Saturday, March 30, 2013

Rs661 crore for forest and environment approved by Gujarat Government.

DNA | Mar 21, 2013, 05:17AM IST

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat Assembly on Wednesday passed budgets of Rs661 crore for forest & environment and Rs7,345 crore for tribal development in the state. Senior Congress MLAs, belonging to tribal communities and representing constituencies with forest areas, raised concerns about tribal development during the debate over the budgetary demands.
Deputy leader of the Congress legislative party and MLA from Chhota Udepur constituency, Mohansinh Rathwa said that instead of utilising money allocated to its own tribal development department, the present state government has set up an agency called Development Support Agency Gujarat (DSAG). Demanding that the agency should be closed down, Rathwa alleged that the state government has received Rs250 crore from Centre but the money has been kept in the banks and not utilised for the development of the tribal areas. 
Another non-tribal MLA from Talala Gir forest area, Jashu Barad, talked about the plight of people living in the forest fringe areas. He said there are issues of boundaries of villages, which fall under the forest area. Along with the rise in lion population, number of people living in the villages, which are located inside the forest, have also increased and in the absence of village land these villagers have to live on the mercy of the forest guards, because they can arrest them saying that they have entered in the jungle.

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