Year End Review: Highlights of the Achievements of the Ministry of Tribal Affairs

Year End Review: Highlights of the Achievements of the Ministry of Tribal Affairs 

The Ministry of Tribal Affairs is responsible for overall development (including health and education) of people belonging to Scheduled Tribes and to protect their rights, preserve and promote their culture and heritage. It has   gap filling role in the activities of various line Ministries in the welfare of the tribal population and implement schemes through the State Governments/Union Territory Administrations or organizations recommended by the Multi-Disciplinary State Level Committee of the concerned State Government/UT Administration.

Ø      To overcome language barriers in learning amongst tribal children all Tribal Research Institutes have been funded to prepare bilingual primers (both in tribal and regional languages) which would be reproduced through Sarva Siksha Abhiyan. Odisha, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Maharashtra have already initiated this process.
Ø      Synchronization of vacation with Tribal Festivals has been advocated to check drop out.
Ø      To provide physical safety and quality education and its access, nearly 20,000 seats during FY 14-15, about 40,000 seats during CFY in hostel/residential school facility have been sanctioned.
Ø      To make education relevant for the tribal children vocational training integrated with residential schools with one of the teachers acting as mentor cum counselor.
Ø      Training of tribal girl/lady as ANM and their posting as Assistant Warden in Girls hostel for girl safety and counselling been initiated.
Ø      Every tribal area school without toilet targeted to have functional toilets with focus on girls toilets and funds provided for safety and inculcating hygiene and sanitation habits.
Ø      Increasing the number of scholarships for ST students in professional education and research from 667 to 1000 scholarships per year under the Scheme of Top Class Education and from 625 to 750 fellowships per year for ST students under the National Fellowship scheme.
Ø      The scheme of Grant-in Aid to Tribal Research Institutes (TRI)” has been revised from the FY 2014-15 to extend 100% financial assistance to strengthen them in the areas of Research & Documentation of tangible and intangible heritage and Training & Capacity building etc.

Ø      TRIs of Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur,Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Tripura, West Bengal & Andaman & Nicobar Islands supported for carrying out the following activities:

    I.   Research Studies/ Evaluation Studies/ Ethnographic /                  Anthropological Studies.
        II.  Organization of Exhibitions/Conferences/Workshops on                          tribal issues, etc.
        III.Training and Capacity building.
        IV. Exchange of visits for Tribal youth.
         V.  Tribal festivals, etc.

Ø      The functions of the TRI, inter-alia, include to work as body of knowledge and research, to support evidence based policy, planning and legislations, capacity building, dissemination of information and creation of awareness etc.

Ø      Strengthening of Integrated Tribal Development Agency/Integrated Tribal Development Project (ITDA/ITDP) for effective delivery of public goods and services to tribals in Tribal Areas.

Ø      The Ministry of Tribal Affairs, in collaboration with the Government of NCT of Delhi, is setting up an autonomous body “Society for Protection of Tribals” which would help the migrant tribals access basic citizen services, including Rescue, Rehabilitation and counselling services, through a 24 X 7 helpline.

Ø      Tribal Research Institute – have been revived to make them vibrant institutions through 100% funding for core staff and activities. TRI, Odisha has been declared as National Resource Centre.

Ø      Centre of Excellence has been set up for study of Tribal language and literature in Viswa Bharati, Shantiniketan, and West Bengal.

Ø      Till the end of September, 2015, 44,01,563  claims have been filed and 17,02,047 titles have been distributed under the Forest Rights Act, 2006. Out of these, 16,61,214 individual, 38685 community and  2148 CFR titles have been distributed, covering a total area of around 89 lakh acresof land.

Ø      A Project Appraisal Committee, headed by Secretary, Tribal Affairs, with representatives of State Governments, Financial Advisor, Planning Commission, etc. has been constituted to appraise and approve the proposals for allocation under various schemes of the Ministry.

Ø      Minutes of these meetings are put on public domain. This has resulted in consultation and transparent fund releases, convergence of programme and optimal utilization of resources.

Ø      All the sanction orders are also kept in public domain through Ministry’s website along with details of the sanctioned project.

Ø      All Advisories and Instructions issued by the Ministry are kept in public domain through the Ministry’s website.

