The Parkari people's homeland is the rocky desert area which lies on the border between Pakistan and India, close to the Rann of Kutch. In this harsh environment they eke out an  existence based on herding livestock and subsistence farming. In this remote desert region they are entirely dependent on the monsoon rains for animal fodder and for growing crops.

In years when the monsoons fail, as happens frequently, the desert communities are forced to migrate on foot together with their livestock, to the irrigated areas, where they seek temporary farm work, and grazing for their livestock.

During the last hundred years or so, many Parkaris have moved permanently to the irrigated areas. Here they live as landless farm labourers in bondage to the wealthy feudal landowners whose fields they work. They do all the sowing, weeding, harvesting and threshing by hand, in exchange for only a half or a quarter of the crop, the rest going to the landowner. They have no rights of tenure, and are often mistreated.

Few Parkaris have vocational skills and barely 1% are literate. Most Parkari villages lack the basic essentials of clean drinking water and access to education and health services. Women and children are the most disadvantaged.