In Pictures

In pictures: The last nomadic people of Nepal

The Raute are the last nomadic people of Nepal. Now numbering fewer than 150, they live in the forests of Accham's middle hills, where photographer Andrew Newey caught up with them.

Raute camp Image copyright Andrew Newey

The Raute people live in temporary camps, hidden away from the villages, in remote parts of the forest. Their dwellings are basic tents made from wooden branches covered with leaves and cloth.

Raute camp Image copyright Andrew Newey

These hunter-gatherers move camp every few weeks through the steeply wooded hills and mountains

Raute elder Image copyright Andrew Newey

A Raute elder returns to camp with a monkey after a successful day's hunting. They are accomplished in the art of hunting monkeys, which they trap using a special net. Hunting is carried out only by males in the community

Women at the campfire Image copyright Andrew Newey

Division of labour is based on gender. Women mostly carry out daily tasks such as cooking, washing, collecting water and firewood and beating the grains.

Gathered around a fire Image copyright Andrew Newey

A very typical scene in the Raute camp, with the whole family gathered around a fire. Despite immense pressure from the Nepalese government to conform, the Raute remain a secretive community deeply suspicious of outsiders.

Boiling leaves Image copyright Andrew Newey

A pot of leaves from the forest boils on the fire. The Raute have a strong attachment to the forest and shun agriculture because they believe it is a sin to sow seeds. Once their forest home allowed them to be self-sufficient, but now they rely on government handouts.

Young Raute girls grind corn Image copyright Andrew Newey

Young Raute girls grind corn using heavy wooden poles, while the infants help to tidy up.

Chopping down a tree Image copyright Andrew Newey

The Raute live in an area known as the middle hills, between the flat land of Nepal's southern Terai region and the Himalayas, and cut only common species of trees.

Raute children Image copyright Andrew Newey

Following two bear attacks in as many days, where one tribe member was killed and another seriously injured, the children are warned not to venture too deep into the forest.

Carrying wood Image copyright Andrew Newey

The area has lost much of its forest. And, although the remaining areas are protected by government legislation, the loss of this habitat along with many of the animals and plants on which the Raute depended for survival has pushed them into direct contact with their settled counterparts.

Child with wood Image copyright Andrew Newey

All photographs by Andrew Newey.

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