Monday, April 9, 2012

Court Commissioner Advocate TS Doabia's Report on Jarawas and Buffer Zone



Introductory. I was appointed as one of the Commissioners in pursuance of an order passed by this Hon’ble Court with regard to the issues pertaining to welfare of Jarawa Tribes of Andaman Islands. 

On 17th February, 2012, at 9:00 A.M., we became part of the second Convoy which was to leave Port Blair on the Andaman Trunk Road towards Baratang in Rangat Tehsil. We travelled 100 kms. to reach this place. On the way we had to cross a creek by making use of the ferry at Nilambur. The passengers as also the vehicles were put in the ferry for crossing. After having spent two hours at Baratang, we returned. We for a while stopped at the police post namely Jirkatang Jetty and then proceeded further. A little ahead of the police post, we found a group of four Jarawas male and female standing on each side of the road. We continued our journey towards Port Blair. About 3 kms., ahead we met a lone young Jarawa. He had just crossed the sign post on which it was written “Jarawa Reserve Area”. The young Jarawa could not have deciphered as to what stood written on the sign board but he was sure that he was moving in a territory which belonged to him and his forefathers since times immemorial. This was apparent from his gait. He had a bow and arrows and was most probably going for hunting a wild boar, unmindful of the Wild Life Protection Act. A success in this mission could have earned him a bride as per the tribal custom. He was also not aware of the fact that there is a chapter on Fundamental Rights in the Constitution of India which enables a citizen a right to move any where in India but he was exercising this right even in the absence of this knowledge as to what was written in the Constitution. He was not aware of Charter of popular liberties known as Magna Carta. As a matter of fact there was no need for him to study this, because he has been enjoying this freedom without any check. The mountains and the jungle area are his castle and fortress for his defence against injury and violence as for his repose. The Jarawas have been moving in the territory unhindered and it would take a long time to make them understand as to what are their rights and duties as Citizens of India.

Till 1997 the Jarawas were very hostile. They would use arrows even on conveys moving on Andaman Trunk Road. The hostility of this Tribe has been one of the major problems of the settlements founded by the British India Government, following the war of Independence of 1857. They were hostile even to the refugee settlement started by the Government of India after 1947. It was in 1997 one young Jarawa is said to have fractured his foot and was found lying in pain. He was picked up and taken to hospital where he was given treatment. After two days of treatment he wanted to rush back to the forest area but was kept for a longer period. This aspect would be adverted to again. Lateron he was sent back with gifts. This was a turning point in softening hostile atmosphere between the Jarawas and non Jarawas. This is a happy sign but at the same time it is sign of concern because too much mingling of the Jarawas with the locals would cause many other social problems. This has happened in the case of Great Andamanease. This would also be adverted to lateron. However good aspect of the hostile nature of the Jarawas and other Tribals such as Shompen and Sentinals is that the Island have remained protected from the poarchers who dared not enter the area.
The brief facts which led to the filing of this Special Leave Petition are being noticed.

In pursuance of a direction given by the High Court of Calcutta (Circuit Bench at Port Blair) vide order dated 09.04.2001 in Writ Petition No.48 of 1999 (PIL) filed by Mrs. Shyamali Ganguli, directions were given to formulate a policy which may take note of the situation pertaining to the welfare of Jarawa Tribe of Andaman Islands. In pursuance of the said directions a policy came to be formulated. This was published in the Andaman Island Gazette Extraordinary on 21st August, 2004. In pursuance of the said policy a Notification was issued on 15.09.2004 declaring certain areas as reserved areas. The further fact is that on 30.10.2007 a Notification was issued by which a Buffer Zone was created. This represents 5 kms belt around the Jarawa Tribe Reserve notified vide Notification No.159/2004. This Notification declaring Buffer Zone was subject matter of challenge in a Writ Petition preferred by M/s Bare Foot Inns Pvt. Ltd. Vs. Lt. Governor and Others, before the Calcutta High Court (Circuit Bench, Port Blair). An order was passed by the Learned Single Judge of that Court.  This came to be challenged before Division Bench of that Court in MAT No.031 of 2009. The Division Bench found no justification to differ with the view expressed by the Learned Single Judge holding that the declaration of an area as Buffer Zone was beyond the provisions of Section 3 of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (Protection of Original Tribes) Regulation, 1956. It is this order which stands challenged in this Hon’ble Court. The further fact which led to the appointment of a Commission was the appearance of certain videos portraying the Jarawa males and females, who were not wearing any clothes. This aspect of the matter led to the appointment of this Commission and in pursuance of the order passed on 03.02.2012 we visited Port Blair.

Rights of the Tribals. Various provisions in the Constitution of India safeguard the Rights of the Tribals. For a considerable period during the British Rule, special laws were made applicable to certain ‘backward areas’ in India that were predominantly occupied by tribal people. These backward regions covered an area of more than 1,20,000 square miles. However, the characteristics of these areas and their populations varied widely. These areas were regulated by statutes. One instance is by Act XIV of 1874, by which Santhal Parganas and Chutia Nagpur Division (now known as Chhotanagpur Division) were created and in these `Scheduled Districts', tribal communities were accorded a certain degree of autonomy to regulate their affairs on the basis of their own conventions and traditions. Many of these communities chose their leaders through an informal consensus among other customary methods for selection.
Constitutional protection to tribals. When the Constitution of India was adopted, these areas were designated as ‘Scheduled Areas’. Article 244 of the Constitution explicitly states that the provisions of the Fifth Schedule shall apply in respect of the administration and control of the Scheduled Areas in any State other than the States of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram. The provisions of the Fifth Schedule guide the administration of tribal areas in those States. Paragraph (4) of the Fifth Schedule States that there shall be in each State having a “Schedule Area”, a Tribes Advisory Council. It was the duty of this Council to advise on matters pertaining to the welfare and advancement of the tribals.
Need to protect from the destructive impact of races possessing a higher and more aggressive culture. It is evident that the intent of framers of the Constitution of India behind including the Fifth Schedule was to set up a separate administrative scheme for Scheduled Areas in order to address the special needs of tribal communities. During the debates on the floor of the Constituent Assembly, some members had criticized such differential treatment for Scheduled Tribes. In response to such criticism, Shri K.M. Munshi had said that ‘Adivasis’ or tribes were many in number belonging to different “ethnic, religious and social groups” and he explained the object of the Drafting Committee's proposals in the following words:
“We want that the Scheduled Tribes in the whole country should be protected from the destructive impact of races possessing a higher and more aggressive culture and should be encouraged to develop their own autonomous life; at the same time we want them to take a larger part in the life of the country adopted. They should not be isolated communities or little republics to be perpetuated for ever...object is to maintain them as little unconnected communities which might develop into different groups from the rest of the country... and that these tribes should be absorbed in the national life of the country.”

Relevancy of Article 39 and other Directive Principles of State Policy. Tribal life and economy, in the not too distant past, bore a harmonious relationship with nature and its endowment. It was an example of sustainable development. But with the influx of outside population, it suffered grievous blow. The colonial system was established on the basis of expropriation of the natural and economic resources of tribal and other areas in the country. Although, theoretically, there has been difference in the approach after the departure of the colonial masters from Tribal areas, in practice, the principles enunciated in Article 39 and other Directive Principles of State Policy have to be followed more rigorously.

Exploitation of tribals. On account of their simplicity and ignorance, over the decades the tribals have been dispossessed of their natural and economic resources like land, forest, water, air, etc. The dispossession has not been confined to through private parties. For the purpose of promotion of general economic development projects, the State also has been depriving them of the basic means of livelihood. These processes have been operative since a long time causing human misery and socio-economic damage. No reliable picture is yet available. We are not seized on the total quantum of land alienated from the tribals both on private and State account nor the number of families, clans or Tribes involved. This has compelled some to perceive development as an agent of destruction. But since planned development has been an article of faith with us, it has to be ensured that implementation of the policies and programmes drawn up in tribal interest are implemented in tribal interest. Since, by and large, the politico-bureaucratic apparatus has failed in its endeavor, powers should be devolved on the people so that they can formulate programmes which suit them and implement them for their own benefits.
Origin of original inhabitants of Andaman. The origin of original inhabitants of Andaman would be a matter of speculation.  Some genetic researchers point out that the Andamanese represent Asian than Africans background. Some studies show that they could be the descendants of early Paleolithic colonizers of South East Asia. Evidence suggests that they came to these islands about 2000 years ago. These islanders became part of the ecology of the islands. They were successful in keeping the strangers at bay. They are intelligent people and whenever occasion arose they interacted with the outsiders.

Original inhabitants are called as Autochthons which in Greek means “sprung from the earth” and those who came later on are described as non-Autochthons. That part of the island which is called Great Andaman was inhabited by greater Andamanese and the Jarawas. Little Andaman was inhabited by Onges. The North Sentinel was inhabited by Sentilenese. The reference here is being made to Greater Andamanese because this would have some bearing when the subject of integrating the Jarawas with the local population is considered. The Great Andamanese and the Jarawas being the immediate neighbours were at loggerhead for ages. These two tribes have common cultural habits, what is sometimes described “nature cultural complex.” The original inhabitants are called as Autochthons which in Greek means “sprung from the earth” and those who came later on have been described as non-Autochthons.

Relevancy of what happened in pre independence era. The historical events which took place during the British India period have relevance. It was in 1857 that part of the population which was found to be against British Government were settled in these islands. These historical events are well known when persons committing crimes and even freedom fighters were settled in these Islands. 

Impact of colonial period. What happened during the colonial period had its impact. The colonial forces utilized the available resources for their own benefit, ignoring the welfare of the native islanders. The Andaman Islands were colonized during the second half of the 19th Century. Establishment of the settlement to subjugate the islands and then settling some people in the islands was not a happy phenomenon. After that these islands came to be described as Penal settlements or colonies.

Penal settlements. The initial years of penal settlement witnessed frequent conflicts between the settlers/colonizers and the Andamanese people. Some times they became friendly and at times were hostile to each other. The Andaman home was set up at Port Blair. The idea was to bring the original inhabitants in close contact with the customs to which the settlers were used to. One Chaplain Corbyne made effort to teach English, Urdu and elementary arithmetic. They were made to work with convicts at the clearing sites. These contacts led to spread of diseases among Andamanese.

1872-73         There is a report by General Steward that the Jarawas “seemed to be peaceably disposed” whereas the Little Andaman islanders would kill or attempt to kill anyone that happened to land on their shores.

1879-1900     The diseases like syphilis and measles were some of the diseases which were noticed. M.B. Portman who took charge of the Home Department in 1879, continued till 1900 and spent most of his time in protecting the Great Andamanese from various epidemics. On his retirement the Home Department was put under the charge of a Deputy Commissioner. At that time, Andaman and Nicobar Islands constituted one District only. At that point of time the interest of the Government was:
(i)         that the crew wrecked vessels should be treated well by the islanders,
(ii)        that the islanders should stop resisting the plan of colonization,
(iii)       that the islanders should help the Bush Policemen to help the authorities to capture convicts who became fugitives.

It may be seen that Jarawas were being pushed from the South on account of settlement and forest operations. There were instances when Jarawas had crossed middle to enter Baratang Island and at some places middle Andaman Islands. 
1905   In 1905, Bush Police was formed with friendly Andamanese as members. A Burmase Jamadar was put in charge. Their job was to hunt the Jarawas and run away convicts. The result was with each passing year, Jarawas became more hostile. Some punitive expeditions were also sent to catch or kill the Jarawas. This is so reported by Bakhtawar Singh,[1] who had access to the Jarawas.

1937   In 1937 the Police made an attempt to catch some Jarawas but most of them managed to escape. A woman and her four children were caught.  One of the daughters of the women named Topsy was brought to Port Blair.  She was married to a Nicobari youth. They had several children.  One of the brothers of Topsy was sent to Ranchi for education but he died. One Jarawa girl was taken to Ferrarganj by one Brig. Francis. She was kept at Aniket Village.  She was looked after by Bhantu community. This girl learnt Hindi and for some time she worked in the office of a Brigadier. When given an option to stay back or go back she opted to go back. She was sent back. She, however, died after some months.

1939   In 1939 the policy was adopted to capture large number of Jarawas and to tame them and then send them back as messengers of peace. One McCarthy, Commandant, Civil Military Police was successful in capturing one young women with three children. The mission however remained unsuccessful on account of the occupation of the Island by the Japanese which were under Japanese occupation from March 1942 to October 1945. The Japanese wanted to fortify the entire coastline. The Jarawas were obstructing the work on the West Coast of Andamans. The Japanese indiscriminately bombed the Jarawas.

1947   After 1947 many other people were settled in the islands. This process continued right up to 1971 when those displaced people from Bangladesh also came to be settled on the islands. These persons came to be known as settlers. These settlers were brought with a view to see that the islands are occupied by those who are friendly to India. They were supposed to do farming. This brought about a change in the attitude of the all original tribals. The Authochthons were still sticking to their original customs. Those who came from the main land were having different social life. There was thus psycho technological shock.

Tribal reserve area. The period from 1947 onwards was not free from skirmishes.  Some land was declared as tribal reserve. The entry into this area by unauthorized persons was prohibited. The Jarawas were not aware of it. They were not sure from where their territory started or where it came to an end. The conflict continued. 

At a later stage, elaborate arrangements were made to protect the villages, forest camps and persons working in the reserve. By 1961, there were 44 camps along the periphery of the reserves, consisting of a work force of 346 persons. In addition there was 150 constables attached to the Forest Department. 

The Government of India decided to colonise the island and encourage immigration. Displaced families from Pakistan and East Pakistan were rehabilitated. This did not reduce the mutual distrust. 

