Junagarh, India — www.leonidfotos.com
The Sidis are people of African descent living in India. Already in the 11th century Africans existed on the Indian subcontinent. Some came as sailors or traders, others as mercenaries. And some were brought as slaves, first by the Arabs and later by the Portuguese and the British. Today most Sidis are Sufi muslims, and they have largely assimilated into Indian culture. However they retain some African traditions, especially in their music and religious rituals — where the Sidis sing songs in Swahili accompanied by African style drums. Some Sidis also carry on the ancient tradition of spirit possession.