The main objectives of the network are listed below:In the state of Maharashtra, the population of Nomadic Tribes is divided into 42 different Community Groups of Non Pastoral Nomadic Tribes. Most of these Tribes have been nomadic as part of their livelihood. As the State administration is mainly designed to deal with sedentary communities, the Nomadic communities continue to have no access to “civil rights” as Indian citizens. ECONET was exposed to this reality through one of our action research processes and felt that there was an urgent need to address the devoid and the social discrimination they face.
Our Journey started with a group of individuals and development organizations that came together to address the issues of Nomadic communities. Many individuals in this group are from Nomadic communities and are exploring different approaches to deal with the discrimination with context to Nomadic Communities.
As we went along, there was need for a space to share knowledge and experiences of working with Nomadic Communities, as not much has been written or designed in the specific context of Non Pastoral Nomadic Communities. These individuals and organizations decided that there was need for a Forum to amplify what they have arrived at and a Forum named the Maharashtra Bhatke Vimukta Manch (MBVM) was formed.
MBVM hosted a daylong event at the India Social Forum in November 2006 to highlight the issues of Non Pastoral Nomads. We invited people from different states working with different Nomadic communities to obtain a National level scenario of Non Pastoral Nomadic communities. One of the most important aspects that came out of this event was the need to develop a niche of these communities and organizations to stand for their own issues.
MBVM is currently exploring development of youth leaders to work for identity of Nomadic communities and to build cross community linkages.