Ranchi community in Andaman to fight for their identity

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Port Blair, Nov 15 (UNI) People from Chhotanagpur area, popularly known as Ranchi community in Andaman and Nicobar Islands, have decided to stage demonstrations for getting recognition as tribals.

''We have been always ignored by the local administration. People from our community were brought here decades back to develope this remote archipelago but were sidelined after development,'' Sylvester Bhengra, general secretary of Ranchi Association, told UNI here today.

''We are even deprived of our basic rights,'' Bhengra stated on the first day of the two day Adivasi Maha Sammelan .

He said the goal of the association was to empower the community and create awareness about their rights and entitlements.

Many of the tribals from the Chhotanagpur region had migrated to this chain of islands in search of jobs in the past years but were leading a miserable life, he informed.

More than 65,000 people of this community reside in various parts of the South, Middle and Little Andaman and also in a few areas of Nicobar.

''These people work in Forest and Public Works department as private labourers and are denied of their basic needs,''he mentioned. During the British regime, people of this community were brought into the islands to work as forest labourers.

They originally belonged to tribes like Oraon, Kharia, Munda, Mahli Turi Ghasi, Cheek and Dom among others. However, they are now suffering from an identity crisis as they are not reffered as tribals following which they find it difficult to make into government jobs.

UNI

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