A master of traditional Kurumba painting techniques: Krishnan of Velaricombai village (Nilgiris) – Tamil Nadu

kurumba_painter_krishnan_screenshotMaking do without blue in the Blue Mountains

Olivia Waring,  April 4, 2017 | To view these and more photos in larger size and read the full article, click here >>

Krishnan of Velaricombai village in the Nilgiris attempts to breathe life into a traditional Kurumba style of painting with natural forest dyes

R. Krishnan is something of a celebrity in Velaricombai village of Kotagiri panchayat, Tamil Nadu. He has acquired local renown for his mastery of traditional Kurumba painting techniques. The style is geometric and minimalist, and subjects include harvest festivals, religious rituals, honey gathering expeditions and other practices of the Adivasis of the Niligiris. […]

Krishnan is among the last few in a long line of Adivasi artists. Many Kurumbas believe their ancestors are responsible for the striking cliff art of Eluthupaarai, an archaeological site said to be 3,000 years old, located three kilometres from Velaricombai. “Before, we lived near Eluthupaarai, in the interior of the forest,” Krishnan says. “You can only find these paintings [among the] Kurumbas.”

Krishnan’s grandfather too was a painter of some renown who helped decorate several local temples, and Krishnan began learning from him at the age of five. Today, he carries on his grandfather’s legacy, with a few modifications: while his predecessors painted with sticks on vertical rock faces, Krishnan employs brushes on canvas and handmade paper. He does, however, perpetuate the use of organic, homemade paints, which, our translator tells us, are far more vivid and long lasting than their chemical counterparts. […]

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Source: Making do without blue in the Blue Mountains
Address: https://ruralindiaonline.org/articles/making-do-without-blue-in-the-blue-mountains/
Date Visited: Mon Apr 10 2017 12:58:45 GMT+0200 (CEST)

Rural India — a living journal, a breathing archive

The everyday lives of everyday people by P Sainath | To read the full introduction, click here >>

Can a project’s success be judged on the basis of its never being completed? Yes, if it’s a living archive of the world’s most diverse and complex countryside. Rural India is in many ways the most diverse part of the planet. Its 833 million people include distinct societies speaking well over 700 languages, some of them thousands of years old. The People’s Linguistic Survey of India tells us the country as a whole speaks some 780 languages and uses 86 different scripts. But in terms of provision for schooling up to the 7th standard, just four per cent of those 780 are covered.

The Eighth Schedule of the Indian Constitution lists 22 languages whose development the Union government is obliged to promote. Yet, there are states whose official languages fall outside those 22, like Khasi and Garo of Meghalaya state. Each of six Indian languages is spoken by 50 million people or more. Three are spoken by 80 million or more. One, by close to 500 million. At the other end of the spectrum are unique tribal languages spoken by as few as 4,000 people, some by even less. The eastern state of Odisha alone is home to some 44 tribal languages. The PLSI also reckons close to 220 languages have died in the past 50 years. ‘Saimar’ in Tripura is down its last seven speakers. Most Indian languages have mainly rural speakers.

The same diversity characterises rural Indian occupations, arts and crafts, culture, literature, legend, transportation. […]

Source: About PARI
Address: https://ruralindiaonline.org/pages/about/
Date Visited: Mon Apr 10 2017 13:09:09 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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In pursuit of “equality for all the citizens”: National Legal Services Authority asked to provide free legal consultations to Scheduled Tribes (ST) – Supreme Court

Legal Correspondent, The Hindu (National), December 22, 2016 | To read the full article, click here >>

[…] A Bench [of the Supreme Court], headed by Chief Justice of India T.S. Thakur, asked the authorities to discharge their duties to protect the SCs/STs [Scheduled Tribes] to attain the constitutional goal of equality for all citizens.

“The constitutional goal of equality for all the citizens can be achieved only when the rights of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes are protected. The abundant material on record proves that the authorities are guilty of not enforcing the provisions of the Act,” the Bench, also comprising Justices D.Y. Chandrachud and L. Nageshwara Rao, observed in a recent judgment. It asked the National Legal Services Authority to formulate appropriate schemes to spread awareness and provide free legal aid to SCs and STs.

Source: SC criticises poor implementation of SC/ST Act – NATIONAL – The Hindu
Address: http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/SC-criticises-poor-implementation-of-SCST-Act/article16921754.ece
Date Visited: Mon Apr 10 2017 10:35:39 GMT+0200 (CEST)

 

Kalpana Kannabiran, The Hindu (Comment), July 24, 2015 | To read the full article, click here >>

Constitutional conversations on Adivasi rights

Even 67 years after Independence, the problems of Adivasi communities are about access to basic needs. These include, but are not restricted to, elementary education, community healthcare, sustainable livelihood support, the public distribution system, food security, drinking water and sanitation, debt, and infrastructure. For them, equality of opportunity remains largely unfulfilled. In this context, it is important to stress that the values of tribal culture are transmitted in a manner that protects the right of the bearers of knowledge to determine the terms of the transmission without exploitation or commodification. Nor can the Adivasis’ unhindered access to land and forests, including full access to the commons, especially in scheduled areas, be understated. Tribal communities have, over the decades, witnessed the fragmentation of their habitats and homelands and the disruption of their cultures through predatory tourism. All this has left them shattered and impoverished. Entire communities across States have been dispossessed systematically through state action, and have been reduced from owners of resources and well-knit, largely self-sufficient communities to wage earners in agriculture and urban agglomerates with uncertain futures. Yet, we can scarcely forget that the rights of tribal communities in India are protected by the Constitution and special legislations. […]

Understanding the situation of tribal communities is key to understanding the Constitution, its framework and its possibilities in the fullest sense. Perhaps it is time to reinvigorate our reading of the Constitution in the troubled times we live in. We may find answers to other questions as well around an idea of justice that we grapple with every day.

(Kalpana Kannabiran is Professor and Director, Council for Social Development)

Source: Constitutional conversations on Adivasi rights – The Hindu
Address: http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/adivasi-rights-in-the-constitution-and-their-traditional-lands/article7457164.ece
Date Visited: Mon Apr 10 2017 11:05:26 GMT+0200 (CEST)

 

Mohan Guruswamy, scroll.in (Opinion), Jan 20, 2016 | To read the full article, click here >>

Tribal people, accounting for 8.2% of India’s population, are spread all over India’s states and union territories. Even so, they can be broadly classified into three groupings. […]

The Fifth and Sixth Schedules, under Article 244 of the Indian Constitution in 1950 provided for self-governance in specified tribal majority areas. This did not happen. Indeed, migrations reduced the number of adivasi majority areas. But there are still solutions possible within the Indian Constitution and in the universal principles of justice and equality. There are 332 tribal majority tehsils in India, of which 110 are in the North East, where they have won states of their own.

This leaves 222 tehsils encompassing an adivasi population of over 20 million. These tehsils, many of them contiguous, must be immediately made self-governing areas, as envisaged by the Constitution. All these tribal majority areas must be consolidated into administrative divisions whose authority must be vested with democratically chosen leadership. This body could be called the Adivasi Maha-panchayat and must function as a largely autonomous institution. All laws passed by the state legislatures must be ratified to the satisfaction of the Maha-panchayat. […]

The police must also be made answerable to local elected officials and not be a law unto themselves. […]

Source: Adivasis: India’s original inhabitants have suffered the most at its hands
Address: https://scroll.in/article/773759/adivasis-indias-original-inhabitants-have-suffered-the-most-at-its-hands
Date Visited: Mon Apr 10 2017 10:53:25 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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Founding a rural tribal school in response to local demand: Sarvodaya Shishu Vatika and Sarvodaya High School – Jharkhand

K A Gupta, TNN (Ranchi), Jan 6, 2017

Sanjay Oraon, a resident of Toto village, 9 kilometers from Gumla has defied the rat race of his generation and started a school for the needy.

[…] He now runs the Sarvodaya Shishu Vatika and Sarvodaya High School on a plot owned by his father and struggling to give it a facelift. There are 300 children in Shishu Vatika and over a 100 students in Sarvodaya High School. “Initially there were very few children when I started the junior wing 3 years ago. But the number of students has increased now,” said Sanjay.
He charges a small amount as fees from the rural students but does not prevent them from continuing if they cannot pay as students from the surrounding as well as the remote forest villages come to study there.

“How can we throw such hapless kids from the school?,” he said. The schools have six teachers, mostly girls who teach in the junior section and qualified teachers for the higher section.

Source: Tribal youth a harbinger of hope for many – Times of India
Address: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/ranchi/tribal-youth-a-harbinger-of-hope-for-many/articleshow/56366710.cms
Date Visited: Tue Mar 21 2017 20:06:36 GMT+0100 (CET)

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Posted in Childhood and children, Community facilities, Eastern region, Education and literacy, Organizations, Press snippets, Rural poverty, Success story | Comments Off on Founding a rural tribal school in response to local demand: Sarvodaya Shishu Vatika and Sarvodaya High School – Jharkhand

A new anthropological museum in Kolkata: New light on hunter-gatherers and modern India’s cultural and linguistic diversity – West Bengal

Shiv Sahay Singh, The Hindu, Kolkata, February 20, 2017 | To read the full article, click here >>

A new museum in Kolkata tells the tale of how modern humans in the Indian subcontinent evolved from ancestors who arrived about 12.3 million years ago from Africa, during the Pleistocene era. Set up by the Anthropological Survey of India (AnSI), the museum traces the history of human evolution in this part of the world through displays of tools, replicas of artefacts and models. […]

Prehistoric animal remains from Nitenkheri and Hathnora sites in the Narmada Valley include rhino, elephant and buffalo molars. Photographs and installations of cave paintings from Bhimbetka and Chambal valley of Madhya Pradesh, Singhanpur and Karmagarh in Chhattisgarh, along with the rock art of Jharkhand, also throw light on humans as hunter-gatherers.

Artefacts, pottery and other articles of everyday use from the Indus Valley Civilisation – around 5,500 years ago – are recreated.

“It is through this evolution that we have come to the present. However, the enormous cultural and linguistic diversity of contemporary India cannot be overlooked,” says Kakali Chakrabarti, Head, Eastern Regional Centre of AnSI.

Ms. Chakarabarti said AnSI has identified as many as 4,635 communities, of which 635 are indigenous. […]

A separate corner in the museum is dedicated to linguistic diversity, which comprises four major groups – Dravidian, Austro-Asiatic, Indo-Aryan and Tibeto-Burman – and their spread. At present there are about 750 dialects in the four major groups.

Cultural attributes are reflected by, among other things, tools. “For instance, bows and arrows used by indigenous people in the Andamans rely more on wood, because it is readily available, whereas tools from central India have more metal because the region is rich in minerals,” says Worrel Kumar Bain, Committee member of the Eastern Regional Centre of Anthropological Survey.

