Prelims cum Mains

Voting a great privilege for these Chenchus

Context of the topic

  • The Chenchu tribals of Andhra Pradesh consider exercising voting right a privilege despite the hardship associated with their lives in forests and never skip voting.
  • However, Candidates keep away from campaigning in these sparsely-populated areas in view of the inhospitable terrain.
  • Also, for the first time in the state, the EVM (Electronic Voting Machine) with Voter verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) feature is being introduced.


About Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT)

  • Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) is a feature of the electronic voting machine which was introduced to verify that the vote polled by a voter goes to the correct candidate.
  • This is a second line of verification process, introduced after allegations around Electronic Voting Machines’ tampering cropped up.
  • A VVPAT machine consists of
    • Printer: A printer gives the record of voter’s selection
    • Display Unit: A display unit that shows any error
  • Working: When a voter presses the button on the Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail machine against the chosen candidate, a printed VVPAT slip is displayed for 7 seconds before it’s automatically cut and delivered to a sealed ballot compartment.
  • The VVPAT slip contains the following details:
    • Candidate’s serial number
    • Name of the candidate
    • Corresponding symbol


About Chenchu Tribe

  • The Chenchus are an aboriginal tribe, mainly inhabiting the Nallamallai hills which has been a part of Nagarjunsagar- Srisailam Tiger Reserve for centuries in Andhra Pradesh.
  • They are a conservative tribal group and have not made many changes in their lifestyle or tried to adapt to modernity.
  • Occupation:
    • The Chenchus still go for hunting rather than farming.
    • They sell the meat for the livelihood.
    • The Chenchus collect jungle products like roots, fruits, tubers, beedi leaf, mohua flower, honey, gum, tamarind and green leaves and make a meagre income of it by selling these to traders and government co-operatives.
  • Origin: The Origin of Chenchu is connected to Lord Malikarjuna of the Srisailim temple.
  • Language: They speak in Chenchu language with Telugu Accent.
  • Religion/God: Largely they follow hinduism (97.63%). Chenchus mainly believe in Bhagaban taru who lives in the sky and look after the Chenchus in all their doings. They also worship Lord Shiva, Hanuman, Goddess of Fire for their safety and prosperity.
  • Social Living Pattern:
    • Penta is the name given by Chenchus to their villages.
    • One penta consists of a few huts that are grouped together based on the kinship pattern.
    • The village elder is named as ‘Peddamanishi’ and is generally responsible for maintaining order and harmony within the family as well as in the village as a whole.

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