West Bengal appoints Toto as social worker

The West Bengal government announced here on Monday the appointment of the first woman graduate from the endangered Toto community in north Bengal as a social worker in the Backward Classes Welfare Department.

“The State government has decided to appoint Rita Toto. It is a historical decision because it will help Ms. Toto to provide services to her own community,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister Partha Chatterjee told journalists after a Cabinet meeting.

“It is the most important decision taken at the 50 meeting of the Cabinet of the Trinamool Congress government. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has taken the initiative in this regard,” he added.

Last week, Ms. Banerjee announced establishing a separate department for tribals in north Bengal that will look into the interests of endangered communities in the region like the Totos, Labhas and Boros.

There are only 1,346 persons in the Toto community that is near extinction she said on May 21, adding that her government has started providing free food grains to members of the community. Mr. Chatterjee said the job will encourage the entire community.

Ms. Toto completed her graduation in the humanities stream from Prasanna Deb Women’s College under North Bengal University in Jalpaiguri district in 2010.  The 25-year-old is the daughter of a group D employee in a local bank. Totos, one of the primitive tribes of India, live in Totopara, a village along the Indo-Bhutan border under the Madarihat block of Jalpaiguri district.