ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Massacres of Adivasis

A Preliminary Report

Adivasis of Jharkhand's Ranchi district have for long been agitating against the Koel-Karo hydel power project, that threatens to displace most inhabitants - mainly the tribal groups, from the region. The recent unprecedented police firing on a group of peaceful protestors; followed by the state government and the police's nonchalance and the largely, one-sided press reports have not deterred them in its resolve to continue its struggle, firmly espousing the path of peace and democracy.

The developmental path we have adopted is hurting them (scheduled castes and scheduled tribes) and threatening their very existence...we should take into confidence the tribals and their representatives...and consult them in regard to the protection of their livelihood and their unique cultures.

President K R Narayanan,
on the eve of Republic Day, 2001

On February 2, 2001, a large contingent of police at the police outpost at Tapkara in Ranchi district of Jharkhand, opened fire from rifles and stenguns for a full hour on a 4,000-5,000 strong crowd of mostly munda adivasis. Nine local people have died so far from the firing and at least 22 other munda persons were seriously injured. Several injuries have not been officially reported while there are a few persons who seem to be missing. This case stands as a testimonial to the president’s recent observation that the ‘very existence’ of adivasis is being threatened today.

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