“The Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh members came and forced our
villagers to join them. When villagers denied, they forced me to tell the
villagers to join because I was the Village leader. As I denied, they started
beating me and other villagers and threatened us to kill if we do not join them.
They tortured our people from time to time as well. So, we opted to leave the
place and came here,” said Jambuli Maleka who is now living in a slum in the
outskirts of Bhubaneswar, the capital city of Odisha province.
Not only Jambuli, at least 7 tribal
families from the same village had to leave their villages and live like
refugee in an urban slum after hiding in the forests for about three
“These families came here because of
atrocious behaviour and torture by one Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh who
forced these people to join their movement. As these people denied to
join them, the supporters of the movement started torturing these
people. They stopped the government rice, old-age pension, electricity
and everything to trouble these people. Not only that, people were also
beaten to get bed ridden for a week or so and were not allowed to be
taken to hospitals,” said Ananta Pal, a social activist who arranged
shelter for these tribal families in distress.
The issue has come to the notice of their
representative Jhina Hikaka, the legislator who himself had been the
victim of abduction by the Maoist extremists operating in the provincial
borders of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.
‘This issue is there since long. Some have
gone to Andhra Pradesh, some are in Koraput. These people have come to
Bhubaneswar. I know this and I have talked to the Chief Secretary to
sort their problems out’, said the legislator.
However, the legislator has no other way
but to try to sort out the issues of these people through administrative
interference as because he is not visiting his constituency since the
mishap with him for security reasons.
In such a situation, these
people displaced by conflict and the movement, that claims to be working
for protecting the rights of the tribal people, don’t see a quick end to
their plight but to accept and adapt to the harshness of life.
exemplifies how the growing conflict in the tribal populated forest
regions of India has displaced many of the tribal families and converted
them into its refugee. While movements by tribal people to restore their
rights over the land and forest are taking up to extremist ideologies,
the tribal people not accepting to such ideas are becoming the worst
victims of the conflict and such extremist movements.