Source: A 12.3 million-year-old story of Indians – The Hindu
Address: http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kolkata/A-12.3-million-year-old-story-of-Indians/article17331259.ece
Date Visited: Sat Mar 18 2017 12:04:26 GMT+0100 (CET)

Welcome to Anthropological Survey of India – On The Path of Excellence

Anthropology as is being practiced in the Anthropological Survey of India is unique with a truly holistic flavour. From very early on, it endeavored to bring in multi-disciplinary teams recruiting Anthropologists of both Cultural/Social and Biological varieties along with Linguists, Human Ecologists, Biochemists, Psychologists and Statisticians who collaborate with each other and with the National and State level institutions, while interacting with the renowned scholars of other countries to study man in all his entirety, not just for the sake of study but to create a human concern for one another and to help tackle problems of contemporary relevance.

Source: Antropological Survey of India
Address: https://ansi.gov.in/
Date Visited: Sat Mar 18 2017 12:24:22 GMT+0100 (CET)

The Anthropological Survey of India (A.S.I.) launched a project on the People of India on 2 October 1985. The objective of the project was to generate a brief, descriptive anthropological profile of all the communities of India, the impact on them of change and development processes and the links that bring them together. This was in accordance with the objectives of the A.S.I., established forty-five years ago in December 1945. The A.S.I. has been pursuing bio-cultural research among different population groups from its eight regional centres. Its objectives have been redefined in the policy resolution adopted in 1985, which commits this organization to the survey of the human surface of India. […]

Source: People of India | Antropological Survey of India
Address: https://ansi.gov.in/people-of-india/
Date Visited: Sat Mar 18 2017 12:26:38 GMT+0100 (CET)

Adivasis: India’s original inhabitants have suffered the most at its hands

Mohan Guruswamy, Scroll.in (Opinion), Jan 20, 2016 | To read the full article, click here >>

Their presence in India pre-dates the Dravidians, the Aryans and everyone else. Yet they have no political power and most of them live below the poverty line.

Tribal people, accounting for 8.2% of India’s population, are spread all over India’s states and union territories. Even so, they can be broadly classified into three groupings. The first consists of populations who predate the Indo-Aryan migrations, and are termed by many anthropologists as the Austro-Asiatic-speaking Australoid people. The Central Indian adivasis belong to this grouping. The other two groupings are the Caucasoid and Sino-Tibetan or Mongoloid tribal people of the Himalayan and North Eastern regions who migrated in later periods.

Article 366 (25) of the Constitution defines scheduled tribes as “such tribes or tribal communities or part of or groups within such tribes or tribal communities as are deemed under Article 342 to the Scheduled Tribes for the purposes of this Constitution”. The criteria for classification being geographical isolation, backwardness and having distinctive culture, language, religion and “shyness of contact”. […]

There are some 573 communities recognised by the government as scheduled tribes and, therefore, eligible to receive special benefits and to compete for reserved seats in legislatures, government and educational institutions. […]

Even before Independence, the legendary adivasi leader Jaipal Singh, while welcoming the Objectives Resolution in the Constituent Assembly on December 16, 1946, stated the tribal case and apprehensions explicitly and succinctly:
“As a jungli, as an Adivasi, I am not expected to understand the legal intricacies of the Resolution. But my common sense tells me that every one of us should march in that road to freedom and fight together. Sir, if there is any group of Indian people that has been shabbily treated it is my people. They have been disgracefully treated, neglected for the last 6,000 years. The history of the Indus Valley civilization, a child of which I am, shows quite clearly that it is the new comers – most of you here are intruders as far as I am concerned – it is the new comers who have driven away my people from the Indus Valley to the jungle fastness… The whole history of my people is one of continuous exploitation and dispossession by the non-aboriginals of India punctuated by rebellions and disorder, and yet I take Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru at his word. I take you all at your word that now we are going to start a new chapter, a new chapter of independent India where there is equality of opportunity, where no one would be neglected.”

Source: Adivasis: India’s original inhabitants have suffered the most at its hands
Address: https://scroll.in/article/773759/adivasis-indias-original-inhabitants-have-suffered-the-most-at-its-hands
Date Visited: Sat Mar 18 2017 12:46:35 GMT+0100 (CET)

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Posted in Adivasi, Anthropology, Archaeology, Assimilation, Central region, Commentary, Constitution and Supreme Court, Crafts and visual arts, Cultural heritage, Democracy, Dress and ornaments, Eastern region, Elephant, Figures, census and other statistics, Government of India, History, Homes and utensils, Languages and linguistic heritage, Literature and bibliographies, Maps, Misconceptions, Modernity, Museum collections - India, Names and communities, Organizations, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Quotes, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Storytelling | Tagged | Comments Off on A new anthropological museum in Kolkata: New light on hunter-gatherers and modern India’s cultural and linguistic diversity – West Bengal

Sharing a theology with ecology as the most important ethical guide for humans: The Asurs, a “Particularly vulnerable tribal group” – Jharkhand

G.N. Devy, The Indian Express, 6 March 2016 | To read the full article, click here >>

The term tribal defies any universal definition. Between the Maoris of New Zealand, the Aborigines of Australia and the Indigenous People of North America, there is a shared historical fact. They were all there before the colonial powers pushed them to margins. This is not so in the case of all tribal communities in India.

Some of the Indian tribes such as the Onges and the Jarawas of Andaman and Nicobar Islands have been entirely indigenous. Some others like the Banjaras in Western and Central India and the Gujjars in the Himalayas have been nomadic. And, some, such as several sub-groups of Bhills, have migrated in various historical phases to their present geographical locations. The stories of migration of such communities are found in their oral traditions. The diverse histories of tribes in India are seen among the ‘Particularly Vulnerable Groups’ as well. The term ‘primitive’ used for them at one time has fortunately been declared as pejorative.

In the context of a pan-Indian consideration, Asurs look like one single community. However, it is not really a monolith and has several distinct sub-groups within it. It likes to classify the members under the captions: ‘Vir-Asur’, ‘Virajiya-Asur’ and ‘Agariya-Asur’. These three clan categories also reflect the different occupations that Asurs have traditionally followed. Some of them lived by forest produce and hunting, others engaged in smithy, making agricultural implements and some others lived by agricultural work.

The ancestry of the Asurs is not quite clear. Going by the most widely shared tale of their origin, it seems that two of these three sub-groups came from ‘outside’ and were adopted and endeared by a third sub-group which had been resident in the area from earlier times. The folktale speaks of two children — a girl and a boy — being lifted up by a cyclone — a mythological person — and being dropped atop a hill. The twins could not be rescued but subsequently became ‘spirits to be worshipped’.

Oral history mentions that Sarguja district in Madhya Pradesh was the original habitat of the Asurs, or at least of one of the three clans. At present, they are resident in the forests of Palamu, Gumla and Lohardaga in Jharkhand. They inhabit the region spread between Jharkhand and West Bengal.

Asurs speak a language quite different from Bangla and Hindi, which is derived from the Proto Asutroloid source. It can be surmised that their contact with the others with Dravidian and Indo-Aryan languages has been not as intimate as the contact that most other tribal communities in India had with them. […]

The term ‘Asur’ occurs in ancient Indian literature right from the Vedic age. ‘Asur’ initially meant a powerful god and later came to be associated with ‘darkness’ or ‘deprived of the Sun’. Nearly a hundred or more locations such as forts and cemeteries in Ranchi district and surrounding areas show signs of some Asur association inscribed in the local folklore. However, it is difficult to press these claims beyond a point as they have neither followed the ideas of divinity central to the ancient literature, nor do they show traces of having participated in the historical dynamics of the region. This is borne by the fact that Asurs mostly follow the ‘Sarana’ (or Sharana) faith, to which many tribal communities in the eastern states subscribe, and which has as ancient an origin as other faiths in the sub-continent. The Sarana theology likes to depict ecology as the most important ethical guide for humans. As part of this, man and other animals belong to the earth, the earth does not belong to them. Some of them have started accepting Hindu myths and gods. Some others have moved to Christianity.

The Asur community is facing a serious threat of extinction. […]

Bishupur in the state has the highest Asur population, which is under 10,000. Their literacy rate in 1971 was a mere 5.5 per cent. At that time, they were in the top 5 per cent of ‘the most illiterate’ communities country-wide. Today, they continue the same legacy though the literacy rate has now increased to over 20 per cent. But this has not increased their livelihood security. Rather, the opposite is true. The spread of mining activity in their region has reduced them to greater penury.

Given the struggle for survival and cultural existence they face, it matters little to them if they are Hindus or not. What they need is livelihood and a threat-free environment. […]

The writer is chairman, People’s Linguistic Survey of India, and a tribal activist
Source: Struggle for survival, not of faith | The Indian Express
Address: http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/asur-tribe-struggle-for-survival-not-of-faith/
Date Visited: Fri Mar 31 2017 10:04:18 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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Posted in Anthropology, Assimilation, Central region, Commentary, Community facilities, Customs, Democracy, Eastern region, Ecology and environment, Economy and development, Education and literacy, Figures, census and other statistics, Government of India, History, Languages and linguistic heritage, Maps, Misconceptions, Modernity, Names and communities, Nature and wildlife, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Rural poverty, Storytelling, Tribal culture worldwide, Tribal identity, Worship and rituals | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on Sharing a theology with ecology as the most important ethical guide for humans: The Asurs, a “Particularly vulnerable tribal group” – Jharkhand

“Who are Scheduled Tribes?”: Clarifications by the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes – Government of India

To read the full post by the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST, Govt. of India), click here >>

The framers of the Constitution took note of the fact that certain communities in the country were suffering from extreme social, educational and economic backwardness on account of the primitive agricultural practices, lack of infrastructure facilities and geographical isolation. The Constitution of India in Article 366 (25) prescribe that the Scheduled Tribes means such tribes or tribal communities as are deemed under Article 342 of the Constitution to be Scheduled Tribes.

The provisions under Article 342 read as follows:

342(1) Scheduled Tribes — the President may with respect to any State or Union Territory, and where it is a State, after consultation with the Governor thereof, by a public notification, specify the tribes or tribal communities or part of or groups within tribes or tribal communities as Scheduled Tribe in relation to that State or Union Territory as the case may be.

(2) Parliament may be law include in or exclude from the list of Scheduled Tribes specified in a notification issued under clause (1) any tribe or tribal community or part of or group within any tribe or tribal community, but save as aforesaid a notification issued under the said clause shall not be varied by any subsequent notification.

