Share
twitterlinkedinfacebook
Image 1 of 1
CHHATTISGARH-065.JPG
GIDMA-BIJAPUR HIGHWAY, DANTEWARA DISTRICT, CHHATTISGARH, INDIA, FEBRUARY 29, 2008 :  Road building contractors use local workers to do the hard labor  of road construction on the Gidma-Bijapur highway. Bridges are built one bucket at the time. All the laborers are tribal people who get 88 rupees a day .women carry stones and sand to mix in the concrete and men lift it up to the walls, one bucket at the time. The government is building roads to improve communication in the district. to cut its isolation. The maoist inrsugents, or naxalites, have often attacked such projects. They destroy equipment but do not arm the workers, but they also collect taxes form anyone operating in the area.The program of relocating entire villages into camps is part of the Salwa Judum or Mouvement for Peace in Gond, to cut rural support to the Maoist insurgency that control 60% of the area.  The southern region of Chhattisgarh is part of India's tribal belt and three fourth of the population are tribal, mainly from the Gond tribe and sub-tribes.The Maoist insurgency called Naxalites have been waging a war against the government for the past 25 years and has been gaining momentum in in the past few years. They are present in some 150 of the 600 districts of India, and Dantewara is one of Chhattisgarh rural Maoist stronghold where they control most of the countryside. The overwhelmed police force is hiring more personel to deal with the Naxalite threat and the Government has armed civil defence anti-naxalite milicias to take on the naxalites , emptying villages to cut local support to the rebels. The movement called "Salwa Judum" (campaign for peace)  started in june 2005 when some villages took a stand against the Maoists, but it is now dragging the whole district into the bloody civil war, at the expense of the  local tribal villagers caught in the middle and forced to leave their ancestral homes for the security of refugee camps. The conflict has claimed over 900 lives in 2006 and again