Jarawa re wah re wah!

So a video went viral. Guardian had published a video shot by a tourist where a policeman (off camera) is bullying the local tribal women to dance and even doing a carrot and stick routine with one that wouldn’t.

Here, watch it and puke.


IBNLive covers it as a big shocker. Absolutely scandalous. I suppose it would be, seeing as how we don’t have a National media worth mentioning. The Metro media that gets called National media, because we have no label for them specifically (I could suggest some) is unable to see beyond its citified nose and altitude.

I am not even going to pretend that their concern was for human rights. This is a guaranteed seller. Almost unheard of tribe of naked women dancing on camera covered by foreign media like a sting operation.

This curiosity for the unknown.
I am only waiting for our moral police to explain how these people asked for it by dressing like that or rather, not dressing at all and begging for food from tourists.

Exploitation of the Jarawa is no new thing. The Protection of Aboriginal Tribes Regulation of 1956 explicitly prohibits any contact with them or commercial activity advertising them even. It isn’t all that long, and worth a read. Do notice that it was already seen necessary in 1956.

The Jarawa have been protected from contact by a Supreme Court order, no less, because their culture and isolation has meant that they have low resistance to diseases like measles – earlier construction near their habitat and contacts since 1997 had led to outbreaks of measles in 2001 and 2006. Additionally, our wonderful nature of exploiting the gullible had led to smarter people initiating a landmark Public Interest Litigation which was heard in Port Blair and explicitly prohibited contact by unauthorized persons with the Jarawa.

Yet, the exploitation of the Jarawa is routine. Jarawas are found hanging around the roads begging from tourists. Their nudity adds an additional zing to the already forbidden exotic guaranteed “exclusively” to tourists. This is no secret.

These are the same guys we spent a few days sensationalizing about after the Tsunami in 2009. The Fate of the Jarawas us unknown, etc. Turns out they weathered it better than us civilized people.

In 2007, the Andaman and Nicobar authorities warned tour operators over Jarawa sightings because people were organizing them for money on the side.

If Indian media cared to look around at what was happening in the country, they could easily find this video I had shared last year in indignation, which is still in my bookmarks. I suppose I wasn’t famous enough then.


This alone is an excellent reason to stop all tourism there. I cannot believe that in an instance of women’s exploitation, my heart is bleeding for another issue, but here it is. Women turned into a perverted joke for cheap thrills.

I also wouldn’t be surprised at all to find regular exploitation of women here by the only few allowed “authorized contact” with them, because I have absolutely zero faith in the capacity of our protectors to see women or indeed any people not powerful as human beings.

And these guys are not powerful. Coconuts are enough as an official gift to them.

Here. This video is much better at representing them than the ones above. Notice how this isn’t an Indian production.

Remember them as innocent people living in what we have long lost for ourselves. Love them and respect them, and show that you are capable of it.

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