50% Decrease in Child Mortality Rate

“Guerrilla fighters have the practice of drinking boiled water only. They are used to that. They have advised the villagers to do the same. After the tribals of Jangalmahal have started boiling their drinking water, the mortality rate of children in the past one year has gone down by 50%. Not any political agenda–but a little concern for the safety of the future generation– was the first step towards the relationship between the Maoists and the tribal people. When the guerrillas make their temporary camps in the forest, their first condition is to make a small makeshift latrine, which they cover up and seal before leaving the area.

Two warring teams. One team believes in destroying the other to get the flag of development flying.The other, while continuing to fight the war, works for land distribution, arranges for irrigation, makes reservoirs, is concerned about public health and designs a fresh basic curriculum for young students. It is obvious that the one who can string together war and developmental activities shall be the winner.

Journalist Brijesh Pandey on his return from the CRPF camps could not but voice his realization that this war can never be won by the CRPF.”

—– this is an excerpt from a write up by architect-activist Samir Saha Poddar. The complete article will be available in Bangla in ‘Ekdin’ dated 20 August 2010.


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