Tribal communities of India living on the hilly tracts follow a method of cultivation by cutting and burning forest patches on the hills of the neighboring areas. This is known in various local terms like 'Podu', 'Dahi' and Jhum. In English documents this is called Swidden or slash and burn or shifting cultivation. It is an interesting aspect of tribal economy. This method allows two or atmost three annual crops and then abandoning that land until the trees have grown again sufficiently to allow a second filling. This process continues until the land gets washed so bare of soil and seed that no more forest growth is possible. It is then finally abandoned and there remains a bare hillside useless for any purpose producing only thorns, creepers and coarse grass. The hill tribal peasants of Orissa, on the Eastern Ghats, have long tradition of practicing 'Podu' cultivation......... more
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|This is an extremely biased perspective of shifting cultivation and is an unfortunate reflection of the prevailing view in the elite/academia of Orissa. Worldwide, shifting cultivation (rotational) is being seen as another legitimate form of agriculture which is the most suitable for tropical sloping area. Please also consider that by not recognising Podu, the State took over millions of hectares of customary tribal land and has made them criminals on their own land. Please refer to the following recent books/reports:
1.Debating Shifting Cultivation in the Eastern Himalayas (2006) http://books.icimod.org/index.php/search/general
2. Perpetuating Injustices: Tribal rights and forestland cultivation in Orissa
|This extremely biased perspective of shifting cultivation could be possible in the colonial phase in Orissa where the so-called elites did not subscribe to the left views.Your comment is redundant for my context. Dash.email@example.com,15-03-2008|
|The view of shifting cultivation was of the colonial phase when left ideas were not accepted by the Orissan elites.The present view does not accept it.Your context is unsuitable for my study. Kailash Dash|
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