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'PESA Act' - Chief Minister opens Eklavya Model Residency School for tribal at Puniavant

“Implementation of Rule-2017 under PESA Act to empower tribal people to minor forest produces and minerals, would eliminate moneylenders” – Vijay Rupani

Chief Minister Vijay Rupani launched implementation of the Rule-2017 under the Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act in 4,503 gram sabhas under 2,584 village panchayats in 50 predominantly tribal talukas in eight districts of the state during Van and Vanbandhu Kalyan Mela from Chhotaudepur today.

The rule under PESA empowers the tribal people living in forest areas to various privileges including minor forest produces and minor minerals. The income thus generated could be used for the development of the region.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Rupani said the forest and its produces are synonymous with the life of the tribal. He said the government initiative would herald the golden period of tribal development in the state and prove to be the sunrise for the tribal people. The step would ensure the gram sabhas would fix the loan interest and eliminate the moneylenders calling shots, create separate security force for forest and leasing quarries to them, using pond water and other facilities, implement complete prohibition.

He said the government proposed to start medical colleges in the tribal areas so that the tribal doctors, engineers and scientists to contribute to the development of the state over the next ten years. The government provided free treatment of prevalence of sickle anemia among tribal people in forest areas. The government would take up appointment of teachers in remote areas on priority, with dry hostel and with food facility. There already is Rs.4,800-crore drinking and irrigation water projects under implementation.

Mr. Rupani distributed token cheques and letters of agreements worth Rs.20-crore to beneficiaries, released a booklet explaining the details. He inaugurated an Eklavya Model Residency School with five star facilities built by Gujarat State Tribal Education Society at a cost of Rs.18-crore at Puniavant. The government has built 80 such schools for 28,000 bright tribal students across the state. He inaugurated and laid foundation stones of other projects totaling Rs.98-crore in the region.

Union Tribal Development Minister Jasvantsinh Bhabhor said the Central and State Government were implementing several projects for the welfare of the tribal people.

Gujarat’s Forest and Tribal Development Minister Ganpat Vasava said the Vanbandhu Yojna has resulted in change in the lifestyle of the tribal, besides facelift of the regions with roads, drinking water, electricity, even providing nutritious food and milk under Dudh Sanjivani Yojna.

Those present on the occasion included Ministers of State  Shabdasharan Tadvi, Jayantilal Kavadia and Bachubhai Khabad, Parliamentary Secretary Jayantibhai Rathwa, MP Ramsinh Rathwa, Mansukh vasava, MLAs Nimishaben Suthar, Motisinh Vasava, Rameshbhai Katara, Van Vikas Nigam Chairman Ramilaben Bara, Additional Chief Secretary Arvind Agrawal, Rajgopal, Principal Secretary R.C. Meena Principal Chief Conservator of Forest Kuldeep Goyal, District Collector Vijay Kharadi and DDO Aurangabadkar.