Ø      In addition to the tech enabled trade information and information of the ministry including its financials being kept in public domain through the ministry’s website, continuous updation of website and use of social media through twitter(@tribalaffairsin) and facebook (Ministry of Tribal Affairs) have been undertaken.

Ø      Launching of MFPnet – for realtime prices across various mandis (

Ø      Linking Kisan Call Centre (1800-180-1551) with MFPNet to provide trade info of not only Minor Forest Produce, but also about agricultural products.

Ø      Launching of e-Commerce portal for sale of tribal crafts and producecollaboration with for online sale of tribal products by TRIFED.

Ø      e-File Tracking System (for tracking files and correspondences), e-Samiksha (Real time Online Monitoring), PRAGATI(Public Grievances), AEBAS (Bio-metric Attendance System) myGOV (for seeking public views on various topics related to the Ministry), VLMS (VVIP Letter Monitoring System) are extensively used.

Ø      All payments in the Ministry are made through electronic transfer.

Ø      All procurements are made through tenders which are uploaded on the relevant portals.

Amount released under different Programmes/Schemes of the Ministry:
            An amount of Rs.2969.00 Crores (65% of RE of Rs.4549.00 Crores) released to various implementing agencies during 2015-16 as assistance under different schemes/programmes of the Ministry for socio-economic and educational development of STs.
National Tribal Festival – Vanaj
The Ministry is providing a national platform for conservation and promotion of cultural heritage of the tribals. A national festival was organized from 13 – 18 February, 2015 in Delhi to showcase tribal art, craft, food, literature, medicines and also display and sale of tribal art and crafts.This would be an annual event to be held between second Friday and third Wednesday of February.

Vanaj 2015 being inaugurated on 13.02.2015 by Shri JualOram, Hon’ble Minister of Tribal Affairs in New Delhi

“GOTIPUA” dance being performed by the tribal children from Odisha during the opening ceremony of “VANAJ” in Delhi
Ø      A number of persons benefitted under various interventions of the Ministry in Skill Development, Vocational Training and Income Generation Schemes/Component.

Ø      Training educated tribal youth to be qualified teachers and paramedics for filling void in the services.

Ø      Modern skills, hospitality, tourism, computers, beautician course, mobile repairing, etc. with the condition of providing at least 2/3 placement guarantee supported.

Ø      Integration of Vocational training with school curriculum in residential schools to make education relevant for the ST children.

Ø      Livelihood activities which can provide regular, sustainable incomes have been supported and advocated e.g. promotion of Dairy Development through co-operatives and linking with Milk Federations would provide a range of veterinary services and regular income that has women participation. Similarly, backyard poultry can reach large number of households and help in providing protein and additional income.

Ø      Composite fish culture is for both containing mosquito population, providing protein supplement and income to the family. Usage of Space Technology for mapping existing water bodies and developing potential one through MGNREGS has been promoted.

Ø      In addition, Horticulture, Apiculture, Floriculture, improved varieties of traditional minor millets advocated and supported. Minor millets are more nutritious than polished rice or maize and hence recommended for menu in schools also. 
Sickle Cell Anemia: A protocol for identification of Sickle Cell Hemoglobin in tribal students through a low cost “Turbidity Test” has been developed by ICMR.Training workshops organized by the Ministry to carry out these tests within this financial year. A card is being issued to each child on sickle cell status which would be used to counsel parents of sickle cell carriers not to marry other sickle cell carrier. A number of States have done the screening and the process is under way.
MALARIA: To reduce the incidences of Malaria amongst the tribal population, composite fish cultures in the ponds has been advocated. Using space technology mapping of existing ponds and potential ponds has been started and training workshops been held in all States/UTswith ST population. This prevents the breeding of mosquitoes. Fish provide additional income and nutrition.
The Ministry has started an initiative to identify tribal students, particularly girl students, who do reasonably well in science subjects, train them as paramedics and keep them attached to an ANM or any other institution with a regular remuneration.
Other initiatives include:
Ø      Bring all pregnant mothers under immunization programme.
Ø      A protocol for including Folic Acid, every Monday immediately after the afternoon meal has been put in place.
Ø      To ensure regular intake of green leafy vegetables, kitchen gardens are encouraged. Traditional foods like minor millets, etc. are encouraged for cultivation and included as a part of the school meals.
Ø      Habit of hygiene and sanitation, use of recyclable material amongst school children, reduction in generation of garbage.
Ø      Circulars regarding hygiene and cleanliness were issued to the Tribal Welfare Departments of all states and union territories.
Ø      Engagement of trained lady health workers as Warden/Asstt. Wardens in girls’ hostels.

