SHIMLA: The Haatti community, which plays kingmaker in four Assembly constituencies in Sirmaur, is likely to get the tribal status from the BJP-led Central government soon.
Haattis already enjoy the tribal status in neighbouring Uttarakhand which shares borders with Sirmaur district.
BJP leaders have alleged that the issue was neglected by the previous Congress governments. If BJP succeeds in this move, then it would benefit about 3 lakh people of 154 panchayats of Trans-Giri area.
The Hatti community resides in four Assembly constituencies of Sirmaur district – Shillai, Paonta, Renuka, and Pachhad.
“The matter is likely to be resolved very soon and a favorable decision may be taken by the Central government,” Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur told The New Indian.
The trans-Giri area is cuff off from Sirmaur by two rivers called Giri and Tons. The area is bifurcated by Tons river from the Jaunsar Bawar of Uttarakhand. The Hattis in Himahcal Pradesh as well as Uttarakhand were once part of the royal estate of Sirmaur until Jaunsar Bawar’s separation in 1815.
Sunil Thakur, an activist who has been at the forefront of demand of tribal status to the community, said he set up a group named Sirmour Vikas Manch and started a peaceful campaign to fight for the rights of the community in 2012.
Hattis have got their name from their tradition of selling homegrown vegetables, crops, meat and wool etc at small markets called ‘haat’ in towns.