Criteria for specification of a community as a Scheduled Tribe

While the Constitution is silent about the criteria for specification of a community as a Scheduled Tribe. The words and the phrase ‘tribes or tribal communities or part of or groups within tribes or tribal communities” in Article 342 have to be understood in terms of their historical background of backwardness. Primitiveness, geographical isolation, shyness and social, educational & economic backwardness due to these reasons are the traits that distinguish Scheduled Tribe communities of our country from other communities. It takes into account the definitions of tribal Communities adopted in the 1931 Census. These facts are the basis for the provision in Article 342(1) which mandates to specify the tribes or tribal communities or part of or groups within tribes or tribal communities as Scheduled Tribe in relation to that State or Union Territory as the case may be. Thus the list of Scheduled Tribes is State/UT specific and a community declared as a Scheduled Tribe in a State need not be so in another State. The Presidential notifications under Clause 1 of Article 342 of the Constitution are issued as the Constitution Orders. Two Constitution Orders were initially issued in relation to two distinct categories of States as existed at the time of adoption of the Constitution of India. […]

Source: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS | National Commission for Scheduled Tribes
Address: http://www.ncst.gov.in/content/frequently-asked-questions
Date Visited: Fri Dec 09 2016 15:41:06 GMT+0100 (CET)

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Video | IndiaUnheard on free wifi for Silphili: Transparency and other benefits for rural people inhabiting a “digital village” – Chhattisgarh

We got support from young people […] are able to reach out to people and keep transparency through the gram panchayat website” – Sanjaysingh Nethi, Village Council Head, Silphili, Chattisgarh in an interview on YouTube from 1:52 >>

Published on Jan 4, 2017

More than 300km from Raipur, the road that leads to Silphili village is anything but smooth – the drive is positively bone-rattling. The residents of this Chhattisgarh village are mostly small-time farmers; growing rice – people you’d least expect to be ‘smart’. Yet, Silphili, tucked away in Chhattisgarh’s border district of Surguja, is today the state’s first village to have free Wi-fi connection for the entire village!

The village was inspired by the Digital India campaign of the NDA government as it was during a district meeting, Sanjay Singh Nethi, the Sarpanch (Village Council Head) of Silphili decided to put his village on the digital map. While Sanjay didn’t receive any monetary or technical help from the Chhattisgarh government for achieving this feat, he had ample of local support. “We got support from young people like Rajesh Saha. He said why don’t we start free wifi service in our village?” says the humble Sarpanch.

With 350 million users, India has the second largest Internet user base after China and continues to be the fastest growing market for the same according to this report. By 2020, this number is estimated rise to 730 million, with 75 percent of new Internet users in India will come from rural areas. Under the Digital India, the NDA government hopes to bring transparency, accountability and better governance in the administration, a feat that Sanjay himself wants to accomplish.

As the village didn’t receive any monetary help from the government, Sanjay and Rajesh had to be innovative to raise funds. “We started this work with the Sarpanch’s help in marketing and raising money from the households,” says Rajesh. Today, the Silphili village even has a website that is regularly updated with circulars, budgets, details of warm members, among other important information. Currently, 150 households out of 480 households have received their login and password, with other 150 households getting the same soon.

Today, the mostly unlettered villagers here discuss Wi-Fi as naturally as they talk about their farming techniques. “Since the wifi is installed, we spend less money on mobile data and also get lots of information,” says a technologically savvy farmer, Luv Kumar.

The youth of the village are upbeat and believe that the Wi-Fi project will definitely translate into an improved quality of life.

COMMUNITY CORRESPONDENT PRAKASH GUPTA REPORTS FROM CHHATTISGARH FOR VIDEO VOLUNTEERS.

This video was made by a Video Volunteers Community Correspondent. Community Correspondents come from marginalised communities in India and produce videos on unreported stories. These stories are ’news by those who live it.’ they give the hyperlocal context to global human rights and development challenges. See more such videos at www.videovolunteers.org. Take action for a more just global media by sharing their videos and joining in their call for change. we could hyperlink to some VV pages, like our take action page.

Source: Free Wi-Fi For Silphili Village From Chhattisgarh – Prakash Gupta reports for IndiaUnheard – YouTube
Address: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHmmp3sLlKM
Date Visited: Wed Apr 05 2017 10:36:02 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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Posted in Accountability, Central region, Commentary, Community facilities, Democracy, Economy and development, Government of India, Internet, Maps, Modernity, Networking, Organizations, Quotes, Storytelling, Success story, Video resources - external | Comments Off on Video | IndiaUnheard on free wifi for Silphili: Transparency and other benefits for rural people inhabiting a “digital village” – Chhattisgarh

India’s tribal cultural heritage: An alphabetical journey – Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh & West Bengal

There are 29 states and 7 Union territories in the country. Union Territories are administered by the President through an Administrator appointed by him/her. | Learn more >>

States and Capitals

  1. Uttarakhand (Dehradun)
    Related posts on www.indiantribalheritage.org >>
  2. Uttar Pradesh (Lucknow)
    Related posts on www.indiantribalheritage.org >>
  3. West Bengal (Kolkata)
    Related posts on www.indiantribalheritage.org >>

Note

States and Union Territories do not generally account for persons with “tribal roots”, unless they are home to people recognized as members of a  Scheduled Tribe (ST) under the constitution of India. Yet countless people with “tribal roots” live in metropolitan and touristic areas such as Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Goa, Kolkata, Mumbai. Their ranks include students, professionals, scientists and employees working for government agencies, educational institutions, banks and businesses.

While an educated person with tribal roots may be lauded for being assimilated as “main stream”, many others remain unnoticed even by their neighbours and local authorities. Their ranks include vulnerable boys and girls – many among them working as live-in maids – who “simply disappear” from their villages without a trace. They are being lured in growing numbers, often with false promises of a “good job” in the city. | Rescue and rehabilitation measures for victims of human trafficking and child abuse >>

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Striving for a “just, free and equitable society” by combating human trafficking, slavery and child labour: Shakti Vahini – Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa & West Bengal

Shakti Vahini visions, aspires and strives for Just, Free and Equitable society. We consider it a duty of every citizen to have social concerns and strive for the progress and development of society. In our efforts and struggle to achieve the above, we draw our inspirations from our rich civilization, plurality of culture, spirit of our Democratic Constitution, National Movement for freedom struggle, lives and teachings of our great leaders. […]

A small body of determined spirits fired by a unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history – M.K.Gandhi

Source: Vision Statements | Shakti Vahini
Address: http://shaktivahini.org/about-us/vision-statements/
Date Visited: Wed Mar 22 2017 11:44:27 GMT+0100 (CET)

Parents input details on their missing child, citizens who spot the child also upload information, and police make the match

NEW DELHI, June 3 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – The Indian government has launched a “Lost and Found” website to help families trace the tens of thousands of children in the country who go missing every year – often abducted for forced labour or sexual exploitation – and are never found. […]

Around 70,000 children go missing every year in India, Gandhi said, citing figures from the National Crime Records Bureau. But only 73,597 children have been traced between January 2012 and April 2015, she added.

Child rights activists and government officials say that many of the country’s missing children come from poor rural areas or urban slums where they are at high risk. […]

“Even if people do not know how to use the Internet or have access, they can enlist the help of the village council members, an NGO, or local officials to register their case,” said Ravi Kant, president of Shakti Vahini, an anti-trafficking charity.

“Many NGOs like ours have already being going out into communities where children are at high risk and informing people of Khoya Paya and how they can use it. It is a good step towards finding our missing children.”

(Reporting by Nita Bhalla, editing by Alisa Tang. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s rights, trafficking, corruption and climate change. Visit www.trust.org)

Source: India launches “Lost and Found” website to find missing …
Address: http://news.trust.org//item/20150603101429-xe7sz/
Date Visited: Wed Mar 22 2017 11:40:13 GMT+0100 (CET)

The Hindu []

A minor Pahariya tribal girl, identified as a Particularly Vulnerable Tribe, from Jharkhand who was trafficked to Delhi from Agra to work as a domestic worker was rescued after her employer’s relative, who is an Inspector with the Delhi Police, informed public authorities and NGO Shakti Vahini. The girl’s family and panchayat head reached Delhi to accompany her back to her Jharkhand village. […]

They traced her village to Pakur in Jharkhand and then we contacted officials at the Jharkhand Bhawan,” said Mr. Ratan. […]

Tribal children are particularly vulnerable and we need to have more concerted efforts to prevent trafficking from home States and support the children once they reach Delhi,” said Mr Rishi Kant. […]

Shakti Vahini has rescued more than 70 girls from Jharkhand since January

Source: Trafficked tribal girl returns home with employer’s help | Shakti Vahini
Address: http://shaktivahini.org/trafficked-tribal-girl-returns-home-with-employers-help/
Date Visited: Wed Mar 22 2017 11:52:33 GMT+0100 (CET)

Jharkhand has today emerged as a major source area for intra-country trafficking in India. Most of the trafficking from Jharkhand is of tribals for domestic labour to metropolitan cities where there is a demand for such work. In cities like Delhi, a number of illegal placement agencies have cropped up.  These agencies take advantage of legal loopholes to traffic mostly innocent girls in the name of providing employment but instead are put into extreme conditions of forced labour. 12-14 hours of work every day is a routine practice for these girls. Many of those rescued also report physical and sexual abuse. Several cases of Sexual slavery have also been reported from the victims rescued in Delhi. Some of the victims are trafficked to Haryana and Punjab for the purpose of Bonded Labour and Forced marriage. […]

Most of the women trafficked from Jharkhand belong to Oraon, Munda, Santhal (including endangered Pahariya ) and Gond tribes, out of which, maximum are from Oraon and Munda. The Palamau and Garhwa districts are highly prone to trafficking for child labour in the carpet industry in Uttar Pradesh. Jharkhand is also a transit for the traffickers trafficking girls from Chattisgarh. The traffickers or the placement agents of the tribal states like Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa and West Bengal are working in close network. […]

Reports state that thousands of girls have gone missing from Jharkhand’s Tribal hinterlands, however the state has no record. The tribal districts of Jharkhand, Chattisgarh, Orissa and West Bengal are most vulnerable to trafficking. In Jharkhand thousands of girls and boys are missing. It is also noticed that school going girls and boys are equally vulnerable to the risk of trafficking.

Jharkhand faces a huge problem of child labour. The state has been running the National Child Labour Project in Garwah, Sahibganj, Dumka, Pakur, West Singhbhum (Chaibasa), Gumla, Palamu, Hazaribagh and Ranchi.

