Initiative giving tribals rights to sell bamboo a success
New Delhi, Apr 12 (PTI) An initiative started in a Maoist-hit village in Maharashtra giving tribals the rights to sell bamboo has been "very successful", Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh said here today. A year after he, as the Union Environment Minister, handed over the transit passbooks--the rights to control the movement of bamboo--to Mendha (Lekha) village in Maoist-affected Gadchiroli district, Ramesh said the Gram Sabha has earned almost Rs 1 crore from the sustainable harvesting of bamboo in the community forest. In a letter to Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, the Minister said the Mendha (Lekha) village experiment has proved that "the move to transfer control of the transit passbooks from the state forest department to the Gram Sabha has powerful implications for economic development." He asked Chavan to take similar initiatives in all the villages where the Community Forest Rights (CFRs) have been recognized under the FRA, 2006. In his letter, whose copies were also sent to Tribal Affairs Minister Kishore Chandra Deo and Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan, Ramesh said there are some 400 such villages in Gadchiroli district where community forest rights under Section 3.1 of the Forest Rights Act 2006 have been recognized. Welcoming the decision to transfer the control of transit passbooks to "10-15 villages" in Gadchiroli district from forest department, Ramesh said, "clearly, the process of replicating Menda (Lekha)'s success needs to very significantly accelerated". It has the potential of meeting the real objective of Forest Rights Act- to empower tribal communities with livelihood and economic options, he observed.The Great Diwali Discount!
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First Published on Apr 12, 2012 09:06 pm