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“Jarawa!” The cry goes up from the front of the bus and, in an instant, the tourists are on their feet, craning their necks to see a small boy clutching a short spear.
He is standing on the edge of the jungle, watching the convoy of vehicles thunder past on the Andaman trunk road. The tourists lurch towards the right-hand side of the vehicle to catch one last glimpse of him and then the government-run bus is past and he is gone.
It is Wednesday morning, three days before the start of the official tourist season and eight months since an Observer investigation into the plight of the aboriginal Jarawa tribe, and an accompanying video of young tribal women dancing semi-naked for food, scandalised India and brought international condemnation of the Andaman human safaris.