London: The plight of Binayak Sen, the
social activist slapped with controversial sedition charges,
is symptomatic of the problems faced by India`s adivasis,
Cambridge University researchers studying his case have said.
A study on the case of the Indian public health
expert, recently bailed from prison, by Department of
Sociology Jonathan Kennedy and Lawrence King researchers has
been published in the latest edition of Social Science and
They argue that Sen`s arrest and imprisonment for
sedition should be seen against a broader canvas of the
healthcare crisis in tribal areas of India, a university
Sen was released on bail in April while he awaits a
retrial in Chhattisgarh, where the paediatrician and human
rights activist has worked closely with some of the most
disadvantaged and marginalised members of society for more
than 30 years.
Kennedy said: "The conviction of Sen provides a prism
through which we can analyse broader health crisis issues in
the central Indian tribal belt. His arrest illustrates that
the state cares more about minerals lying below the ground
than the adivasis living above it.
"Sen`s conviction and the health crisis among adivasis
are not random in distribution or effect, but are symptoms of
deeper pathologies of power".
Adivasis, he said, had been increasingly harmed by
industrial mining projects.