“During the ‘on the spot’ survey, all circumstantial evidences suggest that the deaths occurred due to malnutrition and starvation. Of the 27 Birhor families, in Hindiykala of Pratappur block, only four families had cards under the Anotyodaya Yojana in which foodgrains were shown distributed way back in 1998. While, the mid-day meal in schools and the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) were found to be erratic, hardly any foodgrains were found in the households. Consequently, these people are living on makka (maize) and kanda-gethi (a kind of bitter root),” said Balram.
Starvation stalks tribals of Jharkhand
by Sandeep Bhaskar, The Deccan Herald, 10 November, 2008