Abu Road, Sirohi (2003)

Abu Road Block: Work in Abu Road block was set up in 2003. DD has covered 42 villages to benefit 14072 adolescents in the block. 

Abu road is situated in Sirohi district, bordering to Gujarat.  It is characterized by extreme poverty and under-development. There are 85 villages in this block, but they are dispersed in small, scattered clusters of households situated on the slopes of mountains and small valleys. The population in Abu Road in 2011 was 2,24,404 consisting of 1,16,769 males and 1,07,635 females. Of this, 62% comprises of Schedule Caste and Schedule Tribe (SC/ST).

The sex ratio is 922. As per census 2011 the child sex ratio of Abu Road Tehsil is 917, which is less than average sex ratio (922) of Abu Road Tehsil.

The total literacy rate of Abu Road Tehsil is 57.1%. The male literacy rate is 56.75% and the female literacy rate is 36%.

Garasia community (ST) residing in the Abu Road region, has its own cultural and social rules and customs. Their language, Garasia, is a mix of Gurajati and Marwari. Despite having a strong social organization and an inherent sense of pride in their customs, some of their practices such as vair pratha (family enmity leading to mass revenge), kheench (forcing a girl to marry a man who selects her), addiction to liquor and all kinds of superstitions especially those targeting the womenfolk have been stunting their social and economic progress over the generations. This leads to a simmering discontent and strife in the community. The lack of education and ill-treatment by the other communities adds to their bundle of woes.

The Garasia community has traditionally been dependent on forests. The receding forest cover has increased their dependence on the urban areas which leaves them vulnerable to exploitation and sexual abuse. Families living below poverty line in Abu Road block is 51% which rises to about 70% among the tribal people. Traditional farming, collecting and selling wood and unorganized manual labour are the main sources of livelihood for the Garasia community. However, they are often forced to move along with their families in search of better livelihood and living conditions. This gives rise to large scale seasonal migration. This exclusion and isolation along with the particularly difficult living conditions have generated a sense of despair and low self –esteem in the community.