Fleeting Land, fleeting People: Bangladeshi women in a Charland Environment in Lower Bengal, India

Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt, Gopa Samanta

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Riverine islands (chars in Bengali or diaras in middle Gangetic plain) are common in deltaic lower Bengal and have often provided ideal places for the settlement of unauthorized migrants. Many of these chars are shifting, temporary and flood-prone, but some get stabilized with time although their legal status as "land" still remains contested. This a rticle is about the life experiences of some Bangladeshi women who have migrated from Bangladesh to India without proper authorization papers. It is based on field surveys among very poor migrants in the Char Gaitanpur, an attached char of the Damodar River in southern West Bengal. Participatory research methods, group discussions and informal conversations were conducted with participants in the study. With little or no resources, the choura women undergo a long and hard struggle for survival in this land of high vulnerability. Overburdened with domestic chores as well as earning a living for their families, women form closely-knit social networks among them to facilitate their sustenance in this land of uncertainty.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)475-495
    JournalAsian and Pacific Migration Journal
    Volume13
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2004

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