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End Jarawa exploitation




Jarawa tribe being forced to dance for tourists in exchange for food

Semi-nude Jarawa women were forced to dance for tourists in exchange for food. Watch the video...
More about the Jarawa

Image © Survival International

On 7th January 2012, the British newspaper, The Observer, exposed the scandal of semi-nude Jarawa women being forced to dance for tourists in exchange for food – by a policeman, who instead of protecting them, encouraged behaviour after being bribed by the tour operators.

The Jarawa are an indigenous people living in the reserve on the Andaman Islands. Under the Protection of Aboriginal Tribes Regulation 1956, it is illegal for tour operators to make contact with the Jarawa – to take pictures, to pass through their territory and to communicate with them. The Indian government’s Jarawa policy states the Jarawa people should have ‘maximum autonomy with minimum interference’ in their lives. However, these rules are not enforced and with over 500 tourists visiting their area daily, the Jarawa have become part of a “human safari” with tourists throwing food in exchange for ‘entertainment’.

Tourism Concern is working closely with Survival International to lobby the Indian Government to protect the rights of the Jarawa people. We need you to support us in building a global pressure on the Indian Government to take measures to ensure that the Jarawa’s rights are recognised and those found exploiting are charged accordingly.

Moreover, we would like to urge for the closing of the road running through the Jarawa's reserve, which has allowed tourists to make regular contact with them, putting them at risk of exploitation, contracting diseases and predatory sex.

Please help us stop the exploitation of the Jarawa people by signing the petition below

This will be sent to India’s Minister of Home Affairs, Shri Chidambaram.

Then please contact your MP and ask them to sign Early Day Motion 2692.

Dear Shri Chidambaram,

We, the undersigned, call upon you to immediately take measures to stop the exploitation of the Jarawa people by the tourism industry and ensure that their human rights are respected. Under the Protection of Aboriginal Tribes Regulation 1956 it is illegal for tourists to come into contact with the Jarawa people; being subjected to perform and provide entertainment for tourists is a degradation of their human rights.

We also urge for the closing of the road running through the Jarawa's reserve, which has allowed settlers and tourists to come into close contact with them, putting them at risk of predatory sex, exploitation and contracting diseases.

The Jarawa people must be free to live an autonomous life with minimal interference; they deserve dignity and respect.

Signed

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This petition is now closed.

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Comments on this page...


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Comment by Ursula - January 31, 2012, 9:41 pm

We've just spent quite some time travelling, including the Andaman Islands, and witnessed some of the awful things TC campaigns against. This is bad, very bad, and makes me ashamed of being a Western tourist. Albeit, it doesn't really surprise me this happens in such a remote place in India. While we were treated well, we were never sure if the police are indeed 'lower classes'' local people's "friend and helper". Keep up the good work.



Comment by P Tarrant - January 31, 2012, 10:48 pm

It is unacceptable that people are not protected from exploitation on all levels.



Comment by Chutinderpal Thandi - January 31, 2012, 11:19 pm

I was horrified by the article that I read that semi nude women from a tribe are being compelled to dance for tourists in exchange for food. It is very disturbing to know that the Indian government are not doing anything. They need to take immediate action.



Comment by Rebecca Anderson - January 31, 2012, 11:55 pm

Unfortunately the tourism industry has a very poor record for sexual exploitation and abuse, by raising awareness and campaigning we can bring these problems into the public realm so that they can be addressed.



Comment by Agha Iqrar Haroon - February 1, 2012, 4:51 am

The Region Initiative (TRI) which is a Tri-regional Umbrella of Tourism related organisations. TRI is functioning as a link among three regions----South Asia, Central Asia and Eastern Europe strongly condemn this act of tour operators and tourists to behave with Jarawa people as they were Animals. TRI always indicates that tourism operations in remote areas on the name of ecotourism is sometime Very dangerous. We support Tourism Concern in its campaign to protect Decent and responsible tourism.



Comment by Brian Woodgate - February 1, 2012, 10:30 am

All over the world, peoples way of life have been destroyed by just a few people. Tour operators, Tourists, Hunters, Logging companies, Mining transnationals. All are as careless & selfish. Tourists on a day-trip get nothing, poor photos & glimps. The India Gov is trying to arrest the tour operator. So maybe this campaign is working.



Comment by O Letaief - February 1, 2012, 11:03 am

I am both sadden and shocked, human exploitations such as these should be banned and punished under international human right laws. Tour operators from Western countries should be prosecuted and pay a heavy fine for such inhuman requests.



