Coimbatore district administration engages with tribal people

Tribal people from Pilloor and Velliankadu visiting the government exhibition in Coimbatore on Sunday.

Tribal people from Pilloor and Velliankadu visiting the government exhibition in Coimbatore on Sunday. | Photo Credit: S. Siva Saravanan

In an effort to bridge the gap between the government and tribal communities, the district administration organised an outreach programme for tribal people to visit the government exhibition, Collectorate and Ukkadam tank, here on Sunday.

Based on the arrangements made by Collector G.S. Sameeran, a total of 120 people belonging to Irula, Kota, Kurumba and Toda tribal communities from 38 settlements across the district visited the government exhibition.

Mr. Sameeran told The Hindu that the outreach programme was a part of a larger mission of moving the government control over the forest resources to community control. The district administration had settled more than 3,000 individual forest rights claims within a year. “Now our plan is to make resource mapping with community participation instead of Forest Department making the maps,” he added. 

The district administration was working on a priority basis regarding the Forest Rights Act at Anamalai, Anaikatti and Pilloor areas. The Collector said he had conducted informal meetings with the tribal people so that they came forward to work with the government in getting forest rights.

K. Booma, Revenue Divisional Officer, Coimbatore North said, “this is the first of its kind in the State where there is an initiative to use GPS technology for creating maps to settle claims instead of handmade maps.” 

She said the tribal people would have frequent interactions with government officials in the process of getting their community forest rights. This programme was arranged to break the barrier between the officials and the people.

The government organised the programme with the help of Keystone Foundation and Aadhimalai Federation. Students, who were part of Haiyya leadership training initiative, along with competitive exam aspirants also visited the stalls.

“This is a good opportunity for students and people from indigenous community to know about various welfare schemes,” said M. Bagawanidhi from Keystone Foundation.

They also visited the Collector’s office and Periyakulam tank in Ukkadam.

Ms. Booma added that the initiative would continue, and more tribal people across the district would be covered in the outreach programme in the coming weeks.

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Printable version | Aug 15, 2022 2:37:07 pm |