Effort to make friendly contact and give gifts. Bhaktawar Singh,[2] who was friendly to Jarawa’s narrates about friendly contact. There were expeditions to Jarawas territory. With a view to befriend them gifts used to be left.  In 1968, the Villagers caught three Jarawas. They had come to the settlement for iron implements. They were kept in the police station. They were left after one month with gifts of Bananas and Coconuts. From 1969 and 1974 gifts used to be left in the Jarawa territories. These used to be tied and hung from trees. It was noticed that Jarawas had tied many creepers for visitors to hang the gifts. In April 1974, a few Jarawas were seen making their hut near Lakra Lungta. They saw a boat approaching them. They ran away. The contact team went into the hut. They stayed there for about two and a half hours and returned, leaving the gifts. Next day the contact team visited again. This time the Jarawas made contacts. They came swimming towards the vessel and wanted to receive the gift and even hugged the visitors. After 15 years another such contact was made at Port Campbell in 1989. Later on efforts were made to contact the Jarawas on full Moon days. Full Moon day was chosen because this was an intelligible calendar. The contract party used to distribute pieces of red cloth, coconuts, banana, puffed rice sealed in polythene bags. The practice of giving cooked rice was abandoned.

Doctor and women part of the contact team. The Government doctor used to be the member of contact team. Even women were also part of the team. The Jarawas would also like to come to the ship. The members of the contract team were required to wear half pants. However, dignitaries used to wear upper garments also. Sometimes these clothes were given to the Jarawas and in this manner they came to know about medical care, clothes and availability of gift items.

Jarawa boy taken care of in hospital. In 1997, a Jarawa boy met with an accident. He was found immobilized. He was at the fringe of Kadamtal Village. He was given prolonged treatment. This Jarawa boy named Enmei was sent back with lot of gifts after he recovered. The stay of Enmei was helpful in making friendly contacts. A group of 25 Jarawas came out with the intention of making friendly contact. Enmei became a source of friendly influence. 

In October, 1998 Jarawas of South Andaman repeated the behaviour of Jarawas of Middle Andaman. They would come out of their forest habitat in day time. They were naked and were decked with their traditional tools like knives. They started reaching villages, roads, jetties and other public places. They would collect metal items, cloth, eatables and fancy items from the shops. It was felt that such contact may expose the Jarawas to alien diseases. The Jarawas, specially the younger generations would interact with the non-Jarawas. They would come on the Andaman Trunk Road.  Sometimes they would obstruct vehicles and demand joy rides. 

Contact leading to health problems. The result of these contacts was that this led to health problems. About 125 Jarawa patients were treated at G.B. Pant Hospital, Port Blair between 16th April, 1996 and 19th October, 1999. The diseases from which they came to suffer were identified as measles, pheumonia, infection in the lower and upper respiratory tract and fungal infection.  

Physical features. The Jarawas can be categorized by their physical features. They are short statures, with dark skin. They have broad to round head shape with woolly hair. They are sturdy and walk straight.

Territories of Jarawas. The western region of south Andaman and the Middle Andaman are the places inhabited by Jarawas. They have divided themselves in three territorial regions. The northern group occupies the middle Island. The Northern and Southern Groups occupy the western part of South Andaman Island. The northern group is known amongst the Jawaras as Tanmad and as Kadamtala Jarawa amongst the non tribals. The Southern group is known as Boiab amongst Jarawas and non Jaraws call them Tirur Jarawas The Central Group is known as Thigong amongst the Jarawas and among the non-Jawaras as Nalla Jarawas.

Language. The Language which is used by the Jarwas is being studied. Some studies have indicated that the sound system of Jarawa Language has 12 vowels and 26 consonants. The younger generations among the Jarawas have started picking up the local language and the locals have also picked up the languages of Jarawas.

Family structure. The family structure among Jarawas indicate that they have nuclear families. The concept of joint family is uncommon. They are monogramus. 75 percent of males and females get married only once and 25% of them are married twice. The girls generally get married at the age of 15 years and in some cases the husbands are younger to their wives. The average number of surviving children per mother have been found to be around 2.51.

Social organization. The social organization of the Jarawa Tribes indicate that they are divided in three social units i.e. family or house holders,  local group or band and territorial group. The territorial groups constitute the tribe. The smaller social group among the Jarawas is family. The husband wife and their young children constitute a nuclear family. The family may consist of children from previous marriages also. Once the children grow beyond the age of 6 or 7 years, they live in separate group of boys and girls. They do not share the sleeping space with their parents. From this age onwards they move from one camp to another independent of their parents. They move in groups till they get married. In case of death of husband of a family the nuclear unit ceases to exist. The widow with her young children if any stays with other widows. Similar is the case of widowers. The widowers stay apart with other bachelors. The practice of leaving the children with the family of brother or sisters is common. On remarriage the widowed persons establish their own families again.

Settlements. The hut or the settlement where the Jarawas stay stands divided into three categories. The place where the nuclear family stays is known as Tutine Chadda. The place where the unmarried boys with or without widowers stay is known as Tchorkalald Chadda. The maidens resides with or without widow. This place is known as Thorkoleo Chadda. Separate residential units are not used throughout the year. On certain occasions and especially during monsoon they share common residence which consists of large community huts. In this large community huts there is a clear demarcation for living space and for cooking space for each unit.

Birth of a child. The elderly lady of the settlement attends the delivery of a child. The birth of a female child is welcomed by clapping. The old women particularly the maternal grandmother and all join in dancing and signing.

Child care. It is the responsibility of the parents to take care of the children. A baby depends upon breast feeding. Breast milk is fed to the child not only by the mother but also by the other women of the same group. The elder and teenage girls also shares the responsibility to take care of the young ones. Boar fat is given in small quantities at the stage of weaning and this quantity is increased slowly.

Dead bodies. The dead bodies are left in the open. These are partially or completely exposed between large trees. They wait for its decomposition. The bones are collected and are worn for some days as a mark of mourning.
Kinship. Kinship plays a significant role in the Jarawas families. The term Kaya is used for the mother. The father is known as Aamume. The younger brothers and sisters are known as Aaikota. The elders irrespective of their sex are known as Mapo.

Forest as habitat. The male Jarawas make use of the forest habitat. They however collect iron from wrecked ships and also from the settlements. These are used as arrow tips. The men make their hunting implements like bow i.e. Aav, Arrow i.e. Patho and chest guard namely Kekag. The women make fishing nets botow cane baskets i.e. te-aike.

Dress and ornaments. The Jarawas do not use any apparels to cover their bodies. Recently they have started collecting clothes mainly to make ornaments from the threads. The Jarawas adore themselves with various objects like, shells, clay, leaves and flowers. The young women like to make use of flowers. The Jarawas both men and women of all ages and groups like to decorate themselves.

Food. The Jarawas hunt and procure food which includes fruits, tubers and mollse, fish, wild bore. Turtle is also hunted for. Honey is an important item of food. They also hunt craps. Fish are caught from shallow waters. The Jarawas plant the trees. They cut the beehives and honey is collected in wooden containers. The person who first locate a beehive has the privilege of collecting it. Both men and women collect honey. Collecting cater pillar mostly larva of wood borer is keenly persued. They gather wild edible plants.

Cooking. Traditionally the food is cooked in pit ovens but now they are using utensils also.

Jarawa movement. The Jarawas move from one place to another to meet other groups. When on hunting mission the male leave their young children in the care of old women.

From the narration of facts given above, it is apparent that:
(a)       That there is a constitutional protection to the Scheduled Tribes under the Constitution of India. Article 244 of the Constitution and the Fifth Schedule deal with this;
(b)       Article 39 and other Directive Principles of State Policy do lay down that the rights of the Tribals are to be protected. The speech given by K.M. Munshi when Constitution of India was being drafted is relevant;
(c)        That so far as Jarawas are concerned, they constitute three major groups;
(d)       That in the pre 1947 period the British Government made penal settlement in the islands which led to conflict between the Tribals and the Settlers;
(e)       At one point of time Jarawas seemed to be disposed friendly towards the settlers but the Andamanese Islanders were very hostile;
(f)         In 1897 the Home Department took charge of the problems of the Tribals. The earlier efforts were made by one M.B. Portman.
(g)       In 1905 Bush Police was formed. The Jarawas became more hostile. 
(h)        In 1937 attempts were made to catch some Jarawas but these efforts were unsuccessful.
(i)         In 1939 policy adopted was to capture and to tame the Jarawas but this policy could not be pursued because of the outbreak of the war. The Japanese had occupied the island;
(j)         After 1947 effort was made to settle people from main land but the hostility between the Jarawas and the settlers continued to exist;
(k)        At a later point of time contact groups were formed, who would leave gifts for the Jarawas;
(l)         The real break came in 1997 when one Jarawa boy met with an accident. He was given treatment in a hospital. He was sent back with gifts. Thereafter, the contacts became frequent;
(m)      The physical features indicate that the Jarawas are short statured. The Jarawas have marked their own territories;
(n)        There has been some success in understanding the Jarawa language and the younger generation of the Jarawas is also understanding Hindi language;
(o)       The social structure of the Jarawas indicate that they are family oriented. The unmarried boys and girls stay separate. The child care is the responsibility of the parents;
(p)       So far as dress and ornaments are concerned, they do not use clothes;
(q)       So far food is concerned, they depend upon fruits, tubers, fish, wild boar, turtle and honey;
Policy as published in Andaman and Nicobar Gazette on 21st December, 2004

A policy on Jarawa Tirbe of Andaman Island was published in Andaman and Nicobar Gazette on 21st December, 2004. This policy was framed in pursuance of directions given by the High Court of Calcutta (Circuit Bench at Port Blair). An order to this effect was passed on 9th April, 2011 in Writ Petition No.48 of 1999 (PIL) filed Ms. Shyamali Ganguly, Advocate Vs. Union of India and Others. This order inter alia, directed the Central Government as under:

The Central Government through the Principal Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, within two months from the communication of this order was to form a Committee of Experts with the Lt. Governor of the Islands as the Convener, comprising of renowned Anthropologists, Sociologists, Nutrition Experts, Doctors for immediately undertaking a scientific study, research and survey in the change in the behaviour of the Jarawas and to find out the cause of the same ….

The said Committee was to submit its report within six months from the formation of such Committee before the Central Government and Lt. Governor, Anandaman and Nicobar Islands and was also to file a copy thereof before the Circuit Bench of the Court.

Within six months thereafter the Central Government through the Home Secretary himself and the Lt. Governor of the Andndman and Nicobar Administration was to formulate a policy, plans and programmes on the aforesaid questions whether the steps should now be taken for brining the Jarawas in the mainstream of the society or they should be left to their own way of life as before or the balance between the two should be struck following the peaceful existence theory. For the aforesaid purpose, the Central Government was to arrange seminars and open discussions of the different experts, National and International on the line, Anthropologist, Sociologist and others as also individuals and non governmental organizations having knowledge and experience in the matter inviting them by issuing public notification in widely circulated news papers and sending them letters of invitation and thereafter was to frame the policy decision within the stipulated period after deliberation and discussion on such opinions with the approval of the concerned Ministry. The Central Government was also to publish the papers, discussions and deliberation of such seminar, at its cost, for future reference ……

After formulation of such policy, the same was to be notified by the Central Government and the Anandaman and Nicobar Administration and was also to be placed before the Circuit Bench of the Court for appropriate order.

As per the directions of the Hon’ble High Court, seminars and open discussions with the different experts, National and International, Anthropologists, Sociologists and others as also individuals and non governmental organizations having knowledge and experience in the matter were organized. Accordingly, the Central Government organized two such seminars one at Kolkata on 7th and 8th April, 2004 and another at Port Blair on 27th and 28th May, 2004 wherein experts, non-governmental organizations and individuals deliberated on various issues relating to the Jarawas and their well being. In pursuance of the aforesaid order of the Hon’ble High Court of Calcutta, Circuit Bench, Port Blair, a Committee of Experts was constituted. The Committee of Experts submitted its report before the Hon’ble High Court of Calcutta on 28.07.2003.

The Central Government in the Ministry of Home Affairs considered the report of the Committee of Experts and decided to frame a policy/guidelines for the protection and welfare of the Jarawas in Anandaman and Nicobar Island with the following objectives in view:

Objective of the policy.
(i)                 To protect the Jarawas from harmful effects of exposure and contact with the outside world while they are not physically, socially and culturally prepared for such interface;
(ii)        To preserve the social organization, mode of subsistence and cultural identity of the Jarawas community;
(iii)       To provide medical help to the Jarawas, to reduce mortality and morbidity in case of their sudden affliction with diseases which their systems are un-accustomed to;
(iv)       To conserve the ecology and environment of the Jarawa Reserve Territory and strengthen support systems in order to enable the Jarawas pursue their traditional modes of subsistence and way of life; and
(v)        To sensitize settler communities around the Jarawas habitat and personnel working for the protection and preservation of the Jarawas about the need to preserve this ancient community and to value their unique culture and life styles.
Strategies and guidelines. The Central Government, with a view to achieve the above framed, the following guidelines for the protection and welfare of the Jarawas.

Protection of cultural identity of Jarawas  
(a)       The Jarawas are to be considered and treated as a unique human heritage.
(b)       A policy of maximum autonomy to the Jarawas with minimum and regulated intervention was to be adopted by the Government towards the Jarawas.
(c)        There is to be no intervention in cultural life of the Jarawas and they are to be left at liberty to develop according to their own genius and at their own pace.
(d)       No attempts is to be made to bring them to the mainstream society against their conscious Will or to rehabilitate them in separate islands.
(e)       The quality of intervention with Jarawas is to be managed with care and sensitivity through suitability trained and re-oriented personnel, in consultation with and evaluation by anthropologists and experts. The objective should be to avoid dependency syndrome and to ensure their development as a vibrant social group.
(f)         The personnel working for Jarawas are to be provided with proper training and sensitization. The people of the villages near the Jarawa reserved area and other non tribals are to be sensitized regarding the rights and privileges of the Jarawas.

Protection of the Natural Habitat               
(a)               No exploitation of natural resources within the Jarawa reserve by any non tribal including Government agencies is to be allowed.
(b)               Necessary measures are to be initiated to curb occasional extraction of resources form the Jarawa’s territory by the non-Jarawas.
(c)               Provisions of Anandaman and Nicobar Island (Protection of Aboriginal Tribes) Regulation, 1956, would be amended to provide stringent punishment for poaching in the Jarawa territory and for exploitation of the Jarawas.
(d)               The notified Jaraw’s territory is to be fully and effectively demarcated and no attempt is to be made to curtail, reduce or to acquire land therefrom.
(e)               All encroachments in the Jarawa territory are to be removed on priority basis. Stringent arrangement is to be made to ensure that such encroachments do not take place in future.
(f)                 Permanent residence of Government employees / non-tribals in the Jarawa reserves are not to be allowed.
(g)               It is to be ensured that no person other than a Jarawa is allowed to enter the notified Jarawa reserved by any means unless he or she is permitted by the competent authority designated by the Andaman and Nicobar Administration for this purpose. However, no such permission is to be granted unless the person is proceeding on bonafide work relating to the welfare of the Jarawas or protection of the area.
(h)               No tourist is to be allowed to visit or interact with the Jarawas so that curious intrusions are avoided as these intrusions adversely affect their life style and health.

