By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, Feb 2: The All Adivasi Students’ Association of Assam (AASAA) has urged the State Government to allocate more funds for the development of the Adivasis in Assam in the next budget session.
Talking to mediapersons in Guwahati today, AASAA president Raphael Kujur said, “There are around 70 lakh people belonging to the Adivasi community in Assam and most of them live in the tea garden areas. We demand that the government should sanction more funds for development of the Adivasis as they are lagging behind on almost all fronts, especially in the education and health sectors.”
He further said, “Despite tall claims by the State Education Department, there are still many tea garden areas in the State where there are no schools at all. Many children belonging to the tea community continue to be deprived of education.”
AASAA general secretary Joseph Minz said, “The benefits of the development in the health sector that the State Health Department keeps boasting about are yet to reach the tea garden areas. People in the tea garden areas suffer from malaria, cholera, dysentery and jaundice. On most occasions, patients die on their way to the civil hospital. The medical sub–centres usually do not have adequate doctors, nurses or medicines. Drinking water supply is also a problem in the tea garden areas.”
Minz added, “The Adivasi people, especially those living in the tea garden areas, continue to grapple with a lot of problems. But the government hardly seems to show any concern. Sadly, there are ministers and MLAs belonging to the Adivasi community but they have never voiced the grievances of their community after coming to power. The government usually cites fund paucity as the reason why it has not been able to implement many schemes for development of the Adivasi community. In the next budget session we therefore, urge the government to allocate for funds for development of the Adivasi community. We also urge that a proper policy should be put into place to ensure that funds meant for the Adivasi community are not misappropriated.”