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Adilabad : Mesram ‘Raj Gond’s plan to construct bigger temple for Nagoba

The Mesram clan of the Raj Gond tribe in Adilabad and neighbouring districts of Telangana is planning to construct a new and bigger temple for Nagoba, its clan god.

The Mesrams are raising over ₹1 crore. which will be used to construct the sanctum sanctorum and courtyard where the temple is located at present.

Though the Telangana government has extended financial help for the construction of the temple, the clan wants to spend its own money so that future generations can feel that it is their legacy. “We do not want our children to say that their temple is owned by the government,” observed Vadgaon village headman Mesram Chinnu Patel told The Hindu.

There are about 2,500 families of Mesram Raj Gonds scattered mainly in Adilabad and Kumram Bheem Asifabad districts, besides Kinwat in Nanded and Chandrapur in Maharashtra. Almost all these families gather at Keslapur village in the Indervelli mandal during the Nagoba Jatara, their biggest religious event held every year at the end of January.

“As many as 500 of the 2,500 Mesram families are indigent so they will be exempted from contributing money. Others will pool in ₹ 5,000 each with the 119 families of employees contributing ₹10,000 each,” revealed Pardhan elder Mesram Manohar, who is principal of the tribal government B.Ed. college at Utnoor.

“A committee of Mesram Gonds and Pardhans has been formed for collecting money. The plan is to receive half of the money within the next few days and the remaining during the Nagoba jatara in January end next year,” Mr. Manohar added, reported The Hindu.

The original temple was just a makeshift structure under a tree. The existing temple was constructed by contributions from the clan and the endowments department in the 1980s.

It was the famous ethnologist Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf who bestowed prominence on the Nagoba temple and the jatara by organising a tribal darbar during the rule of the Hyderabad Nizam. While the darbar continues to be held, the jatara has over the years become famous for its pristine cultural aspect of Adivasis.


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