Mankidia denied habitat in Simlipal

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Mains Paper 2: Governance | Government policies & interventions for development in various sectors & issues arising out of their design & implementation.

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups, Similipal Tiger Reserve, Forest Rights Act, Mankidia, Bondas, Didai, Hill Khadia and Paudi Bhuyan tribes

Mains level: Schemes for development of Tribes and issues in their implementation


Not getting benefits of Forest Rights Act

  1. Mankidia, one of the 13 Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTG) in Odisha, were denied habitat rights inside the Similipal Tiger Reserve (STR)
  2. There are provisions related to this in the historic Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006

Forest department’s reasoning

  1. The State Forest Department has objected on grounds that tribals could be attacked by wild animals, especially tigers
  2. Habitat rights would also create barriers for free movement of tigers and other animals

How this would affect Mankidia tribe?

  1. Mankidia, a marginalised group that critically depends on making rope with siali fibre that’s richly available in Similipal, would now be deprived of the non-timber forest produce

Definition of Habitat

  1. ‘Habitat’ as defined under Section 2(h) of the FRA (Forest Rights Act) includes the area comprising the customary habitat and such other habitats in reserved forests and protected forests of primitive tribal groups and pre-agricultural communities and other forest dwelling Scheduled Tribes

Tribes in Odisha

  1. In Odisha, processes have been initiated for according habitat rights to PVTGs such as Bondas, Didai, Hill Khadia and Paudi Bhuyan


Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups

  1. Particularly vulnerable tribal group (PVTG) (earlier: Primitive tribal group) is a government of India classification created with the purpose of enabling improvement in the conditions of certain communities with particularly low development indices
  2. PVTGs have some basic characteristics -they are mostly homogenous, with a small population, relatively physically isolated, social institutes cast in a simple mould, absence of written language, relatively simple technology and a slower rate of change etc.
  3. In 1973, the Dhebar Commission created Primitive Tribal Groups (PTGs) as a separate category, who are less developed among the tribal groups
  4. PVTGs are scattered in different geographical areas of the country
  5. The Scheme for Development of Primitive Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs), came into effect from April 1,2008
  6. The Scheme defines PVTGs as the most vulnerable among the Scheduled Tribes and the Scheme therefore seeks to prioritise their protection and development
  7. It identifies 75 PVTGs
  8. Activities supported under the scheme include housing, land distribution, land development, agricultural development, cattle development, construction of link roads, installation of non conventional sources of energy, social security, etc
Tribal Development
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