The Ministry has been holding workshops and consultations with various stakeholders in tribal welfare, including Members of Parliament, agencies directly involved in tribal welfare, etc. to get real time inputs and suitably modify/adapt the implementation of Ministry’s schemes.

A. Vanbandhu Kalyan Yojana (VKY): 

·         A strategic process was launched in the year 2014-15.
·         Converges resources to achieve desired outcomes through appropriate institutional mechanism.
·         Envisages comprehensive development of tribals by shifting the working character into a holistic approach rather than focusing on physical and financial achievements.
·         Ensures delivery of goods and services to the tribal population across the country while striking at the critical gaps in the sectors of Housing, Livelihood, Health & Sanitation, Drinking Water, Agriculture & Irrigation, Electricity, Education, Skill Development, Sports & Games and Preservation of Cultural Heritage etc. in a targeted manner through appropriate institutional mechanism. 
 Under the newly launched strategic process of VKY greater convergence of efforts of Central as well as State Governments is the crux of the issue. In view of this, a‘Convergence Plan’ has been worked out in the Ministry of Tribal Affairs with a view to pool in resources and efforts of various Central Ministries / Departments in respect of the fourteen thematic areas enunciated in the VKY process. This seeks to converge funds available for tribal development in an optimal manner so as to ensure that the intended benefits, particularly in core areas of education, health, livelihood, housing, drinking water, irrigation, access to basic facilities, institutions, cultural heritage, security and sports, actually reach the tribal people resulting in definite outcomes in terms of various human development indices.As regards the TSP component of Central Ministries / Departments, a Committee of Secretaries (CoS) for Tribal Development has decided that Ministry of Tribal Affairs will have detailed consultation with all the Central Ministries / Departments with a view to advise them, if and wherever necessary, to effect process re-engineering of their respective existing interventions, planning and implementation of TSP. The process is currently on.

A.    Marketing of Minor Forest Produce

·           “Mechanism for Marketing of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) through Minimum Support Price (MSP) and Development of Value Chain for MFP”, a Centrally Sponsored Scheme has been launched during the year 2013-14 as one of the social safety measure for the MFP gatherers, who are primarily members of Schedule Tribe, by ensuring fair monetary returns for their efforts in collection, primary processing, storage, packaging, transportation etc.

·           Initially covering most produced and traded MFPs namely, Tendu, Bamboo, Mahuwa Seed, Sal Leaf, Sal Seed, Lac, Chironjee, Wild Honey, Myrobalan, Tamarind, Gum Karaya&Karanj.

·           The scheme is implemented in the States having areas under Fifth Schedule of the Constitution, namely, Madhya Pradesh,Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

·         Applicable to students who are studying in Classes IX – X. Priority is given for girls.
·         Parental income from all sources should be less than Rs.2.00 lakhs per annum.
·         Scholarship of Rs.150/- per month for day scholars and Rs.350/- per month for hostellers is given for a period of 10 months in a year.
·         Scholarship is distributed through the State Government/UT Administration.

·         Applicable to students who are studying in any recognized course from a recognized institution for which qualification is Matriculation/Class X or above. Priority is given for girls.
·         Parental income from all sources should be less than Rs.2.50 lakhs per annum.
·         Compulsory fees charged by educational institutions are reimbursed subject to the limit fixed by the concerned State Fee fixation committee and scholarship amount of Rs.230 to Rs.1200 per month, depending upon the course of study is paid.
·         Scholarship is distributed through the State Government/UT Administration.
·         Remedial and special coaching is provided to ST students in Classes IX to XII.

·         Scholarship is given to ST students for pursuing studies in prescribed courses in any of the 158 institutions of excellence across the country like IITs, AIIMS, IIMs, NIITs, etc. identified by the Ministry. Priority is given to girls.
·         Total number of scholarships is 1000 per year.
·         Family income from all sources does not exceed Rs.4.50 lakhs per annum.
·         Scholarship amount includes tuition fees, living expenses and allowances for books and computer.

