The Indian Institute of Public Administration (IIPA), Regional Branch, Bhubaneswar organized a seminar on ‘Sustainable Tribal Development’ in collaboration with the Internal Quality Assurance Cell, Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), Deemed to be University, Bhubaneswar on 13th August 2022. Delivering the inaugural address, Dr. Arun Kumar Rath, I.A.S (Retd.), Chairman of IIPA, Regional Branch, Bhubaneswar spoke about the various ways of preserving tribal dialects and culture. He also spoke about integration of tribal communities.

Mr. Sanjib Kumar Hota, I.A.S (Retd.) and former Chairman, IIPA, Regional Branch Bhubaneswar, touched upon various nuances of tribal development, while stressing on ensuring the sustainability of tribal dialects and preservation of their unique way of life. He recommended a new normative yardstick for developing infrastructure in tribal areas and made a case for pro-tribal governance in scheduled areas. The biodiversity in tribal areas has been adversely affected by mindless activities, Mr. Hota lamented, while suggesting application of tribal wisdom and knowledge systems.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Ashok Mohapatra, Secretary, IIPA, Regional Branch, Bhubaneswar, said that the subject of tribal development and KISS are closely connected. He also spoke about the journey of IIPA over the years, highlighting the activities of IIPA in areas of research and publications.

In his keynote address, Professor Deepak Kumar Behera, Vice-Chancellor, KISS-DU gave an emotional account of his experiences of working with the tribal communities and made a strong case for bottom-up planning. He emphasized that, for tribal people, culture is the base, and other superstructures can be built upon the base of their unique culture. Explaining their totemic way of life, he informed the gathering how each tribal clan has a totem which could be either a plant or an animal, and how each clan is expected to preserve their designated totem.

KISS is dedicated to tribal empowerment through education and has been able to retain most of the students enrolled under the institute, said Dr. Prashanta Kumar Routray, Registrar, KISS-DU in his concluding remarks. Dr. Routray made a strong case for quality education and observed that education is the best tool for tribal empowerment. Shri Karunakar Pattnaik, IAS (Retd.) and Brigadier L.C Patnaik also spoke on the occasion.