Friday, 28 June 2013

Vanishing Caravans...!!

Collated from the amazingly difficult work by Mittal Patel:

India is a country of cultural diversity and this is a land where one can find vast differential equation of humanity that has unresolved calculations. This diversified equation is no wonder the biggest challenge of the fastest growing nation in this universe.

While cities like Mumbai is ruled by a large group of strongly bonded community living in the famous slums, states like Gujarat has fallen back in keeping count of the Nomadic and Denotified tribes and failed to give them an identity in this country.

As the name tells us, Nomadic are the people who travel from place to place and hence to give them an identity or keeping a count is a practical challenge for the system. They livelihood is generally in the outskirts of the villages and that is more definitely because they are not accepted by the communities. On the whole the Nomadic and Denotified tribes lack their identity for which survival is a challenge for them. As the system of dependency on identity goes in circle, they have been pushed into the darkest corner of our society.

Their professions are more like salt traders, jugglers, junk jewelers, basket sellers, tattooists, snake charmers, ayurvedic healers, fortune tellers and entertainers partnering animal. Like a lot of other things, these professions are also loosing their value with the gadget gizmos taking over. Again with the Animal rights being made strict, the nomadic have lost their major mean of earning.

This is extremely sad, but on contrary, some of us have done unforeseen harm to the animals which have given way to make the regulations strict. Human beings are the craziest animals on earth. They are the ones who have been able to survive as the fittest and during this war for survival; a lot of other species have become extinct. Hence the introductions of the law, with the promise to provide animals an equal opportunity to survive on earth like the human beings.

On Chennai or Mumbai or Kovalam beech, when I enjoy the cool breeze and walk through the sand, I often see these nomadic go around with ponies/horses with a rider. The pony is his mean of earning, lanky, weak, unbathed, unfed and yet drudging along bringing earnings to its master's household. Does the master feed it well and take good care of it? We all know the answer. We all see women with snakes in the basket begging for alms at the traffic signals. I often wonder what they feed the snake. Are they fed in days together?

It is always that one handful of people in the society who do things to attract problems for the entire big numbers. It is that one group of people who engage in robbery, burglary, killing and domesticating species to make them their way of living and the effect is on a lot bigger numbers. It is unfortunate of nomads that they have lost their prime way to earning due to government rule, but begging is not the only way to survive after that. As Indians, more number of organizations like VSSM should join hand to give them an identity, to set up school for them, to teach the fathers and brothers that they are the protectors of the woman in the family and not the destroyers. To tell them about preservation of the wildlife and how equally important they are like us humans.

These organizations should approach the government and the tourism department to facilitate these nomads to earn their living portraying their art and culture as a part of the rich heritage of our country. The nomadic system is an important part of our lives and the carrier of our history. We should think of ways to enable to earn their living, have voter right, be a part of the society, have their children get adequate education and their daughter have families. They should be proud of their identity in the society and continue to be the same by generations together. If they are looked upon as they are done today, they would soon die out. The privileged groups will want to use the facility of education to become social people and the ones who could not reach out to be among the privileged ones, will soon die out begging and robbing and finally getting killed. Hence, our motto should be to preserve the nomadic culture and provide them with the social upliftment as what they are. That is where we come in, the well read cluster of the society. Nomads need an identity in the society. They bear with them a strong cultural heritage and Indian history. We should preserve then, promote their art, and promote the folk dance drama of Bhavai and Targalas. We should assist them to create an identity in the society as nomadic tribes of India and earn through their heritage. Educate them with their history and make them proud to be what they are. We should preserve the culture of having a healthy family among them so that they too do not become extinct like the minor animal to could not keep up to the fight for survival.

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