To add to this, the state machinery has a long way to go to effectively protect trafficking victims, prosecute traffickers, or prevent trafficking. The rehabilitation set up is almost non-existent and probably needs the most work. Political will is also lacking to effectively tackle human trafficking plaguing the state. Extensive work is also required in tracing the missing children of Jharkhand especially after Sen and Nair (2005) made the link between missing children and trafficking clear. […]

We at Shakti Vahini believe that there is an urgent need of partnership among all the stakeholders, NGOs, Police, Judiciary, Ministries and majorly of common man to curb this menace and save our daughters and sons.

Save at least one human from slavery in your life. Take up the pledge to report the cases of human trafficking or child trafficking in your area.

Source: Latest Updates and Press Releases of Shakti Vahini | Promoting and Defending Human Rights in India
Address: https://shaktivahiniupdates.wordpress.com/
Date Visited: Wed Mar 22 2017 11:31:15 GMT+0100 (CET)

Almost every family in India’s big cities has a regular maid. The maid who cooks, cleans, takes care of the children, irons clothes and completes other household work. The ‘bai’ who goes home at the end of a long day to take care of her own family. The ‘aaya’ who always gets paid at the end of every month.

But chances are that someone just like her, a maid working near your house, is being ill-treated or even forced to work – with no pay, no contact with family or friends, working from early morning to midnight and vulnerable to sexual and physical abuse.

We know that you respect maids for the hard work they do, probably your friends and family do too. By signing this pledge, you’ll send a strong message to those who treat their maids as less than human.

The demand for live-in maids in big cities is rising, and feeding on this vast market are numerous, obscure placement agencies that lure vulnerable girls from villages with false promise of a good job in the city. People near you may be paying these agencies to hire a maid without verification, and in most cases, paying the monthly salary to the agency instead of her.

Take a stand for all these girls and young women who can’t speak up for themselves and ensure that they are treated well and are working on their own free will.

Human trafficking is a crime. To report in India, call Shakti Vahini on +91-11-42244224, +91-9582909025 or the national helpline Childline on 1098.

Source: PLEDGE TO MAKE YOUR HOME SLAVERY FREE – FreedomUnited.org
Address: https://www.freedomunited.org/advocate/pledge-make-home-slavery-free/
Date Visited: Wed Mar 22 2017 11:29:36 GMT+0100 (CET)

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

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Posted in Accountability, Central region, Childhood and children, Community facilities, Constitution and Supreme Court, Eastern region, Figures, census and other statistics, Gandhian social movement, Government of India, Modernity, Names and communities, Organizations, Press snippets, Quotes, Rural poverty, Success story, Tips, Women | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Striving for a “just, free and equitable society” by combating human trafficking, slavery and child labour: Shakti Vahini – Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa & West Bengal

Finding solutions, “the primitive way”: Aadivasi Sanskritik Ekta Mahasammelan & Campaign by notprimitive.in

Times of India, Jaipur, Jan 18, 2017  | To read the full article, click here >>

“Mother Earth is pregnant with problems and only the tribal way of life can save it from decay. Global warming, unpredictable climatic changes, melting of glaciers, tsunamis, famines and floods are the consequences of man’s unthinking mindful interference with nature and if one has to escape them, the only way is to take to the primitive way.”

This was the gist of conclusions reached by delegates at the end of the two-day 24th Aadivasi Sanskritik Ekta Mahasammelan on Sunday here at Dakan Kotda village, close to Udaipur city.

The event, organized by Aadivasi Ekta Parishad, was attended by more than 60,000 tribal people from various states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal, Maharashtra and Dadar& Nagar Haveli. The mega event focused on issues related to tribal communities in India.

“This is an annual event held by the organization in various places to spread awareness among the community and to inform them about prevalent tribal customs in other states. Contrary to the popular notion, tribals are not conservative at all. Women are held in high esteem, child marriages are not prevalent while widow remarriage has always been encouraged by tribes,” said Mahaveer Kharadi, secretary of the organizing committee. During the two days, participants were seen in the colourful tribal attires and traditional head gear. […]

Some of them played musical instruments like drums, pipes, brass plates and bugles. “The delegates attracted everyone with their dressing, simplicity and cheerful spirit,” said Hemendra Chandalia, an activist.

Young participants carried placards which had slogans against exploitation of natural resources, suppression of the Adivasis, environmental degradation and appropriation of tribal land by corporates. […]

Source: ‘Save earth, adopt primitive way of life’ – Times of India
Address: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/jaipur/save-earth-adopt-primitive-way-of-life/articleshow/56633496.cms
Date Visited: Wed Apr 05 2017 15:48:19 GMT+0200 (CEST)

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

Great news – The Hindu has pledged to no longer describe tribal peoples as ‘primitive’.

Following our complaint about an article which used the word ‘primitive’ twice to describe a Chenchu tribal man, The Hindu issued a correction and advised all reporters not to use ‘primitive’ while referring to tribal people. The Office of the Readers’ Editor recommended an ‘exercise of caution’ in this regard.

This is the second major success of the Proud Not Primitive campaign. Following complaints by supporters of the campaign, the editor of India’s Business Standard apologised for the use of the term ‘primitive’ in an article about the Dongria Kondh in July, 2013, which has since been corrected.

Several journalists from renowned Indian publications have also endorsed the movement, including Kumkum Dasgupta of the Hindustan Times, Nikhil Agarwal of the Press Trust of India, and V Raghunathan of the Times of India.

However, there is still a long way to go. Many Indian papers are still using this language:

‘Junior tarzans are children of the Birhor community, a primitive tribe, which has been residing in the jungles for years. […] It took a while but they slowly started understanding the ways of the civilized world and started behaving decently.’

Times of India, May 20th 2013
Together we can stop this prejudice. Please write to the editor of the Times of India and call for it to pledge not to use the term ‘primitive’ too.
Please write a letter to the editor of The Times of India (or a paper of your choice) calling for it to pledge not to use derogatory language to describe tribal peoples. Please click on this link or copy and paste the email below to editor@timesgroup.com

Dear Editor,

I am writing to draw your attention to the way that tribal peoples are often described in your paper. They are regularly called by the offensive and derogatory terms ‘primitive’ and ‘backwards’. These words are not only offensive, they are also dangerous; they are used to imply that the way that tribal peoples choose to live their lives is not ‘modern’. This idea in turn justifies the theft of tribal peoples’ land and efforts to force them into the mainstream in the name of ‘development’.

The Hindu has recently pledged to no longer describe tribal people as primitive. I urge you to ensure that The Times of India takes the same stand. Please amend your paper’s editorial guidelines to ensure that such pejorative language is not used in the future.

May I also remind you that, as well as being offensive, the term ‘primitive tribal group’ is out-dated. The government has replaced the term with ‘particularly vulnerable tribal groups.’

Yours faithfully,

Source: info@notprimitive.in Newsletter 26-11-2013

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Posted in Adivasi, Community facilities, Customs, Ecology and environment, Media portrayal, Misconceptions, Modernity, Names and communities, Networking, Organizations, Press snippets, Quotes, Regions of India, Revival of traditions, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Seasons and festivals, Success story, Tribal identity | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Finding solutions, “the primitive way”: Aadivasi Sanskritik Ekta Mahasammelan & Campaign by notprimitive.in

“The sometimes disturbing story of how we are treating our fragile islands” – Andaman & Nicobar

andaman-nicobar_2books_pankaj-sekhsaria_2016Books on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands by Pankaj Sekhsaria

1) Islands in Flux – the Andaman and Nicobar Story (2017)
2) The Last Wave – An Island Novel (2014)
3) The Jarawa Tribal Reserve Dossier (2010)

The three books, signed by the author, are available at a special set price of Rs. 750. Please write to thelastwave1@gmail.com for details and further information 

Islands in FLUX – the Andaman and Nicobar Story
by Pankaj Sekhsaria
(HarperCollins India 2017)

‘Islands in Flux’ is a compilation of writings on key issues and developments in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands over the last two decades.

Written by one of the islands’ best known and most consistent
chroniclers of contemporary issues, this new book by Pankaj Sekhsaria features information, insight and perspective related to the environment, wildlife conservation, development and the island’s indigenous communities.

The book provides an important account that is relevant both for the present and the future of these beautiful and fragile but also very volatile island chain. It is both a map of the region as well as a framework for the way forward, and essential reading
for anyone who cares about the future of our world.

‘The sometimes disturbing story of how we are treating our fragile islands’
– Rom Whitaker, Herpetologist and Founder,  ANET

Source: courtesy Mari Marcel Thekaekara (email 2 April 2017)

THE JARAWA TRIBAL RESERVE DOSSIER:

Cultural and Biological Diversities in the Andaman Islands edited by Pankaj Sekhsaria and Vishvajit Pandya. Unesco, Paris, 2010. | To read the full article, click here >>

Pankaj Sekhsaria works with Kalpavriksh and is an award winning writer on environmental issues dealing with the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, who also hosts a web-based discussion group on the ecology and conservation of the biodiversity of that region. Vishvajit Pandya has participated in ‘contact’ missions with the Jarawas in his capacity as an anthropologist. He has also acted as consultant to the administration on matters of tribal community welfare. They have brought together articles from experts who are also very well-versed with Jarawa tribal culture, with researchers like Manish Chandi and Harry Andrews from ANET (Andaman and Nicobar Environment Team) having spent many years in those areas in order to better understand the ecology and conservation of their study species. Samir Acharya of the SANE (Society for Andaman and Nicobar Ecology) has dealt with litigation in favour of tribals like the Onge and Jarawas. Inclusion of the results of a study commissioned by the Supreme Court following the PIL regarding the Andaman Trunk Road brings a new facet to the discussion by providing essential insight into the traditional lives of the Jarawa people. […]

Source: 613 Books
Address: http://www.india-seminar.com/2010/613/613_books.htm
Date Visited: Sun Apr 02 2017 12:44:25 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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Health benefits derived from “new species” of Ginger: A scientific paper published in international botanical journal – Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Source: New Ginger species with medicinal properties found in Andamans – The Hindu
Address: http://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/energy-and-environment/New-Ginger-species-with-medicinal-properties-found-in-Andamans/article17009348.ece
Date Visited: Thu Mar 09 2017 08:37:34 GMT+0100 (CET)

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

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Posted in Anthropology, Bees and honey, Customs, Eastern region, Ecology and environment, Maps, Names and communities, Nature and wildlife, Organizations, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Revival of traditions | Tagged , | Comments Off on Health benefits derived from “new species” of Ginger: A scientific paper published in international botanical journal – Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Tip | Explore India’s leading periodicals, online journals and portals: Up-to-date information on tribal culture, ecology, education and other success stories

For up-to-date information on a wide range of issues, use the search window here (e.g. type “Adivasi ecology”): Google custom search – Indian press coverage of tribal culture and education >>


Tip

Enter a single keyword or name of interest to you, or a combination of several ones, in the above search window. This restricts your search to the websites included in the list given below. For instance to learn about tribal customs, Forest Rights Act, music, and success stories in the fields of ecology, economy, education, community services, conservation efforts and health (e.g. biodiversity, wildlife).