·         750 fellowships are provided to ST students each year for pursing higher studies in India for MPhil and PhD. Priority is given to girls.
·         Fellowship is granted as per UGC norms. Presently, @Rs.25,000/- for JRF and @Rs.28,000/- for SRF.

·         Provides financial assistance to selected students to pursue Post Graduation, PhD & Post-Doctoral study abroad. Priority is given to girls.
·         A total of 20 awards are given every year. Of these, 17 awards are for STs and 3 awards for students belonging to Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups.
·         Parental/family income from all sources does not exceed Rs.6.00 lakhs per annum.
·         Implemented through the Ministry of External Affairs.

·         Main aim is to develop the skills of the ST and improve their socio-economic condition by enhancing their income.
·         Vocational Training Centre may cater to five vocational courses depending upon the employment potential of the area. Ensure employment of at least 75% of the students.
·         Implemented through the State Governments/UT Administration/Implementing Agencies/NGOs.

H.    Scheme of Girls and Boys Hostels for STs:
·         Central assistance is given to States/UTs/Universities for construction of new hostel buildings and/or extension of existing hostels.
·         State Governments are eligible for 100% central share for construction of all Girls’ hostel and also for construction of Boys’ hostel in naxal affected areas (identified by Ministry of Home Affairs from time to time).
·         The funding pattern for the other Boys’ Hostel to State Governments is on 50:50 basis. In case of UTs, the Central Government bears the entire cost of construction of both Boys’ and Girls’ hostels. Maintenance of the hostel is the responsibility of the concerned States/UTs. 
·         The hostels may be for middle, secondary, college or university level education.

I.       Scheme of Ashram Schools in Tribal Sub-Plan Area:
·         Objective is to provide residential schools for STs in an environment conducive to learning to increase the literacy rate among the tribal students and to bring them at par with other population of the country. 
·         State Governments are eligible for 100% central share for construction of all Girls’ Ashram Schools and also for construction of Boys’ Ashram Schools in naxal affected areas (identified by Ministry of Home Affairs from time to time).
·         The funding pattern for the other Boys’ Ashram Schools is on 50:50 basis, while cent percent assistance is given to UTsfor construction of both Girls and Boys’ Ashram Schools.
·         The scheme covers primary, middle, secondary and senior secondary level of education.

·         Implemented in 54 identified low literacy districts where ST population is 25% or more and ST female literacy rate is below 35%.
·         Priority to areas inhabited by Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs) and Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected areas.
·         Ministry provides 100% assistance which includes free education, boarding and lodging, books, uniforms, medical help, coaching, incentives to girls, periodical awards, etc.
·         Implemented through Voluntary Organizations (VOs)/ Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and Autonomous Society/Institutions of State Government/ Union Territory Administration.

·         Supports coaching of disadvantaged ST candidates in quality coaching institutions to enable them to appear in competitive examinations.
·         Implemented through reputed Professional Coaching Institutions/State Governments/UT Administrations/Universities which run Pre-examination Coaching Centres.

Development of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups
·      This scheme is in addition to other schemes for socio-economic development of tribal groups who are at the bottom of developmental indices.
·      The scheme by adopting habitat development approach and intervening in all spheres of their social and economic life, to make visible impact in improving of the quality of life of PVTGswhile retaining their culture and heritage.

M.   Implementation of Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 (FRA, 2006)
·      The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 is to recognize and record their existing rights on the forest land.
·      Due process for recognition and vesting rights laid down through Rules and Guidelines.
·      A monitoring system along with building capacity of STs, forest dwellers and officials for effective implementation has been put in place.

N.    Scheme of Assistance to State Scheduled Tribes and Finance Development Corporations (STFDCs)
·         Under the Scheme titled “Assistance to State Scheduled Tribes Finance & Development Corporations (STFDCs), the Central Government is to provide 49% Equity Share Capital to the State Tribal Finance and Development Corporations and the balance of the Share Capital is to be borne by the State Government. 
·         A person belonging to Scheduled Tribes and living below poverty line is eligible for assistance from the STFDCs under the scheme.
·         STFDCs of Odisha and Kerala have been sanction Rs.0.50 Lakhs and Rs.22.00 Lakhs respectively as Equity support to their share capital during 2015-16.

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