Comment by Ioannis Pantelidis - February 1, 2012, 2:50 pm

Please spread the word about this petition if you have a Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter account or any other social media please post the link to this petition so that more people are aware of this. thank you!



Comment by chris franklin - February 1, 2012, 3:27 pm

Sexual exploitation under force and people actually go to watch this?
How do tourists become involved with such behavior? They should be ashamed.
Thank goodness someone had the spirit to speak out and condemm



Comment by Isabel Kelly - February 6, 2012, 1:45 pm

The next step for these poor people, if it has not happened
already, is sexual exploitation and human trafficking either in
their own country or abroad.



Comment by Amy McLoughlin - February 7, 2012, 3:38 pm

Human rights exploitation in these fragile tribal communities is outrageous. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are on of the last untouched paradises. The Jarawa's and others human rights must be addressed. After a recent visit to the Andamans I'd also like to point out that the waste (& water) management of tourism really needs rethinking. Human rights issues and environmental impacts in these beautiful islands should be at the forefront of tourism planning.



Comment by banbai baz - February 8, 2012, 11:11 pm

it just goes to show that the almighty dollar does not cure the ills and seperation of the world and its peoples.

We have a paradise, we lose a paradise, then what do we have?



Comment by A Wilson - February 9, 2012, 4:28 am

I was doing research for sose when i read this and i find the behaviour appaling and the police should be protecting them not exploiting them too. People should need a permit to visit the area or ask the locals polietly to dance. Overall the behaviour is disgusting and the government should do something about it!!!!!!!!



Comment by Michael P. Makovic - February 9, 2012, 2:08 pm

Have you no respect for human life and dignity? Is your country in such poor financial state that you look the other way when people bribe you for such appalling acts in return? The desire of the tourists wants should tertiary to the protection and dignity.

The Jarawa people should not be exploited for monetary gain. Shame on you looking the other way while this happens. Your own country has so many places that not many people have experienced. In other words, The Jarawa people, not trained monkeys.



Comment by Nicholas Catahan BSc (Hons), PGCE, MA, FIfL - February 13, 2012, 10:47 am

I am absolutely sick and tired of the lack of sustainable tourism leadership, management, practice and experiences across our beautiful planet and its communities. I am disgraced by what is continually happening in this day and age, and the lack of real support by those key stakeholders that can make the difference. We (my colleagues, students and I) will be continually critically reviewing this situation along side the many other terrible tourism practices and issues across the planet with a view to campaigning and creating awareness for positive change. If government, private, voluntary sectors and communities decide together, lead and embrace positive experiences of tourism, sustainability can be achieved. Education, training and a holistic approach to planning, development and policy decision-making needs to be in abundance. There are many examples of good practice around the world and you must take heed now before it is too late. What legacy do wish to leave? Don't be a disgrace!



Comment by Sheena Carlisle - February 14, 2012, 1:11 pm

My heart goes out to the Jawara indigenous people and culture. Another sad example of how tourists can be so voyeuristic and unconcerned of the impact of their behaviour



Comment by Alison Stancliffe - February 15, 2012, 11:09 am

I really want to see this high profile issue direct light into dark corners of similar injustice elsewhere, so the more names we have, the better.



Comment by Syd Bill - February 20, 2012, 1:02 pm

Over several years. in my own town. I have been trying to make known the terrible treatment and the attitudes to indigenous tribes/hunter/gatherers.

I hope that you will continue your campaigns on their behalf



Comment by Carina Hibbitt - February 23, 2012, 11:59 am

The chain of responsibility for this distressing and illegal exploitation extends from the tourists to the tour operators as well as the supposed authorities. Thanks to TC for campaigning to raise awareness and accountability to end this appalling intrusion.



Comment by Hermione - February 24, 2012, 1:25 pm

Simply unacceptable!
And another people like this?
How do tourists become involved with such behavior? Shame on you!



Comment by Hans-W. Dorr - February 27, 2012, 12:42 pm

In my opinion urgent action is required. What is happening in Jarawa is not acceptable. What I cannot understand is, why tourists do watch these dances? All stakeholders within the tourism sector must work towards a truly responsible tourism!



Comment by Chris Burden - March 5, 2012, 5:05 pm

The indigenous people of the Andaman Islands are close descendants the first humans who came out of Africa. They are our brothers and sisters. They are us.

As much as any group of people, they must be defended and also be given the human rights tools to defend themselves from the appalling, disgusting behaviour of this 'plague of locusts' aka The Tourism Industry.



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