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Prelims Syllabus : The Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Amendment) Bill, 2018 and list of Scheduled Tribes Mains Syllabus : The Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Amendment) Bill, 2018 and list of Scheduled Tribes

Polity/Governance

Why in news?

The Union Cabinet (chaired by Prime Minister) has approved the introduction of The Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Amendment) Bill, 2018 in the Parliament for certain amendments in the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order, 1950 so as to modify the list of Scheduled Tribes (STs) of Arunachal Pradesh.

Changes made in list of Scheduled Tribes of Arunachal Pradesh are:

  • Deletion of ‘Abor’ in serial No. 1, as it is the same as ‘Adi’ in Serial No. 16.
  • Replace ‘Tai Khamti’ instead of ‘Khampti’ at serial No. 6.
  • Inclusion of ‘Mishmi-Kaman’ (Miju Mishmi), Idu (Mishmi) and Taraon (Digaru Mishmi) in serial No. 8.
  • Inclusion of Monpa, Memba, Sartang, Sajolong (Miji) in serial No. 9 in lieu of ‘Momba’.
  • Inclusion of ‘Nocte’, ‘Tangsa’, ‘Tutsa’, ‘Wancho’ in lieu of ‘Any Naga Tribes’ in serial No.
    • 10 in list of Scheduled Tribes of Arunachal Pradesh.

Scheduled Tribes:

  • A tribe is a social division in a traditional society consisting of families linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect. A tribe possesses certain qualities and characteristics that make it a unique cultural, social, and political entity.
  • The nature of what constitutes an Indian tribe and the very nature of tribes have changed considerably over the course of centuries. Constitution of India has recognized tribal communities in India under ‘Schedule 5’ of the constitution. Hence the tribes recognized by the Constitution are known as ‘ Scheduled Tribes’.
  • The Constitution ensures certain protection and benefits for communities deemed as having Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.
  • Social and political mobilisation has led to the increase of number of STs 225 in 1960 to 700 today.
  • As the number of communities demanding ST status expands, it brings the criteria of the recognition and the legitimacy of the process under scrutiny. The Constitution only states that STs are specified by the President after consultation with the Governor. It does not define or specify a particular criterion.

Criterion for STs:

According to the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, the criterion includes

  • Indication of primitive traits
  • Distinctive culture
  • Geographical isolation
  • Shyness of connect with the community at large &
  • Backwardness
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