Protection of Health Status    
(a)               Periodic health survey of the Jarawa community is to be organized through a Standing Team of health professionals.
(b)               Only cases needing intensive care are to be brought to the hospital but they are to be kept in separate enclosures.
(c)               Appropriate food is to be provided instead of the hospital meals.
(d)               Whenever female Jarawas come or are brought to hospital, female Police would be posted invariably.
(e)               Medical intervention among the Jarawas, i.e. the line of treatment, use of drugs and medicines is to be only on the basis of advice of experts in the relevant fields and is to be administered only when found absolutely necessary.
(f)                 Medical assistance of Jarawas is to be extended in their reserve area by qualified health officials as far as feasible so that all the advantages of such in situ treatment are available to the Jarawas. Jarawas patients are to be shifted to hospital only if in situ treatment is not possible or felt adequate to save the patient.
(g)               The traditional knowledge of Jarawas including ethno medicine is to be preserved and documented.
(h)               Diagnostic approach, treatment regimen and prescription of drugs in case of common pattern or diseases observed amongst the Jarawas is to be standardized and documented so that experimentation by individual doctors and conflicting assessments could be avoided.
(i)                 Periodic nutritional and food security surveys are to be conducted to ensure that there is adequate provision of food resources to the Jarawas and that there is no fall in nutritional standards.
(j)                  The Jarawas are not to be provided food which is alien to their normal dietary habits.
(k)               Officials or workers engaged in the protection and welfare of Jarawas are to be regularly screened to ensure that they are absolutely free from any communicable diseases and that they do not encourage addictive habits such as smoking and drinking amongst the Jarawas population.

Regulation of traffic on Andaman Trunk Road
(a)               Traffic on Andaman Trunk Road is to be regulated strictly limiting the traffic to the essential purposes of public transport, supplies and emergency evacuation of patients and to ensure that it is an innocent and harmless passage and not a source of trouble to Jarawas.
(b)               Vehicles on Andaman Trunk Road are to be allowed to move only in restricted hours and in convoy under notified speed limit to avert possible road accidents and to avoid any sort of interaction of travellers with Jarawas.
(c)               Facilities for travel by boat/ship are to be strengthened and transportation / travel by sea is to be encouraged.  
(d)               Maintenance of the Andaman Trunk Road is to be carried out by a mobile maintenance team bringing men, machine and materials from Ferragrgunj/Jirkatang and carry out the job only during day time.
(e)               The tourist traffic on Andaman Trunk Road is to be strictly monitored to ensure that there is no interaction between the Jarawas and the tourists.

Codification of Jarawa language
(a)       Codification of the language of Jarawas is to be done with the advice and involvement of experts.
(b)       Continuous interaction in the name of codification of language is not allowed.
(c)        Codification of language is to be attempted by relevant experts in a discreet manner during periodic health surveys of the Jarawas.
(d)       Officials of the Anandaman and Nicobar Administration who are likely to come in contact with the Jarawas particularly those of Health and Welfare Departments are to be encouraged to learn the Jarawas language so that they are able to communicate with them and understand their perceptions, reactions and problems.

Institutional arrangement
(a)               The Anandaman and Nicobar Administration is to be wholly and entirely responsible for the implementation of the aforesaid policy on the Jarawas.
(b)               It would lay down detailed tasks for each agency and unit of the administrative machinery and set up structures for monitoring and specific mechanism for enforcing accountability of officials in respect of task assigned to them in connection with protection and welfare of the Jarawas.
(c)               The Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti an autonomous body is to function like a trustee on the interest of the Jarawas and advise Anandaman and Nicobar Administration regarding the protection and welfare of all aboriginal tribes including the Jarawas.
(d)               The Executive Council of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti assisted by experts and persons having knowledge and experience in tribal affairs under the Chairmanship of Lt. Governor would enforce and monitor implementation of the policy.
(e)               Meaningful research on the Jarawas is to be allowed under the advice of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti to further the understanding of their life and culture including their traditional knowledge. However, it was to be ensured strictly that the confidentiality of genetic resources on the Jarawas would be maintained and not used for commercial exploitation by any agency or organization which is not directly concerned with the welfare and protection of the Jarawas.      
(f)                 Periodical review of this policy is to done so that the policy is dynamic and takes into account changing needs and circumstances.

Thus, the objective of this policy is:
(i)                 The cultural identity of the Jarawas has to be protected;
(ii)               No attempt should be made to bring them in the main stream against their Will;
(iii)             The intervention with Jarawas require care and sensitivity;
(iv)              There is need to protect their natural habitat;
(v)                That as far as possible, the health of the Jarawas should be given due attention.  In this regard use should be made of the traditional knowledge of Jarawas;
(vi)              Only those food items should be given to them which do not come in conflict with their dietary habits;
(vii)            They should be kept away from communicable diseases;
(viii)          Drinking and smoking amongst the Jarawa population should be discouraged;
(ix)              Effort should be made for codification of Jarawa language;
(x)                The traffic on Andaman Trunk Road should be regulated;

The above policy is dated 21st December, 2004;

On 30th October, 2007 there was declaration of buffer zone.

On 8th April, 2010, Buffer Zone for Jarawa Reserves were notified

In pursuance of this policy some resorts and hotels, restaurants and bars were closed;

Now a new policy is being formulated, Expert Group has given its view on August, 2011.
The policy elaborates six strategies/guidelines to meet the above objectives under the broad categories of:
(a)               Protection of Cultural Identity;
(b)               Protection of Natural Habitat;
(c)               Protection of Health Status;
(d)               Regulation of Traffic on Andaman Trunk Road;
(e)               Codification of Jarawa language and Institutional arrangements.
The policy lays stress on ‘maximum autonomy to the Jarawas with minimum and regulated intervention’ by the Government when needed. Accordingly to this policy the Jarawas are to be allowed ‘to develop according to their own genius’ and that no attempts is to be made either to mainstream them or rehabilitate them on other Islands. Under the strategies for the protection of the natural habitat, the policy is clear that no encroachments will be tolerated in the Jarawa territory, that no natural resources will be extracted from the Jarawa reserve even by governmental agencies and that no attempt would be made `to curtail, reduce or to acquire land' from the notified Jarawa territory.

The Convener of the Group of Experts, (Director of Tribal Welfare), Andaman and Nicobar Administration, Port Blair prepared a brief note on the Jarawas of Andaman Island. This is dated 27th July, 2011. This is as under:

(1)               Jarawas were quite safe with their very strong psychophysical fort in the past in pre 1997 era. They distanced themselves by keeping aliens at bay practicing fierce hostility. They had indomitable faith in their own strength and their cultural strength. But in post 1997 days Jarawas have taken a different stand by the changing their behaviour towards aliens probably not fully realizing the ultimate consequences on themselves.
(2)               With the end of hostility, Jarawas suffered vulnerabilities in various aspects like health and physical survival; in their physical resources and in their cultural safety and identity. Jarawas are vulnerable to new and alien diseases due to contact with others. They have already suffered due to some of such new diseases like measles, pneumonia, malaria etc. They would be threatened because of many more new diseases including AIDS unless measures to control are taken against such diseases.
(3)               Jarawas are likely to suffer because of cultural dominance, ethnocentric arrogance of the people of the “civilized” society. Accepting or aping the “civilized” society may result in the destruction of their own cultural strength. They may develop ‘inferiority complex’ because of dominating alien’s culture. They would be susceptible to socio economic of non Jarawas and to the sexual exploitation by non Jarawas unless the control measure are taken.
Plans strategy
(4)               First, in due course of interaction of cultural system of a small primitive community with its eco system former strikes an eco-cultural equilibrium. This   dynamic, yet delicate equilibrium gets destabilized by meteoric changes in physical (ecological) and cultural factors. The changes if not meteoric are taken into strides of this changing equilibrium thus dynamic eco-cultural equilibrium is maintained continuously through the process of acculturation could be destabilized by nullifying or modulating the change factors through a scientific and holistic factors, a milieu of eco cultural system could be provided facilitating inherent process of acculturation in the community thereby avoiding “peremptory paternalism” and “pampering materialism”. The approach has to be “loving fraternalism”. Fourth, the exploitative elements of neighbouring mainstream communities would be waiting in their wings for new areas of primitive and vulnereable tribes in transition. Building a defence system in place of their traditional psycho physical fort the inaccessibility and/or hostility, would take considerable time during which the Government has very responsible task of protection of tribes against exploitation. And fifth, the personnel policy in administration of the tribal communities has to be very special and shall be the component of long term plan itself.
(5)               Therefore, the basic tenet of the long term plan for the Jarawas is to stop further action of destabilizing forces, re-stabilize the eco-cultural equilibrium and build up a self defence to co-exist with the mainstream culture. The long term plan for Jarawas has to chronological phases viz. the Quarantinal Co-existence for few decades and Open Co-existence thereafter. The defence mechanism is developed through the process of acculturation during the First Phase by adopting the concept of Buffer Zone administration for the peaceful co-existence with the mainstream societies thereafter.
(6)               Jarawas of Middle Andaman and South Andaman were visited by me along with other members of the Group of Expert during August, 2011 and made certain direct observations and these observations were compared with those prevalent nearly 8 years back. The interaction of the Jarawas with the non-Jarawas has perceptibly increased during recent past. The consequences of such interaction, if not controlled would be harmful to Jarawas.
(7)               The major change that is visible among the Jarawas now is that rice is finding its way almost regularly. It is apparently because of clandestine barter between the Jarawas and the non-Jarawas. The Jarawas have learnt to trap dress, catch crabs with the active behind the scene help of non-Jarawas in the form of supply of (rope traps) and other aides. The hunt i.e. deers / crabs are exchanged with the non tribals and get rice, spices, cooking oil etc. in return. Jarawas have also learnt to respond intelligently with authorities, if encountered with the later.
(8)               The rice is becoming a valued article of food among the Jarawas. If rice becomes a preferred and sought after item by over taking their traditional/indigenous food items, the Jarawas would become not only turn dependent on others for their food but become victims of exploitations by un-scrupulous non-Jarawas. Following the in-road of rice, the rice beer (hundya) would also appear on the scene and thereby worsening the situation. There are living examples in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands wherein the aborigines have adopted rice as food item due to the contacts with the traders and have become dependent on the others. So there is a urgent need to control the inflow of the rice among the Jarawas.
(9)               The hospitalized Jarawas are perforce eating the rice because they are away from their natural habitat. Thus, shifting of Jarawas even for minor treatment to the hospitals located away from their inhabited areas leads to consumption of rice. As such, the location of medical sub centres could be as close to Jarawas areas as possible so that the Jarawas attendants and patients can continue to have access to their normal food under the advice of medical personnel.
(10)          The traffic on Andaman Trunk Road is also one of the major location of interaction and source for the items including eatables, rice etc. for the Jarawas. There is a need to regulate the traffic on the Andaman Trunk Road in the South Andaman Island. As of now the convoys move during the major part of the day from early morning to late afternoon. The regulation could be so designed to ensure that the entire traffic in the sector closes by the noon, say by 11.30-12 O’clock. The first convoy could start early in the morning, say 5.00 A.M. and the last one from Jirkatang could be at 9.00 A.M. and that from Middle Strait could be at 10.00 A.M. The gap between convoys could be reduced to increase the number of convoys within the given time in the fore noon. The convoy system needs to be scrupulously followed to eliminate contact with the Jarawas on the road.
(11)          The absence of traffic in afternoon would facilitate the safe movement of the Jarawas on the road i.e. by avoiding road accidents and could also avert the disturbance in their hunting activities, since, noise and sounding of the horns would alert and interfere in ambush hunting of the pigs.
(12)          The Jarawas Policy of 2004 is well conceived. However, the regular periodic monitoring of its implementation by the independent body consisting of experts and administrators is required to be put in place.
(13)          The mechanism is needed to be established for a continuous long term observation/study of the Jarawas so that an input is available to enable the Government to view the policy measures and activities, if required.
(S.A. Awaradi)
Member, Group of Experts

An expert group was constituted to look into the Jarawa problem. The points which emerged out of the Jawawa expert group constituted by Andaman and Nicobar Administration may also be noticed.

A preliminary documenting outlining the issues and concerns that had emerged out of observations, deliberations and discussions held from 18th August, 2011 to 27th August, 2011 was prepared. This document put together the views of different combinations of five members out of the seven appointed members to the Expert Committee vide Order No.330 A&N Administration, Port Blair dated 27th July, 2011.

While it was clear that certain aspects of change experienced by the Jarawas could be detrimental to their survival as a culture and community, it was also certain that most of these changes would be irreversible. The view was that the concern for Jarawas as a society and culture are to be addressed as lived structure and not a mere mechanical or system mode. The Jarawas have changed since 1998. They changed again after 2004 and they continue to do so. During the colonial occupatation of the islands the Jarawas were one of the most resistant to outsiders because they had the capacity to adapt and change the strategies necessary to safeguard their territory and culture. The Expert Committee noticed incidents of “hostility” but at the same time resistance to poachers by the Jarawas was acknowledged. The Expert Committee was of the view that in forming any policy regarding Jarawas, the issues required to be gone into are:
(i)                 Why is it the Jarawas have never expressed the desire to inhabit the lived space of the outsider?
(ii)               Why do they regard the forest as integral to their survival?

The Expert Committee was of the view that the present need is to first understand what constitutes Jarawa knowledge that sustains their society in their space and time. It is not enough to merely ascertain issues of shortages of any resource that could be provided to them in the name of welfare.

