Table 1.

Sociocultural and linguistic characteristics of 20 population groups sampled from different geographical locations of India, with sample sizes

Population nameSocial hierarchyGeographyLinguistic groupPrimary occupation*Sample size
Khatri (KSH)Upper casteNorthIndo-EuropeanTraditionally warrior*19
Gujarati Brahmin (GBR)Upper casteNorthwestIndo-EuropeanTraditionally priest*20
West Bengal Brahmin (WBR)Upper casteEastIndo-EuropeanTraditionally priest*18
Maratha (MRT)Upper casteWestIndo-EuropeanTraditionally warriors*7
Iyer (IYR)Upper casteSouthDravidianTraditionally priest*20
Pallan (PLN)Lower-middle casteSouthDravidianAgriculturist*20
Kadar (KDR)TribeSouthDravidianHunter-gatherer20
Irula (IRL)TribeSouthDravidianHunter-gatherer20
Paniya (PNY)TribeSouthDravidianHunter-gatherer18
Gond (GND)TribeCentralDravidian/Austro-AsiaticAgriculturist20
Hunter-gatherer
Ho (HO)TribeCentral and EastAustro-AsiaticAgriculturist18
Hunter-gatherer
Santal (SAN)TribeCentral and EastAustro-AsiaticAgriculturist20
Hunter-gatherer
Korwa (KOR)TribeCentralAustro-AsiaticHunter-gatherer18
Birhor (BIR)TribeCentralAustro-AsiaticHunter-gatherer16
Manipuri Brahmin (MPB)Upper casteNortheastTibeto-BurmanTraditionally warrior*20
Tharu (THR)TribeNorthIndo-EuropeanAgriculturist20
Tripuri (TRI)TribeNortheastTibeto-BurmanAgriculturist19
Jamatia (JAM)TribeNortheastTibeto-BurmanAgriculturist18
Jarawa (JRW)TribeAndaman and NicobarOnganHunter-gatherer19
Onge (ONG)TribeAndaman and NicobarOnganHunter-gatherer17
  • * With the formation of the caste system, which is a system of social stratification, endogamous caste groups were traditionally attributed occupations that were to be hereditary. All of the caste groups in contemporary India are large populations and are engaged in a variety of occupations. The “Primary occupation” column describes the traditional occupation.