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'People in cities look down upon tribals,' says tribal affairs minister

October 01, 2015 16:18 IST

People in Delhi and other big cities are very “cunning” and look down upon the tribals in the country, Union Minister Jual Oram said on Thursday, as he called for a change in the outlook of the society towards the community.

“People in Delhi and other big cities are very cunning, they consider us (tribals) as the ones from remote villages who do not know anything...they look down upon us,” he said.

“I want to tell them that what we don’t know you also don’t know, we are just not active in portraying ourselves as superiors and that is the only weakness,” he told while addressing a ‘student-parliament’ on the tribal issues.

Oram further believed that there is a common notion among those living in the big cities that the tribals are not part of the same society.

“There is a need to dispel this notion. There is no clarity among them about what the word ‘tribal’ means. We need to understand that they (tribals) are very much part of the same society and deserve the same treatment,” he said.

“We might be backward and exploited but we are not beggars. We are mineral-rich and have the kind of resources that others do not possess. We are not just good at exaggerating and manipulating things and that is what makes us inferior in their eyes,” he added.

The three-day parliament, which kick-started on Thursday is being organised by the Bharatiya Janata Party’s student wing, the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad and students representing universities across the country are taking part in the event to discuss issues faced by them and draw the government’s attention towards the need for safety and development plans for them.

While the first day was dedicated to tribal students at a seminar entitled, ‘Tribal Student-Youth Parliament’, the remaining two days will be for ‘Women Student Parliament’ and ‘North East Student-Youth leaders Parliament’.

The report on issues arising out of the discussions of the three parliaments will be handed over to the ministries concerned in the form of a memorandum. 

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