Naya Sawera Vikas Kendra (NSVK)

Project Theme

Natural Resource Management

Target Group

Others

Project Period

01 Apr 2015 - 31 Mar 2016

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Introduction

NSVK has been working towards the empowerment of the poor and the marginalized since 1999. Born out of concern and commitment to serve the multitude living under alien and subhuman conditions, it has effectively worked through towards uplifting the conditions of the denied and the deprived. In this relentless pursuit, NSVK has initiated several interventions to meet the changing socio economic and political context and be relevant and working directly with the communities through the community based organizations and their networks. NSVK is working with Oxfam India since 2009.

The overall goal of the organization is to promote Gandhian thought and action to work towards local governance, community self-reliance and responsible governance. Jharkhand being a tribal majority state, NSVK has closely worked with the forest dwelling communities. Working with the communities NSVK has taken up their issues of access and control over natural resources.

NSVK in this struggle realized that there is a need of a systematic advocacy on this issue. The grass root mobilization will give the much needed public pressure; however there is need of involving other stakeholders and an intense advocacy at different levels. To take forward the advocacy NSVK engages itself with state and national level networks and campaigns. Apart from this at the state level NSVK has actively initiated and participated in networks and campaigns on natural resources.   

 

About the Project

After long struggle and historical injustice towards the tribes and other forest dwellers finally The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006, was passed on December 2006 and signed by the President on December 29, 2006, but only notified into force on December 31, 2007 (one year later). The Rules to the Act were notified into force on January 1, 2008. But still implementation of FRA is a question mark for Jharkhand. 

Geographically 29% of Jharkhand is covered by forest land but only few no. of IFR has been recognized and there are no any recognition of CFR (under section 3 (1) i of FRA) in the state. Process for reconstitution of FRCs is in initial stage in the state and progress is slow. [As per Govt. record till Feb 2015 title of only 18152 IFR and 364 CFR have been given but these are not as per provision of FRA specially in the case of CFR all titles are as per section 3 (2).] Jharkhand government has already signed more than 100 MoU with different corporate to provide lease on Jharkhand Land. 

In project are 1998 IFR claims have been recognized and many CFR and IFR claims are in process but there are still need to increase number of recognition of claims to respect 'The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006'

For over three years through the project, NSVK has been actively engaged in building community based institutions, carry out mass awareness campaign for empowering rural communities to understand their rights under FRA, advocacy and networking and knowledge building to link the community level initiatives with macro level policy initiatives identifying FRA as a major legislation, through which community’s access and control over natural resource can be facilitated. Working on FRA, NSVK regularly does advocacy with government for its effective implementation. The constant interface with the administration has facilitated increasing of understanding over the issues related to FRA. Oxfam’s objective of reducing poverty and injustice is taken forward by this project by facilitating individual and community claims over forest resources. The village institutions created, sustains the process. The project works with the tribal community, which is one of the major focus communities of Oxfam India. 

NSVK has been instrumental in formation and strengthening of Jharkhand Van Adhikaar Manch which is a network of 22 organizations. Gradually the Manch got recognized by Government of Jharkhand and a tripartite agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) has been signed between Jharkhand State Tribal Co-operative Development Corporation Ltd and Poorest Area Civil Society Programme and Jharkhand Van Adhikaar Manch for implementation of forest right act. 

 

The strategic objectives of the project are

•To develop and strengthen the community organization to demand their right over forest land (individual and community rights) and increase access to natural resources and energy for forest dependent communities

•Increase networking with existing FRA groups/networks to lobby and seek accountability from the government to implement the FRA, 2006  

•Raising awareness and seeking accountability from the government towards the Tribal Sub Plan and its provisions 

•Empowerment of women in relation to their right to natural resources

 

This would be achieved by undertaking the following set of activities

•Building awareness among the youth and women in the community on CFR, IFR and renewable energy. 

•Capacity building of local youth on FRA, NTFP, PESA and renewable energy. 

•Facilitate claim filing process under CFR.  

•Strengthening linkages with Government departments and advocate for effective implementation of FRA. 

•Capacity building on use of GPRS technique. 

•Awareness generation on TSP analysis at various platforms. 

•Networking with other CSOs, PRIs and other state level networks. 

•Leadership training for women members of Forest Rights Committee.

•Advocacy meeting at State level with Tribal CBOs and state level alliances for better implementation of FRA.

•Meetings at the district level on convergence with government schemes for strengthening forest based livelihoods of the communities

 

Results to be Achieved 

•Recognition of 30% CFR Claim and 50 % IFR Claim submitted at FRC, SDLC and DLC level.