Note: the above search window is also found in this website’s main menu under “Search”.

sanctuaryasia-covers-screenshot

Born of a sense of wonder for India’s natural heritage, and the drive to affect positive change, Sanctuary Asia envisions a world with abundant biodiversity, a sustainable climate and an equitable future for one and all.

Source: About Us
Address: http://www.sanctuaryasia.com/about-us.html
Date Visited: Thu Mar 09 2017 09:57:46 GMT+0100 (CET)

Direct links

The updated search list includes the following periodicals online journals and portals providing information on tribal culture in English:

 

Posted in Accountability, Adivasi, Assimilation, Commentary, Community facilities, Cultural heritage, Customs, Democracy, Eco tourism, Ecology and environment, Economy and development, Education and literacy, Fashion, Forest Rights Act (FRA), Globalization, Health and nutrition, History, Languages and linguistic heritage, Media portrayal, Misconceptions, Modernity, Music and dance, Nature and wildlife, Press snippets, Revival of traditions, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Rural poverty, Seasons and festivals, Social conventions, Storytelling, Success story, Tips, Topics and issues, Tribal elders, Tribal identity, Women, Worship and rituals | Comments Off on Tip | Explore India’s leading periodicals, online journals and portals: Up-to-date information on tribal culture, ecology, education and other success stories

The Typecraft Initiative’s digital typeface based on Godna tattoos: Working with tribal women artists from Chhattisgarh

Rites of Passage | To view more photos and read the full text, click here >>

In general, women have a strong connection with the idea of a “vital cycle” not only as life givers, care-takers of children and the home; and their own monthly menstrual cycles. Some women, especially those from the tattoo community within the Gond tribe have a strong connection to the rites of passage — which are marked by the application of a certain godna tattoo motif on a specific part of the body — to mark the entrance into a new phase of life (such as puberty or pregnancy), for a woman. The motif and the placement varies according to the tribe they are inscribing the tattoo on. Baiga tribe motifs vary for instance, from Bhil tribes. That the tattoos are mainly done by women on women is another strong connection they have to the cycle of life.

Similarly, both Chittara and Mithila art was traditionally painted on the walls and floors outside the home — according to the season, festival or special occasion (for instance, marriage) by the lady of the house. The motifs (in the case of Chittara) and the subject matter (in the case of Mithila) reflect the changing of seasons and represent the different stages of life — from birth to death. […]

The over-arching idea for each new typecraft, is, to challenge both the craftsperson and ourselves as designers. The aim is to be able to engage and work with a number of forms of craft and tribal art from all parts of the country — that are made with varying materials for different purposes and a diverse set of meanings associated with the craft or tribal art.

Since I work a lot in the cultural sector, my goal is to include the completed typefaces from, The Typecraft Initiative, into these projects and also have more and more people and state governments use the these typefaces. It is only then that the project will be successful and can make a bigger impact.

Source: http://www.typecraftinitiative.org/
Address: http://www.typecraftinitiative.org/
Date Visited: Tue Mar 21 2017 18:30:42 GMT+0100 (CET)

Godna typeface | To view more photos and read the full text, click here >>

Godna is a display typeface based on Gond tribal tattoo drawings.

For this edition of the project, we engaged with three tribal women artists — Ram Keli, Sumitra and Sunita — who belong to the Gond tribe of Chattisgarh in Central India. These and other women from this tribe etch tattoos onto the Baiga and other tribal women. […]

All the drawings and artworks are completely done by them and we never drew anything for the artists except as part of the instruction.

Source: http://www.typecraftinitiative.org/
Address: http://www.typecraftinitiative.org/
Date Visited: Tue Mar 21 2017 18:51:25 GMT+0100 (CET)

Chittara | To view more photos and read the full text, click here >>

Chittara originated from ancient cave paintings and eventually found its way to the walls and floors of village homes. The Kannada word Chittara (which is related to chittra) means creating an image or drawing. Historically, the artform has been practiced by women of the Deevaru community in the Sagar district of Karnataka, where these images were painted on auspicious occasions on the interiors and exteriors of the home. These paintings are a part of the family and community rituals associated with daily life and festive seasons.

This form is only done by the woman of the house to make the entrance auspicious and to welcome the gods. In this project we had to explain the rules of type design as well as how this specific artwork can be transformed into type. We intentionally let the artist, Radha Sullur, draw and paint all the letters herself.  […]

Source: http://www.typecraftinitiative.org/
Address: http://www.typecraftinitiative.org/
Date Visited: Tue Mar 21 2017 18:54:23 GMT+0100 (CET)

To read the full text, click here >>

Ishan Khosla is a designer, teacher and image-maker, currently living in New Delhi, India, where he has been heading Ishan Khosla Design (IKD) since 2008. Ishan is committed to building strong ties between the Netherlands and India. He was invited to the Netherlands in 2010 by the BNO, and, in 2011 by Dutch DFA to help create partnerships and links with Dutch designers, origanisations and educational institutions. He subsequently wrote, A Partnership of Contrasts for the Dutch DFA 2010 Annual Report. Since his invitation, Ishan has worked on several Dutch design initiatives such as Here, There, Everywhere by Droog Lab at Dharavi, Mumbai in 2011, and, Delhi 2050 by Anne Feenstra. In 2015, while working on the graphic design for the Bihar Museum, IKD invited Dutch design studio, Mijksenaar to work on the wayfinding aspects of the museum. IKD has also hosted public talks for Dutch designers — such as, Jurgen Bey , Roel Stavorinus as well as students from the Design Academy Eindhoven. Ishan continues to seek partnerships with Dutch designers, origanisations, educational institutions and the government.

IKD has developed the first tribal digital typeface. Based on godna (tattoo) art from Chattisgarh, and designed in collaboration with three tribal women (Ram Keli, Sunita and Sumitra) from the marginalised help create partnerships and links with Dutch designers, origanisations and educational institutions. He subsequently wrote, A Partnership of Contrasts for the Dutch DFA 2010 Annual Report. Since his invitation, Ishan has worked on several Dutch design initiatives such as Here, There, Everywhere by Droog Lab at Dharavi, Mumbai in 2011, and, Delhi 2050 by Anne Feenstra. In 2015, while working on the graphic design for the Bihar Museum, IKD invited Dutch design studio, Mijksenaar to work on the wayfinding aspects of the museum. IKD has also hosted public talks for Dutch designers — such as, Jurgen Bey , Roel Stavorinus as well as students from the Design Academy Eindhoven. Ishan continues to seek partnerships with Dutch designers, organisations, educational institutions and the government.

Published December 2016
©2016 Ishan Khosla Design, LLP

Research, Text and Design | Ishan Khosla
Ishan Khosla Design
Editor | Sheeba Bhatnagar

TYPEFACES USED IN THIS REPORT
This report uses both Dutch and Indian typefaces.
Avenir by Adrian Frutiger
Baloo by Ek Type
Fedra Sans by Typotheque
Godna by Ram Keli, Sunita and Sumitra (from the tattoo tribal art community in Chhattisgarh, India) | Ishan Khosla Design LLP (concept, co-ordination,

vectorisation) | Andreu Balius (type design)

The Typecraft Initiative

Source: 27_02_17_DesignPataka_ABSOLUTE_FINAL_V3.pdf
Address: http://dutchculture.nl/sites/default/files/27_02_17_DesignPataka_ABSOLUTE_FINAL_V3.pdf
Date Visited: Tue Mar 21 2017 18:15:10 GMT+0100 (CET)

New guide to India’s design sector for Dutch creatives who want to cooperate.

We are happy to present Design Pataka! The explosion of design in India: 2010 –2016. This long read will give culture professionals from the Netherlands insight into the Indian design sector. It is also a guide for creative Dutch  who want to reach out to their Indian counterparts for joint projects. We would like to express our gratitude to Delhi-based designer Ishan Khosla for researching, writing and compiling this comprehensive overview of Indian design.

For the passed 18 months we have worked hard to strengthen the cultural exchange between the Netherlands and India, specifically in the fields of design, games, photography and film. The goal was to build sustainable relationships between Indian and Dutch organizations and creatives and to boost opportunities for joint projects.  You will find more information about our activities in India here (Dutch).

Source: Road to Indian Design | Dutchculture | Centre for international cooperation
Address: http://dutchculture.nl/nl/news/road-indian-design
Date Visited: Tue Mar 21 2017 18:59:00 GMT+0100 (CET)

The Rabari women tattoo elaborate symbols onto their necks, breasts and arms, signifying their strong faith in magic.

Skin Deep: The Tale of India’s Tattoo Tradition

Sanchari Pal, The Better India, June 14, 2016 | To read the full article and view more photos, click here >>

Even among the tribes of western India, the craft of tattooing is revered, with tattoos having a close relation to secular and religious subjects of devotion. The Rabari women of Kutch have practised tattooing for decorative, religious, and therapeutic purposes for hundreds of years. A traditional Rabari tattoo kit is simple: a single needle and gourd bowl to hold the liquid pigment, which is made by mixing lamp soot with tannin from the bark of local trees. A small quantity of turmeric powder is also added to brighten the colour and to prevent swelling.

Source: The History Of India’s Tradition of Tattoos
Address: http://www.thebetterindia.com/58170/india-tattoo-tradition-history/
Date Visited: Tue Mar 21 2017 19:15:53 GMT+0100 (CET)

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

The Typecraft Initiative is a self-initiated and self-funded project that aims to create — display typefaces from languishing crafts and tribal arts from each state of India. Each typeface is made from a craft or tribal art, which belongs to a specific region, material, process and context. | Learn more >>

Source: The Typecraft Project: Chittara (Karnataka) | Ishan Khosla Design
Address: http://www.ishankhosla.com/work/typecraft-project-chittara-karnataka
Date Visited: Mon Apr 24 2017 12:26:19 GMT+0200 (CEST)


More by and about Ishan Khosla

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Tip | How to improve the living conditions for India’s tribal communities: World Water Day held annually on 22 March – United Nations

un-water-fresco-forum_2011

World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

An international day to celebrate freshwater was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). The United Nations General Assembly responded by designating 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day.

Each year, World Water Day highlights a specific aspect of freshwater. In 2015, World Water Day has the theme “Water and Sustainable Development”.

In 2016, the theme is “Water and Jobs,” in 2017 “Wastewater” and in 2018 “Nature-based Solutions for Water”.

