- Digital Collaboration – In Touch – Edition 5
From the Soil
- Sangita Maity
On view is a range of Sangita Maity’s works from the last several years that are based on her extensive research in Keonjar, Orissa and Tripura on forced dispacement of indigenous communities and their occupational conditions as a result of ongoing industrialization and accompanying erasure of natural forests. During the last few years, she has been spending time at the rubber plantations in Tripura, engaging with communities whose subsistance depends on the industry, the region’s ecology, and the ways by which policies have affected the land and its native people. Rubber plantation has been aggressively promoted in Tripura since the 1960s as the harbrigner of employment and development, ousting native custodians of the land, and turning those who depended on naturally occuring resources of the forest and jhum chaas (step cultivation) to grow rice, vegetables, and fruits, into plantation labour. In the iron ore mines of Orissa, similar aspirations for development displaced communities that lived in harmony with the land and its produce. The people indigenous to the land had to eventually turn to work in the mines for survival, in the process wiping out their customs, traditional tools, ornaments and way of life.