Exodus of Gothi Koyas from strife torn Chattisgarh into Bhadrachalam జనవరి 2, 2010Posted by Telangana Utsav in Andhra, attrocities, Bhadrachalam, BJP, Congress, Culture, displacement, Economy, Koya, livelihoods, Naxalite, Polavaram, politics, population, ST, Telangana, violence.
Over 16,000 migrant Gothi koyas identified in Khammam district
Special Correspondent, The Hindu January 2, 2010
They hail from strife-torn districts of Chhattisgarh
BHADRACHALAM: A habitation-wise enumeration taken up by an official agency in coordination with some non- governmental organisations working on the problems of internally displaced persons (IDPs) helped in identifying some 16,361 Gothi koyas who migrated to Khammam from the strife-torn districts in Chhattisgarh.
The migrant population could find shelter in 203 habitations, mainly in Bhadrachalam revenue division.
As many as 110 of the Gothi koya habitations had come up in the reserve forests and a few of them fell in the core area. This rendered the provision of basic amenities an impossible task. The administration prepared plans for reaching out to a majority of the 4,030 migrant families living in 20 tribal mandals in the district with facilities such as drinking water, nutrition, medicare and education. It would be difficult to cater to the needs of the IDPs in the event of a fresh wave of migrations, said the officials.
Though migration of Gothi koyas was common to the district for the past two decades, the problem assumed serious proportion after 2004, especially once the Salva Judum activists began to take on the Maoists in Chhattisgarh. Initially, some non-governmental organisations came forward to sink borewells in such habitations.
The administration too changed its approach towards the IDPs, who were initially looked upon as Maoist supporters adding to the extremist problem in the district. Drinking water sources were created in some 51 habitations so far. In a good number of habitations the administration had issued the NREGS cards and opened savings accounts in post offices, thus giving a sort of identity to the migrants. In all, 62 schools were sanctioned for the benefits of the Gothikoya children. Residential bridge centres were sanctioned at five more places in addition to the ones already functioning at important places such as Edugurallapalli. But the fresh migrations triggered by the unrest prevailing in Chhattisgarh had irked the administration. The officials were of the view that the problem cannot be addressed unless some pressure was mounted on the Chhattisgarh Government to restore normality in the border districts and stop migrations. A police officer had said the number of migrant Gothi koyas would be certainly more than the figures available with the administration. Migration of Chhattisgarh tribes, if not checked at this point, would result in a conflict with the native tribes and it might snowball into a serious law and order problem in future.