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Jobs, schools for Birhors - BDOs to be held responsible for deaths in tribe

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By The Telegraph Online in Bokaro
  • Published 19.03.09
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Birhors attend a meeting held by the Bokaro administration on the safety of primitive tribes on Wednesday. Picture by Pankaj Singh

Bokaro, March 19: The Bokaro district administration has chalked out an ambitious plan to save the Birhors — a tribe whose population is fast dwindling.

The plan mainly encompasses the health and employment sectors. The decision was taken at a meeting chaired by deputy commissioner Satyendra Singh and attended by junior officials recently. The plan aims to understand reasons behind the high mortality rate among Birhors, who have a life expectancy of 40 years and less.

The plan would place onus on block development officers to ensure the safety of the primitive people. Welfare officials would assist the BDOs in their attempt.

Soon, BDOs and welfare officials will jointly conduct surveys in their areas to gauge education, health and employment needs of Birhor families, especially in Naxalite-hit regions under Gomia and Nawadih. The survey would focus on Tulbul, Dumri and Khakhanda in Bokaro and a report would be presented to the deputy commissioner on an urgent basis. After the survey, officials will interact with senior members of the tribe to discuss problems faced by the community and create self-help groups to tackle the same.

The administration is trying to ensure safe drinking water, food and medical facility to the tribe and ensure education for all the children.

A plan has also been chalked to grant benefits to Birhors under government schemes including Antodyaya, Annapurna and Deendayal Yojanas and the NREGA. Talking to reporters, Bermo SDO Rajesh Kumar confirmed that BDOs and government staff will be held responsible for any deaths among Birhors. “The government will leave no stone unturned,” he added.