Tribal people want their right to collect minor forest produce be ensured

Tribal People’s Council has demanded that tribal people be allowed to harvest minor forest produce as per the rights governed in the Forest Rights Act, 2006.

In a letter to the Director of Tribal Welfare, who is also the State Level Nodal Officer for implementing Forest Rights Act 2006, K.A. Gunasekaran, Chairman of the council, said that as per the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006, tribes have the right to collect the produce and earn their livelihood.

“But nine years after implementation of the Act, tribals were denied their right to collect the produce,” he added.

As per the Government Order, the rights of tribal people to enter the forest and collect the forest produce should not be denied and Tribal Village Forest Committees should be formed. He said that 50 Tribal Village Forest Committees were constituted in Salem and Dharmapuri districts so that its members could enter the forest. “But tribals were not allowed,” he added.

The letter said that the Principal Secretary to Government, Environment and Forests clearly emphasised that the forest officials are to co-operate with the Revenue and Tribal Welfare Department officials for the speedy implementation of the FRA Act.

But, forest officials in Salem district have auctioned for harvesting the minor forest product through non –tribals, he alleged.

The letter wanted officials to desist from these unethical practices of the forest officials and render justice to the tribals. The letter said that the economic uplift of the tribals depend on the collection of resources from the forest and wanted it to be allowed as per law.

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Printable version | Oct 24, 2021 9:47:20 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/Tribal-people-want-their-right-to-collect-minor-forest-produce-be-ensured/article14001293.ece

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