Parliament passed a bill on Thursday to include “Betta-Kuruba” along with “Kadu Kuruba” in the list of Scheduled Tribes in Karnataka.
The Rajya Sabha passed the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Fourth Amendment) Bill, 2022 through a voice vote on Thursday.
The Lok Sabha had, on December 19, passed the bill that was piloted by Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda in the Upper House.
The minister said the bill seeks to provide justice to the Betta-Kuruba community of Karnataka, which has only about 5,000 members living in the southern state.
“The state government of Karnataka has requested to include ‘Betta-Kuruba’ community as a synonym of ‘Kadu Kuruba’ in entry 16 in the list of Scheduled Tribes of Karnataka,” said the statement of objects and reasons of the bill.
Responding to the issues raised by Opposition members, Munda alleged that the Congress has not done anything for the welfare of the tribal community and is now shedding crocodile tears.
Munda said the Narendra Modi government is trying to give justice to all sections of the society.
Once the bill is approved by Parliament and the rules are framed, the members of the Betta-Kuruba community will be entitled to all the benefits provided to the Scheduled Tribes, especially reservation in educational institutions and government jobs.
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What is Betta-Kuruba community?
The Betta Kuruba tribe lives in the hilly regions of Karnataka and is one of the few indigenous communities of the Nilgiris.
They belong to the Hindu caste native to the Indian states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
They are generally believed to be the descendants of the Pallavas. Consanguineous marriages like cross-cousin marriages are preferred among the Kurumbas.
(with PTI inputs)