Image: Northeast Now

The fourth edition of the ‘Adivasidom,’ a three days residential workshop for understanding and sharing the history, literature, culture, and politics of the Adivasis (tribals) was held at Koyu Village in Lower Siang District of Arunachal Pradesh recently.

Hosted by Pasighat based NGO, Woodlanders, the workshop witnessed diverse participants from schedule tribes of states such as Rajasthan, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Orissa, Manipur, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Uttarakhand and including the host state of Arunachal Pradesh.

The three days workshop was designed in a way to understand the cultures and lifestyles of the Pasis at Pasighat, Padams at Kiyit and Ngopok, and the Galos at Koyu.

According to Kaling Dabi, a Rajiv Gandhi University based research scholar in Tribal Studies the primary aim of the workshop Adivasidom is to ‘fill the gap of the disconnection prevalent among the tribals of India and help create a common forum for maintaining a pan identity by way of cultural exchanges and also share the problems of each tribes spread across India under a unified voice.’

The thought was echoed by Vandana Tete, general secretary of the Jharkhandi Bhasa Sahitya Sanskriti Akhada, who in her brief speeches as one of the resource persons constantly reminded that the Adivasidom initiative is aimed spreading awareness among the tribals to be self reliant and embrace its roots of maintaining a close bond with natural environment for its sustenance by way of educating oneself through all means available.

Other resource persons included A K Pankaj, Ranjit Oraon and Dr Joram Nabam Yalam.

Significantly, the three days workshop included lectures from Kaling Borang on the significance of Oral Narratives in ethnic communities; the pros and cons of the Inner Line Permit (ILP) by Group Captain Mahanta Pangging (Retd.); Status of Tribal languages by Dr Joram Nabam Yalam, besides practical display of brewing ‘opo/apong’ (rice beer), methods and significance of Galo Genealogy among others, all under the aegis of the host Woodlanders.

DAMIEN LEPCHA

Damien Lepcha is Northeast Now Correspondent in Arunachal Pradesh. He can be reached at: lepcharaul@gmail.com

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