Who are the real patriots of this country? Are they the tribes who rigorously fight for the protection of environment and resources? Or, are they the people who are exploiting the resources and polluting the environment? questioned Gaddar, famous Telugu revolutionary balladeer at the International Indigenous Day celebrations at University of Hyderabad organized by Tribal Students’ Forum on August 13.
The message the event successfully drove home, through scholars and experts to the mainstream society, was about the indigenous people of the country are being neglected, marginalized, and exploited in the name of development.
Gaddar mesmerized the crowd with his revolutionary songs. Devender Singh, IAS, Zilla Parishad, Maharashtra, explained about the government strategy for the upliftment of the indigenous population of the country. He said, “India has a total of 640 districts in which, 62 districts are having more than 50% of tribal population, 92 districts are having more than 25-50%.” He further added, “Tribal literates are 57% in our country. Dropout rate is 75% among boys, 71% among girls in ST category.”
Others present also expressed concern at the discrimination against the tribals.