. We have not publicised this story as we carry a good relation with Todas::::
நமது படுக தொரய பாட்டனாரும் பெரும்பான்மை பிரிவு படுக பாட்டனாரும் அண்ணன் தம்பி என்பதாகவும் ஒருநாள் சூழ்நிலை காரணமாக தொதவா வீட்டில் தங்க நேர்ந்ததாகவும் அது சமயம் தொதுவன் தயிர் கடையும்போது அதில் (non vegetarian ……….) சேர்த்து கடைவதை தம்பியாகிய நமது பாட்டனார் பார்த்துவிட்டு மறுநாள் தொதவன் அந்த கடைந்த தயிரை நமக்கு குடிக்க கொடுத்து விடுவார் என்று பயந்து அண்ணனாகிய பெரும்பான்மை படுகு பிரிவு பாட்டனார் தூங்கிக் கொண்டிருக்கும் போது எழுந்து ஓடியதாகவும் மறைந்து ஓடியதால் தொரைத்தாரி ஓடின தொரைய என்று நமது படுக தொரய பாட்டனாரை குறிப்பிட்டதாகவும் கூறப்படுகிறது உண்மையில் பெரும்பான்மை படுகரும் நாமும் அண்ணன் தம்பி என்பது தெரிகிறது.
No doubt there are issues on supremacy among Badaga clans not just with us but with Haruva, Adhikari, etc. However, few of the minority clans have merged with the majority and has solved some of the issues on the identity.
At Bamudi Ooru, our ancestors had erected Bukka structure ( I assume you are aware of the Bukka structure significance in an Ooru) which confirms we are an ancient ooru and also at Nedugula which is close by to our village. We had invited Kotanalli (Badaga Haruva) people from Talamalai area to set up their village to perform pooja at our Mahalinga Swami Gudi (Bana Gudi). Kotanalli land records indicate that their hatti was built by the land given by Bamudi ayyas, about 32 acres which they acknowledge. Sundatti village (Thanthanadu lineage) also came into existence after Bamudi and Kotanalli.
Interestinly, Bamudi Ooru had built a ‘Halamala somi’ temple (original temple is in Talaimalai forest, pooja performed by Kurumbas) which was later taken over by Sundatti after a long dispute. Overall, there are 5 Bukkahatties in the Porangadu region and shared Bukka in other regions.
Interestingly, there were few inter clan marriages in those days between Kotanalli (Badaga Haruva) and Bamudi (Badaaga Toreya). Similary between Kapatti and Kannerimukku. Also Jackanarai and Sakkatha, Kengarai and Kairbetta, Doddamanehatti and Kannerimukku. These are to my knowledge as of now. We are trying to gather information from other regions. We have not had any marriage relations due to historical differences. We have given woman in marriage to other clan and not vice versa.
Regarding MBC status, it was a mistake committed by our elders. I feel frustration due to continued isolation by other Badaga clans had forced them to do so. Our clan (Thoreya) youngsters are fighting it out to bring the status on par with other Badaga clans. Some of the youngsters in our clan have realised that MBC status has created further split among the clans which we realise and working to correct it.
Regarding ‘servant’ (Aevil Thoreya) status, I have not come across these impressions ‘with facts’ in all our 43 villages. There have been disputes and being a minority, it is quite natural for a majority clan to suppress the minority. Others minority clans too had revolted in the past but our clan seems to have preferred to be quiet and keep away. In my investigation with almost all hatties, I have never heard of any ‘servant’ status. Probably, due to our poor economic status, some of the people may have worked with a majority land lord and it does not mean a ‘status for all’
At Ebbanad, where my family ancestors hail from, they have their ancestral roots at Kadanad. We are just 4 houses among 250 houses of the larger clan but we have been treated with utmost respect. We have been reciprocating it from time immemorial. We continue to lead the poojas at Annikal temple, Jedayasomi temples, Devva Habba etc. Also you may be aware that at Kadanad, both of our clans have adjacent Devva Mane though the minority clan has just 2 families at present among the balance 200 families of the majority clan.
In the recent Devva Habba at Ebbanad, it was interesting to know that our ancestral prayers refer to ‘Thale Tagaduru’ and common Hethappa between our clans though we have different Devvu Mane (Dodda Mane) among us. Badaga Toreya leads the pooja, Badaga Haruva performs the pooja and majority Badaga clan carries out the pooja further. I think we all co-exist in a harmonious manner.
We have started documenting some of the real historical facts and shall release it as soon as it is completed. Meanwhile, we can interact and also invite you to Ebbanadu and Bamudi Oorus where I am connected to take note of yourself the traditions, customs, etc which are no different or as good as other Badaga clans. To me, all our customs and traditions are no different. Issues like economy, religious conversions, attitude, agriculture, etc are all the same which we are struggling to solve.
I strongly believe we have only oral history with us and we can just write books and web sites based on the oral facts only.