There are more than 500 Adivasi communities living in India who need equal access to educational opportunities as the rest of the citizens. With this in mind, two tribal universities have been set up in the country. The Indira Gandhi National Tribal University, Amarkantak (MP) was established in 2007 and the Central Tribal University, Vizianagaram (AP) became functional in 2019. They were set up to disseminate and advance knowledge by providing instructional and research facilities in tribal art, tradition, culture, language, medicinal systems etc.
Tamil Nadu which has about 36 Adivasi communities may also get a tribal university that will focus on the educational needs of the people. According to a report by The Hindu, the Madurai Bench of Madras High Court in March ordered notice to the Centre and the State regarding the establishment of such a university. It was given in response to a public interest litigation petition that sought a direction as to how a tribal university can be established in Tamil Nadu, to preserve the culture and tradition of tribal communities.
The petition was filed by S. Selvagomathi, who is the Joint Director of the SOCO Trust and the Managing Trustee of the Justice Shivaraj V. Patil foundation, Madurai. A Division Bench of Justices M.M. Sundresh and S. Ananthi sought response for the same.
The petitioner sought the establishment of the University in either Dindigul or the Nilgiris district where many Adivasi communities reside. In 2017, Jharkhand had also announced that it will set up a Tribal University.