Sunday, 1 February 2015

Niqita Gupta | Baiga: The Vanishing Tribe

Photo © Niqita Gupta - All Rights Reserved

I came across some members of the Baiga tribals in Chhattisgarh, but they're mostly found in Madhya Pradesh, as well as Uttar Pradesh, and Jharkhand.

The Baiga are known for an almost reclusive culture, as they don't interact with other related tribals in the region, such as the Gonds.  They are totally dependent of the jungle for their survival, believe in a hand-to-mouth existence, have no interest in education, rarely eat outside their community, or associate with others. Following a death in the family, the Baiga just leave the house and build another. The Baiga consider themselves as people of the forest, who can only live on the produce of the forest.

A distinguishing feature of the Baiga tribals is that the women are famous for having tattoos on almost all parts of their body. Both men and women get their hair cut only once in a life time, as they take immense pride in their long hair as a tradition.

Photographer Niqita Gupta features a gallery Baiga: The Vanishing Tribe, and provides us with a brief glimpse into their simple life.

Niqita is based in India and can work worldwide. From the dense tropical forests of Kanha where the Baiga tribe lives, to the private lives of drag queens in London, she strives to work with communities and examine their relationship with each individual.