KHARSAWAN: Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren on Monday said that certain forces were trying to divide the tribal community over issues related to 'jal, jungle aur jammen' (water, forest and land).
Addressing a public meeting after paying tributes to the tribals killed in Kharsawan on this day in 1948, he said these forces were also attacking the tribal culture and traditions.
"Tribals continue to remain neglected as policymakers never take into account the community's interests. This is the reason tribals have become weak and lagging behind economically, academically, intellectually and politically," he said.
"There are certain forces in the society who want to divide tribals over issues related to 'jal, jungle aur jameen' and displace the community by tampering with laws such as the Chotanagpur Tenancy Act and Santal Paragana Tenancy Act. They are also attacking the tribal culture and traditions," he alleged.
Soren said Jharkhand was once identified with tribals, but the community has been marginalised in the state over the last two decades.
"But, you people have voted my party to power, and I can assure you all that my government will not allow anyone to tarnish the honour and self-respect of the community," he told the gathering, calling upon the tribal to unite.
"The roots of our government are very strong as it has been elected by you. Hence, it is our top priority to take care of your interest," he added.
Soren said his government was working for the empowerment of tribals, and urged members of the community to ensure higher education for their children.
He claimed that Jharkhand will become a "strong state" by 2025.
Jamshedpur MP Bidyut Baran Mahato also paid homage to the tribals who sacrificed their lives.
"Several persons had sacrificed for the cause of Jharkhand's identity and pride and we should take a pledge that their sacrifice will not go vain," he said.