To assess the condition of tribal colonies, Social Welfare Minister G Anjaneya will stay in a tribal colony at Reshme Hadlu in Thithimathi on Saturday.
The tribals feel that there is a ray of hope and wish that their lives will change after the minister’s visit, owing to the non-implementation of the Forest Rights Act effectively.
There are over 30,000 tribals including Jenukuruba, Bettakuruba, Yaravaru and Soliga communities in Kodagu district. However, title deeds under Forest Rights Act have been received by only 1,338 families. Not many have received community right under the Act.
The Conservation-cum-Development (CCD) Plan of the Central government to improve the standard of living of traditional dwellers also has not been implemented effectively. The CCD Plan aims at providing a housing, drinking water and other basic facilities for the forest dwellers.
Unfortunately, no houses have been constructed under the CCD plan in the district for the past several years. Rs 25 crore released by the Centre has remained as it is. In fact, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had expressed displeasure over non-utilisation of fund during his visit to the district on November 3.
According to sources, the Forest department had failed to provide permission for constructing houses in and around Nagarahole National Park, which was one of the reasons for non-utilisation of funds. The tribals say that those residing in the forest do not possess ration cards, and as a result, they are denied benefits under Anna Bhagya scheme of the government.
Also, the supply of nutritious food for the tribals during monsoon, is not regular. They also said that majority of the Ashrama Schools run by Social Welfare department suffer from acute shortage of teachers.
ITDP Officer Sathish said measures have been taken to construct houses under CCD plan, and title deeds have been issued to 1,338 families under Forest Rights Act. “Community rights have been given to three colonies. The verification of documents pertaining to 42 colonies are in final stage,” he added.