Supreme Court bans use of road in tribal area of Andaman and Nicobar Islands

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Supreme Court bans use of road in tribal area of Andaman and Nicobar Islands
New Delhi:  The Supreme Court today banned tourists from using the Andaman-Nicobar Trunk road, which cuts through a tribal reserve area in the Andaman and Nicobar islands where the endangered Jarawa tribals live.

Tourists will now not be able to use this road that goes to Limestone cave in the island, as it falls in a prohibited zone. However, those who live to the North of the Island or in areas within the reserve and government officials will be allowed to pass through the area.  

The directive comes after the outrage last year over a video that surfaced showing women belonging to the Jarawa tribe being paid to dance for some tourists. The video had caused much consternation, with the Central government seeking a report from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands administration on the alleged exploitation of the tribals.

The Supreme Court in July last year had banned all commercial and tourism activities within a five-kilometre radius around the Jarawa Tribal Reserve in the islands.

The court today also directed the Andaman and Nicobar administration to file an affidavit along with a detailed map indicating the area of the Jarawa tribals.

This, however, is an interim order and the court will take up the case on February 26.



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