EQUALITY INDIA NEWS- A SHAKTI VAHINI RESEARCH INITIATIVE
The Ministry of Tribal Affairs took several new initiatives during 2010 for empowering Scheduled Tribes (STs) through better service delivery mechanisms. Various steps were taken towards improving and safeguarding the lives of the Scheduled Tribes community in the country and strengthening of the historic Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006. Major policy initiatives taken by the Ministry are as under:
Constitution of National Council for Tribal Welfare and Standing Committee for Tribal Welfare
National Council for Tribal Welfare has been constituted. The Council will be chaired by the Prime Minister. In addition to the Council, a Standing Committee has also been constituted. This will be chaired by the Minister of Tribal Affairs. The National Council for Tribal Welfare set up objectives are (i) provide broad policy guidelines to bring about improvement in the lives of the Scheduled Tribes community in the country (ii) review the implementation of the Forest Rights Act (iii) review the implementation of Fifth Schedule and Sixth Schedule of the Constitution (iv) monitor the implementation of Tribal Sub Plan (v) monitor programmes aimed at protecting particularly vulnerable Tribal Groups.
Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006
The Ministry of Tribal Affairs is implementing The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 which recognizes and vests the forest rights and occupation in forest land in forest dwelling Scheduled Tribes and other traditional forest dwellers who have been residing in such forests, for generations, but whose rights could not be recorded. The salient features of the Act are – (i) The occupation of forest land up to an area of 4 hectares (Max.) can be recognized (ii) Rights are heritable but not alienable or transferable (iii) Persons living in and dependent on forests for livelihood shall be eligible (iv) Responsibility of protection of wild life, forest and biodiversity has been assigned to the right-holders (v) State/UT Governments are implementing the Act. More than 30.14 lakh claims have reportedly been filed in various States/UTs and more than 10.90 lakh titles have been distributed in the States/UTs, as on 30.11.2010.
The Minister of Tribal Affairs addressed letters to the Chief Ministers of all States on 30th August, 2010 to ensure compliance of the provisions of the Forest Rights Act before taking decision on displacement of Scheduled Tribes from National Parks and Sanctuaries. He again addressed the Chief Ministers of the States on 31.08.2010 & 10.11.2010 to accord priority to the implementation of the Act and to ensure distribution of the title deeds to all eligible claimants without delay.
Participation of Tribal Guests in Republic Day Celebrations 2010
As per the practice being followed over the years, this year too, the Ministry invited two tribal representatives, one female and one male from each State/Union Territory as guests of the Government of India, to witness the Republic Day Parade and Celebrations 2010. 53 tribal guests from 28 States/Union Territories came to Delhi to witness the Republic Day Parade 2010.
Tribal Guests witnessed the Republic Day Parade 2010, attended the Prime Minister’s NCC Rally on 28th January, 2010 and Beating Retreat Ceremony on 29th January, 2010. The tribal guests also called on the President of India and Vice President on 27th January, 2010, and also attended the reception hosted by the Prime Minister on 28th January, 2010. They also met the Defence Minister. The Minister of Tribal Affairs held a reception in their honour and distributed shawls to them. The tribal guests paid homage to the Father of the Nation at Rajghat on 30th January, 2010. The guests were taken for sightseeing in and around Delhi and also visited Agra, Fatehpur Sikri and the temples in Mathura.
The tableau of the Ministry was displayed during the Republic Day Parade 2010 on the theme of Forest Rights Act 2006.
Organizing of National Tribal Festival “Prakriti” in New Delhi
The National Tribal Festival “Prakriti was organized from 5th to 7th February, 2010 at Delhi Haat, New Delhi. This event was integrated with “Aadishilp” and was a joint venture of Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Ltd. (TRIFED) and the Ministry of Culture. TRIFED sold goods made by tribal artisans and the Ministry of Culture brought in performing tribal troupes from different parts of the country to make the event a convergence of Tribal art and culture. During the event from 5th to 8th February, 2010, the Ministry also organized a Photo Exhibition of Selected photographs of 3rd National Level Photo Competition in collaboration with Photo Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
National Level Photographic Competition 2010
The Ministry of Tribal Affairs and Photo Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting jointly organised the fourth National Level Photographic Competition 2010 on the theme “ARTISTIC EXPRESSION OF TRIBAL WOMEN” by inviting Amateur Photographers, especially tribals in the country to participate by submitting colour photographs.
Workshop on Tribal Heritage Agriculture Systems (THAS)
The Ministry of Tribal Affairs organized a workshop on Tribal Heritage Agriculture Systems (THAS) on 1st June, 2010 at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi. The workshop was inaugurated by Shri Kantilal Bhuria, the Minister of Tribal Affairs. The key note speaker was Dr. Parviz Koohafkan, Director, Land and Water Division and Coordinator, Globally Important Agriculture Heritage Systems (GIAHS) of FAO (UN). The main purpose of this workshop was to enable the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, in association with the concerned Administrative Ministries viz. Ministries of Rural Development, Agriculture and Cooperation, and State governments to initiate programmes to identify and support bio-diversity rich tribal heritage agriculture systems in our country, and as a first measure, identify a few extremely unique but vulnerable systems for designing support mechanisms.
Constitution of Tribal Advisory Council (TAC) in the State of Uttarakhand
In pursuance of sub-paragraph (1) of paragraph 4 of the Fifth Schedule to the Constitution of India the direction of the President of India has been conveyed to the State Government of Uttarakhand for Constitution of Tribal Advisory Council (TAC) in the State, vide the “CO 263” The Tribal Advisory Council (State of Uttarakhand) order, 2010; published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary Part II- Section -3. Sub Section (i) dated 25.06.2010.
National Tribal Archery Competition 2009-10 for Scheduled Tribe Boys and Girls
A National Tribal Archery Competition 2009-10 for Scheduled Tribe Boys and Girls was organized by the Ministry for the first time, through the Archery Association of India, in five States namely, Arunachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Meghalaya and Sikkim. The final Competition was held at Jamshedpur (Jharkhand) in January, 2010.
Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Ltd. (TRIFED)
The total sale proceeds of the Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Ltd. (TRIFED) during the month of November 2010 have been Rs. 175.38 lakh, as compared of Rs. 114.42 lakh during the corresponding period in November, 2009.
National Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation (NSTFDC)
The National Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation (NSTFDC) disbursed an amount of Rs. 25.14 crore for income generating activities during November, 2010 as compared to Rs. 21.24 crore during the corresponding period in November, 2009.
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