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‘Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh should be taken into confidence by State'

Correspondent


‘There is need for a common dialogue between policymakers, administrators, and academicians'


KORAPUT: The police, revenue inspector and forest guard were the symbols of fear for the tribal communities in Koraput region in pre-independence era.

Now the Planning Commission was trying to find a solution to left-wing extremism which is high in the area, by giving responsibility, ironically, to the district Collector, Superintendent of Police and the Divisional Forest Officer, the very symbols of fear for the tribals for the past many years. A solution could have been found if organisations like Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh (CMAS) of Narayanpatna, were taken into confidence, because of their better understanding of the ground reality, said Achyut Das, director, Agragamee, an organisation working for the rights of tribal people in the region.

He was speaking at the valedictory session of a national seminar on ‘Eradicating chronic poverty in Orissa', held at Koraput on Saturday.

Over the years the deterioration in the system of governance has led to a situation where no one was eager to listen to the grievances of poor people and thus creating space for growing discontentment among them, the very people who were fighting a war against poverty all alone, he added.

While rural poverty across the state could be associated with isolation, lack of roads, poor infrastructure and limited institutional presence, there were very significant regional differences in the prevalence of poverty even within Orissa, Prof. Anand Kumar of JNU said, in his concluding remarks. The rural poverty ratio in the southern region was more than two-and-a-half times than that of the coastal region.

With such a diversified nature of existence of poverty in the state, there was need to start a common dialogue between the policy makers, administrators, academicians and civil society activists to deal with the issue of poverty, he added.

Among others, P.C. Mahapatra, director, COATS and Sudhakar Patnaik, OIC, Central University of Orissa spoke

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