The Expert Committee considered the issue of Andaman Trunk Road along with that of the Buffer Zone. It was noticed that the resolution of either of these issues would not automatically resolve or address the larger issues pertaining to the future of the Jarawas. While Andaman Trunk Road does constitute a major point of reference in any discussion of the Jarawas, other issue such as the nature of change experienced within the community, the processes and practices of negotiating such changes and the implications these have on their evolving relationship with the State and the non-settler population, it was felt that it does need to be understood.

The Expert Committee felt that the contact through the road with non-tribal within certain sectors that is visible to all indicates or has become for many outside observers as being indexical of the “readiness of Jarawas to be incorporated” but it has to be noted that this has never been the urge of the Jarawa majority. Evidently Jarawa youth now possess clothes that are not part of the standard distributed items of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti implying that some alternative channels of exchange are operating within the Jarawa society, but these observations at the same could not be generalized for the entire community. Given the fact that the demographic profile of the roadside hangers has changed in last nine years it is evident that the whole of Jarawa community is not interested in being at the road. Neither could it be argued that the road provides all that or substantially the provisions that the community or a family cluster needs. One needs to know the intergenerational and inter-gender relationship within the Jarawas. The Jarawas it was felt could not be viewed as a monolithic cultural group.

The opinions both nationally and internationally are pulling and pushing the debate on Jarawas in two distinct polemics:
(a)               Protect and insulate them and
(b)               Provide venues of incorporation and ‘progress’.

The inputs from the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti would be very important since it is their field staff who can provide this insights into the less visible aspects of ‘change’ within the community.

The Expert Committee felt that the need today is to create a situation of mutual understanding where the Jarawas are empowered to make their own decisions and seek the required assistance from State.

Again the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti has to be re-oriented for insuring the future of Jarawas as well as other PTG’s,[3] whether the tribal communities want to move “Out” or remain “In” This issue was considered to be an issue for research and implementation that has to be set in motion. This determination would indicate as to what degree and how the tribals articulates isolation or incorporation.

One of the term of reference given to the Expert Committee was to “ascertain the reasons for their increasing interaction with the outside world and assess the resource crunch if any”. This was not a new point but is an old point. This was the directive given to the previous Expert Committee that submitted different versions of the Expert Report of 2004. What is significant is that the follow up of the brief provided and is significant. This is to, identify the Jarawa, “expectations from outside world and gaps in the present system of tribal welfare activities concerning Jarawa Tribe”. This forms the central crux of how the group can make the qualitative difference and construct a platform that is robust enough to deal with pulls and pushes from the outsiders concerns for the Jarawas, often that are unrealistic or rightfully critical.         

In the course of the collective discussions an understanding was reached among the committee members and the administration officials, and also the Jarawas associated with areas of Middle  Strait, Lakra Lungata and Tirur as well as the field staff working in the Jarawas areas. This was to the effect:
(a)               Situation has changed dramatically since 1998 and Post 2004 when a Jarawa policy was implemented based on the earlier study.
(b)               It is not the problem of large number of Jarawas community (cross age and gender lines) visible on the roadside and initiating contacts with the users of the road in different intensity and scale.
(c)               Group member’s earlier experiences and the field staff’s daily interaction within the Jarawa context endorsed the point of view that over the time the situation has evolved to a level that now only much younger age group under the supervisionary vision of selected teenagers (male between age of 20 to 30) hang around the sides of Andaman Trunk Road.
(d)               Part of this is success of the diligent and dedicated Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti field staff whose relationship with the Jarawas has succeeded in building a deep and effective relationship that has significantly evolved from disciplining the Jarawas to a friendship and understanding and mutual respect and understanding.
(e)               However the few selected Jarawas teenagers play a prominent role as interlocutors between administration workers and the Jarawas community at large. This was most evident in the acquired language and expressions of the Jarawas teenagers and the Jarawas elders who remain aloof from the structured colliding world of the administration’s pre-constructed world for Jarawas and Jarawa construct of their world. This pattern is not a recent phenomena as post 2000 also such individuals had emerged who have now completely with change in age set status become relative aloof from the interaction with the administrative interactive structures and have been replaced by new set of individuals.
(f)                 That changes have undeniably occurred at the level of social dynamics within the Jarawas society as well as the world view formed by the interaction of the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti staff and Jarawas. This could be construed as Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti been successful in limiting the potential damage to the Jarawa social structure and culture by maintaining a cautious intervention. But at the same time a significant incorporation of material culture within Jarawa indicates that Jarawas have developed network of relations among themselves and the settlers and police persons that sustain an informal organized exchange of goods and ideas. This was considered by the Expert Committee as major aspect at present that needs to be focused and understood that how Jarawas have adapted and developed.
(g)               Rice, shoes, tailored fashionable clothes, condiments and spices to cook are material clues that hint at a mapped out relation between the world inside the Jarawa community and the outsiders who are constant present around them.     
(h)               The Expert Committee felt that the Jarawas do not reflect a loud articulation of ‘leaving the forest’ but do look forward to some aspects of the world outside? The forest being present for them in the forest specifically medicine, implements to carry on daily operations, and some items of food such as biscuits and rice that they in there cognitive classification of food see as special treats or as fall back category of means to satisfy taste not hunger. But at present, they are not seen as essential wants. That as the so-called edible substances available from the Andaman Trunk Road has reduced it cannot be concluded that Andaman Trunk Road or the administration or even the settlements are major source of food supply. There is a fair amount of forest resources available to the Jarawas to hunt and gather, however, the impact of outsiders also seeking it – (informally or illegally) is a pressure on Jarawas that they do articulate and have resented historically post 2004.
(i)                 That historically Jarawa culture has undeniably changed over the last thirteen years but at no point since colonial to post independence have ever exhibited that they have ever insisted or indicated any tendency to not to return back to the forest from which they come out for any form of contract with the outside world. They still attach some value and aspects that has kept Jarawas tied to their world within the forest, and be only a self created agency that selects and edits its own interaction with the outsiders.
(j)                  The Jarawas interaction with the outsiders beyond the visible context of Andaman Trunk Road has increased but should not be seen as the indicator of decline in their forest resource per se. It however is indexical of new situations that may start emerging and need to be considered seriously, particularly in line with what the Island administration and Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti in particular has to do vis-à-vis the Jarawas as well as the other PTG’s,[4] on the Island.

The immediate actions required to be taken to ensure the further outcomes was pointed out by the Expert Committee. The Expert Committee was of the view that:
(i)         Convoys have become haphazard and extremely disorganized. It was felt that the number of vehicles could be increased but the frequency must be reduced. This would contribute positively to the better streamlined management of the traffic and misuse of power and privilege of the road users in relation to the Jarawas.
(ii)        The Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti’s effort to control the situation should be backed by the police personals.
(iii)             There should be increased dependency on alternative sea route north of Port Blair, that are particularly cheaper for moving commercial goods.
(iv)              One of the members namely Manish Chandi suggested that non-Jarawa have the ability and to reorganize and adapt to such a change, in comparison to the Jarawas.
(v)                Tourist traffic to Baratang and beyond needs to be diverted from the Andaman Trunk Road to an alternative route from Shoal bay or also implementing a full fledged sea route from Port Blair to avoid their untoward interaction with the Jarawas.
(vi)              Tourist traffic has increased and is among those travelers on the Andaman Trunk Road who also influence the nature of exploitative interaction. This category of traffic on the Andaman Trunk Road increases the novelty of interaction between Jarawa and non-Jarawa and can thus be diverted.
(vii)            No scientific and scholarly data is available to substantiate claims for a resource crunch, implying reducing resources and/or effects of an increasing population.
(viii)          In order to empower the Jarawa means of subsistence, which is foraging and hunting, poaching by non Jarawa needs increased checks to enforce the Protection of Aboriginal Tribes Regulation as well as the Indian Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.
(ix)              Poaching was identified by many Jarawa as an issue of competition that they have had to contend with for long. The Tribal Reserve boundary is large and porous; schemes of patrolling as exhibited by the Navy and Coast Guard may be replicated and adapted for foreshore and terrestrial checks by the Department of Police, Forest and Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti.
(x)                Data on poaching was felt to be under reported given information on this phenomenon by Jarawa as well as non Jarawa. A large number of labourers are another group, which are present in the Jarawa reserve on frequent and periodic basis engaged in road repair and maintenance.
(xi)              Inoculation, screening and awareness among these people also need to be ensured, or checks put in place to avoid communication of harmful diseases and influences. This is mandated for tribal welfare and other govermental staff in regular posting within this region, so this needs to be extended to road laborers as well. 

With regard to centralization and streamlined co-ordination of efforts made by Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti within the Jarawa territory (as well as other tribal reserve areas), the Expert Committee felt that it must be considered as to how the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti field staff can become more effective as often their efforts get subverted by chain of dependency on police and forest departments. It was felt that the field staff of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti has done outstanding work and with extreme care and dedication but often they do not get any backing on matters that report from the field to the complex maze of paper works and other interests and obligations.

The settlers and others exploiting the Jarawa economically or otherwise should be punished as severely as possible.

The Expert Committee felt that the issue of needs is required to be immediately overhauled and if required regular procedures must be reviewed and strictly implemented. The Jarawas are often drawn to medical care where the attraction is the ‘different’ food and ‘clothing’. No regular check ups are carried out. The pharmacists on the field are performing well and are effective but a female staff from time to time must be included to articulate the needs of women and respect the gender and age distinction within the Jarawa culture.

Inoculation and maintenance of well being should be reinforced, not in terms of just providing symbolic gesture like “tooth past and soap” or constantly conveying “they are dirty and unhygienic”. The growing tendency of carelessly sending the tribal patients to mainland, the Expert Committee felt that this exhibited lack of sensitivity to the tribals and encouraged the channel of administrative staff vying for the benefit of a trip to mainland. As the accompanying staff has no language skill or orientation to the needs of the patient and concerned family, apart from being a ‘chaperon visiting homeland’. Procedures to be taken up for the advanced course of treatment must be placed rather then left to whims and fancies of the “desk workers” at Port Blair. Much like the Jarawas demanding for rice now they think flying to the main land for treatment is a treat in itself.

Efforts must be made by the various departments to sensitize the non tribals to the position and predicaments of the tribal community. Public awareness and pride and understanding of the tribal culture are a must to initiate a mutual respect if the identity and integrity of the PTGs as citizens of the Nation has to be maintained and sustained. The Expert Committee felt that there should be regular review, monitoring and systematic analysis and consideration of the functions of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti.

In no way the Jarawas should be pushed or pulled by policy imposed from outside. Based on the knowledge derived from them it should be utilized to empower them and fortify them in their cultural and social practices that could be better synchoronotized with external conditions and changes.

The administration should refrain from deciding what the Jarawas should be but derive from them what they want to be. This has been the course of action that has impacted adversely the Great Andamanese (perhaps beyond any point of correction) and Ongess (with whom the course of action could be corrected).

The current policy of the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti to avoid gifting and introducing a sedentary lifestyle was appreciated. This policy is different from earlier attempts and practices in conserving livelihoods of the other indigenous islanders. This change it was felt needs to be strengthened by enhancing the capability of the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti in coordination with other agencies to improve their development of policy and practice with tribal groups across the Andaman and Nicobar archipelago. It was felt that minimal intervention (in influencing livelihood) and meaningful practice (enforcing regulation, and positive interaction comprehensible to both Jarawa and non-Jarawa) can go a long way in securing and aiding the process of empowerment for communities such as the Jarawas.

What has remained understudied and un-noticed is that how the practice of child infanticide (Shankateyeh) has been drastically reduced by the dedicated interaction of the field staff of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti. This will entail systematic organization of information as well as re-structuring and enhancing the managerial and effectiveness and capability of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti. The Jarawas are also active agents in there own history and culture and have selectively and strategically adopted aspects of the outside world. They should be idealized as a “primitive a historicized community that needs protection and provisions for perpetuity. The effort should be to facilitate their selection on their terms in accordance of their culture what they want for future. The role of the administration has to be only to facilitate that process.

One must understand properly how Jarawa themselves identify the problems and what the administration could do is to present them aspects of explanations that would enhance there own capacity to empower and make informed choices or rejections for them selves.
The Expert Committee ultimately concluded that:
(a)               That varieties of feelings are embodied in the present state of the community of Jarawas.    
(b)               No effort has been made to understand what the Jarawas would say to the difficult proposal posed by the present situation and the issue of determining the possible future course.
(c)               The matter cannot be seen in relation to extraneous development at levels of court, road and governmental departments.
(d)               The foremost intention should be to better understand the Jarawa articulation of what they see as problem not their response to what administration articulate as problem for them.
(e)               The method of taking questionnaire is ineffective as the intent is not understood by the Jarawas and ‘Yes’ and ‘No’. Thus, tabulations would serve no function but reinforce the present forms of stereotypes and organization dealing with PTG’s,[5] that keep them alive in present, but have no vision for the future.
(f)                 Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti has to be involved in a research based programme implementation as opposed to just distributing dole to PTG’s,[6] and from time to time undertake exercises that reflect changing situations in the large context.
(g)               The primary task would be to reorient the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti, particularly its ground staff and really utilize the capability of the existent staff to collaborate in research involving Jarawas and experts.
(h)               Some of the suggestions made and areas of research identified should contribute in making dynamic database that is not static and inform the logic of action that is compatible with the practice in Jarawas culture.
(i)                 Prompt and immediate action to initiate time bound research work is essential. Members of the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti Executive Committee could be considered as a primary group that deals with the research issues.

Follow up of the report of Expert Committee as suggested by Shri Ajai Saxena, Principal Secretary (TW). As a follow up of the report of Expert Committee as suggested by Shri Ajai Saxena, Principal Secretary (TW), suggested the following measures, both short term and long terms:
(1)               Reduce the frequency of convoys on Andaman Trunk Road and develop an alternate sea route for tourists and cargo to Baratang and North Middle respectively.
(2)               Better facilities and streamlining of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti to make their work with Jarawas effective and implementation of Protection of Aboriginal Tribe (PAT) Regulations, 1956, and Wildlife Protection Act properly.
(3)               Proper and adequate medical help/ intervention, screening of staff and workers on the Andaman Trunk Road against communicable diseases and their inoculation.
(4)               Awareness programme for settlers and communities using the Andaman Trunk Road and by including appropriate information on local tribes and tribal culture in school curriculum.
(5)               A proper review, monitoring and systematic analysis of the functioning of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti.
(6)               Listen and facilitate Jarawas, rather than ‘provide and deny’, due to the changes being experienced by this community.
(7)               Policy or actions to be ‘research’ backed and driven. Research is to be time bound and monitoring long term.
(8)               Some suggested areas for long term monitoring and research are on Social Impact Assessment. Study of movement patterns and “calenderics” of Jarawas Nutrition along with orientation and training of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti staff.    

