Indigenous people of Kumily
|The tribal communities of Kumily, which have a total population of around 2000, live in perfect harmony with Nature. Five ethnically different communities -- the Mannans, the Paliyas, the Uralis, the Mala-arayas and the Malampandarams -- have settled in Kumily panchayat, mainly on the outskirts of the Periyar Tiger Reserve.
Though they used to earn their living through traditional occupations like fishing and agriculture, with the advent of eco-tourism initiatives, they have found alternative jobs. They actively take part in the tourism-related programmes and serve as guides for tourists or as forest guards to prevent poaching and other illegal activities.
In the remote forests, there are tribes who still carry out their age-old practices such as building small dolmens for honouring the dead.