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Roots with South Asian Today: Overseas scholarships are a bureaucratic nightmare for Indian Tribal students

Season 02, Ep 03: In conversation with Ashok Danavath

India has the largest Tribal and Indigenous population globally, yet there are only 20 National Open Scholarships for about 110 million Tribal people. Why?

Our third episode is a special interview with social justice scholar Ashok Danavath about the lack of tribal representation in Indian embassies in the west and the institutionalised casteism many Indigenous, Dalit and Tribal students face.  Those who screen students, take care of administration, or are responsible for allocating funds are overwhelmingly upper caste. As we know, wherever South Asians go, they pack caste along.

Ashok Danavath is a Tribal graduate scholar currently at the international institute of social studies in the Netherlands. His ongoing research pertains to the marginalisation of Tribal communities in India, and the host for this special episode is Mudit Vyas, a graduate researcher at Monash University. He specialises in the anthropology of creative industries. 

They talk about the role of the Ministry of Tribal Affairs of India, how the lack of further support affects students who do get the scholarships, and what happens to the many students who don't. 

Tune in.

About the author

Mudit Vyas is a graduate researcher at Monash University. He is a critical-cultural-studies scholar and specialises in the anthropology of creative industries. Mudit can be reached on his Instagram handle here.