Bhopal, Aug 9: Madhya Pradesh has taken a lead in the country in the implementation of the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Rights) Act 2006 and Rules 2008 by launching distribution of forest land right papers.
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan made a token distribution of the forest land right papers to eight tribals at a function held on Friday, Aug 8 at Niwas tahsil headquarters in Mandla district.
Under the government scheme to withdraw all cases of minor forest offences registered against tribals and other forest dwellers, about 90,000 such cases of minor offences would be withdrawn, Mr Chouhan said.
Household articles seized from tribals in minor forest offences and encroachment cases were also returned to them at the function.
While returning their belongings like ploughs and wheels of bullock carts, the Chief Minister said, ''It is not the return of the belongings but restoration of honour of the tribals.'' The state government had chalked out an action plan for implementing the Act keeping in view the possible future problems and other requirements of the beneficiaries.
''While many states are yet to complete even the first phase of its implementation, Madhya Pradesh has already started distribution of right papers,'' an official spokesman said.
So far, 2.35 lakh claims had been received so far across the state. The claims were being verified with the assistance of personal digital assistant device while an awareness campaign was launched by providing information in local dialects.
As many as 39,561 claims had been received in Bhopal division, 6428 in Hoshangabad, 4054 in Indore, 6706 in Ujjain, 1953 in Chambal, 36,989 in Gwalior division, 15,017 in Sagar, 29,947 in Jabalpur and 45,792 in Rewa division.