Tribal communities are entitled to being involved in a dialogue on eye-level rather than being told how to manage their affairs: Adivasis have a proud  of their own. Wherever their traditional way of life remains feasible, they avoid dependance on charity.

Photo: United Nations General Assembly Hall ©

India’s representative at the 2007 United Nations General Assembly affirmed his government’s commitment promotion and protection of indigenous peoples’ rights:

A Nomad Called Thief:
Reflections on Adivasi Silence and Voice by Ganesh [G.N.] Devy | Publications >>

AJAI MALHOTRA (India) said his country had consistently favoured the promotion and protection of indigenous peoples’ rights [and affirmed] their right to autonomy or self-government in matters relating to their internal and local affairs, as well as means and ways for financing their autonomous functions.

Addressing  is bound to accelerate the implementation of policies designed to alleviate . For this to happen, the aspirations of tribal youths must be taken into account in all domains of public life.

 is a key issue for any organization fostering India’s tribal : ensuring that it will flourish in the world’s largest . As a case in point, Union Minister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh called for a change in the mental attitude towards adivasis and forest-dwellers at a function in Gadchiroli district (Maharashtra) in 2011:

About 25 crore [250 million] people live off the forests, we cannot keep them out. […] The adivasi is not the enemy of the forests.

Sacred grove photo © >>
Learn more about the Soliga community in Karnataka >>

“We have a special responsibility to document, monitor and conserve our most precious asset” – Kamaljit S. Bawa in “Our biodiversity, our life, our future” >>