ADILABAD: Tattoos are a fashion for young people in urban pockets, but they are a part of the culture for tribals in Agency areas. Tribals believe that by getting tattoos on their hands and foreheads, they will not get any diseases, and also save themselves from falling prey to black magic.
Against this background, a group of tattoo artists from Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra arrived in the district recently.
They set up shop on pavements in towns like Adilabad and also visit tribal areas during jataras.
Many college students are getting tattooed in a variety of patterns with names and pictures. It has become a fashion statement for youth. Sterilized needles are used for tattooing and the fee ranges from `30 to `2,000 for simple to intricate designs.
Challawar Sudheer, an intermediate student, says, “It is a fashion these days; all are getting the tattoos.” These colourful tattoos would cost `5,000 in cities, but here the fee is not more than `2,000 during jataras, he said.
Tribal people get images of gods or their own names tattooed on their hands. It is their tradition and the conviction is that tattoos keep diseases and evil forces away. “Whatever the older generation believed, for me it is a way to remember the roots and show my respect towards my parents and grandparents by tattooing their names on my hands,” said Gedam Laxmi, a tribal girl who got tattooed during the recently held Nagoba Jatara in the district. While her parents had to undergo a painful experience to get tattoos, she felt little pain with the latest electric tattoo machine.
Anand Rao, a tattoo artist who came from Vardha in Maharashtra, said fresh needles are used for every customer and care is taken to avoid infection.
“These days, it is very easy to get tattoos. But one should think twice before taking a decision as tattoo removal is possible only through an expensive surgery,” he warned.