Individual pattas issued to34,000 tribal people in the first phase

The revenue officials have embarked on a special drive to receive individual and community claims from the eligible tribals under the ROFR (Scheduled Tribes and other Traditional Forest Dwellers Recognition of Forest Rights Act), 2006, in the district.

The move has been initiated in the backdrop of the demand from various organisations for expeditious settlement of long pending claims of the tribal people for grant of right over ‘podu lands' in their possession for a long.

The special drive is aimed at settling all the pending claims in respect of lands possessed prior to December 13, 2005, in compliance with the provisions of the ROFR Act, sources said.

Sources further said individual pattas had been issued to around 34,000 tribals for nearly 1.10 lakh acres under the first phase of the ROFR Act in the district. The present drive, considered to be the second and final phase, has been initiated to settle all the claims under the ROFR Act once for all.

It is intended to address the recurring problem of the conflict between the law enforcement agencies and the adivasis over the issue of podu lands, said an official of ITDA, Bhadrachalam, who did not want to be quoted. “Any attempt to occupy forest lands in the name of podu would incur serious punishment under the forest laws,” he said.

Gram sabha

Meanwhile, the revenue officials conducted a gram sabha at Bodu village in Tekulapalli mandal on Monday. The officials have received a total 27 individual and four community claims under the ROFR Act from the tribal people in the gram sabha.

When contacted, Tekulapalli Tehsildhar Vinayabhaskar told The Hindu that as many as 2,682 claims had already been settled under the first phase of ROFR Act in the mandal in the past. Another 630 previous claims are pending with the forest officials concerned, he said. No fresh claims would be entertained after the present drive, which is slated to end on February 25, he said.

  • Officials have received a total 27 individual and four community claims at gram sabha

  • No fresh claims will be entertained after the present drive, says revenue official