The Administration endorsed these suggestions. The Committee’s views were first discussed by the Chief Secretary with officers of the concerned department. Subsequently, these were placed before the Lt. Governor. It is the view of the Administration that while many of the steps suggested can be acted upon immediately, there is a need for further, non-intensive research with reference to suggestions 6-8 above. Anthropological Survey of India would have to partner with the Administration in these exercises, so that they are able to develop a better understanding of the Jarawas world view.

Regarding the other suggestions, the Administration has initiated the following steps:-
(1)               Curtailment of number of daily convoys on Andaman Trunk Road from 8 to 4, which stands implemented from 25th September, 2011.
(2)               For better facilities and streamlining the functioning of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti and for implementation of Protection of Aboriginal Tribe Regulation, the restructuring of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti is being taken up.
(3)               To conduct systematic studies and research on the life of the tribal communities and for documentation of various aspects of tribal life. The Administration is keeping a separate provision in the 12th Plan. Research work shall be carried out in consultation and association with the Anthropological Survey of India as stated above, and other experts.

On 17th February, 2012 we were on the Trunk Road. This is a road which passes through Jarawa Reserve Area. At a place known as Nilambur, one has to cross through ferry. After having crossed through ferry, we reached Baratang. Here we met large group of people from different walks of life. These included members of Zila Parishad and Panchayats. They submitted representations. Some representations were submitted by Pradhan, Gram Panchayat, Kadamtala, Kumani Roy from Nilambur was also there. All of them were unanimous in submitting:
(i)         That Andaman Trunk Road should not be closed. This is because:
(a)       this constituted the life line of area;
(b)       this road connects Port Blair with Car Nicobar;
(c)        the alternate route is not effective because at some places on account of Tsunami and earthquake the rocks have come up;
(ii)        That the boats and ships are not easily available;
(iii)       That tourism provide means of sustenance and employment. This would be adversely affected.  
(iv)       That with regard to the Buffer Zone they submitted that in this area i.e. Kadamtala and Utara are the areas where settlers have been settled who have been living for decades;
(v)        With regard to Jarawas it was submitted that they come and contact the locals, they ask for food and other facilities;
(vi)       They described an incident where when the demand of the Jarawas was not met they caused injuries.
(vii)      G. Kurma Rao submitted objections on 17th February, 2012.  This objection was regarding the Buffer Zone.

The representations submitted on 17th February, 2012 along with enclosure are marked as ANNEXURE A (COLLY).
Police post at Jirkatang:
The situation with regard to the Andaman Trunk Road may now be noticed. It be seen that earlier there used to be 8 convoys. Now the number of convoys has come down to 4. They move at 6 a.m., 9 a.m., 12 p.m. and 2.30 p.m.  At the head of each convoy there is police vehicle. There is another police vehicle which is in the rear. There are two escorts on motorcycle. They move in between. This practice has been adopted because some vehicles would stop on the pretext that there is some breakdown, though the real purpose used to be meet and see the Jarawas. This escort on motorcycle now see to it that nobody misuses the facility of using Andaman Trunk Road. A record is maintained. There is:
(i)      Report of the convoys which moved on 16th February, 2012.
(ii)     The yearly report of private vehicles which moved in the year 2011 is also there.
(iii)    The details of the Jarawas who came on the Andaman Trunk Road is part of the report. This is adverted to while dealing with Police Post at Jirkatang. As such, every effort is being made to see that the local population does not come in open contact with the Jarawas.

It is at this police post where the record of vehicles moving on Andaman Trunk Road is maintained. This is enclosed as ANNEXURE B (COLLY). The record indicating the names of Jarawas who had visited this area is also enclosed at Serial No.5 of Annexure B (Colly).  This record is well documented.  This shows the sincerity with which the Jarawa policy with regard to Andaman Trunk Road is being followed.

Visit to Village Tirur and Bare Foot Resort Area on 18th February, 2012. On 18th February 2012, in the fore-noon we visited Tirur area also. We were on the pucca road. The Police Post is in the Revenue Village and at the end of the Village boundary is a small hillock on which there exist a Jarawa hut. The employees of the Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti informed us that the Jarawas move around in this area. They come and seek food. There was an instance, when on refusal, bodily injury was also caused. There was also an incident where some local boys went into Jarawa village and caused injury on the neck of Jarawa boy. That boy came to the police station and reported the matter. He was given medical aid and survived. He identified the assailants. 

Bare Foot Resort. The Bare Foot Resort is located in Revenue Village, Colinpur. This is not far from Tirur. It took us about 15 minutes to reach there. A thatched accommodation was in existence. This was obviously not being used. The Jarawas are coming frequently in these areas. They are moving around in the Jarawa Reserve Areas and also outside. They are seen even on the Andaman Trunk Road. 

On 18th February, 2012 a public hearing was arranged in the afternoon. Persons from different walks of life put across their grievances. They wanted the Buffer Zone to be scrapped as this was called a draconian measure and was anti-settlers. Shri Vishnu Pada Ray, a member of Lok Sabha was also present. It was said that on account of Buffer Zone the land of 50 to 60 villages is affected. It affects those who came to be settled 1850 onwards. The closure of restaurants, hotels, lodges, bars and guest houses which are in existence in these area has proved to be detrimental to the economy of the settlers. The Buffer Zone on sea from Tirur to Chainpur has caused immense damage to fishery sector. The ultimate demand was that the Buffer Zone Notification which completely prohibit the activities notified therein should be withdrawn. The written submission submitted by him is annexed herewith and marked as ANNEXURE C.  

With regard to Andaman Trunk Road, it was stated that this is a national highway. It was declared to be so on 25th February, 2004. The entire stretch of 333 kms was declared as National High Way but it was later on curtailed. It was submitted:
(i)         That Andaman Trunk road is life line of Middle and North Andaman;
(ii)        It not only helps the civilian population but also is essential for defence movement;
(iii)       Journey by sea is not feasible;
(iv)       The essential goods can be transported only by use of Andaman Trunk Road;
(v)        That the closure would lead to unemployment of about 10,000 people;

The Member of the Parliament sought implementation of the Report submitted by Shri Jairam Ramesh in 2006.

Ultimately, the demand made was that alternate sea route is not feasible and it should not be implemented as an alternate of Andaman Trunk Road. It was stated that restriction or the tourist establishments and commercial establishments has led to grave adverse impact on the economy of settlers.

So far as Buffer Zone is concerned, there was lot of protest on this issue because this has:
(i)                 diminished the value of the land;
(ii)               this has allegedly caused unemployment.

Representation were submitted by:
(i)         Shri Sudhir Biswas, a former Upadaksh Zila Parishad, Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The copy of representation is marked as ANNEXURE D.  
(ii)        Representation were submitted by Vishal Jolly, State President and ex-State President Bhartiya Janata Party in which a demand was made for withdrawal of Buffer Zone. Copy of representation is marked as ANNEXURE E.     
(iii)       The Communist Party of India (Marxist) through B. Chandrachoodan submitted a representation against the Buffer Zone and also with regard to the proposed closure of Andaman Trunk Road. This is marked as ANNEXURE F.    
(iv)       The Bengal Association of Andaman and Nicobar Island submitted detailed representation through one Shri Jayanta Biswas. The main burden of this was that the Buffer Zone Notification should not be given effect to. They objected to the closure of Andaman Trunk Road, as according to them the settlers were brought from the main land and there is no justification now to interfere with their rights. The Bengali settlers are said to be about 1.35 lakhs.  Copy of representation is marked as ANNEXURE G. 
(v)                Tapan Kumar Das, an advocate also submitted his view point on the buffer zone notification. Copy of representation is marked as ANNEXURE H.   
(vi)              All India Kisan Sabha through Dr. Gouranga Maji also spoke against the Buffer Zone. Copy of submission of memorandum on the matter of Buffer Zone is marked as ANNEXURE I. 

There was a lone voice suggesting that Jarawas should be shifted to some other Island. There were no supporters for this.   

A former Member of the Parliament namely, Manoranjan Bhakta also opposed the Buffer Zone but at the same time pointed out that the interest of Jarawas are also required to be taken care of. It was stated that an effort should be made to bring them in the main stream. What was written by him in his representation, in Para 10 is reproduced below:
“The Great Andamanese and the Onges have been rehabilitated at Strait Island and at Dugong Creek and South Creek Bay in Little Andaman respectively. But the Jarawas are yet to be rehabilitated. The Jarawas should be treated with dignity and they may gradually be allowed to come to the “main stream” of social life. Once they experience the taste of civilization now, nothing can prevent them coming out and coming up. It was pointed out:
(a)       Jarawa people need food.
(b)       Jarawa people need potable water.
(c)        Jarawa people need arrangement for proper health and sanitation.
(d)       Jarawa people need to learn cooking of food and its facility.
(e)       The children of Jarawa people need education for their better future.
(f)         Jarawa people need segregation from non-tribal population.
(g)       Jarawa people need to provide food articles like banana, papaya and coconut in their habitats.
(h)        Jarawa people need special check and control with healthy arrangement for proper supervision to protect their culture and prevent evils of civil society.
(i)         The hundreds of young male-female from Jarawa Community are using clothes and they do not wash it and change till these are become unsuitable which cause skin diseases to them.”

Thus, he made ferment appeal that the Jarawas should be treated with dignity. Copy of the representation made by Manoranjan Bhakta, Former Member of the Parliaments is marked as ANNEXURE J.   

Shri Kuldip Raj Sharma of the Andaman Nicobar Territorial Congress pointed out that steps be taken to protect the Jarawas but pointed out that the Andaman Trunk Road should not be closed as it is the lifeline of the people and any disruption would affect the life of the people. Copy of views of Andaman Pradesh Congress Committee on Buffer Zone is marked as ANNEXURE K.

On indigenous tribes of the world and the Jarawas of Andaman Andaman Trunk Road and Buffer Zone Shri S.B. Chatopadhyay, expressed his view. There are marked as ANNEXURE L.

Shri Shri Harris Anselm, Chief Editor, The Andaman Messenger, Fortnightly, submitted his views. This is marked as ANNEXURE M.

In a public hearing held on 18.02.2012, one Ms. Jessy John, Proprietor, Dew Dale Resort, Baratang Island was also present. She made her submissions. She was advised to make a written representation. She has accordingly sent a written representation. Her grievance is that she had set up the resort prior to the issuance of the Notification. This was issued on 30.10.2007. Her resort it is stated is located outside the Buffer Zone. It is accordingly submitted by her that the action taken by the Administration to seal her resort is not in accordance with law. The summary of events which have been projected by her may be noticed.
i.                    It is submitted that a scheme was framed by the Andaman and Nicobar Administration with a view to promote tourism in the Islands. Under this scheme 50% capital subsidy was to be given to the tourism industry.
ii.                  The representationist submitted an application for conversion of land owned by her for tourism purposes. This application is dated 13.03.2007.
iii.                The Sub Divisional Officer (Revenue) (Assistant Commissioner North and Middle Andaman) Mayabunder allowed the diversion on the terms and conditions stipulated in the order dated 14.03.2007.
iv.                 That there after the representationist sought financial assistance from the bank and the requisite sanction was granted by the State Bank of India. For this reliance is being placed on a communication dated 18.08.2007.
v.                   The representationist submited an application for grant of bar license to the Deputy Commissioner, Excise on 15.10.2009. The said application as per the representationist was rejected on 17.06.2010. She sought certain information under Right to Information Act. This is part of the representation.

Her grievance is that a notice to close down the resort was issued by Tehsildar, Rangat on 08.12.2010. This was in pursuance of the directions given by the Deputy Commissioner (North and Middle Andaman). The representationist submitted her reply on 09.12.2010.  She makes reference to Inter-Departmental Note dated 30.12.2010. She was, however, intimated on 24.12.2010 that her establishment would be closed and the sealing order was passed on 08.02.2011. The representationist was informed that she should not re-open the premises till the matter is finally decided by this Hon’ble Court.

The representationist is aggrieved by this order by which the resort referred to above has been sealed. She states:
i.                    that she had started the project in pursuance of the scheme dated 29.03.2005;
ii.                  that the project which was to be executed by her was duly approved and a recommendation to this effect was made on 14.03.2007.  The requisite diversion was allowed;
iii.                the bank granted loan to the extent of Rs.70 lakhs;
iv.                 it was provided that the resort should provide 3-Star facilities and as the provision for the bar was a must, therefore, she applied for a license. This permission was not granted and an order of rejection was passed on 17.06.2010.

The basic grievance of the representations is:
i.                    That her resort does not fall within the Buffer Zone and therefore the restriction imposed by the notification dated 30.10.2007 by which Buffer Zone was created would not be attracted as no retrospective effect could given to the subordinate legislation;
ii.                  She was granted permission before the declaration of Buffer Zone.
iii.                That the employees engaged by her are without any work and they have been deprived of the means of subsistence;
iv.                 That the limited permission granted to the representationist to only carry on maintenance and cleanliness of the premises is not sufficient. She also claims compensation for the loss sustained by her.

The copy of representation submitted by Ms. Jessy John, Proprietor, Dew Dale Resort, Baratang Island is marked as ANNEXURE N.
Experience of integrating the Great Andamanese not very happy, visit to Strait Island on 19th February, 2012. We also went to a settlement where Great Andamanese stand settled. They are 57 in number. In this settlement there is a school, a health centre and a Police Post. The experience of integrating the Great Andamanese has not been very happy. They have:

(i)           become lethargic,
(ii)   are found to be indulging in taking liquor and drugs.

