//Jesuit contribution towards Tribal Identity and Culture

Jesuit contribution towards Tribal Identity and Culture

Fr. John Baptist Hoffmann started the Chotanagpur Catholic Mission Co-operative Society which helped the Adivasis stand on their feet economically. They were saved from the clutches of money lenders and profiteers through this well managed Co-operative Society. With his expert advice he helped the British Government pass the Chotanagpur Tenancy (CNT) Act in 1908. As a result non-Adivasi exploiters could not possess Adivasi land. Similarly, in 1949 the Santal Pargana Tenancy (SPT) Act was passed. Consequently, the Adivasis of Chotanagpur and Santal Parganas in Jharkhand have been able to protect their land to a great extent. The BJP (2014-19) regime in the State tried to amend the two Acts but failed in its attempt due to widespread protests of the Adivasis.

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The author is the Director of the Tribal Research and Documentation Centre, Jeevan Vikas Maitri at Asha Deep, Pathalgaon (C.G.).