Source: UN-Water: World Water Day
Address: http://www.unwater.org/campaigns/world-water-day/en/
Declaration of the Youth participants of the launching of the 2013 International Year of Water Cooperation

7 Ways Indian Villages Adopted Water Management to Combat Drought

As most of India deals with the drastic consequences of drought, find out how these villages in India are reaping the benefits of efficient water management and revival systems.

It’s no secret that rainwater management and water harvesting can bring about a major socioeconomic turn around in villages and farmlands. […]

In the period between 1980 and 1990 in Gujarat, Sadguru Foundation, an NGO, worked hard to bring back water in five villages through watershed management and dams. For instance, in the Dahod district, Bhil tribals faced acute shortage of water for decades. It all changed when in 1994, check dams were built along the Machhan, and watershed management programs were undertaken. As the dams recharged the groundwater, water became available to the 153 households in that area. Similarly, the Raj-Samadhiyala village, near Rajkot, revived itself from an arid zone to a lush cultivated area. Gandhigram residents had no clean drinking water for decades. That changed in 1999, when the villagers took a loan to build a check dam. In Mandlikpur and Jhabua, the villagers initiated rainwater harvesting on the rooftops of their homes, besides undertaking watershed management to recharge their wells. These techniques got the villages through many spells of drought in the years to come. […]

“There are 230 households in the village and only those people who own shops would benefit directly from this project, that is, about 60 households. The rest of the families did not believe in the project at all,” he says. It took several meetings and presentations before all the villagers agreed. Ankush explained how the project would be beneficial for all of them, as eco-tourism could provide them with a good source of alternate income, based on their advantageous location.

Currently, seven months into the fellowship, Ankush is concentrating on two main projects. One of them is to set up a restaurant at the waterfall site that will serve local tribal cuisine. He wants the women in the village to be involved in this and is working with two self-help groups – training women on the workings of a restaurant, how to keep it up and running, how to speak with customers, etc.
The forest department has already agreed to sanction land for the construction of the restaurant and Ankush is trying to gather the required funds to take it forward next month. […]

After completing his Master’s in International Hospitality from the University of Perpignan in France, Ankush worked for eight years before quitting his Dubai-based job in 2014 in search of something new. An avid traveller at heart, he travelled for about a year before taking up this project in Gujarat. Here, he is working in collaboration with the non-profit organisation, Aga Khan Rural Support Programme, which helped him with the initial funding for the project.

According to him, the real impact of his fellowship has been in the change in perception towards eco-tourism that he has been able to create among the villagers and also for government officials. He is hopeful that with the newly gained knowledge the villagers will be able to take the project forward without his help.

“One of the reasons why I gave up on my old life was because I was tired of planning all the time. So I don’t have any plans at the moment, but I might come back to this region to take the project forward and develop facilities for rural homestays in the village,” concludes Ankush.

Source: 7 Ways Indian Villages Adopted Water Management to Combat Drought
Address: http://www.thebetterindia.com/53323/villages-fighting-drought-success-stories/
Date Visited: Wed Mar 22 2017 10:17:40 GMT+0100 (CET)

To view the Info-Graphic by unwater.org titled Water: Cooperation or Competition?, click here (PDF) >>

Pavillon de l’eau, Paris, France, 11 February 2013 

Preamble
1. We, the youth participating in the launching of the 2013 International Year of Water Cooperation, having met in Paris, France on 11 February 2013, are working together for the protection, restoration and better management of natural resources,
particularly fresh water, a vital resource which is becoming increasingly scarce and polluted every day.
2. We affirm our commitment to cooperate and to find solutions to the challenges that are threatening the
livelihoods of millions of people around the world, with emphasis on unequal access to water and sanitation, its linkages with climate change and a more equitable water governance, including aspects related to gender equality.
3. We affirm to work with honesty, transparency, with and for our communities, to join forces and share
capacities; to be fair between human needs and natural resources, and, to act in good faith.
4. We also affirm our commitment to cooperate and contribute to our governments’ efforts in achieving “The
Future We Want”, as well as in the implementation of other water-related international agreements, the 2013
International Year of Water Cooperation, the International Decade for Action: Water for Life”, the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development, and the 2012 Declaration of the World Youth Parliament for Water.

[…] we acknowledge that enhanced cooperation, good governance and stakeholders’ participation at local, national, international and basin levels are essential for fair, and inclusive water distribution based on the local circumstances . We also highlight the role of parliaments in generating inclusive participation in cooperation with governments, civil society actors, water and sanitation experts, indigenous people, women, youth, and children, because we can altogether achieve great things with relatively small efforts.

Source: Youth_Declaration-International_Year_of_Water_Cooperation_2013.pdf
Address: http://www.unwater.org/fileadmin/user_upload/watercooperation2013/doc/Youth_Declaration-International_Year_of_Water_Cooperation_2013.pdf
Date Visited: Wed Mar 22 2017 09:50:50 GMT+0100 (CET)

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

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Slideshow | Baha Parab, the Santal Flower Festival “celebrating Man’s Communion with Nature” – West Bengal

 
Baha Parab (Celebrating Man’s Communion with Nature)

by Dr. Boro Baski, Bishnubati

Baha Parab

28th Year of Adibasi Baha Parab (Santal Flower Festival), organized by Ghosaldanga Bishnubati Adibasi Trust, successfully celebrated with various eventful programmes on 9th March 2017.

BAHA means ‘flower’ in Santali . It is the second biggest festival of the Santals after SORHAI, the harvest festival. It is also considered the holiest festival of all and celebrated in the Bengali month of Falgun (Feb-March) every year. Falgun is the first month of Santal calendar. The festival celebrates man’s communion with nature. This is the time when most common trees, like Mohuwa, Peepal, Mango, Polash, Neem, Sal, Muringa bear new leaves, flowers or fruits. This is the time, Santals believe, when the trees become reproductive and one should not disturb their body and soul by plucking or cutting off their buds, flowers, leaves and branches. Therefore, Santals never pluck or eat the flowers or fruits of Mango trees, never tear off the leaves of Peepal and Neem trees before celebrating Baha. Women do not use Sal flowers in their hair for decoration and trees are not cut for firewood at this time. If it does happen, then the firewood is not brought to the village but is kept outside. Any family who breaks such rules will not be visited by the village priest who normally enters every family’s house during the Baha rituals.

In our Birbhum District (West-Bengal), the Baha festival is celebrated for two days. The ‘Naike’ or village priest who is the main celebrant of the festival, prepares himself physically and mentally on the first day by taking a bath, by wearing new clothes and by fasting. He also sleeps alone at home that night, away from his wife. The main puja of the Baha is held at the ‘Jaher Than’, the sacred grove outside the village. The Naike along with the village elders like the ‘Manjhi haram (headman), the Jog Manjhi (assistant headman), the Godet (convener), the Kudamnaike (assistant priest) and other villagers go to the ‘Jaher Than’, clean it and make a small symbolic hut with thatch for the offering on the next day. He constructs a number of ‘Pinds’ (altar) and rubs them with cow dung. In our village Bishnubati, sixteen altars have been made, but this number differs from village to village. Each ‘Pind’ is named after one of the benevolent ‘Bongas’ (spirits) who are located in different places of the village. The ‘Bongas’ were discovered by our ancestors who founded this village. When they chose the place to build a new village a boundary was identified. Within this boundary, different spirits bearing different names are being worshiped. These spots could be a bush, a forest, any water body, a roadside space or simply a barren land. We believe that these spirits are the original inhabitants of these places and are protecting them. Therefore our village people can be happy and prosperous only if we live with them harmoniously.

In the morning of the second day, the headman sends the young men of the village to the forest to collect Sal flowers. After that the Naike, along with the villagers, goes to the ‘Jaher Than’ with sixteen chicks, collected from the village, and offers then to the spirits of the village and of the surroundings. During the offering, water instead of rice beer is being used.. The Naike prays to the spirits and to the ancestors who after death have joined our benevolent spirits. The Naike prays for all the villagers, for the children, the youth, the animals who go out to the fields, forests and rivers every day so that life may remain safe, and that the benevolent spirits may protect them from all evils spirits.

Later the Naike and the villagers prepare khichuri and eat it outside the village. In the afternoon, the Naike, along with his companions, visits all the families and distributes Sal flowers. The woman of the house receives the flower from the priest in the folds of her sari after she has ceremonially applied oil on his feet and washed them. An unmarried man carries the water on his shoulder and after exchanging greetings with her, sprinkles it on the shoulder of the woman. After receiving the flower the women put it in their hair and the men behind their ears. The rest of the flowers are kept in the ceiling of their thatched or tiled roof. This is the sign that the village has celebrated Baha and men and women can now sing, dance, drink rice beer and enjoy themselves.

Santal festivals have always been closed community festivals. There is little scope for non-Santals to join and integrate with them. Considering this limitation, 28 years ago then registered societies of Ghosaldanga and Bishnubati started to organize the Adibasi Baha Parab which is an extension of the traditional Baha festival. The main objective was to open this festival to Santals of other villages and to non-Santals and thus make it inclusive. We wanted to disseminate the ideas of Baha among the people at large. We celebrated for one day after the traditional Baha of the village is over. We hold it on the large playground of Ghosaldanga. After the procession in the village, a symbolic Baha ritual is performed on the playground. Later various tribal sports, folk dances are organized — everybody can take part. In the evening the prize distribution, felicitations, Santali dramas and a whole night musical programme take place. This year, forty folk dance teams from various villages of Birbhum District and Jharkand took part.

The recipient of this year’s Baha Award was a well-known Santal traditional medicine man, Mr. Ram Hembrom of Ramnagar village, Birbhum District. Mr. Hembrom has grown 475 different varieties of herbal plants in his courtyard and is treating the villagers with these medicinal plants since the last thirty years. Santali dramas ‘Kriya’ and ‘Monetabon bodolabon’ were also staged by Sidu Kanu Smriti Sangha of Nildanga and Kalitola Sporting Club. Another special event of this year was the felicitation of the ‘Manjhi baba (Santal traditional leaders) of ten different villages by the local police administration who later talked about the positive impression this inclusive programme has created.

Source: courtesy Dr. Boro Baski by email (16 March 2017)

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Santali and related tribal languages of the Chotanagpur region: Mundari, Ho and Birjiya – Jharkhand

Birjiya [Birjia] is the language spoken by Asur tribe/ethnic group, just as Kurukh is spoken by Oraon group, Santali by Santal group, Mundari by Munda group, Ho by Ho group and Kharia by Kharia group.  These are broadly identified by sociolinguists and anthropologists as belonging to two distinct linguistic and ethnic families:

a. Mundari (Santal, Munda, Ho and Birjiya)
b. Adi-Dravidian (Oraon, Kharia).