This was so reported by the women folk. Otherwise we were informed that out of this settlement those children who have been sent to Pot Blair for study are doing better than the locals. The impression gained by me was that the Administration was rightly not happy in settling the Great Andamanese in Strait Island by asking them to move from their original habitat. The same is the position of the Onges. It is this factor which is prevailing with the Administration for adopting a cautious approach in the matter of dealing with the Jarawas.


The Standing Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment, 2010-2011, in its 16th Report dated 11th August, 2011 has suggested that the Jarawas should be brought within the main stream but not against their Will.  What is said in this regard is being reproduced below:
“In pursuance of the provision of Clause VI (e) of the policy on Jarawa Tribe, a Sub-committee of the Expert Committee to review the existing “Policy on Jarawa Tribe of Andaman Islands, 2004” has been constituted under the Chairmanship of Secretary, Tribal Affairs on 27.09.2010. The Committee also observe that divergent views are being expressed on the review of the “Policy on Jarawa Tribe of Andaman Island, 2004”. The Committee feel that the Jarawa Tribes have been living in the Andaman forests for years and with time they have become part of our rich cultural heritage.  However, at this juncture when many of the Jarawas themselves are now willing to come to the mainstream and live modern lifestyle, it would not be appropriate to suppress their voice and leave them in total isolation, unattended and without care. Therefore, the Committee recommend the Ministry to review the policy of Jarawa Tribes keeping the above fact in perspective and bring necessary changes in the above policy which should aim at facilitating a slow and smooth process of transition i.e. bringing the Jarawas into the mainstream with minimum damage to the cultural heritage as well as the Jarawas themselves.”

In this regard it would be pertinent to mention that a video was taken in the year 2008 and it is alleged that it is this very video which is being circulated time and again by the media. A news item came in the Deily Telegraph also. The Administration has taken steps and the policeman who was responsible for assisting the preparation of the video has been identified and he has been suspended. A communication issued on 22.02.2012 by the Assistant Commissioner of Police is as under:
“I am directed to inform you about the action taken on the second video footage on Jarawa tribe is as under:
1.            In connection with the second video telecast in the national and international media and news channels on the Jarawa Girls dancing on the Andaman Trunk Road, a case vide Crime No.17/12 dated 06.12.2011 under Section 292/34 IPC both 67 of IT Act, sections 3(1)(iii) and (x) of SC and ST (POA) Act, 1989 and sections 7/8 of PAT Regulation, 1956 was registered at Police Station, Bambooflat and investigation was taken up by the Deputy Superintendent of Police, Middle Andaman.  On the close scrutiny of the video by the staff at AMN Police revealed that the person in the khaki uniform shown in the video is police constable PC/1734 Class/ The policeman has been arrested and placed under suspension for dereliction in the discharge of his duties. A departmental enquiry has been initiated against him.
2.            During the course of further, investigation, the old records of JPP, Jirkatang were scrutinized and the names of 40 police personnel who performed duty with PC Claton were shortlisted. A test identification parade was held on 19.02.2012 at Jirkatang No.9 on the sidelines of the ATR with the help of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti officials. The three Jarawa women independelty identified PC/2433 Sylvarious Kindo as the culprit who asked the Jarawa women to dance and then video recorded them. The police constable has been arrested and placed under suspension. The said video has been sent for forensic examination to ascertain its date of recording and the device used to record the same.
3.            Further investigation is in progress and efforts are being made to identify the person in camouflage uniform seen in the first video which was probably shot between 15th September and 15th November, 2008.
4.            Extracts of News item on the issue published in the official media viz. “The Daily Telegrams” are also enclosed herewith.”

“Policeman seen in Jarawa video identified:
In connection with the second video appearing in the visual media and news channels where a policeman is seen watching Jarawa women dance, a case has been registered and efforts have been made to identify the Jarawa women and the policeman appearing in the video. The policeman seen sitting while the Jarawa women are made to dance on the road for an unknown videographer, though partially visible, has been identified to be one PC Claton.  On perusal of the video showing PC Claton it is clearly seen that he is not preventing the recording. He has been placed under suspension for dereliction in the discharge of his duties. A departmental enquiry has also been initiated against him. Vigorous efforts are being made to identify the other person who was video filming the protected Jarawa tribe in the said video, a communication from SP (SA) said here today.”
This communication is part of Annexure O (Colly).
The various steps taken by the Police Administration are in the shape Press Releases. These are being made part of this report. These are marked as ANNEXURE O (Colly). These are:
1.         Press release dated 24.01.2012: Two arrested for organizing Human Safari and transmitting lascivious videos of the members of the Jarawa tribe;
(a)       Jarawa Video case: A&N Identifies the Policeman Involved, Chronicle dated 9th February, 2012.
(b)       Another Police constable suspended in video recording of Jarawa tribe. The Daily Telegram dated 21.02.2012.
(c)        Tourist encroachments on parking lots rued. The Bullet of Andaman (Weekly) dated 20.02.2012.
(d)       Two more Jarawa video released by ‘Observer’ NGOs may selectively release more Jarawa Videos to sensationalize ATR issue: Police. Andaman Sheekha dated 07.02.2012.    
(e)       UK MPs call for end to ‘human safaris’ as new video proves police link. Andaman Chronicle dated 07.02.2012.
(f)         Jarawas’ alleged exploitation attract world media glare. The Echo of India dated 12.01.2012.
 (g)      Controversy over tribals’ dance footage.
(h)        Government disputes video footage.
(i)         TV Channels to be served notices too. The Echo of India dated 12.01.2012.  
(j)         Pvt. bus owners warned against violation of route permits and time. The Daily Telegrams dated 12.01.2012.
(k)        ‘Observer’ owners and Apology to A&N Police Force: DGP. Andaman Express dated 12.01.2012.
(l)         Administration’s reputation at stake: News Channels project wrong image of A&N Islands in National level. The Andaman Express dated 12.01.2012.
(m)      Andaman Police launches hunt to trace Jarawa video source. Andaman Sheekha dated 12.01.2012.
(n)        A&N Police categorically refutes media reports on Jarawa Exploitation. Andaman Express dated 12.01.2012.
(o)       Andaman and Nicobar Administration Rebuts Jarawa video shown by Times Now. Andaman Chronicle dated 12.01.2012.
(p)       Hunt is on for Jarawa clip videographer: First two arrests made in Jarawa dance video clip case. Andaman Sheekha dated 25.01.2012.
(q)       Police involvement in ‘human safari’ exposed in the Andaman Island. Andaman Chronicle dated 10.01.2012.  
2.         Press Release dated 12.01.2012.
3.         Press Release dated 11.01.2012.    
4.         Press Release dated 14.01.2012.    
5.         Press Release dated 14.01.2012.
6.         Press Release dated 12.01.2012.
7.         Press release dated 24.01.2012: Two arrested for organizing Human Safari and transmitting lascivious videos of the members of the Jarawa tribe.
8.         Press Release dated 20.02.2012.
9.         Press Release dated 08.02.2012.
10.       Press Release dated 10.01.2012.
11.       Communication dated 22.02.2012.
The press releases and above material noted above does indicate the concern of the police administration.  I was told that it is an old video of 2008 which is being circulated time and again. Steps have been taken with a view to determine the date, time and the means by which video recording was done.

‘Human Safaris’ Threaten Jarawas in the Andamans: Tourists Treat Tribe like ‘Circus Ponies’
The video footage posted online is the kind of exotic encounter some tourists dream about when they set out on a so-called "safari," but the practice is both devastating and humiliating for the tribe involved.
Jarawas: Tourism Pushing Andaman Aborigines to Tipping Point authored by Mr. S. Santosh Murthy
The Andamans, which comprise over 550 islands, some of them uninhabited, are home to different tribes and is rich in exotic flora and fauna. The islands, which were battered by the 2004 killer tsunami, house some historic sites like the Cellular Jail.
The Andaman Trunk Road opens early in the morning and closes by about 4 pm. The gates will not open or close before the prescribed time. The administration strictly follows this rule to protect the tribal community.
But there was no getting way... They had already posed for a photo.
I pretended as if I were taking their photos. They continued to emit innocent smiles and I felt guilty since I didn't really take their photos.
The complete report is marked as ANNEXURE P.
It may be mentioned that Jarawas have survived in the Island for more than 2000 years. They have been brought up in tough but invigorating natural habitat without any outside support. They have not only survived but they have saved themselves from poachers. Even the might of the British Empire was not able to control them. The bombing of the forests by the Japanese Forces during the War did not in any way affect the spirit of this Tribes. These tribals are strong people who protect their independene fiercely. They are conscious of their self-respect. Though some attempts have been made by the younger generation to come on the Andaman Trunk Road but it has been noticed that after some time they have withdrawn to the jungles and are happy with the natural surroundings of the forests. This is evident from the fact that the younger Jarawas who come on the road always keep on changing.
In the background of the above and in background of their culture and social organisation noticed above the issues which arise are:
i.                    Whether the Jarawa tribes should be allowed to get integrated in the main stream;
ii.                  To what extent this integration has to be done;
iii.                As to whether this integration is to be done against their Will or after taking note of their views which they are now in a position to express;
iv.                 The other issue is with regard to the Andaman Trunk Road i.e. whether it should be closed or the entry to this should be restricted or that goods and other material which is carried on this road, be routed through the sea routes;
v.                   If the Andaman Trunk Road is closed, what impact it would have on those settlers who have been settled from time to time beginning from 1850 onwards;
vi.                 What impact it would have on the Tourism in the area;
vii.               The other issue would be as to what are the implications of the Buffer Zone?

The aforementioned matters have been examined by me and I find that the Andaman and Nicobar Administration have formulated a policy which is clear and categoric.

The objectives of this policy are:
i.                    The cultural identity of the Jarawas is not to be destroyed in any manner;
ii.                  No attempt is to be made to bring them in the main stream against their Will;
iii.                That in any intervention which Jarawas require, a very careful approach is required because this issue is sensitive and the Jarawa habitat is to be protected;
iv.                 The health of the Jarawas should be given due attention and in this regard the traditional knowledge of the Jarawas on the basis of which they have been taking care of their problems is to be given due regard.
v.                   So far as food items are concerned, only those items which do not come in conflict with their dietary habits should be given;
vi.                 That every effort is to be made to see that they remain away from communicable diseases;
vii.               That drinking and smoking should not be encouraged;
viii.             That the language of the Jarawas should be codified.

The above are the main objectives of the policy to deal with the Jarawas. It may be seen that so far as the issue of keeping the identity of the Jarawas intact is concerned, this is of paramount importance. They have survived all along without any outside assistance.  As a matter of experience of the Administration in bringing the North Andamanese in the main stream has not been very happy. This aspect of the matter has been noticed when I visited Strait Island. It was found that men folk were making extensive use of alcohol and drugs.

Similar situation has been described with regard to the another tribe, namely the Onges.

In this regard it may be pertinent to mention that Jarawa Policy of 2004 has been reviewed from time to time. The Parliamentary Committee which was formed has also taken note of this. This Committee has also expressed the need to bring the Jarawas in the main stream but then at the same time has cautioned that this should not be done against their Will.

An Expert Committee was constituted. This Committee of experts prepared a note which was required to be examined. On the basis of the note so prepared and after due deliberation the view expressed by the Expert Committee was:
i.                    that the concern for Jarawas as a society and their culture are to be addressed;
ii.                  that there is a need to first understand what constitutes Jarawa knowledge that sustain their Society;
iii.                that though some people feel that there is readiness on the part of Jarawas to be integrated in the main stream but this has never been the urge of majority of Jarawas;
iv.                 that the entire Jarawa community is not interested in coming on the road;
v.                   that the need is to create a situation of mutual understanding where the Jarawas are empowered to take their own decisions;
vi.                 The Expert Committee took note of the situation which has come into existence after 1997 and on account of the policy of 2004 and suggestions have been made in this regard.

About Andaman Trunk Road:
In the public hearing which took place on 17.02.2012 as also on 18.02.2012 concern was shown about the Andaman Trunk Road. This is a road which runs through the Island and is used as a means of communication from Port Blair to Chainpore. This road runs at some places by the side of Jarawa Reserve Area and at other places through it. The settlers had shown their concern and were worried as to what would happen if this road is closed. According to them:
i.                    This is the arterial road through which the essential goods to sustain the lifeline are carried;
ii.                  This is the quickest and safest means for transporting essential items as also patients in the event they require to be given treatment at Port Blair;
iii.                As this road runs through Jarawa reserve area, the Jarawas are coming on this road and at some places the expression used is they “hang around” on this road;
iv.                 To the suggestion given that there should be alternate sea route, it is said that it is not feasible because at several places the sea route which was being used has become unusable. Rocks have come up and it is not safe for ships to pass and a new course has to chartered which has not been done so far.
v.                   That even alternate land route is not possible in the near future as many of jetties have become unusable on account of Tsunami and earthquakes.
In nutshell what has been conveyed is that the life would become not only difficult but unsustainable if Andaman Trunk Road is not kept open.

The policy of 2004 which was framed by the Administration and the later recommendations of the Expert Committee do not suggest the complete closure of this road. A suggestion has been made to streamline the traffic. Earlier there used to be 8 convoys, now there are 4 convoys. Earlier there used to be police at the front and at the rear now there is a motor cycle escort as well. This additional step was taken because it was found that some unscrupulous persons would stop their vehicle on the pretext that they have developed some defect. The real pretext used to be to wait for the Jarawas and inter-mix with them.

The Administration also is of the view that making a provision for alternate route on the road would be costly venture and it would take a long time to complete the same.

Jarawa Reserve Area:
The need to mark an area for the Jarawa Tribals was felt so that the settlers may not enter their area. Though the Jarawas are to some extent made aware of this aspect of the matter but they are not very clear about it. The settlers did not have much grievance on the creation of Jarawa Reserve Areas. Their only grievance was that notwithstanding that Jarawa Reserve Area has been marked and even if they do not go inside, the Jarawas come to their settlements and want to mix with them.

