Poverty & Inequality

Exploratory research on the impact of the Forest Rights Act, 2006, on deforestation, tribal welfare, and poverty, with implications for implementation strategies.

  • Blog Post Date 01 July, 2012
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Jagdish Krishnaswamy

Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment

jagdish@atree.org

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E. Somanathan

Indian Statistical Institute

som@isid.ac.in

When the United Progressive Alliance came to power in the Indian general elections of May 2004, it published a Common Minimum Programme in which it promised to end the eviction of tribal and other forest-dwelling people from forest lands. The purpose of this project was to explore data availability in order to examine the feasibility of the following four research questions: (i) Did the Forest Rights Act (FRA) of 2006 lead to an increase in forest clearing in order to establish claims to individual title? (ii) Does community control lead to better forest protection and soil conservation than state forest department control? (iii) Has the FRA achieved its aim of “correcting historical injustices” by giving titles to the poor? (iv) How are claims to title mediated by political and other networks, caste, and status?

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