Telangana to ask Centre to extend deadline for issuing pattas

Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao directed the forest officials not to thrash or attack tribal people who were in possession of forest lands. 

Published: 02nd October 2021 07:52 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd October 2021 07:52 AM   |  A+A-


Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao (File photo | EPS)

By Express News Service

HYDERABAD: The State Legislative Assembly is likely to adopt a resolution requesting the BJP-led Central government to extend the cut-off date for providing Records of Forest Rights (RoFR) pattas to the tribal people in Telangana. The UPA government, under the Forest Rights Act, had set the year 2015 as the deadline to give pattas, but the State is yet to issue the same for another 6 to 7 lakh acres of land.

During a short discussion on ‘Haritha Haram in Telangana’ in the State Legislative Assembly on Friday, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao directed the forest officials not to thrash or attack tribal people who were in possession of forest lands. 

He said that as per the UPA government’s direction, RoFR pattas were handed over to 96,676 tribals for 3.08 lakh forest lands. “After 2015, a few more tribals were identified and it is learnt that around six to seven lakh acres of forest lands are in their possession. A Cabinet sub-committee was constituted to study their problems. Once the committee submits its report, the Assembly will adopt a resolution requesting the Centre to extend the cut-off date, so that more tribal people get pattas. They have been cultivating forest lands for so many generations. We cannot just remove them,” Rao said.  

The Chief Minister said that if necessary, the government would lead an all-party delegation to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi to explain the resolution adopted by the Assembly. Rao, however, pointed out that issuing RoFR pattas would not confer any right to the tribal people. “They can only raise fruit-bearing trees on the lands and sell the produce. The rights over forest lands lie with the government,” he added.

Rao said that tribal conflicts were prevalent in agency areas because of the intrusion of Lambadas from Maharashtra to Adilabad and Gotti Koyas from Chhattisgarh to Warangal and Khammam districts. “The tribals from other States are not only attacking the native tribals, but also destroying the State’s forests,” he said, directing the officials to stop the infiltration of tribals from other States. 

Govt set to take up digi land survey soon
The Chief Minister said that the digital land survey proposed by the State government was delayed due to second wave of Covid-19. He said that it would be taken up shortly to end all land-related disputes. “Only after the survey can we give conclusive titles,” he said


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