ADIVASI Original inhabitants in Sanskrit 

Officially recognised by the Fifth Schedule of the Indian constitution as “Scheduled Tribes”, the adivasi represent a minority of over 84 million people. Adivasi claim a special relation with nature, and they often live in forest areas. They used to live off the forest, but their lives and their lifestyles are more and more endangered by land grabbing and commercial exploitation and by the creation of natural reserves cutting their rights over so called Non Timber Forest Products, such as fruits and seeds, honey and so on. Despite efforts by the central and federal states, and affirmative actions to promote and protect their identity and place in society, adivasi have face a future full of challenges. The first step is to get an official individual identity document, then to obtain property of the land adivasi communities have often occupied for centuries, and to see their rights and cultures recognised as worthy as any other. Winning the bureaucratic battle may be the first step in gaining dignity and in seeing their rights acknowledged, even in a country that seems to be privileging industrialisation and development at the expenses of nature and diversity.

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