Volume No. :   3

Issue No. :  4

Year :  2012

ISSN Print :  2321-5828

ISSN Online :  0975-6795


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Law and Scheduled Tribes

Address:   S. Shubhang
3rd Semester, Hidayatullah National Law University, Raipur (C.G.)
*Corresponding Author:

India’s population includes nearly one hundred million tribal people. These numbers are matched only by the remarkable diversity of India’s tribes. The two main regions of tribal settlement are the country’s northeastern states bordering China and Burma, and the highlands and plains of its central and Southern regions. The latter is home to more than 80 per cent of the tribes, which differ from the northeastern tribes in ethnicity and in having experienced greater intrusion of the Indian mainstream and of the pan-Indian model of the state, society, economy and culture. There are also differences in the extent to which the tribes interact with non-tribal communities. While the northeastern tribes are usually isolated communities, the tribes in peninsular India may at times coexist with non-tribal people. Despite some regional variation, the tribes share many traits, including living in relative geographical isolation, and being relatively more homogeneous and more self-contained than the non-tribal social groups. Consequently, several tensions (both perceptible and obscure) pervade relations between tribals and non-tribals, on the one hand, and the tribes and the State, on the other. The conventional, and largely accepted, solution is to balance the dichotomy between assimilation of tribal peoples and their independent identity, and delineate the contours of a national policy that would allow them to preserve their way of life without compromising development. Although relatively simple to capture as a concept, India has struggled to maintain the balance in practice. The most common problems relate to recognizing that the tribes have a right to autonomy and not merely decentralized administration; that they have a right to seek justice within their own traditional or customary laws; and that they have a right to own and exploit the natural resources in their habitat. These issues are addressed in the Constitution of India (Constitution) and through tribal-people-specific statutes, but there are considerable differences in the way the northeastern and peninsular tribes are treated in the Indian legal system. Law related to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes are-Prevention of Atrocities Act, 1989 and The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006. These two acts are introduced in Indian constitution for the betterment of the tribal population in India.
Law and Scheduled Tribes
S. Shubhang . Law and Scheduled Tribes . Research J. Humanities and Social Sciences. 3(4): October-December, 2012, 519-523.
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