Tribal Development

Tribal Village Adoption - Attur Taluk & Block : Thavalappatty Village

  • Honble VC TNAU inaugurated millet value addition centre
  • Honble VC TNAU visits exhibition at villages
  • Installed Minor Millets value added machinery unit at remote tribal village

The Veerappan reality has brought out clearly as to how the tribal people’s lives in Tamilnadu get shattered by a nexus of police, the forest department,politicians and smugglers. Their basic human rights are cynically violated. Despite being protected by law against encroachment into tribal areas, land alienation is increasingly becoming an issue in tribal areas. Their right to preserve and enjoy their cultural heritage in harmony with nature is severely threatened by the process of modernization and economic growth. “There are 36 Tribes and the population as per 1991 Census is 5.74 lakhs, representing 1.03% of the Tamil population...” ( Ninth Five Year plan Tamilnadu : 1997-2002)

Majority of the tribal population in Tamilnadu live in hilly ranges viz., Eastern Ghats, Western Ghats and the iscontinuous hill tracts adjoining the plains and the hills. These tribals live in forests. Irular in Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts form an exception to this general trend and are found to live in the plains. The basic human rights of tribals in Tamilnadu are cynically violated. Land alienation is increasingly becoming a major issue in tribal areas (Tamilnadu Social Development Report 2000).

Tamil Nadu has a total Scheduled Tribe (ST)  population of 0.65 million   which constitute about 1.04 % of the total population of the state. The major tribes that inhabit the state include Kadar, Muduvan, Paaliyan, Kanikkar, Malayali, Soliga and Konda Reddi . While there are pockets of tribal habitations especially concentrated in the Hills, there is also a significant that is dispersed . The Primitive Tribal Groups are found as concentrated population in the Hills. Developmental efforts are mainly through the Integrated Tribal Development Plan in nine tribal areas in seven districts. 85 percent of the Scheduled Tribes are living in rural areas. Majority of them are economically deprived, socially marginalized and lack resources. Their access to Health, Education, Employment and other income generation opportunities is limited. The literacy percentage of the scheduled tribes is 27.89 percent as against 63.72 percent of the general population.

Despite several programmes and projects for the upliftment of tribal communities – they are still marginalized and remain the invisible poor located in landscapes such as hill slopes, river valleys, periphery of reserve forests or wildlife protected areas and plains and coasts. Tribals have an intrinsic connection to natural systems. Any development activity to be relevant - needs this connection to be developed, protected and innovated constantly. Development interventions have not taken this into fact and indicators such as Hospital beds, education levels for mainstreaming have become a priority. Tribals have their lifestyles and livelihoods – instead of delineating populations from development processes; there is need for interventions to be gradual and staggered so that the mainstreaming or external change agents converge with their traditional rhythm and their view of development and empowerment. The challenge lies in the identification of crucial activities, practices, cultural patterns that can absorb and develop interventions at their own terms. 

Based on these in Salem District, Kalvarayan hills villages Neyyamalai and Kalakkampadi, Pachamalai village Thavalapatty were taken by KVK and through INSIMP programme value addition of millet awareness campaign was conducted. Under the programme the following activities are being carried out

  • Awareness campaign on minor millets was conducted at Neiyamalai.
  • Installation  of millet processing equipments ( Destoner cum grader cum aspirator, dehuller, pulverizer and flour sifter )was done at Neiyamalai and Thavalapatty.
  • Farmers from Kalakkambadi village  attended  two days training programme on  “post harvest processing of sorghum / millets especially with special focus on processing equipments, entrepreneurship development , value addition and marketing of sorghum / millets” at Directorate of sorghum research(DSR),Hyderabad.