Nature Talk

    Never before the discourse on the tribals has occupied so much space in the media as it is today. Certainly it has come out of the anthropologists’ exclusive closet; the emphasis on the study of culture and custom of tribals is giving way to their livelihood issues, which are becoming increasingly complex in the pursuance of the current development paradigm. The land on which the tribals live with minerals underneath and forest above is becoming the irresistible destination of the rich and powerful. The threat of being pushed to the margin looms large on the tribal communities. No one who seeks to find the tribal culture and custom to survive in their pristine form would ever brook any such threat where tribals lose their livelihood. Not surprisingly, more the widespread has become such threat, the resistance has become more visible and the tribe of concerned people has increased. The romanticism has diminished in the discourse on tribals and existential realities have begun dominating. Soft discourse has turned hard. The tribals have begun demanding more attention to their problems concerning home and hearth and thus has increased pressure on the policy makers to give priority to the survival of tribals with dignity while formulating policies on land, forest, water and minerals.

    The policy makers must not take such pressure lightly, instead read the writings on the wall and respond accordingly with suitable policies to be implemented with sincerity by the agencies responsible.