Most of India's people live in villages. Most villagers are farmers who work in nearby fields. A typical Indian village is a collection of mud-and-straw dwellings. These homes are generally small, consisting of one or two rooms with mud floors. Wealthier families live in brick or concrete houses. Most villagers own few possessions. These belongings typically include brass pots for cooking and clay pots for carrying water and storing grain. Village people cook foods on a chula, a clay oven that burns coal. People sit and sleep on cots of woven string, which are dragged outside on warm days. Many people also sleep outside. If the village is without electric power, kerosene lanterns are used for light. A local well or nearby pond or river provides water for most villages. Some larger villages have running water. A council of elected elders, called a panchayat, governs most villages. The panchayat has the power to hear complaints and administer punishments.
Village life in India
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