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INDIA – Tribe lives in abject poverty, local NGO writes to Congress for better living conditions

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ghasia_tribe.jpgA tribe that was once honoured by Rajiv Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi is being forced into virtual extinction due to poverty and administrative apathy.

ghasia_tribe.jpgA tribe that was once honoured by Rajiv Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi is
being forced into virtual extinction due to poverty and administrative
Members of Ghasia tribe of Raup village, Sonebhadra,
had been invited to the luncheon hosted by the then Prime Minister
Rajiv Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi at Teen Murty House, New Delhi on
November 24, 1986 as a mark of respect. However, they are now living in
abject poverty and inhuman conditions.
Local NGO Peoples'
Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR) wrote a letter to Congress
general secretary Rahul Gandhi on Friday requesting for a better living
condition for these people and preservation of their cultural heritage.
to Lenin Raghuvanshi, the PVCHR convener, members of Ghasia tribe are
artiest of Karma and they perform their art in various parts of the
country and also give theatrical performances on stage, radio and
television. One of the tribe members — Rukhmaniya — was invited to
have lunch with the PM and Sonia Gandhi in 1986. He said it was
shocking that many children of the tribe had lost their lives in
2001-02 after consuming wild and poisonous grasses, wild mushrooms and
extremely poor quality of rice due to acute poverty. The adults somehow
manage to survive the ill effects of the poisonous intake.
also faced police torture for not fulfilling their wishes, he said
adding that on August 27, 2003, the PVCHR sent petition to National
Human Rights Commission (NHRC). On October 29, 2009, NHRC forwarded the
petition (case no. 21997/24/2003-2004/FC) to the chief secretary of UP
stating "if the allegations are true, the matter requires urgent
attention of the authorities". After the NHRC intervention, the
district administration distributed food grain to the affected families
for their survival and issued red card to them, said Raghuvanshi.
his letter he urged for immediate intervention to prevent further
hunger deaths. He also demanded allotment of land in the name of Ghasia
tribes under 122 (4 BF) of Zamindari Abolition Act and Land Reform Act.
"The Ghasia tribals have been living on this land since 2000," he said,
adding a high-level investigation of the alleged police brutality
should be done. He also demanded that the Raup village to be developed
as a cultural village for the preservation and promotion of culture. He
had also written a letter to the Prime Minister on December 4, he said.

Source: Here . Photo credit: