Understanding Human Dependence on Forests: A Perspective on Bangru Housing Patterns and Food Habits

This exploratory study was conducted on the forest dependency nature of the Bangru community of Arunachal Pradesh by highlighting their indigenous knowledge of housing patterns and food habits. A numerically weak community, Bangru is sited in about 15 villages of Sarli circle in Kurung Kumey district, a northernmost frontier district bordering Tibet (China) in the north-east Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. According to the Electoral Rolls conducted in 2011, the total population of Bangru was numbering about 1,023 (39.35%) out of approximately 2,600 persons in the Sarli circle. Although there is no separate Census record on this community, however, according to the data gathered, the Bangru account for about 1.14% of the total population of Kurung Kumey district. The study was carried out concerning three income groups. A total of 60 households (20 from each income group) were assessed using different participatory appraisals through semi-structured questionnaires. A special type of indigenous knowledge on housing pattern and food habit was explored in the Bangru community, which correspond to the severe dependence on forest resources.