eBook | “We are strong and industrious people”: Migration in a region suitable for tribal settlement, the cultivation of paddy and pulses, and rich in forest products – Odisha

Jauramunda Indigenous Day celebration >>

Neoliberal Development, Displacement and Resistance movement: The Case of Kalinga Nagar Industrial complex, Odisha, India | To read the full paper by Dinabandhu Sahoo and Niharranjan Mishra (NIT Rourkela), click here >>

The tribals of Kalinga Nagar have been migrated from different districts of Chotanagpur in the last part of 19th century and early 20th century. Lack of irrigation facilities and frequent drought in tribal areas of Chotanagpur region left no option for the tribals but to migrate to other places like tea gardens of Assam and Coal fields in the nearby area (Miri, 1993). The shortage of labour in the tea gardens of Assam during colonial times particularly in the 2nd half of the 19th century caused a large scale migration of the Santhals, Munda, Oraons and Hos from the villages of Chotanagpur and Santhal Pargana to Assam. Similarly, the establishment of industries in these areas led to a large scale displacement of tribals resulting into their alienation from land (Prasad, 1988:78). Land alienation due to different purposes like hydro-electric project, administration, industrial and mining projects, reservation and conservation of forests, business and other institutions like schools, colleges and technical training institutions etc. in Chotanagpur in colonial and postcolonial period pushed the adivasis of the region to migrate to other areas (Prasad, 1988:77-99). The mining industries near Chotanagpur also attracted the Hos as well as other tribes as labour force. In a similar vein in 1877 due to severe drought in Saraikala region (Present day Jharkhand), people migrated to Sukinda valley (Near the present day Kalinga Nagar Industrial Complex) (Sahu, 2007).

Similarly an adivasis of Kalinga Nagar Mansingh Purty (age about 74) vehemently stated the other cause of Adivasi migration to Kalinga Nagar area: 
We are strong and industrious people. Our forefathers came here from Ranchi areas as contractual labour by the colonial British ruler to construct the Rail road in Eastern Odisha in the last half of 19th century. Since then we are living in this region. The then Sukinda king (Zamindar) permitted us to live here and make land by cutting forests and cultivate it. He gave some people patta and we were giving Khajana (Tax) in the form of Gotti (bonded labour) to the king”. (Interview 15.12.2014)

In fact it can be concluded that environmental degradation and climate change not only induced tribal migration but also economic opportunity acted as a pull factor for tribal migration to Sukinda/Kalinga Nagar area. 

The topography of the area was also suitable for tribal settlement. The topography of the area consists of undulating landmass with small hills and forests. Small streams, low waste lands and Patas (wetlands) were the main source of water supply to the area. Streams and Patas provide a large quantity of varieties of fishes and crab to the local people. In Khapuria-Kumbhiragadia area there was a large grazing land which supports hundreds of milkman families for cattle rearing. The main livelihood of the local adivasis consists of agriculture, especially rain-fed agriculture i.e. paddy cultivation. After harvesting rice, some people grow pulses like black and green gram, Khesari, maize, kulthi and vegetables. The nearby forests and hills play an important role of supplying firewood and minor forest products like ground nuts, kendu fruits, mango, tamarind, jack fruits, various kinds of leafy vegetables and besides meats of various wild animals and birds. These provided health and wellbeing of the tribal populations in the area. Some rare species of medicinal herbs were found in the nearby hills. Besides these economic values, forests and hills also had religious and aesthetic values for the local tribals. Some  people in the area also worked as agricultural or other wage labourers in the nearby mines and quarries.  […] 

The paper looks at the problems of development-induced displacement and resistance movement in Kalinga Nagar Industrial Complex in Odisha, India. While analysing the problems the paper considers some of the important variables such as livelihood risks, past resettlement policy and implementation, increase in consciousness about displacement and consciousness of opportunities and differentiation both among local people and outsider to argue how these factors initiated conflict and mobilized resistance movement against displacement in Kalinga Nagar Industrial Complex. It also argues how differentiation, fragmentation and consciousness of opportunities helped for split and decline of the movement. Based on the theoretical premises of political economy and new social movement and following ethnographic fieldwork the paper broadly explicates the political economy of development and dispossession, causes and emergence of collective mobilization and demands and strategies of resistance movement.

