Odisha eyes Forest Act implementation by 2024

July 08, 2022 12:00 am | Updated 05:34 am IST - BHUBANESWAR

Target is to have 587 revenue villages

The Odisha government is chasing an ambitious target of completing implementation of the Forest Rights Act (FRA) by granting all kinds of rights mandated under the historic Act by 2024.

Addressing a national consultation on ‘Potential of Forest Rights Act in the Context of Tribal Development: Implementation Gaps and Way Forward’ here on Thursday, Odisha’s ST and SC Development Secretary Ranjana Chopra said, “We are confident enough to launch Mission 2024 for FRA where we are committing ourselves to saturate the State of Odisha by granting all kinds of forest rights whether it is individual, community or habitat.”

“All tribals will be granted their rightful ownership. The Mission is under scrutiny by the Finance Department and the Planning and Convergence Department. I think we would soon be able to launch the ambitious programme. By 2024, we would be able to achieve the mandate given to the State government under the FRA,” said Ms. Chopra.

“The journey which started in 2006 would hopefully conclude on a happy note by 2024,” she said. The State government has set a target to convert 587 forest villages into revenue villages in the targeted time. As of now, only 15 forest villages have been recognised as revenue villages.

‘Records digitised’

“All old records of rights [land pattas] have been digitised and the future pattas would also be digitised. A dedicated website has been hosted to keep all records. The whole process of demarcation of land and reaching out to the last citizen has been facilitated by non-government organisation partners,” said Ms. Chopra.

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