Santali is very similar to Mundari, Ho and Birjiya (i.e. mutually comprehensible) but different from Kurukh and Kharia.

The Chotanagpur region of Jharkhand has many tribal groups living close to each other. A unique phenomenon of this region is the emergence of a hybrid language called “Nagpuri” or “Sadri”, which is used as lingua franca. It is a mix of many tribal languages and Hindi. It’s a bit like the Creole used among migrants in some areas of the world. Purists dislike the Nagpuri/ Sadri language and are trying to revive their mother-tongue.

In Santal Parganas (Dumka) region, there are two main tribal groups – the Santal and the Paharia. Paharias are considered backward and live on hills while Santals are considered more advanced and live on the plains. The Santals see themselves as dominant and do not intermarry with Paharias, though they do intermarry with Oraon and Munda groups (which are the most advanced among Chotanagpur tribes).

There are other small groups also in Chotanagpur like the Birhor of Netarhat and the Chik Baraik. The Birhor and Paharia communities are among the “Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups” (PVTGs) identified by the government, entitiling them to special welfare schemes.

Even among different tribal groups, there is some friction and some sense of animosity. The Santals and Mundas are supposed to be most “martial” because the two great tribal rebellions occurred among them – the Santal Hul of 1855-56 (led by two brothers named Sido and Kanu Murmu) and the Munda Ulgulan of 1872-1901 (led by Birsa Bhagwan).

Courtesy: Dr. Ivy Hansdak, Assistant Professor, Department of English, Jamia Millia Islamia University New Delhi (email 17 March 2017)

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Santal village development and social work inspired by Rabindranath Tagore: Visva-Bharati’s Sriniketan – West Bengal

Rabindranath Tagore: adventure of ideas and innovative practices in education by Prof. Kumkum Bhattacharya (Springer, 2014) | Publication details and libraries on Worldcat.org >>

Authors: Bhattacharya, Kumkum

  • Describes the evolution of Tagore’s ideas stemming from his personal experience of schooling
  • Elucidates the emergence of a university that would offer the best of the east and the west as well as Visva-Bharati in contemporary times
  • Explains Tagore’s aim to extend education for social rejuvenation, uplift and reconstruction of rural societies and rural life

About this book

This new addition to Springer’s series on Key Thinkers in World Education tracks the intellectual and philosophical journey of a trail-blazing innovator whose ideas have fired the imaginations of progressive educationalists for almost a century. The volume’s in-depth analysis of the educational philosophy of Bengali polymath Rabindranath Tagore offers an unrivalled focus on his highly influential views.

Tagore—poet, internationalist, humanist, and the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize for literature—lived on the cusp of change between two momentous centuries in world civilization and foresaw the dissolution of colonialism and the globalization of culture. His ideas on education placed the creative individual at the centre of the quest for knowledge. Eschewing the artificial distinctions between elementary and higher learning, he advocated the importance of sowing the seed of humanism as early as possible, and fostering the individual’s enjoyment of education as well as their courage to challenge conventions. In doing so, he anticipated the modern concern with critical thinking at the same time as he was encouraging independence of thought and action as a counter to colonial oppression and condescension. Concise yet thorough, this volume on one of the most original thinkers of the last century covers every aspect of Tagore’s highly original educational philosophy.

Source: Rabindranath Tagore – Adventure of Ideas and Innovative | Kumkum Bhattacharya | Springer
Address: http://www.springer.com/gp/book/9783319008363
Date Visited: Fri Mar 17 2017 10:02:58 GMT+0100 (CET)

SRINIKETAN

The Institute of Rural Reconstruction was founded in 1922 at Surul at a distance of about three kilometres from Santiniketan. It was formally inaugurated on February 6, 1922 with Leonard Elmhirst as its first Director. Thus the second but contiguous campus of Visva-Bharati came to be located in 1923 at a site which assumed the name of Sriniketan. The chief object was to help villagers and people to solve their own problems instead of a solution being imposed on them from outside.

In consonance with the ideas about reconstruction of village life, a new type of school meant mainly for the children of neighbouring villages who would eventually bring the offering of their acquired knowledge for the welfare of the village community was also conceived. This school, Siksha-Satra, was started in Santiniketan in 1924 but was shifted to Sriniketan in 1927. The Lok-Siksha Samsad, an organization for the propagation of non-formal education amongst those who had no access to usual educational opportunities, was started in 1936. Siksha-Charcha for training village school teachers followed next year.

Source: Sriniketan
Address: http://www.visvabharati.ac.in/Sriniketan.html
Date Visited: Sun Mar 12 2017 12:33:23 GMT+0100 (CET)

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

More publications by Prof. Kumkum Bhattacharya

JOURNALS:
• “Relevance of Village Studies: History and Reality” published in The Visva-Bharati Quarterly, Nov. 1998.
• “Growing up in a Santal Village” published in the Journal of Comparative Cultures, No. 4, 1999 University of Sapporo, Japan.
• “Experience of marginality: the Santals” (joint) published in the Journal of the Anthropological Survey of India, Vol. 51, No., 1 March 2003.
• “Leisure among the tribes” published in Journal of Tribal Studies, New Delhi, Vol.1, 2003.
• “Tribes – State of Mind?” (joint) published in the Journal of Indian Anthropological Society, Vol 38, 2003.
• 2004 “Dr. Surajit Chandra Sinha: A Tribute” (joint) in Indian Social Science Review, Vol. 6 No. 1 (January-June) 135-149.
• 2010 “Sustainable Development and Spirituality” in Sustainability Tomorrow, Vol 5, Issue 1; January-March 2010, CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development, New Delhi.
• 2010; “Sustainable Development and Spirituality” in Journal of Social Work & Social Development, Vol.1 No.1; June 2010, Department of Social Work, Visva-Bharati.
• 2010 Invited to write the entry on Rabindranath Tagore for the ACPI Encyclopedia of Philosophy in two volumes edited by Johnson J. Puthenpurackal, Bangalore, Asian Trading Corporation.
• 2011 “Jivan Devata: Quest for Interpretations” in Journal of Indian Council of Philosophical Research, Special Issue on Rabindranath Tagore, Volume XXVIII, Number 1, 155-164, January-March 2011.
BOOKs:
• Santals: entering the free stream (vernacular) with Sona Murmu, Boro Baski and Gokul Hansda, 2001, Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre, Kolkata, India.
• Conditioning and empowerment of women: a multidimensional approach edited with Asha Mukherjee, 2003, Gyan Publishing House, New Delhi.
• Celebrating Freedom: the Santal way of life, edited by Boro Baski and Kumkum Bhattacharya, Ghosaldanga Adibasi Seva Sangha.

Source: Kumkum Bhattacharya
Address: http://www.visva-bharati.ac.in/Faculty/faculties/sriniketan/siksha_vibhaga/social%20work/kumkum_bhattacharya.htm
Date Visited: Sun Mar 12 2017 11:54:20 GMT+0100 (CET)

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Video | Santali dances performed at the Sahitya Akademi’s Festival of Letters (February 2017) – New Delhi

YouTube post by Sunder Manoj Hembrom
Sahitya Akademi reak̕ Meghdoot akhṛare John Soren ar unire̠n do̠l Bado̠li.

This was the first song in the programme at Meghdoot Open Air Theatre, performed by Badoli Cultural Troupe on 25 February 2017.

Among the main types of Santali folksongs are the Sohrae, Don, Lagre, Durumjak’, etc. All four were performed by the Badoli group at the Festival of Letters 2017. A notable exception was the Dasae dance which is performed only by men.

Information courtesy: Dr. Ivy Hansdak, Assistant Professor, Department of English, Jamia Millia Islamia University New Delhi (email 20 March 2017)

Performed by Badoli Cultural Group, Dumka (SP) at Meghdoot Open Air Theatre, Lalit Kala Akademi, N. Delhi. Video courtesy: Dr. Ivy Hansdak

Santali Dance performence by Badoli Cultural Group
Dumka (Santal Parganas) on the occasion of SAHITYOTSAVA 2017 at Meghdoot Open Air Theatre, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi 25 February 2017

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International Women’s Day 2017: Tribal artiste Sukri Bommagowda honoured – Karnataka

tribal-artiste-sukri-bommagowda_ie_9-3-17

KSRTC honours tribal artiste Sukri Bommagowda

By Express News Service | Published: 09th March 2017

BENGALURU: On the occasion of International Women’s Day, KSRTC honoured Padma Shri awardee and tribal leader Sukri Bommagowda (Sukrajji) here on Wednesday. It handed over D25,000 and issued a free bus pass to her. A press release stated that KSRTC also honoured 34 women employees in 17 divisions for their service. The release stated:
“KSRTC is the first government organisation in the state which has implemented 33 per cent reservation for the women in jobs. Around 10,000 women are working under KSRTC… Of the 37,569 officers/officials, 6.65 per cent are women.” […]

Source: KSRTC honours tribal artiste Sukri Bommagowda- The New Indian Express
Address: http://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/bengaluru/2017/mar/09/ksrtc-honours-tribal-artiste-sukri-bommagowda-1579384.html
Date Visited: Thu Mar 09 2017 10:29:38 GMT+0100 (CET)

UN Secretary-General’s message for the International Women’s Day

Women’s rights are human rights. But in these troubled times, as our world becomes more unpredictable and chaotic, the rights of women and girls are being reduced, restricted and reversed. Empowering women and girls is the only way to protect their rights and make sure they can realize their full potential. Read more>

Source: International Women’s Day 2017 | UN Women – Headquarters
Address: http://www.unwomen.org/en/news/in-focus/international-womens-day
Date Visited: Thu Mar 09 2017 11:09:31 GMT+0100 (CET)

International Women’s Day is a global celebration of all women, everywhere. It is a rallying call; both for reflection on lessons learned and for accelerating momentum towards gender equality and the empowerment of every girl and woman.

It is a day to rejoice in the extraordinary acts of women and to stand together, as a united force to advance gender equality around the world.

A bit of history: International Women’s Day, back to 1975

Since its inception, International Women’s Day has grown into a global celebration of past and present accomplishments of women, and as an opportunity to look ahead to the untapped potential and opportunities for future generations of women.

In 1945, the Charter of the United Nations became the first international agreement to affirm the principal of equality between women and men. With that belief in mind, the UN celebrated its first official International Women’s Day in 1975, 42 years ago.

This year, the UN theme for International Women’s Day is “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality”. Despite the enormous progress since 1975, women are still underrepresented in too many  sectors of society, undermining progress and sustainable development. It  constrains creativity and talent and suffocates inclusion and pluralism. This does not just harm women – it weakens the very fabric of societies.

