RECENTLY, the tribals at Chidia in the West Singhbhum district in Bihar took up cudgels in protest against the proposed modernisation of Indian Iron and Steel Company (IISCO) unit. The pent up anger in tribals at being exploited for centuries is now slowly breaking out. The tribal leaders have alleged that IISCO had exploited the mineral-rich regions of Singhbhum and Santhal Pargana without giving a thought to the development of the region. IISCO, they say, has engaged the tribals of the region for the extraction of minerals, ignoring their 'legal rights'. The proposed modernisation programme will cost about 400 tribals their jobs. This is the first such case of tribal uprising against large-scale industrialisation in mineral-rich Bihar.
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