Saturday, December 9, 2023

Salkhan blocks traffic for Sarna code, flouts COVID-19 protocols

Jamshedpur: Activists of Adivasi Senegal Abhiyaan on Sunday blocked Tata-Hata road for several hours leading to long queues of vehicles.  As per the nationwide chakka jam, the tribals led by their leader Salkhan Murmu blocked the road. They are demanding that the Central government must approve the resolution passed in the state assembly in favour of a Sarna code. They activists carrying banners and posters in support of their demand for a separate Sarna code sat on the road in Karandih.

Many were shouting slogans against the Centre. Several protesters were without masks and social distancing norms were violated.

“We are fighting for our cause. We had announced It has a nation-wide chakka jam. We want that tribal communities across the country be recognised as a separate religious group and now that a resolution has been passed in the state assembly, the Central government should accept it,” Murmu.

It may be mentioned that on November 11, during a special session of the state assembly, a resolution was passed for the provision of a separate ‘Sarna Code’ for members of tribal communities.

“ We want that the central government must also approve it so that in the upcoming census in 2021 there will be a separate column for the community, allowing members of these communities to identify themselves as belonging to a distinct religious community,” said another activist of Adivasi Senegal Abhiyaan.

He said that as far as demands of the tribals are concerned there is not much difference between approach and attitude of Congress and the BJP. They are not concerned about the tribals.

The demand of tribals for a separate Sarna code, also known as religion code, is centred around a separate identity. Currently, they are either included as Hindus, Christians or Muslim in the census, that does not have a separate column for their religion.

“We are also running a public awareness campaign in various states across the country. We need to be awake to demand our right. The government convened a special assembly session and immediately passed the bill related to it and sent it to the central government. If the government does not recognize the Sarna Code we will further intensify the movement,” said the activist.

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