India – Golla ǀ Southern Indian ǀ South Asian
The India – Golla population data represent DNA samples from 65 unrelated individuals living in 30 villages in the Southern Andhra Pradesh region of India. The Golla is a middle-ranking caste group of Andhra Pradesh who speak a Dravidian language called Telugu. Traditionally, this population has been semi-nomadic sheep herders and they still practice strict caste endogamy (marriage within the same clan, people or kinship group). Samples were obtained by the Anthropology and Human Genetics Unit of the Indian Statistical Institute in Calcutta; by the Dept. of Environmental Health at the University of Cincinnati (Ohio) and the DNA Typing Unit at the Central Forensic Science Laboratory in Calcutta.
The Golla people are spread out in different states of India. The word 'Golla' is derived from the Sanskrit word, 'Gopal,' which means keeper of cows. They are known by different name in different areas, such as Yadav and Patra in Orissa. Other subgroups are called the Nunia, Haldia, Panera, Chelia and Kondar. Golla people speak Telugu, and also are conversant in Hindi and other regional languages. The Golla are land owners in a community that rears sheep and goats. The women are involved in agriculture and animal husbandry, and are very good at tattooing and singing folk songs. The men participate in folk-dramas. They also stage performances around holding red hot iron balls in their mouths, hot iron plates in their hands and swallowing long knives. The Golla Pedditi performs magic in the villages and receives grain and money in return.
As a community, the Golla practice endogamy(marrying only within specific clans or kinships) and Gotra exogamy (one cannot marry another if they share the same male lineage – called the Gotra). Bride price is a prevalent practice. The women wear vermilion, a thali (necklace identifying the family she is marrying and their beliefs) and toe rings as symbols of marriage. Naming ceremonies are observed on the 21st day after birth. Child labor is prevalent among the Golla. They worship Krishna and have other village deities such as Mangala, Thakurani Rajamma and Korallama. They celebrate evebnts such as Dol Purnima, Rathjathra, Ganesh Puja and Lakshmi Puja, and worship their agricultural implements during these major festivals. The dead are buried and death pollution is observed for 11 days, or the dead are cremated and a purification ceremony is observed on the 10th day after death.Alternate names: Yadav, Ahir, Gop, Ashtandra, Monda, Pedditi, Yerra, Mon.
For more details on the Golla population of Southern Andhra Pradesh, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andhra_Pradesh;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yadav (caste system details).
Source publications: STR Data for the AmpFlSTR Profiler Plus Loci Among Golla Population of Southern Andhra Pradesh, India, JFS, 2001, p734-735.