Cong demands protection of tribal rights on forest land

Congress in Rajya Sabha demands protection of tribal rights on forest land

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Congress members in Rajya Sabha on Thursday said there is a need to further tighten the existing laws or bring a new one in order to protect rights of tribals on their forest land.

Raising the matter during Zero Hour, Congress leader Madhusudan Mistry said over the years, there has been "tardy" implementation of a law that protects forest land of tribals and forest dwellers. Many complaints of tribals are still unresolved and the government should set up a separate tribunal in this regard, he added.

Another Congress leader P Bhattacharya said the existing law enables gram sabhas to protect rights of scheduled tribes (STs). "Instead, Gram Sabhas are taking decision on eviction and giving lands to private parties," he said, and urged the government to make necessary changes to the law or bring a new one to protect rights of tribals.

Raising issues related to education sector, Manoj Kumar Jha (RJD) said the government should make appointment of teachers on a priority basis, while Harnath Singh Yadav (BJP) said teachers should not be given election and census duty as this will affect the education of children.

Sarojini Hembram (BJD) demanded the government provide more funds for renovation of the Biju Patnaik Hockey Stadium in Rourkela, Odisha -- the venue for the 2023 Hockey World Cup. Abdul Wahab (IUML) said the condition of Muslims has not improved even after 13 years of the recommendation of the Sachar Committee for uplift of the minority community.

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