Bhasha, on India Together :
Bhasha Center is engaged in conserving tribal culture,
redefining its identity in the contemporary context and preserving its
civilizational values. The word "Bhasha" in the organization's name is
used to signify the 'voice' of tribals and nomadic communities. Combining
academic interest with purposeful social activism, Bhasha has made serious
interventions in the areas of tribal languages and literature, arts and
culture, education, health, socio-economic empowerment and human rights.
The organization's work with denotified communities is spread in the
states of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Karnataka and West Bengal.
Overall, the Bhasha group works with Rathwa, Dungri Bhil, Tadvi, Vasava
and Naika tribal communities and Banjara, Davre-Gosai, Tudi, Nat, Pardhi,
Sansi, Chhara, Kheria-Sabar, Wadi, Waghri and Chamtha nomadic groups.
VERRIER ELWIN LECTURE
Defying labels, defining themselves
Year of birth : 1871
Dr. Ganesh Devy, in "Seminar"
External Link Silent no more
Bhasha makes Adivasi voices heard Forty paise worth of respect, please?
Dilip D'Souza visits the Sabars of West Bengal Retracing the roots
A profile of Ganesh Devy, The Week, Oct 99
Also see : The Gentle Crusader The plight of the Pardhis
Frontline Budhan : The Play
Budhan, who belonged to the Sabar community in the Purulia district of West Bengal, was killed in February 1998. When the Kheria Sabar Welfare Samiti and their leader, the noted Bangla writer Mahasveta Devi, arranged a post-mortem, it became clear that Budhan had died of a severe beating (rather than suicide) in police custody. In July the Calcutta High Court decided the Budhan Sabar murder case; Dr. Ganesh Devy and others resolved to produce a play at Bhasha's first national conference. The play made a profound impact on the audience, and the group subsequently performed it at major venues in New Delhi, Bhopal, Baroda, Pune and Bombay. Each time they did so, they modified parts of the script, so while the play was written by Dakshin Bajrange (and translated by Sonal Baxi), it can truly be said to come straight from the oral tradition of tribal theatre. It is not an imaginary perception of suffering; it is based on the lived, traumatic experience of being branded a criminal.
Budhan: The play
The main objectives of the Bhasha Center are:
THEATRE FOR DEVELOPMENT
BHIL CAVE PAINTINGS
The prison of their own bodies
During the time he was a Media Fellow with the National Foundation for India, Dilip D'Souza wrote a number of articles on denotified tribes in India. Many of these were published as part of his column at rediff.com, links to those articles are provided below. These articles, along with others, were later published in his first book, Branded By Law. - Lazy, Shiftless, Thieving, but People
- And The Tap Tells A Tale
- Pushed Out Of Town
- The Satara District Biscuit Sting
- What A Fall Was This
- Ringside At The Uldha Cockfight
- Getting My Goat, Monkeying Around
- Accused Of Being Accursed
- A Tale Of A Few Photos
- Respect, but only on paper
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