National Commission for Scheduled Tribes seeks better compensation for tribals

“The Commission is of the view that the Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 should be applicable to tribal communities being displaced from tiger reserves and wildlife sanctuaries. The NCST holds the view that the tribals are not being adequately compensated at the moment. So it arrived at this decision on Friday, that the LARR Act should be applicable to tribals in the reserve belts,” said the official. The LARR Act has provisions for compensation, rehabilitation and resettlement of communities when their land is taken away. Read more

Courtesy: The New Indian Express

Declare land acquisition for Rourkela steel plant null & void: NCST to Guv

NEW DELHI: Declare land acquisition for Rourkela Steel Plant null and void with retrospective effect – National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) has asked Odisha Governor to step in and protect interests of tribals who are being unfairly evicted from their rightful land.

In a first, the Commission has asked Odisha governor to exercise special powers granted in the Constitution for Scheduled Areas and cancel land acquired for Rourkela Steel Plant expansion plan. The move comes after the Commission examined complaints received from tribals living in the area and numerous field visits over the last 18 months. The tribals of Ruputola and Luakera villages in Rourkela had complained to NCST that they had been living in the area for over 50 years and were being wrongfully evicted after the plant’s expansion plans firmed up. Read more

Courtesy: The Economic Times

Bullet train: Gujarat HC issues notices to Centre, state on farmers plea challenging land acquisition

The Gujarat High Court today refused to stay the land acquisition process for the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet train project, while issuing notices to the Centre and the state government on a petition filed by five farmers.

The five farmers from Surat district have challenged the land acquisition process.

A division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice V M Pancholi refused to issue any stay, saying the court would wait for the replies from the respondents before passing any order. Read more

Courtesy: The Economic Times

Andhra Pradesh passes amendments to Centre’s land acquisition law; a boost for private property rights

Andhra Pradesh has passed an amendment to the Centre’s Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act of 2013 (LARR 2013), after over two years of legal and constitutional challenges. With this move, the Andhra Pradesh government has finally succeeded in reducing the acquisition of private agricultural land to a simple agreement initiated by the district collector. This statutory change bypasses the procedures the LARR 2013 had put in place, expediting land acquisition for the state’s new capital Amaravati under Andhra Pradesh’s controversial land pooling scheme that eliminates monetary compensation for land acquisition. Read more

Courtesy: First Post

Maharashtra Denies Habitat Rights to the Most Backward Tribal Communities

In January 2016, a decade after the Forest Rights Act (FRA) was passed by Parliament, 60 gram sabhas in Khutgaon, Gadchiroli, became the first forest-dwelling people in Maharashtra to file a claim for habitat rights. These people are part of a community called Madia Gond, classified as a particularly vulnerable tribal group (PVTG). Almost three years since their claims were submitted, since also approved by the authorised body, they are yet to receive their legal titles.

PVTG is a subcategory of scheduled tribes (ST), characterised by a pre-agricultural level of technology, stagnant or declining population, extremely low literacy rate and subsistence level of economy. There are 75 listed PVTGs in India; Maharashtra has three: Katkaria or Kathodi in Thane and Raigad districts, Kolam in Yavatmal district and Madia Gond in Gadchiroli district. Among STs, the PVTGs have distinct societies and cultures rooted in their territories and forests. Most PVTGs are known to identify themselves as part of a larger clan of villages of the same community, with large and shared bio-cultural territories. These territories or habitats provide livelihood and resources as well as social and spiritual significance. Read more

Courtesy: The Wire

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