The Word of the Week for May 13, 2013 is Bhil
The poem this week is “The Sword of Lal Singh.” According to Lal Singh:
Men I have slain with naked steel,
Mahratta, Afghan, Jat and Bhil,
The word Bhil is derived from the Bil or Vil which mean Bow. In the history of independent India these tribes of India were regarded as the fighters who were in a war against the Mughals, Marathas and the Britishers. Bhils furnished the needs of Princes of Mewar with bowmen, supplies or by guarding their families.
In feudal and colonial times, many Bhils were employed by the ruling Rajputs (members of northern India’s warrior caste) in various capacities, e.g. as Shikaris or hunters because of their knowledge of the terrain. Many had even become warriors in armies. Bhils respected their motherland and were ready to defend it if anybody tried to occupy it.