IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


17th December, 2022 POLITY AND GOVERNANCE

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In News

  • To grant Scheduled Tribes (STs) status to the Hatti community in Himachal Pradesh, the parliament passed the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Third Amendment) Bill, 2022.

The Process of adding to the ST List

  • The process of adding tribes to the ST list starts with a recommendation from the State governments.
    • It is sent to the Tribal Affairs Ministry, which reviews and sends them to the Registrar General of India, Under the Home Ministry for approval.
    • After approval, it is sent to the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes and then sent to the Cabinet for a final decision.
    • Once the cabinet finalizes it, then it introduces a bill in the parliament to amend the Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order, 1950, and the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order, 1950.
    • After the amendment bill is passed by both the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, the President’s office takes the final decision under Articles 341 and 342 of the Constitution:

Hatti community

  • The Hattis are a close-knit community.
  • Harris people take their name from their traditional occupation of selling home-grown crops, vegetables, meat, and wool at small-town markets known as ‘haats’.
  • Hatti men traditionally dress in distinctive white headgear on ceremonial occasions.
  • In Himachal Pradesh, Hattis people live in 154 panchayat areas, and according to the 2011 census; members of the community are around 2.5 lakh.
    • The present-day population of the Hattis is around 3 lakh.
  • They live near the Himachal-Uttarakhand border area in the basin of the Giri and Tons rivers, both these rivers are tributaries of the Yamuna.
  • The Tons River marks the border between the two states.
    • Hattis live in the Trans-Giri area in Himachal Pradesh and Jaunsar Bawar in Uttarakhand.
    • Both have a similar tradition, and inter-marriages are common among them.
  • A rigid caste system operates in the community;
    • The Bhat and Khash are so-called upper caste people.
    • The Badhois are so-called lower caste people.
    • Inter-caste marriages between these 2 castes are discouraged.
  • The Hattis people are governed by a traditional council called ‘khumbli’ which is similar to the ‘khaps’ of Haryana, they decide community matters.


 Tribal Area

  • The Indian Constitution states two types of areas:
    • Scheduled Areas in terms of the 5th Schedule of the Constitution.
    • Tribal Areas in terms of the 6th Schedule.
  • “The “Tribal Areas” are also mentioned under Article 244(2) of the Constitution.
  • For the declaration of Scheduled Areas, the criteria followed are:
    • The predominance of the tribal population.
    • Closeness and reasonable size of the area.
    • Presence of a viable administrative unit such as a district, block or taluk.
    • Economic backwardness of the area as compared to neighbouring areas.

About Tribal in India

  • The Term “Tribal” literally means ‘original inhabitants’ – are communities who lived and often continue to live, in close association with forests. They are very old Communities, being among the oldest inhabitants of the Sub-Continent.
  • They are not a homogeneous population: there are over 500 different tribal groups in India.
  • Their societies are also the most distinctive because there is often very little hierarchy among them. This makes them radically different from communities organised around principles of jati-varna (caste) or those that were ruled by kings.
  • They practise a range of tribal religions that are different from Islam, Hinduism and Christianity. These often involve the worship of ancestors, village and nature spirits, the last associated with and residing in various sites in the landscape – ‘mountain spirits’, ‘river spirits’, ‘animal spirits’, etc.
  • They have their languages (most of them radically different from and possibly as old as Sanskrit), which have often deeply influenced the formation of ‘mainstream’ Indian languages, like Bengali.
    • Santhali has the largest number of speakers and has a significant body of publications including magazines on the internet.
  • In terms of language, tribes are Categorized into 4 Categories:
    • Indo-Aryan
    • Dravidian
    • Austric
    • Tibeto-Burman
  • In terms of size, the biggest tribes are Gonds, Bhils, Santhals, Oraons, Minas, Bodos and Mundas.
    • The total population of tribes amounts to about 8.6% of the population of India.
  • Based on livelihood, tribes Can be Categorized into Fishermen, food gatherers and hunters, Shifting Cultivators, Peasants, Plantation and industrial workers.
  • Tribal Society is a more egalitarian and kinship-based mode of Social organization.
  • Tribals were not always the oppressed groups they are now; there were Several Gond kingdoms in Central India.
    • Many of the So-Called Rajput kingdoms of Central and western India emerged through a Process of Stratification among Adivasi Communities themselves.
    • Adivasis often exercised dominance over the Plains People through their Capacity to raid them, and through their Services as local militias.
    • They also occupied a Special trade niche, trading forest Produce, Salt and elephants.
    • Capitalist economics to exploit forest resources and minerals to recruit cheap labour has brought tribal Societies into Contact with mainstream Society a long time ago.
    • They were losing their land to non-tribal immigrant Settlers, and their access to forests because of the government policy of reservation of forests and the introduction of mining operations.

