More financial help needed for strengthening economy of tribal areas

Bhopal

Tribal Welfare Minister Meena Singh said in the video conference called by the Union Tribal Ministry that the economy of the tribal areas has been affected due to Corona virus infection. To increase employment opportunities in these areas, there is need for additional financial assistance from the Centre. She said that the amount of Rs one and a half lakhs given to the group of 15-20 women should be increased to Rs 2.50 lakhs. At the beginning of the video conference, the Union Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda said that due to Corona infection, the need has been felt to further strengthen the economy of tribal areas. In this context, discussions are being held with the Chief Ministers of the states and the Tribal Welfare Ministers of the states.

The Tribal Welfare Minister said that due to Corona crisis, migrant labourers have returned to tribal areas in the state. In such a situation, a large number of employment based work is required to be started in these areas. Minister Meena Singh said that the compensation amount of Rs. 10 lakhs given for displacement of tribal and other families is way too less and as their employment is also affected due to the displacement, there is a need to increase the amount of compensation. Minister Meena Singh informed that Mahua is being purchased in the state at the rate of Rs. 35 per kg. Along with this, tendupatta is being purchased from the forest dwellers at the rate of Rs 2500 per quintal.

It was informed in the meeting that 86 Bandhan Kendras have been approved in tribal dominated areas of 15 districts of the state. As many 300 members have been added to each Bandhan Kendra, who are pursuing the work of forest produce collection. Training and equipment of small forest produce is being given to the members associated with Bandhan. The state has received an amount of Rs 7 crore for the development of Bandhan Kendras from the central government.

“Apni Dukan” has been developed in the Haat-Bazaar for the sale of forest produce in the state. Efforts are being made to ensure fair price to the forest dwellers for their produce through these shops. The support price for 12 varieties of minor forest produce has been announced by the state government.

Principal Secretary Forest Ashok Varnwal, Principal Secretary Tribal Welfare Smt. Pallavi Jain Govil and Commissioner Tribal Development B.C. Chandrashekhar was also present.