Introduction / History
The Turaiha are a fishermen Hindu Tribe. They are considered as a lower caste and very depressed. Most of them have no idea about their origin. As Mr. A.C. Turner (1933) states "They are an offshoot from Kahars who have a subcaste of Turai in the plains and of Turaha in the hills. They now form a distinct caste broken away from Kahars" (Census of India, 1931.)
Where are they located?
The main population of Turaihas is located near the different rivers and lakes in Rohilkhand, Meerut, Agra, Oudh and Benares Division of Uttar Pradesh as well as Bihar and Bengal. The Turaihas are also known as Turai, Turaha, Turahiya and Turha.
What are their lives like?
Turaiha people used to speak in Hindi, Bhojpuri, Matheli, Oudhi and Bengali. The chief occupation of Turaha people is fishing, cultivating Singhara (Water Nut), making handheld fans and baskets. They are some of the best fishmen in India. They catch and sell fish for their daily income.
They usually drink liquor and toddy. They eat mutton, pork, fish, tortoise and crab. Brahmins do not enter Turaiha houses. On Hindu social scales Turaiha is higher than Chamar and Bhangi. Turaiha community is near to Bhil Tribe and somewhere treated as Dheemar also.
What are their beliefs?
Turaiha are Hindu. They believe they are descended from the Sun god. The great Deity of the Turaihas is Sanichar Raja. Their main festival is held on Saturday in the month of Sawan at the asthan (Shrine) of Sanichar Raja by offering goats, pigs, kheer, grains and bread.
* For the salvation of the Turaiha and that God may bring several Christian workers among them.
* Pray that Turaiha will wake up and join the main stream of nation.
* Pray that Christianity will bring modern medicine and antibiotics to the sick of the Turaiha community.
Text source: Arun Kumar