Source: “Neoliberal Development, Displacement and Resistance movement: The Case of Kalinga Nagar Industrial complex, Odisha, India” by Dinabandhu Sahoo [PhD Scholar] and Niharranjan Mishra [Assistant Professor], Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, NIT Rourkela, Odisha, pp. 250-1
URL: https://www.academia.edu/34043372
Date visited: 14 June 2020

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

“The practice of religious rituals, ceremonies and sanctions by specific cultural groups allow such sacred landscapes to be maintained, emphasizing that humans are intrinsically part of the ecosystem. Taboos, codes and customs specific to activities and community members restrict access to most sacred groves. […] The inclusion of local people’s needs and interests in conservation planning is increasingly accepted as essential, both to promote the well-being of human populations, and to ensure that biodiversity and conservation needs are met in the long-term.” – Nazir A. Pala, Ajeet K. Neg and N.P. Todaria in “The Religious, Social and Cultural Significance of Forest Landscapes in Uttarakhand Himalaya, India” (International Journal of Conservation Science, Vol. 5, Issue 2, April-June 2014) | Sacred groves | Biodiversity and development – Himalaya >>

Learn more: Bondage | Bonded labour | Childhood | Human trafficking | SlaveryZamindari >>
Human trafficking is a crime. To report in India, call Shakti Vahini
+91-11-42244224, +91-9582909025 or the national helpline Childline on 1098.

“As per a study on human trafficking, the state of Jharkhand has emerged as India’s trafficking hub with thousands of tribal women and girls being trafficked out of the state each year to Delhi, Punjab, Haryana and beyond [while] human traffickers are also involved in many cases of missing children.” – The Wire | Shakti Vahini | Tourism locations | Adivasi tribal bondage slavery trafficking (Safe search) >>

“Health spending by the Indian government as percentage of GDP has long been one of the lowest for any major country, and the public health system is chronically dismal.” – Pranab Bardhan in “The two largest democracies in the world are the sickest now” | Learn more: Scroll.in, 24 August 2020 >>

Find up-to-date information provided by, for and about Indian authors, researchers, officials, and educators

List of web portals covered by the present Custom search engine

Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE) – www.atree.org

Freedom United – www.freedomunited.org

Government of India (all websites ending on “.gov.in”)

Shodhganga (a reservoir of Indian theses) – https://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in

Survival International – www.survivalinternational.org

UCLA Digital Library – https://digital.library.ucla.edu

Unesco – https://en.unesco.org

Unesco digital library – https://unesdoc.unesco.org

Unicef – www.unicef.org

United Nations – www.un.org/en

Video Volunteers – www.videovolunteers.org

WorldCat (“the world’s largest library catalog, helping you find library materials online”) – https://worldcat.org

To search Indian periodicals, magazines, web portals and other sources safely, click here. To find publishing details for Shodhganga’s PhD search results, click here >>

Search tips

Combine the name of any particular state, language or region with that of any tribal (Adivasi) community.

Add keywords of special interest (music, poetry, dance just as health, sacred grove and biodiversity); learn about the rights of Scheduled Tribes such as the “Forest Rights Act” (FRA); and the United Nations “Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples”, “Universal Declaration of Human Rights”, “women’s rights”, or “children’s right to education”.

Specify any other issue or news item you want to learn more about (biodiversity, bonded labour and human trafficking, climate change, ecology, economic development, ethnobotany, ethnomedicine, global warming, hunter-gatherers in a particular region or state, prevention of rural poverty, water access).

For official figures include “scheduled tribe ST” along with a union state or region: e.g. “Chhattisgarh ST community”, “Himalayan tribe”, “Scheduled tribe Tamil Nadu census”, “ST Kerala census”, “Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group Jharkhand”, “PVTG Rajasthan”, “Adivasi ST Kerala”, “Adibasi ST West Bengal” etc.

In case the Google Custom Search window is not displayed here try the following: (1) toggle between “Reader” and regular viewing; (2) in your browser’s Security settings select “Enable JavaScript” | More tips >>

Note: hyperlinks and quotes are meant for fact-checking and information purposes only | Disclaimer >>

