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Origin and Development of "Gurung"
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Sun, Mar 3rd, 2013 :



Nepal is multi-cultural, multi-language, multi-religious and multi-lingual country with residing by different caste/ethnic groups. There is a good co-operation between different caste and ethnic groups which has the great contribution for Nepal's nationality. Broadly the caste ethnicity of Nepal can be categorized into two groups (i) indo­Aryan or can casoid and (ii) Tibeto Burmase or Mangoloid. So, Tibeto Burmase or mongoloid is indigenous people of ethnic groups. Which is this group is still considered backward in Nepal. Among them indigenous group the people of Gurung is also included.

The Gurung is called the Tamu in their own language, which is one of the 59 indigenous ethnic groups of Nepal. Gurungs are influenced by the different cultures with their identity gain of their language and culture. The total population of the Gurung are 543571 which constitute 2.39 percent of the total population of country where (259375) 47.71 percent are male and (284195) 52.28 percent are female in Nepal according to the CBS, 2001.

Origin of the Gurung is Southern Slope of Annapurna Himalaya in west-central Nepal. Traditional territories extend from Gorkha, Lamjung, Kaski, Syangja and Tanhaun in Gandaki zone is main homeland of Gurung. In this areas Gurungs speak their own language similarly they are originally derived from Tibetean stock is supported by evidence of linguistic affiliations and physical types as well as by a number of cultural characteristic. So Gurungs are related to Tibetan and beliefs with Buddhist religion (Gurung-Nepal English Dictionary, 2003).

The Gurungs social organization is very fluid and flexible in its nature on the contrary the Gurungs have very rigid and complex social organization too. They have very distinctive structural featured social origination. They have a dual society, the society as a whole has been divided into two hierarchical strata. Thus, the Gurungs society consists of two great divisions. 1. Major groups charjat or four clans 2. Minor groups sorajat or sixteen clans The traditional occupation of Gurung people is agriculture and livestock rearing. Another major occupation and source of income is abroad labour to join Indian and British army which has deeply rooted in Gurungs society since even until today. Few Gurungs are associated with business and government services, more than 80 percent Gurung people's occupation is agriculture. They mostly live in rural area with poverty and ignorance.

More many Gurungs left their original place, migrated into the urban and central area. Still such trend is prevailing because very few people can be seen involving in education and career advancement sector. They have protected their own traditional rituals, social organization and their identity gain of culture as well as found in that geographical environment own their Tamu community (TECANET­Nepal).

Many parts of Nepal Gurung community could not remain isolated from the influence of Hindu social structure in which male dominated prevails. As a result, the status of Gurung (Tamu) women remains slightly unequal to male. Most of the women are illiterate, they have to be dependent on males. So they can't make their- own right decision. Therefore due to discriminatory situation the Gurung women association emerged to work for women right welfare and upliftment. The Gurung women have become gradually aware of their own responsibility for the protection and preservation on community, social, cultural and religious beliefs.


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The Gurung is called the Tamu in their own language, which is one of the 59 indigenous ethnic groups of Nepal. Gurungs are influenced by the different cultures with their identity gain of their language and culture. The total population of the Gurung are 543571 which constitute 2.39 percent of the total population of country where (259375) 47.71 percent are male and (284195) 52.28 percent are female in Nepal according to the CBS, 2001.

Origin of the Gurung is Southern Slope of Annapurna Himalaya in west-central Nepal. Traditional territories extend from Gorkha, Lamjung, Kaski, Syangja and Tanhaun in Gandaki zone is main homeland of Gurung. In this areas Gurungs speak their own language similarly they are originally derived from Tibetean stock is supported by evidence of linguistic affiliations and physical types as well as by a number of cultural characteristic. So Gurungs are related to Tibetan and beliefs with Buddhist religion (Gurung-Nepal English Dictionary, 2003).

The Gurungs social organization is very fluid and flexible in its nature on the contrary the Gurungs have very rigid and complex social organization too. They have very distinctive structural featured social origination. They have a dual society, the society as a whole has been divided into two hierarchical strata. Thus, the Gurungs society consists of two great divisions. 1. Major groups charjat or four clans 2. Minor groups sorajat or sixteen clans The traditional occupation of Gurung people is agriculture and livestock rearing. Another major occupation and source of income is abroad labour to join Indian and British army which has deeply rooted in Gurungs society since even until today. Few Gurungs are associated with business and government services, more than 80 percent Gurung people's occupation is agriculture. They mostly live in rural area with poverty and ignorance.

More many Gurungs left their original place, migrated into the urban and central area. Still such trend is prevailing because very few people can be seen involving in education and career advancement sector. They have protected their own traditional rituals, social organization and their identity gain of culture as well as found in that geographical environment own their Tamu community (TECANET­Nepal).

Many parts of Nepal Gurung community could not remain isolated from the influence of Hindu social structure in which male dominated prevails. As a result, the status of Gurung (Tamu) women remains slightly unequal to male. Most of the women are illiterate, they have to be dependent on males. So they can't make their- own right decision. Therefore due to discriminatory situation the Gurung women association emerged to work for women right welfare and upliftment. The Gurung women have become gradually aware of their own responsibility for the protection and preservation on community, social, cultural and religious beliefs.

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