Guj: ડાંગ ḍāṅga
‘Bamboo Forest’ District, Gujarat
From Skt: dhān(us), ‘bamboo’, ‘bow (and arrow)’
Dang(s) is the smallest District in Gujarat with 657 square miles of forest including teak and bamboo.
The population is 93.8% tribal and the five Bhil Kings of Dangs are the only hereditary rulers left in India. The British failed to wrest control of the Dangs from the Bhils and were forced to agree terms to lease the teak forest; this involved the payment of 3,000 silver coins and a lavish 15-day durbar to honour the kings. The tribal population has faced a long struggle to have its rights to the forest recognised [The Dangs: How a remote part of Gujarat has suffered over 200 years on forest rights].
Bamboo is associated with bows and arrows and thereby with the tribal people. Both teak and bamboo play an important role in the local economy: handicrafts, furniture and even fishing.