[*] Some clarifications on caste-related issues by reputed scholars

Understanding “caste” in the context of Indian democracy: The “Poona Pact of 1932”
“Mahatma Gandhi and BR Ambedkar differed over how to address caste inequities through the electoral system. Their exchanges led to the Poona Pact of 1932, which shaped the reservation system in India’s electoral politics. […]
Two prominent figures who have significantly contributed to this discourse are Mahatma Gandhi, Father of the Nation, and Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, Father of the Constitution. The two stalwarts of Indian politics, while revered equally by the public, had contrasting views on the caste system. Their subsequent debates have shaped the course of Indian society and politics. While Gandhi denounced untouchability, he did not condemn the varna system, a social hierarchy based on occupation, for most of his life. He believed in reforming the caste system through the abolition of untouchability and by giving equal status to each occupation. On the other hand, BR Ambedkar, a Dalit himself, argued that the caste system disorganised and ‘demoralised Hindu society, reducing it to a collection of castes’. […] 
And yet, despite their differences, they developed an understanding to work for the betterment of the marginalised.” – Rishabh Sharma in “How Ambedkar and Gandhi’s contrasting views paved way for caste reservation” (India Today, 6 October 2023)
URL: https://www.indiatoday.in/history-of-it/story/ambedkar-gandhi-caste-system-poona-pact-1932-reservation-2445208-2023-10-06

~ ~ ~

“That upper caste groups should declare themselves to be OBCs [Other Backward Castes] and want to avail of the reservation policy is a pandering to caste politics of course, as also are caste vote-banks. It is partially a reflection of the insecurity that the neo-liberal market economy has created among the middle-class. Opportunities are limited, jobs are scarce and so far ‘development’ remains a slogan. There’s a lot that is being done to keep caste going in spite of saying that we are trying to erode caste. We are, of course, dodging the real issue. It’s true that there has been a great deal of exploitation of Dalit groups and OBC’s in past history; making amends or even just claiming that we are a democracy based on social justice demands far more than just reservations. The solution lies in changing the quality of life of half the Indian population by giving them their right to food, water, education, health care, employment, and social justice. This, no government so far has been willing to do, because it means a radical change in governance and its priorities.” – Romila Thapar  (Emeritus Professor of History, Jawaharlal Nehru University) interviewed by Nikhil Pandhi (Caravan Magazine, 7 October 2015)
URL: https://caravanmagazine.in/vantage/discipline-notion-particular-government-interview-romila-thapar 

~ ~ ~

Casteism is the investment in keeping the hierarchy as it is in order to maintain your own ranking, advantage, privilege, or to elevate yourself above others or keep others beneath you …. For this reason, many people—including those we might see as good and kind people—could be casteist, meaning invested in keeping the hierarchy as it is or content to do nothing to change it, but not racist in the classical sense, not active and openly hateful of this or that group.” – Book review by Dilip Mandal for Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents (The Print, 23 August 2020)
URL: https://theprint.in/opinion/oprah-winfrey-wilkerson-caste-100-us-ceos-indians-wont-talk-about-it/487143/

~ ~ ~

“The theoretical debate on caste among social scientists has receded into the background in recent years. [However] caste is in no sense disappearing: indeed, the present wave of neo-liberal policies in India, with privatisation of enterprises and education, has strengthened the importance of caste ties, as selection to posts and educational institutions is less based on merit through examinations, and increasingly on social contact as also on corruption. There is a tendency to assume that caste is as old as Indian civilization itself, but this assumption does not fit our historical knowledge. To be precise, however, we must distinguish between social stratification in general and caste as a specific form. […]
From the early modern period till today, then, caste has been an intrinsic feature of Indian society. It has been common to refer to this as the ‘caste system’. But it is debatable whether the term ‘system’ is appropriate here, unless we simply take for granted that any society is a ‘social system’. First, and this is quite clear when we look at the history of distinct castes, the ‘system’ and the place various groups occupy within it have been constantly changing. Second, no hierarchical order of castes has ever been universally accepted […] but what is certain is that there is no consensus on a single hierarchical order.” – Harald Tambs-Lyche (Professor Emeritus, Université de Picardie, Amiens) in “Caste: History and the Present” (Academia Letters, Article 1311, 2021), pp. 1-2
URL: https://www.academia.edu/49963457

~ ~ ~

“There is a need for intercultural education. We all need to work together to bridge these divides not only between religions and castes but also regions. It is not correct to think that one part is better than the other. Some of the limitations of India as a whole are due to our common heritage, say the one that has restricted women from having a flourishing life for themselves.” – Prof. V. Santhakumar (Azim Premji University) in “On the so called North-South Divide in India” (personal blog post in Economics in Action, 13 April 2024)
URL: https://vsanthakumar.wordpress.com/2024/04/13/on-the-so-called-north-south-divide-in-india/

Find publications by reputed authors (add “open access” for freely downloadable content)


Search for an item in libraries near you:
WorldCat.org >>


Search for an item in libraries near you:
WorldCat.org >>