Adivasi women in Chattisgarh demanding that District Mineral Fund be provided directly to the communities affected. Photo Credit: Savita Rath
Adivasi Rights

How the Government Diluted Forest Rights Of Adivasis during Lockdown

Policy decisions for forest diversion during the COVID19 lockdown  which potentially dilute the Forest Rights Act, 2006 (FRA) and undermine the decision-making authority of the Gram Sabhas have become a major issue faced by Adivasi and forest dwelling communities.FRA requires the completion of the recognition and vesting of forest rights and obtaining free prior informed consent of Gram Sabhas before diversion of forest lands. This is  specified in the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC)’s own 2009 guidelines ,  the Forest Conservation Rules (2016), and also upheld by the Supreme Court in the landmark Niyamgiri judgement (2013).An analysis