Forest reserves as source of food and other valuables. The forest areas where the Jarawas have their place of abode has wild life and also food items on which they depend. One of the these items is honey. The other items have already been mentioned above. The other forest produce is Dhup i.e. resin used for agarbattis.  Another item which highly priced is the Ambergris, produced by the Sperm whale.  Ambergris, like all aromatic substances of animal origin, is a pheromone and acts directly on the hormonal system through the sense of smell, without physical contact. The Sperm whale that produces Ambergris is so called for the large amount of fine and valuable oil that is found behind its head. There are unconfirmed rumours that the Jarawas use the barter system, at least for honey and dhup but Ambergris is an item which is smuggled out. It is for the Administration to see that these valuable forest produce is preserved and used for the welfare of the Jarawas. To some extent they have become aware of the barter system. This system can be developed through government channels. The staff of Adam Jati Samiti can be utilized for this purpose.

Buffer Zone:
Buffer Zone is the major problem projected by the settlers. They said that the creation of Jarawa Reserve Area has caused them problems which they were bearing with but the creation of the Buffer Zone which extends upto 5 kms along with the boundary of the Jarawa Reserve has caused further damage to their economy. According to them this Buffer Zone extends in the sea also and the fishermen are unable to do fishing. This has affected their means of subsistence. 

As the building activity has been totally banned in the Buffer Zone, this has reduced the value of the property and have caused un-employment. It was this notification issued in 2007 which was held to be bad by Calcutta High Court (Circuit Bench Port Blair) and the litigation in this regard is pending in this Court.

It may be seen that the Administration is of the view that the necessity to create a Buffer Zone was felt with a view to protect the Jarawas only. The idea was that:
(i)                 There should be least mingling between the Jarawas and the settlers.
(ii)               This is essential to keep the identity of the Jarawas intact.
(iii)             It is also essential to keep them free from communicable diseases.
(iv)              The source of food in the forest habitat needs to protected.

So far as tourism is concerned the main attraction for a normal tourist is Port Blair, where the Cellural Jail is located. This is the jail where most of the freedom fighters were detained. Then there is Ross island which is within the reach of anyone who is staying at Port Blair.

The other tourists resort are lime rocks and caves. In Baratang Island, particularly at Nayadera near Wrafters Creek, there is a huge deposit of limestone, where some deposits are in the form of caves and the rest of them are in the form of layers or beds one upon the other. These deposits are either above the soil or under the ground where the underground portions form these caves. There are more than 300 major and minor deposits of limestone, out of which only one in the form of a cave is open to tourists. In the cave, massive limestone formations dangle from the ceiling, glow from the sides or sprout from the ground. To unravel the mystery behind the Limestone cave formation in Baratang Island, one need to reach Baratang. This is situated between South and Middle Andaman Islands. From Port Blair the Andaman Trunk Road takes the tourists to Baratang Island which is approximately 100 kilometers away and a four hour road journey. The journey also involves a short ferry ride from Middle Strait to Baratang Island (Nilambur Jetty). From Nilambur Jetty, it entails a half-an-hour boat ride to Nayadera Jetty. After getting off from Nayadera Jetty, one has to walk one and a half kilometre through dense tropical forest habitat to reach the Limestone caves. As the speedboat cruises its way through the waters of the Baratang Creek, the sight of tiny islands and endless stretches of massive, primordial tropical forests and mangrove vegetation provides a soothing effect to the eyes.

The other tourist attractions are the Havelock Island which has been developed from tourists point of view. This island is free from Tribals. One has undertake journey by sea. As a matter of fact this is the Island which provides vegetables to the Port Blair and other areas.

It is felt setting up of a resorts which are near the Jarawa Reserve, is to satisfy the desire and curiousity of a tourist to meet Jarawas. This could be one of the motives for setting up the tourist resorts near Port Blair.

Bare Foot Resort and Dew Dale Resort. The Bare Foot Resort is easily accessible to the Jarawas Tribals. This is located in Village Colinpur. This is equally close to the Revenue Village Tirur, from where one can see Jarawa huts. The Dew Dale Resort is also in an area inhabited by Jarawas. Though the claim is that this is not within the Buffer Zone, this is a matter on which no final view can be formulated. But I have gained an impression that setting up a resort in this area, the main attraction appears to be to satisfy the curiosity of the tourists who would be staying there to see the Jarawas.
Relevancy of the Panchayat Act:
The Panchayat Act is applicable to the revenue villages. It is necessary to obtain permission for carrying out any building activity.

Even in the matter of extension this permission is required. From the documents which have been made available by Mr. Jessy John, the Representationist, challenging the creation of the Buffer Zone and seeking to continue with her Dew Dale Resorts, nothing has been brought on record to show that this permission was obtained. This permission would be required even if the provisions of Buffer Zone Notification are ignored for a while.

The relevant statutory provision is embodied in the Andaman and Nicobar Island (Panchayat Administration) Rules, 1997. The relevant provision contained at Chapter VII Control of Building Operations Rule 31 is reproduced as follows:
31.   Application in Form 11.- (1) Subject to the provisions of Rule 33, any person intending to erect a new structure or a new building or to make any addition to an existing structure of building  in any area within the jurisdiction of a Gram Panchayat shall for obtaining prior permission in writing of the concerned Gram Panchayat make an application in duplicate in Form 11 to the Gram Panchayat. The Secretary or any other employee of the Gram Panchayat authorized by the Pradhan in this behalf, shall receive the application, in duplicate, retain one copy of it and return the other copy noting thereon the date of receipt under his signature and the seal of the Gram Panchayat.
(2)       An application in Form 11 shall be submitted along with a plan in duplicate, of the proposed structure or building, a site plan in duplicate, copy of record of right and copy of such other records showing title and interest of the applicant in respect of the land as may be necessary.
(3)       Such applications shall be scrutinized by a sub-committee called “Sub-Committee on control of building operation” appointed by the Panchayat under these rules. The Committee may recommend or reject the application for reasons to be recorded in writing and forward the same to Gram Panchayat.
(4)       Copies of Form 11 shall be supplied on demand by the Gram Panchayat to any intending applicant at a non-profit making price to be fixed by the committee referred to in sub-rule (3). The Secretary shall maintain the accounts of the stock of Form 5.
(5)       Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rule (4) any person may submit his application in Form 11 under sub-rule (1) in manuscript, type-written or otherwise mechanically prepared copy of the Form.
Rule 33. Exemption from permission:
(1)         No permission of the Gram Panchayat shall be necessary for erection of any  new thatched structure, tin, shed or tile shed without brick wall covering an area not exceeding eighteen square meters, and such structure or shed does not cover more than three fourth of the total area of the land including appurtenant land.
(2)         Permission of the Gram Panchayat shall not be necessary for repair of an existing structure or building unless-
(3)         Permission of a Gram Panchayat shall not be necessary for erection a boundary wall unless it is made of brick or cement concrete and unless the bounded area is not kept as vacant land but is used or likely to be used as stockyard or for any commercial or institutional purpose either on open space or by erecting temporary shed.
Another aspect which would be required to be looked into is the impact of Coastal Zone Regulations. Under these Regulations earlier there was a restriction to build any resort within a distance of 50 mtrs. Now this limit has been extended to 100 mtrs. No doubt as per the decision of this Hon’ble Court the on-going constructions were permitted to go on and the extended limits were not to be applied to those constructions which were going on before the limitations were extended. 
Notification issued under Section 3 of the Environment (Protection) Act 1986 to prevail over ”any other law”
Notification issued under Section 3 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 is to prevail over “any other law”. Coastal Regulation Zone Notice No.1 dated 19th February, 1991 was issued under Environment (Protection) Act 1986. The Government contended that Development Control Rules, 1967 are not applicable to the builder which could entitle them to additional Floor Space Index because the date on which their application was considered, draft regulations of 1989 were in force. It was held that when Coastal Regulation Zone notification refers to existing rules, the same shall mean existing as on date of notification and not on the date of grant of permission. On 19th February, 1991, Development Control Rules, 1967 were in force hence building activities were to be governed by them only. Suresh Estate Private Limited v. Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai, (2007) 14 SCC 439.
On going constructions or incomplete constructions can be completed  
By filing a petition under Article 32 of the Constitution, a declaration was sought that the building plans sanctioned and constructions made and ongoing constructions pursuant to the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification dated 19th February, 1991, as amended by the Notification dated 16th August, 1994 issued by the Central Government are valid. The facts were that an owner of the land situated near river Zuari at Goa submitted plans in the year 1993 for construction of a hotel and residential complex. The Central Government, through Ministry of Environment and Forests, issued Coastal Regulation Zone Notification dated 19th February, 1991. This was done in exercise of powers under Rule 5(d) of the Environment (Protection) Rules, 1986. As per the said notification, the area upto 100 meters from the High Tide Line was earmarked as “No Development Zone” and no construction was permitted within this zone except for repairs etc. However, the Central Government issued another notification on 16th August, 1994 amending notification dated 19th February, 1991. It relaxed the “No Development Zone” to 50 meters from 100 meters. In view of the said relaxation, the owner of the land who had earlier obtained construction permissions in respect of a project beyond 100 meters, submitted an additional proposal to the Panchayat of village for construction of 18 blocks between 50 meters and 100 meters. The Village Panchayat referred the matter to the Town and Country Planning Authority, as required under the Rules for technical evaluation. The Town and Country Planning Authority approved the abovementioned additional construction to be made between 50 meters and 100 meters. Based on this approval, the Village Panchayat sanctioned the plans and granted permission to construct. The owner of the land commenced construction in accordance with newly approved plans which were revalidated from time to time. Earlier the Indian Council for Enviro-Legal Action had filed a public interest litigation in the Supreme Court of India under Article 32 of the Constitution against the Union of India making a prayer to direct the Central Government to implement notification dated 19th February, 1991 by which Coastal Regulation Zones were formed and restrictions on development were imposed. The grievance made was that the non-implementation of the said notification had led to continued degradation of ecology. In the said petition, Goa Foundation, a society registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 filed an application challenging the vires of notification dated 16th August, 1994 by which main notification dated 19th February, 1991 was amended. The Court took into consideration the salient features of the main notification dated 19th February, 1991 and noticed that the said notification was issued to ensure that the development activities were consistent with the environmental guidelines for beaches and coastal areas and, therefore, by the said Notification, restrictions on the setting up of industries which had detrimental effect on the coastal environment were imposed. The Court thereafter proceeded to examine validity of notification dated 16th August, 1994. After noticing that six amendments were made in the main notification, the Court found that reduction of the ban on construction from 100 meters to 50 meters was illegal and power given to the Central Government for relaxation of developmental activities in the entire 6,000 kilometers long coast line was unbridled and capable of being abused. Thus, in Indian Council for Enviro-Legal Action v. Union of India, (1996) 5 SCC 281, the abovementioned two amendments were held to be bad. From the judgment, it transpires that:
(i)         there could not have been uniform basis for demarcating “No Development Zone” and it would depend upon the requirements by each State Authority concerned in their own management plan, but no reason had been given as to why in relation to tidal rivers, there was a reduction of the ban on construction from 100 meters to 50 meters.
(ii)        That no explanation had been given in the affidavit filed on behalf of the Union of India as to why the construction was permitted at a distance of 50 meters and more along rivers, creeks etc.
(iii)       That reduction of the ban on construction from 100 meters to 50 meters would permit new constructions to take place and, therefore, the reduction could not be regarded as a protection only to the existing structures.
(iv)       That there was absence of a categorical statement in the affidavit of Government to the effect that such reduction would not be harmful or result in serious ecological imbalance.
(v)        The Court expressed its inability to conclude that the amendment was made in the larger public interest and was valid.
The said amendment was held to be contrary to the object of the Environment Act and found to have been made for no valid reason. The two amendments out of six amendments introduced by the amending Notification were declared to be illegal. The question which fell for consideration in Goan Real Estate and Construction Ltd. v. Union of India, (2010) 3 Scale 512 : (2010) 3 JT 462, was whether the constructions made or on-going pursuant to the plans sanctioned on the basis of Notification dated 16th August, 1994 would be affected or not. On a study of the judgment in Indian Council for Enviro-Legal Action v. Union of India, (1996) 5 SCC 281, it was found that it was clear that the Court had examined validity of six amendments made by Notification dated 16th August, 1994 in the Notification dated 19th February, 1991. Two out of the six amendments were found by the Court to be arbitrary and illegal and, therefore, they were struck down. When one part of the Notification was found to be legal and another part of the said Notification to be bad in law, it would not be proper to construe the judgment affecting past transactions. In Goan Real Estate and Construction Ltd. v. Union of India, (supra) the Court pointed out that the tenor of the judgment indicated that the Court intended to give prospective effect to the judgment dated 18th April, 1996 rendered in the case of Indian Council for Enviro-Legal Action v. Union of India, (1996) 5 SCC 281. In its judgment the Court had not specifically directed demolition of existing structures. It was pointed out that the Court had not stated as to what will be the fate of ongoing constructions which were coming up or on-going as per sanctions during the period when the said amending Notification dated 16th August, 1994 was valid and in force. In view of these circumstances, the Court in Goan Real Estate and Construction Ltd. v. Union of India, (supra) tried to find out the real intention of the Court ingrained in the judgment dated 18th April, 1996. It was held that ongoing construction could be completed.


The Jarawas have survived in the state of nature since time immorial.  A study of tribal life of Jarawas indicate that they are part of ecology of the islands. They have survived for centuries in natural habitats. They have strong family structure. They are bound by kinship. The family ties are very strong amongst the tribals. They are together in birth and death.

No attempt should be made which may disturb the social life of the Jarawas.  There is need to protect them from destructive impact of aggressive culture.  This was so visualised by Shri K.M. Munshi while debate with regard to needs of the tribals communities was going on in the Constituent Assembly. Whatever interference is to be made should be done with the consent of the Jarawa Tribe.
Any attempt made to control the Jarawas during the British India period, and during Japanese occupation and even after independence up to 1997 proved to be futile.

No solution should be thrust on the Jarawas against their Will. They constitute an intelligent tribe. When the Jarawa girls were called upon to identify the police personnel who had taken their videos they did it successfully.

Tribal Reserve Area has been marked.  The tribals may not be in a position to identify clear cut demarcation of this line of demarcation but broadly they know what their territory is.

