Forest Produce for Tribals
The Times of India, Friday, 23rd September 2011

Tribals to get 20% royality on forest produce.


Tribals in Maharashtra will obtain a share of the royalty for forest produce, thanks to a cabinet decision, which has brought the joint forest management committee (JMFC) under the purview of the gram sabha.  Every gram sabha oversees the workings of gram panchayats.


The JFMC, an independent body, was set up under the Forest Rights Act in 2008.  However, villagers complained of not getting their share, which was to be split between the Centre, the forest department and the tribal community.


“Now, gram sabhas will be constitutionally empowered to oversee the working of the JFMC,” said Sudhir Thakre, secretary, rural development.


“Villagers will be entitled to 20% of the royalty, provided they have helped in protecting the forests,” added Thakre.


For instance, if the forest department sells teak worth Rs. 1 crore, Rs. 20 lakh will go to the villages, thus providing them an incentive to conserve forests.


Under the Forest Rights Act, tribals have a right of ownership of land, which they have been traditionally cultivating.




Gram Sabha, Gram Panchayats are rural bodies or committees.

Geeta Chhabra


Geeta Chhabra Comment Form
Form a link. Comment inside the box below. Your views will be published in a coming edition.