Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Shompen tribe

Facts for Prelims (FFP)


Source: BBC

 Context: Experts warn that the development of Great Nicobar into a shipping hub and tourist destination could lead to the extinction of the indigenous Shompen tribe.

  • The $9 billion development plan could introduce 650,000 people to the island, increasing the risk of contact and diseases that could devastate the Shompen.


The Shompen are an indigenous group of people who live on Great Nicobar Island in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. They are hunter-gatherers who hunt wild game, forage for fruits and forest foods, and farm yams, roots, vegetables, and tobacco.

The Shompen are one of the most populated tribes in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, with around 200–300 people living mainly on Great Nicobar Island. They were first contacted in the 1840s and are designated as a Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group (PVTG)


There are six main tribes in the Andaman Islands: the Great Andamanese, Onge, Jarawa, Sentinelese, Shompens, and Nicobarese