The Andh are a designated Scheduled Tribe in the Indian states of Telangana, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. Andhs have the originated from the Satavahan dynasty. Andh community is one of the oldest Hindu community in India. At the time of Satvahan rule, the king was the owner of the lands and the forests but some time after the death of the Satvahan king, the East India Company decreed all lands and forests under their governance. This was reason of andh community people becoming isolated and non-progressed. They seem to have originated in southern India in the vicinity of Madras which was once ruled by the Andhra dynasty. However the identification is only used for the people who by the start of the 20th century had a long history of residence in central India.
The Andh people themselves are to be the original descendants of Andhra dynasty or Satvahana dynasty that ruled between third century BC to second century AD. At the time of Nijamshah of Hyderabad, before the marathwada region were isolated, andh people are the ruling the satvahan dynastry, but after attack of Nijamshah on this region satvahan dynastry has collapsed due to death of king and region had to be taken into 'Hyderabad Sansthan'. After this massive loss the andh people started agree and live as a tribe.
The Andhs live primarily in the hills of the Adilabad district in Andhra Pradesh. They are further subdivided into the Vertali and the Khaltali. The Vertali consider themselves as superior people and avoid marrying the Khaltali."It seems highly possible that the word Andh is only a corruption of the Sanskrit 'Andhra', a designation given by the ancient Aryans to an aboriginal Tribe dwelling in the Andhra Desh " (Wilson,V.P.190).
In Maharashtra the Andh community comprise 474110 population (census 2011). Andh people are distributed in Parbhani, Nanded, Yeotmal, Akola districts mainly. They called them self Hindu and are relatively well progressed in education.
According to the Anthropological Survey of India, there are over 74,000 Andhs in Maharashtra. These Andhs speak Telugu, Marathi. The Andhs are primarily Hindus. In, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana About 100,000 Andh speak the Telugu.
- "List of notified Scheduled Tribes" (PDF). Census India. pp. 19–22. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 November 2013. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
- K. S. Singh; B. V. Bhanu; Anthropological Survey of India (2004). Maharashtra. Popular Prakashan. p. 65. ISBN 978-81-7991-100-6. Retrieved 29 May 2011.