There is need to respect the Tribal Reserve Area. This is essential to protect:
(i) the social life of the Jarawas;
(ii) natural food resources to which Jarawas are accustomed to;
(iii) the wildlife which the Jarawas hunt and use as items of food;
(iv) any exploitation of these natural resources by non-jarawas would enlarge the area of conflict and this has necessarily to be avoided.

The Jarawas have after 1997 adopted a friendly approach with the Administration. There has been offer of gifts. This was in the shape of fruit and other eatables.  There has been more frequent contact with the Jarawas.

More free contact with the Jarawas should be avoided.  This has led to health problems.  About 125 Jarawas were treated at the G.B. Pant Hospital, Port Blair between 26th April, 1996 and 19th October, 1999.
The giving of gifts including clothes is a practice which is being followed.

Any attempt to offer clothes to the Jarawas can be counter productive. This is because they do not have the means to clean them. There are instances where they have suffered from skin diseases. The island have a long spell of monsoon for about 7 to 8 months.  On account of humidity, fungus appears even in the clothes lying in closed cupboards. The indiscriminate use of clothes by the Jarawas can lead to skin and other problems.

Some people did suggest that there should be more interaction and active effort should be made to take care of the problems of the Jarawas.

Any attempt to, to much interfere would be counter productive. This has happened in the case of tribals namely Great Andamanese who are settled in Strait Islands. The male population has become addicted to drugs and alcohol. This was so reported by the women folk when we visited the island on 19th February, 2012.

The Jarawas have depended and survived on food available in the forests in the shape of fruits, turbers, fish and wild boar.  Turtle is also hunted for.  Honey is another important item.

There should be least interference with these dietary habits. No doubt the young Jarawas are coming on the road and have shown interest in some of the packed items like biscuits but this is more to satisfy their curiosity. This does not indicate that they want to shift and change their dietary habits. It is just like in the urban towns people go to fast food joints but then this does not mean that they want to abandon their dietary habits.  Same is the position vis-à-vis the Jarawas. They are intelligent as also curious. If in order to satisfy their curiosity they look forward to biscuits and other gift, then this should not be taken to mean that they want to give up the food available to them in their natural habitats.

The Jarawas have unique human heritage.  They have a cultural indentity. The staff dealing with them has to be properly sensitized.

The protection of cultural identity of Jarawas is part of the Jarawa Policy of 2004. This is the consistent view till now. There is not much change in the later opinions. The cultural identity of the Jarawas has to be respected and protected. They constitute a unique culture. They should not be made to too much depend upon the Administration. The intervention with the Jarawas has to be managed with care and caution. Every effort should be made to respect their sensitiveness.

The Jarawas are used to staying in a natural habitat. For times immemorial they have depended upon natural habitats for their food and other requirements.

The natural habitats of the Jarawas has to be protected.  They are to be kept away for interaction with curious settlers and the tourists.
There is a need to protect the health of the Jarawas. The Jarawas are coming to the hospitals and dispenceries.

Efforts should be made to take care of the health of the Jarawas with the traditional system of medicine to which they are accustomed to. The pregnant women coming for deliveries should be treated with proper care. Effort should be made to provide female staff. There should be periodic nutritional and food surveys.

In the matter of providing medicines there should be adequate stocks. The traditional medicines which the Jarawas have been using should not be given up.

The Jarawas have their own language.

There is need to codify the language of the Jaraws. This should be done with the assistance of the experts.

It was felt that there was some time some area of conflict between the Jarawas and the settlers.  There was one incident where injuries were inflicted on the settlers. There was yet another incident where the local boys injured a Jarawa.

There is need to take proper care of this aspect of the matter. These conflicts should be avoided. The employees of Andaman Adim Jan Jati Vikas Samiti have been dealing with the Jarawa problem with care and caution. They have developed understanding their way of life. This institution should be strengthened.

There is nothing on record to show that the Jarawas have any system of self governance. The self governance is in the shape of command of elders.

Any reform in institutional set up of self governance of the Jarawas should be with the consent of the Jarawas. A deep study should be made of the system they have been following in resolving their disputes. This should be encouraged.

Obtaining services of the Jarawas for protecting the coast line.

As a line of communication has opened up between the Jarawas and the Administration it would be apt to use their services for protecting the borders. It is on account of Jarawas and other tribes the islands have remained free from poachers. This is, however, a matter on which policy decision has to be taken by the Government. If possible, their knowledge or protecting the coast line can be utilized with their consent.
It has been found that there is no coconut, papaya or banana plantation in the Jarawa Reserve Areas. They come out and sometime ask for coconuts.

Let proper plantation be done which should be exclusively for the Jarawas.  This of course should be done with their consent.
The Jarawa population has been on the increase from 253 the number has gone up to 383, though recent count has not been done. It was suggested that the number is around 400.

This is a happy sign. The increase in the number of population shows that the steps taken by the Administration to provide facilities at the time of child birth has yielded dividends.
Forest Reserves Areas as source of food and other valuables. The forest areas where the Jarawas have their place of abode has abundance of wild life and also food items on which they depend. One of the these items is honey. The other forest produce is Dhup i.e. resin used for agarbattis. 
Another item which is highly priced is the Ambergris, produced by the Sperm whale.  Ambergris, like all aromatic substances of animal origin, is a pheromone and acts directly on the hormonal system through the sense of smell, without physical contact. The Sperm whale that produces Ambergris is so called for the large amount of fine and valuable oil that is found behind its head.

The Administration can usefully regulate the valuable forest produce. Its marketing should be channelised. 

Ambergris is valuable commodity which used by perfume manufacturers all over the world.

There are unconfirmed rumours that the Jarawas use the barter system, at least for honey and dhup. They prefer to have rice.  

Ambergris is an item which appears smuggled out. It is for the administration to see that these valuable forest produce is preserved and used for the welfare of the Jarawas. To some extent they have become aware of the barter system. This system can be developed through government channels. The staff of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti can be utilized for this purpose.

The barter system should be strengthened. The services of Andaman Adim Janjati Vikas Samiti can be made use of as these persons have access with the Jarawas.

The issue of Andaman Trunk Road has been a much debated subject. The settlers want this road not to be closed. They have projected this as their lifeline. They have also said that the alternate means stand disturbed.

It was noticed that the traffic of Andaman Trunk Road is well regulated. It moves in convoys.  In this regard it is suggested –
(i) that there should be a separate convoy for the tourists who want to visit the lime caves;
(ii) there should be a separate convoy for those who carry and transport essential goods.
(iii) the number of convoys can be reduced so far as passenger traffic is concerned.
Alternate route. 

Till alternate route is developed or till the sea route is made operational the Andaman Trunk Road should not be closed as it would affect the livelihood of the settlers who have been settled on the islands for more than 150 years now.  Any attempt to close the trunk road may lead to unemployment. 
In the public meetings held at Baratang on 17th February, 2012 Pot Blair on 18th February, 2012 the feeling expressed was Andaman Trunk Road should not be closed.
Garbage problem
It was observed that there is no proper sanitation arrangement where the vehicles are parked.  The used plastic bags and other litter remains lying. This creates unsanitary condition.

It was observed that at Nilambur Jetty where the tourists stop for taking a ferry for going to the lime caves lot of garbage in the shape of polythene bags and other disposable gets accumulated. The responsibility for seeing that sanitary conditions are maintained should be made imperative. The driver of the vehicle or the tour operator who arranges the transport of the tourists to these areas should be personally made responsible to see that sanitary conditions are observed.

Noise created by vehicles to be regulated.

The noise emitted by vehicles must be controlled. The noise pollution affects the presence of wild life along the Andaman Trunk Road.

In terms of the Notification issued by the Administration Jarawa Reserve Area has been earmarked.

There is need to protect this area. Any interference in this regard would lead to reduction of the necessities which are essential for the Jarawas. The Jarawas hunt for wild boar and fish from shallow water. This aspect cannot be ignored. Any reduction or interference in the Jarawa territory can lead to unnecessary friction.

Regarding Buffer Zone the grievance was that the creation of Buffer Zone has led to unemployment. It was also led to decrease in the prices of land.

Buffer Zone has been created to insulate the Jarawa Reserve Area. This is essential. This zone extends into sea also. An indiscriminate entry in the sea adjacent to the Jarawa area would reduce the supply of fish to the Jarawas. They can fish only in the shallow waters.

The issue as to whether buffer zone has been properly created or not is matter on which this Hon’ble Court has to express its views.

That with regard to Buffer Zone the most vocal person was the owner of Dew Dale Resort. Her grievance was that she had made lot of investment and this was done before the notification by which Buffer Zone was created on 30th October, 2007.

There is merit in what has been said by the owner of the Dew Dale Resorts.  The issue would be as to whether a Notification issued in the exercise of subordinate legislation can be given retrospective effect. This aspect of the matter was gone into by this Hon’ble Court in Goan Real Estate and Construction Ltd. Vs. Union of India, (2010) 3 JT 462. That decision thus laid down that such notifications have to be given prospective effect.

The owner of Dew Dale Resort seeks compensation.

The Administration should look into this.

The impact of Panchyat Act vis-à-vis building activity is issue which has to be taken note of.  It may be seen that there is need to have prior permission of the Gram Panchayat under the Andaman Nicobar Islands Punchayat Administration Rules, 1997. There is nothing on the record which may indicate that such permission was ever obtained by owner of Dew Dale Resort.

That the question as to whether permission was obtained or not is available as per the data furnished by Dew Dale Resort. In case no permission was obtained then her claim would get weakened.

Coastal Zone Regulations – The question as to whether there is due compliance of coastal zone regulations or not is also required to be looked into. No material is available regarding this.

That this aspect of the matter be examined by the Administration at their own level.
Video Recording:  It was widely reported that there was video recording of male and female Jarawas who were not wearing any clothes. The Administration has indicated that requisite action has been taken. The police personnel have been identified and a case has been registered.

That the Administration has already taken administrative disciplinary action.  It has been brought out that the police personnel have been punished. It has also been brought out that the video of the year 2008 is being re-projected. The action taken by the Police Administration has been dealt in detail above.

In this regard it may be pertinent to mention that the material available on Google Internet deal with this situation under the heading: “Human Safaris Threaten Jarawas”. Another heading is “Tourism Pushing Andaman Abrogines to Tipping Point”

It may be seen that the heading given “Human Safaries” does indicate lack of insensitivity on the part of those who have termed the whole incident as human safaris.  Again the person who has put the material on internet has stated “I pretended as if I were taking their photos”.  They continued to emit innocent smiles and I felt guilty since I really did not take their photos.  The person who has put this material on internet can be identified. He has given his name as Mr. S. Santosh Murthy.
Tourist Resorts: It may seen that two resorts are sought to be set up in the area which are now said to be part of Buffer Zone though in the case of Dew Dale Resort this is being disputed. It may be seen that most of the tourists who come to Port Blair want to see Celluar Jail, Ross Island and Lime Caves.

That so far as tourist activities are concerned for that one doesn’t have to visit the two resorts. The two resorts are either located in the Buffer Zone or are very close to Jarawa Reserve Area. The Jarawas keep on moving from one area to another. The possibility of the Jarawas visiting these resorts cannot be ruled out and, therefore, this aspect of the matter has to be given due attention. The fact that these resorts have set up to satisfy the curiosity of the tourist to meet Jarawas cannot be ruled out. 

There is a need to avoid too much interaction as this has proved to be counter productive in the case of Great Andamanese Tribes.

The Andaman Adam Jati Vikas Samiti maintains a close watch on the settlers as also the Jarawas. It is doing good work. They understand the needs of the Jarawas. The Jarawas repose confidence in them.

That the Adaman Adam Jati Vikas Samiti should be strengthened. Wherever necessary they should be given police protection. They appear to be workers who are dedicated to the job and they should be given proper encouragement.

Let there be constructive reporting.

Let the issues be not blown out of proportion.

Let positive steps taken by the Administration to full fill Jarawas policy be given due publicity.

I am accordingly of the view that the policy decision of 2004 and the later expert reports are achieving good purpose. The Jarawas appear to be happy. However, there should not be too much interference.  Progress has to be there but this progress should not be at the cost of destroying the Jarawa culture. The Jarawas is an intelligent self-respecting tribe. They have survived all these years without any outside help but this should not mean that they should be left to themselves. They should be asked to express themselves and what action is to be taken should be in accordance with their wishes.

I am thankful to Hon’ble Mr. Justice G.S. Singhvi and Hon’ble Mr. Justice Sudhansu Jyoti Mukhopadhaya for having entrusted me with the job of acting as a Commissioner. Three days time is too short to understand the magnitude of the problems. However, I have made an attempt to see that this report is in terms with the ground realities. This is my humble contribution to the cause of brave Jarawas.    

I am also thankful to the Administration of Andaman Islands for having rendered all possible help in knowing about the Jarawas problems.

I had suggested to my learned colleague Mr. Sanjay Upadhaya, Advocate to have a short meeting so that there could be exchange of thoughts before submitting the report. It appears that on account of his busy schedule he was unable to find time for this purpose.


Dated: 16.03.2012

[1]. a former Police personnel.
[2]. a former police personnel.
[3]. Primitive Tribal Group – now the term used is Vulnerable Group.
[4]. Primitive Tribal Group – now the term used is Vulnerable Group.
[5]. Primitive Tribal Group – now the term used is Vulnerable Group.
[6]. Primitive Tribal Group – now the term used is Vulnerable Group.

1 comment:


They said this, they said that. He said this, she said that. Jarawa. They submitted this, they submitted that. Sun rises from the east and sets in the west. Buffer Zone. Someone said this, someone said that. ATR. Somebody submitted this, nobody submitted that. They issued this, they issued that. The days are hot and nights are cold. South Andaman. Everybody said this, somebody said that.

Based upon my path breaking thesis enumerated above, I request my thesis on Jarawa, Buffer Zone and ATR be accepted for awarding me a PhD degree in Jarawa, Buffer Zone and ATR.

I am thankful to The Light of Andamans, The Dark of Islands, Sun shining in the sky, Waters of sea, Air circulating in the archipelago, Greenery of the forests and all those who helped me in compiling the above thesis on Jarawa, ATR and Buffer Zone, in just three days.