Thiruvananthapuram: Yuva Morcha national secretary P Shyamraj has come out against the Pinarayi government for insulting the tribal groups in Kerala in the Keraleeyam program organized by them. Shyamraj openly stated that the tribal people should not be treated as animals or objects for public spectacle and accused the Kerala government of attempting to cause a sense of inferiority among the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe communities. In the Keraleeyam event organized at Kanakakunnu, Thiruvananthapuram, people belonging to the tribal groups were dressed up and presented as exhibition objects.
Shyamraj asked the Chief Minister not to subject the tribal community of Kerala to demeaning treatment. He said, “Tribals are not animals or objects to be presented as exhibits for people to watch. Members of various tribal communities including the Urali community from Thodupuzha in Idukki district were dressed up and presented as exhibits at Kanakakunnu, Thiruvananthapuram during the Keraleeyam event. Even the reproduction of tribal huts is being praised as fascinating! To truly appreciate and understand the uniqueness of these cultures, one should visit the actual tribal habitats, rather than showcasing them as mere showpieces in the capital city. Have you ever witnessed any of the tribal groups in Kerala wandering around as they have been portrayed in your imaginative narratives?” asks an enraged Shyamraj.
“Who stands to benefit from depicting a community that includes people like Vinod, a PhD student from the Cholanaikar community, and Palliyara Ramettan, a descendant of the freedom fighter Thalakkal Chandu, as a group that continues to wear leaves and tree bark as clothing and goes about dressed in such a manner? Every person and community deserves a certain level of dignity and respect. Holding a position of authority does not grant the right to intentionally offend their sentiment,” comments Shyamraj.
The Yuva Morcha national secretary further said that the tribals of Kerala have a rich history, a story of generations of struggle, renaissance and self-respect. He expressed that the government’s attempts to undermine the illustrious history of Dalit and tribal communities and diminish their self-esteem will undoubtedly face a strong response.