About Us - Profile
Vanavasi Seva Kendram TamilNadu affiliated to Akhil Bharatiya Vanavasi Kalyan Ashram, has been active among our vanavasi brethren in TamilNadu from 1980, looking after their needs primarily in the fields of Education and Health.
Vanavasi Seva Kendram TamilNadu was started in Karumandurai, a place of Tribal need, in Kalrayan Hills in Salem (Dt), in the form of a small students hostel for Tribal students. Now the unique work and service projects have spread over TamilNadu covering 7 lakhs vanavasi people belonging to 35 groups in different Hills.
There are about 12 crore Vanavasi people living in remote forest areas of our country deprived of their basic facilities, of which around 9 lakhs live in Tamilnadu.
There are 36 sects of government notified tribes living in 76 blocks of 22 districts in Tamilnadu. Some of the sects are Toda, Kota, Irula, Malayali, Paliyar, Vedar, Konda Reddy who form a large number among them. In order to uplift the living standards of our Tribal Brothern, to preserve their rich Cultural Identity and make them at par with the rest of the society, our Organisation, a Registered Trust in the above name was started and we are at the service of the Tribals since 1980. At present our work is in the fields of Education, Health, Preserving their cultural identity, Women Empowerment through religious and economic activities, identifying the potentially suitable candidates in the field of Sports etc.
As of now, our work is spread over in 31 blocks of 15 given below districts.....
Nilgiris, Coimbatore, Erode, Salem, Dharmapuri, Krishnagiri, Namakkal, Tiruchirapalli, Kallakurichi, Tiruppattur, Tiruvannamalai, Tiruvallur, Vizhupuram, Vellore and Chennai.
We intend to further our area of operation to other districts also where sizeable Tribal Population reside.
In 3032 BC, the present day Sri Kalahasti Temple area was a dense forest in which Vanavasi's were living, whose main source for living was hunting wild animals and selling its meat and skin.
Thinnan, son of the local Vanavasi leader, once went deep into the forest along with some of his friends and hunted many animals. While returning home, he found a Shiva Temple amidst the forest with No Pooja for the Shiva Linga.
Immediately he plucked some forest flowers and brought a little water in his mouth. He did abhishekam with the water from his mouth and offered the forest flowers with much devotion besides offered the meat of the animals he had hunted as " Nivedanam".
He started visiting the temple daily and offered the meat of the animals hunted that day with much devotion.
After some time, a Poojari came to the temple and shocked to find meat everywhere. He cleaned the temple and did Pooja. But when he returned next day, was shocked to find meat again everywhere. Again the Poojari cleaned everything and did Pooja. On the next day also he found the samething repeated and continued every day.
Hence he decided to find out how this was happening and hid himself inside the temple. After sometime he found the Vanavasi Thinnan arriving with meat in one hand, forest flowers on the other hand and water in his mouth. The Priest watched how Thinnan did Pooja. After Thinnan left, the priest started crying and asked the Lord Shiva how he was accepting the meat, water brought in mouth offered by the Vanavasi man.
Lord Shiva replied that he considered only the devotion of a Bhakta and Not what he offered. Also he advised the priest to watch what happens on the next day.
Next day, as advised by the Lord Shiva, the Priest hid himself inside the temple and started watching what was going to happen.Thinnan came as usual with meat and forest flowers in the other hand and water in his mouth. After completing his Pooja, Thinnan found blood oozing out from one eye of Lord Shiva. Thinnan tried to stop the blood oozing but couldn't. Hence Thinnan with his arrow, plucked off his one eye, fixed it in the eye of Lord Shiva and found the blood oozing stopped. Thinnan was happy that blood coming out was stopped. But soon he found blood coming from the other eye of the Lord Shiva. This time also the Vanavasi Thinnan decided to pluck his other eye and fix it. Suddenly he thought that after removing his second eye also, he couldn't locate Lord Shiva's eye & hence to identify the spot, he put one of his legs on the blood coming eye of Lord Shiva. He plucked his second eye also and fixed it in the Lord Shiva's eye with the help of the leg he placed on the Lord Shiva.
At that time, Lord Shiva gave Darshan to Thinnan, restored his eyesight and blessed him by calling Thinnan as "Kannappan"
which means " The Person Who Gave His Eyes to Lord Shiva".
The Vanavasi Thinnan, who was blessed by the Lord Shiva, became "Kannappan" for his " Nishchala Bhakti" ie Strong Devotion, became one of the 63 Nayanmars, being worshipped by all.
Let us be proud about our Vanavasi Thinnan who became Kannappa Nayanar and being worshipped by all.
(15 November 1875 - 9 June 1900) was an Indian tribal freedom fighter, religious leader, and folk hero who belonged to the Munda tribe. He spearheaded a tribal religious millenarian movement that arose in the Bengal Presidency (now Jharkhand) in the late 19th century, during the British Raj, thereby making him an important figure in the history of the Indian independence movement. The revolt mainly concentrated in the Munda belt of Khunti, Tamar, Sarwada and Bandgaon. Birsa is known for challenging the Christian missionaries and revolting against the conversion activities along with the Munda and Oraon communities.
His portrait hangs in the Indian Parliament Museum, he is the only tribal leader to have been so honored.
Demography of Tribals in TamilNadu
Out of the total number of 39 districts we have vanavasi people living in 22 districts spreading over in 590 villages according to recent report in 2011, which clearly indicates that we still have our ancesteral Tribal people namely Kurumbas, kondareddies, katunayakkan, thoda, kotha, paniyas and so on living very nearer to us . Both the groups Malayalis and Irulars constitute the major percentage of 67 out of the total vanavasi population of 8 lakhs.
Read more about Tribal Development in TamilNadu
Total population as of 2011 census is around 9 lakhs
Upliftment of Vanavasi Tribal people is essential
Vanavasis termed as Tribals are actually innocent children of Forests and Hillocks, used to live with nature. The so called civilization has put them far behind in the progress, leaving them in utter ignorance and poverty. Sadly their weakness is cleverly exploited by several vested interests and the children of forest who are forcibly driven out from their environment stand stranded totally depending on their urbanized brethren for their survival. Proslylization is rampant in all Tribal belts throughout TamilNadu and hence now the utmost necessity has arisen to save our Tribal people from their predicament.
Vanavasi Seva Kendram TamilNadu is constantly working among the vanavasi people in 31 villages now and the work now going on may look minimum but it is more vital and result oriented. The Kendra has planned to do a lot in future with the care, support and active participation of the philanthropists who support in kind and cash.
Keeping in view that all the Tribal people must get an all round development in their life, Vanavasi Seva Kendram has planned to work in three fields that is Education, Health and Culture.