Panel for scheduled tribes to track rejection of forest dwellers’ claims

The National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) is considering reviewing some states to track the number of forest rights claims of dwellers that were rejected.

Published: 01st March 2019 08:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st March 2019 06:29 PM   |  A+A-

Scheduled tribes

(Photo| Facebook/ National Commission for Scheduled Tribes)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  The National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) is considering reviewing some states to track the number of forest rights claims of dwellers that were rejected.“The states that we are planning to review are Odisha, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. We would reviewing why a large number of claims are being rejected,” an NCST official said.

There is also an immediate need to intensify state-level monitoring committee meetings across the country in order to empower the tribal communities, according to the NCST. “The states need to monitor the meetings taking place frequently in order to do justice to the communities under the Forest Rights Act,” the official said.

“The Commission is of the view that most of the rejected cases are arbitrary decisions by the field functionaries. The Commission recommends that proper review should be done with the balance of convenience for the welfare of tribals. This should be achieved within the time limit set by the Supreme Court,” the Commission said.

The Commission pointed out the challenges that ensue while tribal families try to get their land claims cleared. “Ground visits show sometimes tribals are unable to get the quorum for the gram sabhas to function. On several occasions, we have found that the claimants are not aware of how to go about the process,” the official said. These cases are mostly typical of Goa and Odisha.

The gram sabha has a substantial role in the implementation of the provisions of the Forest Rights Act, 2006, it noted. The Campaign for Survival and Dignity, a national platform of adivasi and forest dwellers’ organizations, which was holding nationwide protests the apex court’s order on the eviction of tribal families living on forest lands, said the struggle was not over.“Both the Central and state governments should know that forest dwellers will continue to fight for recognition of all of their rights. Evictions or the denial of rights will never be accepted,” said the forum.

Catering to tribals

There is also an immediate need to intensify state-level monitoring committee meetings across the country in order to empower the tribal communities, according to the NCST. “The states need to monitor the meetings taking place frequently in order to do justice to the communities under the Forest Rights Act,” the official said. It noted that the gram sabha has a role in the implementation of Forest Rights Act, 2006

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp