Caribbean Museum chairman Devant Maharaj.
was extremely fascinated with the nature of the results.
The test shows the path of human migration and shows that
I have a link with my Jewish brethren.
Caribbean Museum chairman Devant Maharaj
INTERESTED in tracing your ancestry and finding your roots?
The Indian Caribbean Museum (ICM), at Waterloo Road, Carapichaima,
is offering the national population the opportunity to trace
ones ancestry, using high-tech, state-of-the-art DNA
ICM chairman Devant Maharaj said the process is affordable,
ranging from $600$1,263. Maharaj said this was much
cheaper than the $5,000-plus people have paid in the past
to trace family trees through traditional records.
He said the ICM had partnered with Family Tree DNA (FTD),
an organisation based in Houston, Texas, in the United States.
He said a kit is sent to the client directly from FTD in
which a cheek swab sample of the client is placed in a vial
and returned to FTD. He said all monies are paid to FTD
and not to the museum.
Maharaj said he was tested and his results showed that he
is descended from Eastern European Jews.
He said: I was extremely fascinated with the nature
of the results. The test shows the path of human migration
and shows I have a link with my Jewish brethren. We have
a common ancestry from the Kurgan Tribe, the first people
to domesticate the horse, that moved from the Steppes of
Russia to India.
shows that the Jews were never persecuted in India. Certain
tribes in India did DNA testing that showed they had Jewish
ancestry and successfully migrated to Israel.
However, Maharaj said he has no plans to move to Israel
any time soon based on the results.
Stating that results are delivered within six weeks, Maharaj
added, The advantage in using DNA testing for genealogy
purposes is that it allows us to compare the DNA from other
individuals in order to find common ancestors, or places
Indian Heritage Month the interest in tracing Indian ancestors
is heightened. Many schools ask students of all ethnicities
to develop a family tree. For the descendants of many Indians,
due to the circumstances of history, tracing the family
tree beyond three generations is simply not possible.
further research is possible there is a strong likelihood
that the documents to delve deeper into family history are
not available at the National Archives, he said.
the African community, due to the inhumanity of slavery,
family research is even more difficult. DNA technology offers
a scientific manner in which individuals can explore their
Maharaj also spoke of the importance of testing the Y-DNA
(Y chromosome) in males to determine the paternal lines.
He explained: The Y-DNA strictly checks the paternal
line, with no influence of any females along that line.
do not receive the Y-DNA, and therefore females cannot be
tested for the paternal line. If you are female and would
like to know about your paternal line, you would need to
have a brother or a male relative from that line to be tested.
All Y-DNA tests allow you to identify your ethnic and geographic
origins, both recent and far distant on your direct male
descending line. Among others, you will be able to check
your Indian, European, or African ancestry, he said.
To check ones maternal line the mtDNA test is done
on both males and females since both genders receive the
mtDNA (X chromosome) from their mother.
Maharaj said genetic information is added to the museums
secure, private and confidential non-Web-based result database.
He added: As other people order their genetic tests,
they will either be looking for a relationship to another
specific individual or they will be submitting for a comparison
to the database library. If a match occurs in the future,
you will be informed of this relatives existence so
that you can contact that person, if you desire.
Maharaj said the ICM also plans on approaching the Indian
High Commission in T&T to accept the results of the
DNA tests for people applying for a Person of Indian Origin
Card. He said PIO cards are only granted to people who can
prove their ancestors came from India.Persons interested
in tracing their family tree can call the Indian Caribbean
Museum at 673-7007, or Devant Maharaj at 683-8233.
Family Tree DNA test kit consists of two cheek scrapers
and two collection tubes, designed for single-person use.
Each tube contains a fluid designed to arrest bacteria growth,
so you can scrape your cheek and return your kit in any
type of weather (hot or cold). The freshness of your sample
will remain intact for months. Photo :http://www.familytreedna.com/kit.html