Chavan announces Rs 50 crore for Vidarbha tribals



Nagpur: Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithiviraj Chavan on Tuesday announced a rehabilitation package of Rs 50 crore for tribals in tiger reserves of Tadoba and Melghat in Vidarbha region of the state.

Chavan, who kicked off a whirlwind tour of Vidarbha from today, visited Lekha-Mendha village in Gadchiroli district, along with union minister for environment and forests Jairam Ramesh, and handed over transit passes to tribals there thus offering them right of harvesting and managing Bamboo as a forest produce.

Chavan said that "The state government has decided to denotify 32,230 hectares of land and will prepare a draft proposal accordingly and it would be sent to Centre for necessary process."

"A large number of irrigation, infrastructure, roads and other projects were held up because of Zudpi-Jangal act which prohibited any activities in the forested areas. The state government will take up the issue with the Centrally Empowered Committee (CEC) before approaching the Supreme Court to denotify the Zudpi-Jangals," he said.

Chavan announced that the state Government will allocate Rs 10 lakh each to the families in Kolsa village in Tadoba forest area. Out of Rs 50 crore, Rs 10 crore would be spent on Tadoba and Rs 40 crore on Melghat, Chavan said.

Ramesh, who along with Chavan inaugurated the regional office of National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA), said since a number of tiger projects are located near Nagpur, the government would shortly be preparing a master plan for developing it as an gateway to nearby tiger reserves.

PTI