New Delhi: A special commission will soon be set up to fix the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for the forest produces used by tribals to earn their livelihoods, government said here on Monday.
The Commission will be put in place by January next year and Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation (TRIFED) will be entrusted with the responsibility for implementation of schemes under it, Tribal Affairs Minister V Kishore Chandra Deo said.
"We are working on a commission which will start functioning from January next year. It will ensure Minimum Support Price (MSP) for the forest products used by tribals to earn their livelihood," Deo told reporters on sidelines of a function to celebrate silver jubilee of TRIFED.
Planning Commission has already given its nod for setting up the commission.
"There is a procedure for setting up a commission. We have received a go ahead from the Planning Commission and TRIFED will be the nodal agency for this commission," the Minister said.
He also said that definition of Minor Forest Products (MFP) will be expanded to include items such as bamboo and tendu leaves to provide more options to the forest dwellers.
"The term Minor Forest Products will be changed to include Non-Timber Forest Products to include items such as bamboo and tendu leaves which can be used by tribals for earning a meaningful livelihood," Deo said.
On functioning of the Commission, he said, "Central government will provide financial support for procurement, creation of enabling infrastructure, training for sustainable harvesting and also provide subsidy to state level agencies in case they incur any loss in the transactions."
Deo also assured TRIFED that it will be adequately
strengthened both administratively and financially for effectively carrying out its responsibilities.
TRIFED is the nodal agency for marketing various products developed by tribals and manages a chain of 27 retail outlets called `Tribes India` in 16 states.
Appreciating TRIFED, Deo said, "TRIFED`s effort to build `Tribes India` as a brand needs special mention as it provided tribal handicrafts and textile products a distinct identity in the market.
Addressing the gathering, Deo highlighted the major acts such as Forest Rights Act (FRA) and Panchayti Extension to Scheduled Area (PESA) implemented by government to empower forest dwellers.
"These acts will be instrumental in establishing ownership of forest dwellers and tribals on forest produces which have been traditionally collected within or outside the village boundaries," he said.
The Tribal Affairs Ministry will also be holding a review meeting of all the states and Union Territories to take stock of the progress of several schemes initiated by the government.
The meeting will be chaired by Secretary Tribal Affairs Vibha Puri Das and will be attended by all the concerned state officials over the next two days.