•Strengthening capacity of Gram Sabha and Forest Right Committee for preparing and recommending new IFR and CFR claims

•Strengthening district and state level network for regular advocacy for effective and speedier implementation of FRA in Jharkhand.

•Building awareness among the youth and women in the community on CFR, IFR and renewable energy. 

•Capacity building of local youth on FRA, NTFP, PESA and renewable energy. 

 

Prior Achievements

•Recognition of 1998 IFR titles for 998.5 acres and regular follow up is going on for 2947 IFR claim submitted at SDLC / DLC level.

•44 CFR claim filed for 12107.89 acres at SDLC and DLC level involving Gram Sabha and FRCs. Out of the 44 claims for CFR submitted  20 -22 CFR are in process to recognized soon at DLC

•NSVK played a key role in formation of Jharkhand Van Adhikar Manch. This is an united effort of 22 civil service organization which is operational in the entire district of Jharkhand. In a short period of a year Jharkhand govt. recognized this forum as knowledge resource hub and signed a MoU for providing training to Van Mitra and other govt. officials.

•Apart from putting in efforts to build capacities of community on land rights and their rights as forest dwellers, NSVK has also established linkages with govt. departments through various meetings, district and state level consultations of FRA. Through this project, the organization has taken initiative to engage communities with government, invited government officials in Gram Sabha meetings and held the interface meetings Also it has emerged as one of the strong advocacy organization through engaging itself with various networks active in the state. 

•Established linkage with community / community organization and line department to increase their access to several welfare schemes through convergence.

 

Quotes of Beneficiaries

“Every community must be self dependent and should not be treated with mercy of government staffs. Rights must be claim with strength of unity and responsibility.”– Laliya Devi

Village- Adwara, Block-Bagodar, Dist-Giridih (Jharkhand)

 

Case Study

The Believe of one Women is now the strength of Community

Laliya Devi

Village – Paharpur Tola, Adwara, Block – Bagodar, District – Giridih (Jharkhand

Even after age of more than 60 years of independence some part of Jharkhand still give the glimpse of 18th century. Though the beauty of the area is admirable but the basic amenities for human being are negligible. The scenario  of “Malgudi Day “the stories of R K Narayanan could be felt during the visit of Paharpur Tola of Advara Village at Bagodar Block of Giridih. But the existing reality is not as harmonious as were in Malguri.

The Pharpur Tola is around 5 kilometres away from the main road and the road connectivity is pathetic. The situation gets worse during the rainy season.  The connection for the electricity is like much awaited dream for this area.   

This tola is the habitat of 36 Kole (Adivasi, Schedule tribe families). Most of the family’s members are regular wage earner and are much dependent on the minor produce of forest. They were not allowed to do agriculture in the forest land by the mighty forest department officials moreover they were many hindrances were produce by the forest department even in the collection of the minor forest produce and its selling in the local markets. 

Laliya Devi is also a local resident of this area but with difference of high positive attitude and has energy to fight for her and her community rights with a rational approach. Laliya devi is unlike other widow with the feeling of helplessness. Laliya Devi has one married son and two teenage daughters still to get married. Though Laliya Devi is only a signature literate and earns her livelihood with her son as a daily labourer in MNREGA or any other privet construction site but on the same hand are much respectable member of her community. She is the president of “Van Surakha Samiti”. She do not perform her job only a mere duty but as worship for the almighty. She has the inherent believe that the prosperity of her and her community is much co-exists with the prosperity of forest. Many religious beliefs’ are also related to the forest. 

During the initial days of her advocacy for the Individual Forest Right Claim she was sometime felt as a  subject of joke in her own community as people were not at all in believe that one day the government will allow legal right on the forest. But the continuous approach to the related government officials and motivation to the local community now eleven families of local Kole (ST) families have received Individual forest right (IFR) claim on around seven Acers of land.

The achievement of legal right of this forest land has changed the mentality of the community and has been significantly changing the livelihood of the same eleven families.  Before achievement of IFR the community was not at all practicing the agriculture activities in forest but now they are growing some grain at least for their household consumption. 

Now the community is also focussing on Community Forest Right as around 150 Acers of land exist in the area surrounded by hillocks and seasonal rivers. This success of gaining IFR has empowered the community to collect forest produce. Now they are collecting the forest produce with much less fear and some time selling in the local markets. The social strength and the self respect have also increase. Now community members know about their forest right. 

Self believe and positive attitude with regular rational approach is now the motivation of Community.