In the name of Indigenous Peoples Day celebration the church-left lobby is trying to push forward its divisive agenda and create countrywide conflicts between the tribals and rest of the Hindu society
- Harsh Chouhan
Christianising the Discourse : Kharagpur SCMI Unit and Oasis Foundation jointly organised Tribal and Adivasi Day on the theme Solidarity in Christ- Bearing One Another’s Burdens’, West Midnapur, West Bengal
An all Churches Conference held in Pune during 1991-1992 concluded with a note of confession that despite all their efforts the church outputs are not getting desired success in conversion of people in India as compared to other parts of the world. They said the bonds of dalits and tribals in India with rest of the Hindu society are very deep and they cannot be converted en mass until they are ‘liberated from the Hindus who exploit them’. A new kind of ‘liberation theology’ was introduced. However, this theory was widely used in other parts of the world by church, but not in India. Under the ‘liberation theology’ they conspired to disconnect the tribals from the mainstream Hindu society. Work on this theory began with full preparations and even a network of dedicated workers for its execution was created in early 1990s itself.
Claiming that the Indian tribals also come under the UN definition of indigenous people the church-left lobby is trying to create confusion among the Indian STs.
The church was busy in expanding these activities on the ground in India, meanwhile the United Nations declared the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples in December 1994. That proved to be a weapon in the hands of the church to push forward its divisive agenda. The original definition of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples was to remind the people of the world of the atrocities perpetuated on the indigenous people in Australia, the US and some other countries by the Anglo section race, which margninalised the indigenous people there. That Day was started to raise a voice for the rights of those oppressed people in western countries. But the Breaking India forces, particularly the church and left outfits, conspired to include the Indian tribals also in this celebration. Whereas the clear stand of the Government of India on this issue since beginning has been that the definition of the indigenous peoples decided by the UN is not applicable to the Indian STs. Even today the Indian stand is unchanged and this has been reiterated at various national and international fora time and again. But the church-left brigade has been trying to create a perception that the Indian tribals are also the indigenous peoples. They hold different kinds of activities to push that divisive agenda. That is why they have started observing the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples on August 9 as Adiwasi Diwas or Janjati Diwas in various parts of India.
Hidden Agenda of Church
When the United Nations celebrated the Indigenous Peoples Day in 1994, at that time too the church outfits had observed it at 52 places in India in a planned manner. Big conferences were organised as part of the celebration and many church and left organisations were involved in that celebration. In those conferences they shouted the slogans “We are not Hindus”. The proceedings of those conferences were properly documented with a view to push forward the movement more aggressively. In some tribal areas where they have strong presence as in Nagaland, they started writing to the United Nations for ‘self-determination’ as mentioned in the Charter of the UN. In fact, the real game plan is to first bring the tribal communities under the definition of the UN and then raise the demand for self-determination. It is the hidden agenda behind all the activities being carried out in the name of the Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations. This has already happened in East Timor, Indonesia.
Claiming that the Indian tribals also come under the UN definition of indigenous people the church-left lobby is trying to create confusion among the Indian STs. And unfortunately the political leadership of our country has ignored the seriousness of this conspiracy. Fact is that the Indian tribals do not come under the UN definition of indigenous people. Another fact is that whatever demands have been mentioned in the UN Charter about the indigenous people, have already been included in the Constitution of India in 1951 itself for the Scheduled Tribes. What is not in the Indian constitution is the ‘self-determination’ which is not possible for anyone, otherwise all other things have been done. But today the situation is that not only the political parties, in the greed of votes, but also some governments are trying to follow the divisive agenda and do not understand the whole conspiracy. They are not ready to understand the thin line between the Adivasi, Janjati and the indigenous peoples. The gist of this whole game plan is to push forward the case of separate identity. They are also demanding separate religious code for tribals. It may come up in a big way during the 2021 census.
We Follow our Own Heroes
Most people are confused and many sensible people are silent feeling that if any day is observed for the tribals, what is wrong in that. Majority of the people are not aware of the seriousness of it and they also do not understand the whole conspiracy. What should happen is that everybody should say that we are with the indigenous people of the Western countries who have been persecuted and tortured by the Anglo section race and are now at the verge of extinction. Hence, what the UN is doing in that context in those countries is welcome. All people of India express solidarity with those oppressed communities of the West. Connecting that celebration with the tribals of India is wrong, because any such thing has not happened in India. No outside race oppressed the Indian tribals. The governments should also realise that they should not be trapped in any game plan.
If at all we have to observe any day in India for tribals that should be in the memory of our own tribal heroes. After all how can any foreigner be our ideal? The ancestors of Indian tribals never accepted defeat from the British or the Mughal invaders. There are many tribal heroes in our country who are our ideals and who are symbol of the self-respect of Indian tribals. There is a need to understand this whole conspiracy. Once they generate the perception that the Indian tribals also come under the UN definition of indigenous people, they will push their other agendas. Once they are successful in that game plane, they will start sending representation to the United Nations. Then they will also raise the demand of self-determination. Hence, August 9 should not be observed as Janjati or Adivasi Diwas anywhere in the country, because it generates wrong perception.
(The writer is national convener of Janjati Suraksha Manch)