Parbotto Chattagrame Jumchash
Jum (swidden cultivation) is a form of agriculture practiced by the indigenous communities of the Chittagong Hill Tracts, whose economies, histories and cultures are closely intertwined with it. While a significant percentage of the indigenous hill peoples are still directly involved with jum, contemporary jum cultivators or the jumias are in a tough struggle for survival because of the government policy to restrict or limit the traditional agriculture.
The smaller indigenous communities in the remote areas are particularly affected by government policies and initiatives on plantations, militarization and development activities that put tremendous pressure on the land formerly used for jum cultivation. There is a general tendency to identify jum cultivation as a harmful practice. Moreover, official policies to change the way of life of the jumias through “rehabilitation” programs and related measures also raise concerns.
Despite the importance of swidden agriculture in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, research initiatives to thoroughly understand it is sparse. As a result, most people are oblivious to even what swidden agriculture is. Many also have wrong notions about this traditional agriculture in the Chittagong Hill Tracts.
In this vacuum Parbotto Chattagrame Jumchash (Swidden Cultivation in the Chittagong Hill Tracts) authored by Prashanta Tripura and Abantee Harun and published by the Society for Environment and Human Development (SEHD) presents some of much desired information and insights. The book is the result of the authors’ research, discusses critical issues concerning jum cultivation in the CHT. Given the general trend of misconceptions and lack of reliable information regarding jum, this book will hopefully fill in the information gap to some extent and refresh many about the myths and flawed notions.
Paperback: 117 pages
Prepared by: Prashanta Tripura and Abantee Harun
Price: Tk.150 / US$5