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Odisha government to resubmit proposals for inclusion of Communities as Scheduled Tribe  

Monday June 09, 2014

ODISHA, TRIBAL, COMMUNITY, DEVELOPMENT, INDIA  
 

"Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik apprised the Union Minister for Panchayati Raj and Tribal Affairs, V. Kishore Chandra S. Deo in New Delhi on a host of measures that have been taken by the government of Odisha during recent years in order to empower the tribal communities.

 

HNF Correspondent

 
 

While visiting V Kishore Chandra S Deo, the Union Minister for Panchayati Raj and Tribal Affairs, India, in New Delhi, Chief Minister of Odisha, Naveen Patnaik, brought the long pending proposals for inclusion as new categories/ synonyms of various communities in the Scheduled Tribe (ST) list of Odisha to the notice of the Union Minister and requested that the proposals be approved at the earliest possible keeping in view the repeated and legitimate demands made by the communities for an early inclusion.

“Odisha occupies the first position in the country in the implementation of the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 under which about 3.07 lakh individual forest right titles involving about 4.94 lakh acres of land have already been recognized in the State,” said Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

 

Naveen Patnaik also apprised the Union Minister for Panchayati Raj and Tribal Affairs, V Kishore Chandra S Deo, in New Delhi on a host of measures that have been taken by the government of Odisha during recent years in order to empower the tribal communities.

While briefing the union minister on different programmes, Naveen brought to the notive of the union Minister that the State has recently implemented a pilot project in 1042 villages under the Odisha Tribal Empowerment and Livelihood Programme with the aim to formalize the rights of the tribals over homestead and agricultural land which has paid rich dividends in the allocation of land to the landless tribals. “The State has accordingly formulated an innovative and comprehensive strategy, to be implemented over a period of 5 years from 2012-13 to 2016-17, to ensure that there is no homeless and landless tribal household in the Tribal Sub-Plan areas of the State covering 118 Blocks, by 2016-17,” said Naveen requesting the Union Minister to sanction the innovative project envisaging a cost of Rs.31.37 crore as Innovative Project component under Article 275(1).

Stating that the livelihood improvement of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs) is a priority of the State, Naveen Patnaik informed the Union Minister that the State has accordingly formulated a detailed proposal and submitted to the Union Ministry in February 2012 for the livelihood improvement of PVTGs, which involves external funding. Chief Minister of Odisha requested the Union Minister to forward the said proposal envisaging a project cost of Rs.609.21 crore including proposed assistance from external agency IFAD of Rs.397.84 crore to the Department of Economic Affairs, at the earliest.

Chief Minister of Odisha also apprised the Union Minister that the State has already completed construction of 40 hostels for Scheduled Tribe girls and boys out of 65 sanctioned during 2010-11 and the balance are also nearing completion. He urged the Union Minister to convey his ‘in-principle’ approval for sanction of at least 100 numbers of 100 seated hostels for Scheduled Tribes at an estimated cost of Rs.125 lakh per hostel. In addition, the Union Minister was requested to sanction the balance 20 Ashram Schools during the current year 2012-13 as per the proposal submitted for sanction of 50 Ashram Schools in 2011-12.

Giving a serious consideration to Naveen patnaik’s appraisal, Union Minister Deo assured that the proposal of Government of Odisha envisaging an innovative and comprehensive strategy for ensuring the rights of tribals at a cost of Rs.31.37 crore, spread over a period of 5 years from 2012-13 to 2016-17, will be considered favourably under the Innovative Project component of Article 275(1). Appreciating the concerns of Odisha on 159 proposals, pending for a long time for inclusion as new categories/ synonyms of various communities in the list of Scheduled Tribes of Odisha, the Union Minister clarified that the Union Ministry does understand that there is a need to update the list of Scheduled Tribes in Odisha but it has to be guided, however, by the advice of the Registrar General of India. Union Minister requested Naveen that the State should re-submit the proposals by clearly specifying additional ethnographic evidences available in support of the proposals, while promising that the Union Ministry shall pursue the matter with the Registrar General of India upon receipt of the same.

The Union Minister, however, agreed ‘in principle’ for sanctioning additional hostels for tribal students under the scheme of ‘Hostels for Scheduled Tribe Girls and Boys’. He also assured to sanction the balance 20 new Ashram Schools during 2012-13 upon receipt of utilization certificates for the grants sanctioned earlier. He further suggested that his Ministry, in consultation with the State Government, will make some amendments in the project proposal of the State for livelihood improvement of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups and forward the same after making necessary amendments to the Department of Economic Affairs for posing to International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) or any other external agency.

It's to be noted that the Extremist Maoist groups have also placed the demand for inclusion of some communities as tribal groups during all the cases of abduction in Odisha.

 
 

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