For the celebration of International Women’s Day 2017, UNESCO will focus on Women and Art, showcasing the work of young women artists and discussing the way forward.

Source: International Women’s Day 2017 | United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
Address: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/womens-day
Date Visited: Thu Mar 09 2017 11:04:10 GMT+0100 (CET)


Women’s collectives foster access to justice in India

jharkhand-women-unesco-screenshot2013Through special women’s courts and justice committees, women’s collectives in eastern India have forged an increasingly respected system to access justice, which also addresses cases of violence against women. They resolve disputes through both formal and informal channels, while providing emotional support and counselling. More >>

Source: Search Results | UN Women – Headquarters
Address: http://www.unwomen.org/en/search-results?keywords=tribe%20india
Date Visited: Thu Mar 09 2017 11:12:19 GMT+0100 (CET)

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Video | Creation Myths of six tribal groups: Sahitya Akademi’s Annual Festival of Letters (February 2017) – New Delhi

The Sahitya Akademi (India’s National Academy of Letters) had its Annual Festival of Letters in February 2017, during which the Creation Myth of six tribal groups were narrated and presented in the original languages (Kurukh/ Oraon, Munda, Santali, Kharia, Ho and Biryia/ Asur).

Here are two videos that were shown with live-streaming and are available on Youtube.

The session is in two parts:

Part I has narrators from Munda, Kurukh/ Oraon, Ho and Birjiya/ Asur;
Part II has narrators from Kharia and Santali.

Source: courtesy Dr. Ivy Imogene Hansdak (Assistant Professor, Department of English, Jamia Millia Islamia University New Delhi)

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Published with the aim of enabling members of tribal communities to “face the modern world as sturdy, self- reliant citizens”: Tribal Hyderabad – Telangana & Andhra Pradesh

“We have no time to lose in putting our aboriginals on their feet and enabling them to face the modern world as sturdy, self- reliant citizens.” – Foreword by W.V. Grigson

Published 1945/00/00

Topics NATURAL SCIENCES, Biological sciences in general, General and theoretical biology

Publisher The Revenue Department.
Pages 247
Language English
Call number 33440
Book contributor Osmania University
Collection universallibrary

Source: Tribal Hyderabad : Furer Hamendorf Charistoph Von. : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive
Address: https://archive.org/details/tribalhyderabad033440mbp
Date Visited: Sat Nov 26 2016 13:08:29 GMT+0100 (CET)

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Tagore’s Santiniketan, “an Abode of Learning Unlike Any in the World” – West Bengal

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Sanchari Pal, The Better India, August 31, 2016 | To read the full story and view more photos in high resolution, click here >>

Located about 158 km northwest of Kolkata in Bengal’s rural hinterland, Santiniketan embodies Rabindranath Tagore’s vision of a place of learning that is unfettered by religious and regional barriers. Established in 1863 with the aim of helping education go beyond the confines of the classroom, Santiniketan grew into the Visva Bharati University in 1921, attracting some of the most creative minds in the country. […]

As one of the earliest educators to think in terms of the global village, he envisioned an education that was deeply rooted in one’s immediate surroundings but connected to the cultures of the wider world.

With this in mind, on December 22, 1901, Rabindranath Tagore established an experimental school at Santiniketan with five students (including his eldest son) and an equal number of teachers. He originally named it Brahmacharya Ashram, in the tradition of ancient forest hermitages called tapoban.
Rabindranath Tagore and Students, Santiniketan, 1929.

The guiding principle of this little school is best described in Tagore’s own words, “The highest education is that which does not merely give us information but makes our life in harmony with all existence.” […]

Tagore wanted his students to feel free despite being in the formal learning environment of a school, because he himself had dropped out of school when he found himself unable to think and felt claustrophobic within the four walls of a classroom. […]

Flexible class schedules allowed for shifts in the weather and the seasonal festivals Tagore created for the children.

In an attempt to help with rural reconstruction, Tagore also sought to expand the school’s relationship with the neighbouring villages of the Santhal tribal community. Thanks to his efforts, Santiniketan has today become the largest centre for educated Santhals in West-Bengal. Many of them have become teachers, several serving in Visva Bharati itself, while others have become social workers.

Santiniketan can be credited with taking the first path breaking steps in the field of education at a time when the country was slowly getting hitched to the European mode of education (textual and exam oriented knowledge imparted in closed classrooms).

Other than a humane and environment friendly educational system that aimed at overall development of the personality, Santiniketan also offered one of the earliest co-educational programmes in South Asia. […]

Tagore was one of the first to support and bring together different forms of arts at Santiniketan. He invited artists and scholars from other parts of India and all over the world to live together at Santiniketan on a daily basis and share their cultures with the students of Visva Bharati. He once wrote:
“Without music and the fine arts, a nation lacks its highest means of national self-expression and the people remain inarticulate.” […]

The grand Poush Utsav is celebrated on the Foundation Day of the University, while the colourful Basant Utsav is celebrated on the occasion of Holi. The Nandan Mela, which was originally started to raise money for a poor student who needed money for treatment, is today an event where university students display and sell their art. Other events like the Sarodotsav (Autumn Festival), Maghotsav (Founding Day of the Sriniketan campus) and Brikhsharopan Utsav (Tree Planting Festival) are also celebrated with great pomp and fervour.
On all these occasions, the entire campus has a festive atmosphere, with baul (traditional wandering minstrels of Bengal) songs, tribal dances, and other cultural performances being organised throughout the township. […]

Thanks to Tagore’s legacy, Santiniketan has managed to preserve Bengal’s fast-disappearing rural crafts culture through folk markets, like the weekly Bondangaar Haat, and rural co-operatives, like Amar Kutir. […]

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This ground-breaking outlook is also the reason why Santiniketan has given India many luminaries like pioneering painter Nandalal Bose, famous sculptor Ramkinkar Baij, Nobel-winning economist Amartya Sen, globally renowned filmmaker Satyajit Ray, and the country’s leading art historian R. Siva Kumar. The University also has several eminent international alumni that include Indonesian painter Affandi, Italian Asianist Giuseppe Tucci, Chinese historian Tan Chung, eminent Indologist Moriz Winternitz, and Sri Lankan artist Harold Peiris, among many others. Pouring his creative genius into his work, Tagore himself produced some of his best literary works, paintings and sketches at Santiniketan. Over the years, Santiniketan has adapted to the changing times. But the essence of the place is still what Tagore wanted it to be.

The Nobel Laureate’s life, philosophy and literary works find their greatest reflection in Santiniketan, where classes are still taught in the open, where nature and its seasons are still celebrated instead of religious festivals, where the graduation ceremony is marked by the gifting of a chhatim leaf, and where education is rooted in Tagore’s philosophy that “the whole world can find a nest.” […]

How to reach Santiniketan
The distance from Kolkata to Santiniketan is about 182 km. Santiniketan is well connected to Kolkata via road and rail.
By Rail: The nearest station is Bolpur. Take the Visva-Bharati Fast Passenger or Rampurhat Express from Howrah to reach Bolpur within 2.5 hours.
By Road: If you follow the Durgapur Expressway, it takes approximately 4 hours to reach Santiniketan. Buses to Bolpur are available from Esplanade bus terminal in Kolkata […]

Source: Exploring Tagore’s Santiniketan, a Unique Abode of Learning
Address: http://www.thebetterindia.com/66627/santiniketan-rabindranath-tagore-bengal/
Date Visited: Wed Dec 14 2016 13:28:16 GMT+0100 (CET)

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Posted in Childhood and children, Community facilities, Crafts and visual arts, Cultural heritage, Eastern region, Economy and development, Education and literacy, Globalization, History, Maps, Modernity, Names and communities, Nature and wildlife, Performing arts, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Revival of traditions, Seasons and festivals, Social conventions, Success story, Tagore and rural culture | Tagged | Comments Off on Tagore’s Santiniketan, “an Abode of Learning Unlike Any in the World” – West Bengal

India’s tribal cultural heritage: An alphabetical journey – Tamil Nadu, Telangana & Tripura

There are 29 states and 7 Union territories in the country. Union Territories are administered by the President through an Administrator appointed by him/her. | Learn more >>

States and Capitals

  1. Tamil Nadu (Chennai)
    Related posts on www.indiantribalheritage.org >>
  2. Telangana (Hyderabad)
    Related posts on www.indiantribalheritage.org >>
  3. Tripura (Agartala)
    Related posts on www.indiantribalheritage.org >>

Note

States and Union Territories do not generally account for persons with “tribal roots”, unless they are home to people recognized as members of a  Scheduled Tribe (ST) under the constitution of India. Yet countless people with “tribal roots” live in metropolitan and touristic areas such as Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Goa, Kolkata, Mumbai. Their ranks include students, professionals, scientists and employees working for government agencies, educational institutions, banks and businesses.

While an educated person with tribal roots may be lauded for being assimilated as “main stream”, many others remain unnoticed even by their neighbours and local authorities. Their ranks include vulnerable boys and girls – many among them working as live-in maids – who “simply disappear” from their villages without a trace. They are being lured in growing numbers, often with false promises of a “good job” in the city. | Rescue and rehabilitation measures for victims of human trafficking and child abuse >>

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Nehru Centenary Tribal Museum Hyderabad: “Celebrating the aboriginals who lived on this very hill” – Andhra Pradesh

October 22, 2012 | To read the full description with pictures, click here >>

Located right in the heart of city near Banjara hills, celebrating the aboriginals who lived on this very hill is the Nehru Centenary Tribal Museum Hyderabad.

Nehru Centenary Tribal Museum Hyderabad

On the ground floor of Tribal Museum Hyderabad, through Chenchu tribes dioramas. They try to showcase their conical huts, their honey collection technique, their hunting equipment. And techniques as they continue to be hunter-gatherers. […]

In terms of activities of women and cultivation method called Podu where they keep clearing the jungle in small patches for agriculture. The other half of the hall focuses on the developmental activities being done by the government for the tribal communities. […]

Source: On The Tribal Land – Tribal Museum Hyderabad | Inditales
Address: http://www.inditales.com/tribal-museum-hyderabad/
Date Visited: Mon Oct 24 2016 14:46:32 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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Posted in Anthropology, Crafts and visual arts, Cultural heritage, Customs, Dress and ornaments, Government of India, History, Homes and utensils, Maps, Media portrayal, Museum collections - India, Music and dance, Names and communities, Photos and slideshows, Quotes, Southern region, Storytelling, Tips, Tourism, Women, Worship and rituals | Tagged | Comments Off on Nehru Centenary Tribal Museum Hyderabad: “Celebrating the aboriginals who lived on this very hill” – Andhra Pradesh