Media reports: Adivasi Aikya Vedika, and members of the Food Sovereignty Alliance-India jointly condoled the passing away of the former bureaucrat and supporter of Adivasi movement, B.D. Sharma on Sunday.
Dr. Sharma questioned the hegemony of the State and the process of internal colonisation of Adivasi homelands, a release by the Vedika said.
Dr. Sharma, who passed away at 86 in Gwalior, worked as Bastar district Collector in united Madhya Pradesh, and launched many schemes for welfare of tribal people.
Owing to his work then, he could later play a key role in securing release of the Sukma district Collector Alex Paul Menon, who was kidnapped by Maoists in 2012.
He also served as the last Commissioner of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, between 1986 and 1991, and later as Vice-Chancellor of the North-Eastern Hill University, Shillong.
Dr. Sharma's resolute belief and commitment for decentralised local self-governance anchored by Adivasi customary governance councils resulted in powerful legal instruments such as Panchayat (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 and the Forest Rights Act, 2006, the condolence message by Adivasi Aikya Vedika said.
His journeys through Telangana and Andhra Pradesh Adivasi territories campaigning for self governance gave birth to slogans such as 'Maa oorlo maa rajyam' (In our village, we rule).
Madavi Shiva Prasad, the Vedika's Telangana State committee member and Gond tribesman from Adilabad, too conveyed his deep condolences on phone.
After retirement, he founded Bharat Jan Andolan.