Challenges faced by Tribals

  • Land and forests were taken away from Tribal Societies in the name of development.
  • Development involved the building of large dams, factories and mines. Because the tribal areas were located in mineral-rich and forest Covered Parts of the Country, tribals have paid a huge Price for the development of the rest of Indian Society. This kind of development has benefited the mainstream at the expense of the tribes.
  • Forests Started to be systematically exploited in British times and the trend continued after Independence. The Coming of Private Property in the land has also adversely affected tribals, whose Community-based forms of Collective ownership were placed at a disadvantage in the new System.
  • Many tribal Concentration regions and States have been experiencing the Problem of heavy in-migration of non-tribals. This threatens tribal Communities and Cultures, besides accelerating the Process of exploitation of tribals.
    • In Tripura, the tribal Share of its Population halved within a Single decade, reducing them to a minority. Similar Pressure is being felt by Arunachal Pradesh.
  • Many Tribals in the North-East States have been living for decades under Special laws that limit the Civil liberties of Citizens, States have been declared as ‘disturbed areas’.
  • The vicious Circle of armed rebellions Provoking State repression which in turn fuels further rebellions has damaged the economy, Culture and Society of the North-eastern State.

Schemes for the development of Tribal

  • The Pre and Post Matric schemes are demand-based schemes and every ST student whose family income is up to Rs 2.5 lakhs is entitled to a scholarship for pursuing education from class IX to Post Doctorate across India.
    • The states send the proposal for the estimated expenditure during the financial year based on the expenditure incurred in previous years and advance up to 50% of the Central share is released to the States.
    • After the State has disbursed the scholarship to the students and has submitted certificates, the balance amount is released to the State provided the State has contributed its share.
  • Pradhan Mantri Adi Adarsh Gram Yojna:
    • Comprehensive development of 36,428 villages will be undertaken to develop these villages as Adarsh Gram, under ‘Pradhan Mantri Aadi Adarsh Gram Yojana’.
    • These villages have a tribal population of more than 500 and are 50% tribal.
  • Pradhan Mantri Janjatiya Vikas Mission
    • The Mission seeks to achieve livelihood-driven tribal development in the next five years through the formation of Van Dhan groups that have been organized into Vandhan Kendras.
    • New haats bazaar and warehouses will be developed in the next 5 years as part of “Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhyan”.
    • TRIFED would be the nodal agency for implementing the scheme. The products produced will be marketed through Tribe India Stores.
  • Venture Capital Fund for STs
    • An amount of Rs. 50 cr. has been sanctioned for the new scheme of ‘Venture Capital Fund for Scheduled Tribes’ (VCF-ST), which is aimed at promoting Entrepreneurship among the STs.
    • The VCF-ST scheme would be a social sector initiative to promote ST entrepreneurship and to support and incubate the start-up ideas of ST youth.
  • Central Sector Scholarship Scheme for ST students was introduced in the academic year 2007-08 to encourage meritorious ST students for pursuing studies at the Degree and Postgraduate level in any of the Institutes identified by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs for the purpose.

●        Vocational Training Centers in Tribal Areas

  • The main aim of this scheme is to upgrade the skills of the tribal youth in various traditional/ modern vocations depending upon their educational qualification, present economic trends and the market potential, which would enable them to gain suitable employment or enable them to become self-employed.