Indian authorities have hit pause on efforts to retrieve the physique of slain American missionary John Chau from the distant island of North Sentinel, the place he was killed by members of a reclusive endangered tribe.
Chau was killed Nov. 17 after illegally visiting the island in a bid to transform the uncontacted Sentinelese hunter-gatherer tribe to Christianity. His physique is believed to be buried someplace alongside the seashore.
Anthropologists and tribal welfare specialists have urged authorities to desert any plans to retrieve the physique with a purpose to keep away from confronting the tribe and probably exposing them to illnesses for which they lack immunity.
READ MORE: North Sentinel tribe could possibly be endangered by makes an attempt to get better missionary John Chau’s physique
Authorities have determined to pay heed to that recommendation, in accordance with the BBC.
The British broadcaster reported that senior authorities, police, forest and anthropology division officers met Monday and determined to put the search on maintain.
An official who attended the assembly instructed the BBC that the choice was taken as a result of dangers concerned for each the tribe and restoration crews, in addition to “objections” raised by numerous teams.
CNN cited a police official saying authorities needed to keep away from “direct confrontation” with the tribe, however weren’t categorically ruling out a future try at a restoration mission.
“We don’t need to go there and create an sad scenario,” CNN quoted the police official saying.
WATCH: Investigators nonetheless attempting to find out methods to get better physique of American killed on Indian island
International Information reached out to Chetan Sanghi, a senior authorities official who the BBC reported organized the assembly, to verify the choice and the reasoning behind it.
Sanghi declined to debate the assembly. As an alternative, he referred International Information to a Guardian column that outlined the historic exploitation of the Sentinelese by colonial teams and argued for the tribe to be left alone.
“The historical past of outsiders’ relations with the indigenous folks of the Andamans has a transparent sample – colonization, exploitation and eventual extermination,” wrote researcher Ajay Saini within the column.
“If we’re to be taught something from our previous, it’s that the Sentinelese needs to be left alone on North Sentinel Island.”
WATCH: Who’re the Sentinelese folks? A take a look at the historical past of the tribe
Authorities beforehand stated they have been consulting anthropologists and tribal welfare specialists to see if there was any manner they may convey a pleasant gesture to the tribe and strategy the island.
Consultants have additionally been consulting experiences on the tribe’s behaviour following their killing of two Indian fishermen in 2006 as they search for clues as to how they reply after the killing of outsiders, of whom they’re famously leery.
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Indian officers have repeatedly traveled close to the distant island since Chau’s killing, however haven’t set foot there.
Tribesmen have been seen on the shores of the seashore armed with spears and bows and arrows, however didn’t try and launch them at authorities observing from a ship a number of hundred metres away from the shore.
“They’re a treasure,” stated Dependra Pathak, director-general of police for the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. “We can’t go and pressure our manner in. We don’t need to hurt them.”
Authorities have dominated out taking any motion in opposition to the tribe over the killing. The tribe, whose inhabitants is believed to quantity lower than 100, have particular protected standing below Indian legislation.
Nonetheless, three fishermen who Chau bribed to take him to the island have been arrested and are to be held in police custody for per week, the New Indian Categorical reported.
— With a file from the Related Press
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