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25 DECEMBER 1990 





A Word of Introduction by SIDA & CENDERET 

Foreword by Shri PK Mohanty, !AS, Secretary, Forestry, 
Animal Husbandry & Fisheries, Government of Orissa 

Chapter One: 

Report of the Workshop held on 15-16 October 1990 

1. The Prelude 

2. The Workshop 

3. The Aftermath 

Chapter Two: 

Documents Emerging from the Workshop 

1. Inaugural Speech by Shri PK Mohanty, IAS 

2. Main Findings of the CENDERET Report & Working Paper 

3. A Note on Micro-level Planning & Watershed Management 
by Shri Ashoka Dalavai 

4, Reports of the Four Groups 
Group No. 1 
Group No. 2 
Group No. 3 
Group No. 4 

5. Conclusions & Resolutions of the Workshop 
Annexure : List of Participants at the Workshop 
1. Official Documents 

1. National Forest Policy, 1988 

2. D.O. from the Secretary, Environment & Forests, Government 
of India, No : 6-21/89-FP dated 1st June 1990 

3. Extracts from the Approach to the Eight Five Year Plan 

4. Govt. of Orissa, Forest, Fisheries & A.H. Dept. Resolutions 
of 1-8-88 & 11-12-90 




il. *“‘How to do it’’ Documents 

5. Drought Proofing through Chakriya Vikas Pranali 


Sloping Agricultural Land Technology, SALT 1, 2, 3 


If. HRD for Aiternatives to Shifting Cultivation, 
Extracts from the Working Paper 



Keeping People at the Centre of the Stage, 
Panchashila of People’s Development 
Coordination between Agencies, 

Possible Pattern 

Action Programme During the First Year of Operation. 


The present document is the outcome of a process of research and 
dialogue. It started with a field study by CENDERET amongst a sample of 
400 forest dwellers of Orissa, who today survive by engaging in shifting 
cultivation. The findings were discussed with NGOs and officials, who are 
concerned with-this problem and intensive interaction took place between 
the two, at a workshop organised at Xavier Institute of Management, 
Bhubaneswar, on 15-16th October, 1990. 

It is not areport of the usual type, but rather a set of notes and 
guidelines, emerging from this interaction. They are meant for officials and 
non-officials, when they interface with each other, or together they interact 
with the forest dwellers. The latter are increasingly becoming aware of the 
unviability of shifting cultivation and are willing to adopt alternatives, 
provided there is somebody to hold their hand during the transition. 

Shifting Cultivation, or Podu as itis locally called, isan ancient 
problem, and efforts to contain It date from even before Independence. 
Success obtained by the Forest Department, the Soil Conservation Depart- 
ment, the Tribal Welfare Department, the Integral Tribal Development 
Agencies, and anthropologists associated with these agencies has been 
uneven. Till now a formula, fully acceptable to the people, has not yet been 
found. The search continues. 

On the other hand, the need to assist the forest dwellers, is immense. 
Only a small percentage of them are at present covered by official 
programmes to find alternatives. 

Official agencies, amongst which the Forest Department occupies 
pride of place, therefore, increasingly welcome the cooperation of the 
NGOs, and feel that the latter can especially help in HRD, the Human 
Resources Development face of the problem. 

Official agencies and NGOs can henceforth look as partners, to a 
common challenge they are called upon to solve with the shifting cultiva- 
tors. The two can work together, but this needs on both sides, a readiness 
to adjust, patience and keenness to help the other party succeed in its task, 
This process of learning will require some time, as the organisational 
cultures of the partners differ from each other considerably. 

( 2 ) 

After a short report on what transpired at the Workshop held on 
15-16th October, the volume lists the documents and conclusions and 
resolutions that emerged from the interaction. It also contains an agenda for 
a follow-up programme, A number of documents have been reproduced in 
appendix, which may help both the partners, as_ reference documents. 

What about the third partner, the tribal people of Orissa, who engage 
in shifting cultivation ? They were not represented as a group in the work- 
shop, but spoke indirectly through the research findings which had taken 
account of their views. A handful of representatives of the tribal 
communities, however, active in some NGOs in the State, were present and 
did speak up. 

The matter contained in these guidelines has the approval of the 
highest officials of the Forest Department. The document, therefore, 
expresses an understanding that has been arrived at between official and 
non-official agencies. 

The guidelines will prove their effectiveness to the extent they 
facilitate effective action, at the field level. [tis the ardent. hope of the 
sponsors that this will take place, and that we will learn more, as we move 
along with growing understanding. 

Anders Nystrom M.V.d. Bogaert, sj 
Project Coordinator S. P. Das 
SIDA supported social forestry project Latha Ravindran 
Orissa, Bhubaneswar Paul Fernandes, sj 

CENDERET, Bhubaneswar 
25 December 1990 


Shifting cultivation is an age-old practice and is a way of life of the 
tribals, But, of late, this has become more pronounced as the cycle gets 
shorter and shorter and its economics more negative due to biotic pressure. 
Attempts in the past to wean away the shifting cultivators from the practice 
have not been totally successful. Obviously, alternate strategies are in order. 

The shifting cultivators should be brought to the centre of the stage 
in the matter of planning and implementation of schemes for their 
rehabilitation. In this gigantic task the NGOs can play an effective role as 
an interface bétween the Government and the tribals. 

The workshop has thrown some new light on the problems and the 
possible solutions. They need be followed up by respective quarters. | hope 
this will be a precursor to further research and thinking in this sphere and 
will serve as a guide for future and not an end in itself. 

sd/- (P.K. Mohanty) 

Commissioner-cum-Secretary to Govt. 
Forests, Fisheries & 

Animal Husbandry Department 

* This foreword is not to be taken as an official endorsement of the 
recommendations of the workshop. 

Chapter 1 


15-16TH OCTOBER, 1990 


On ist September 1988, the SIDA (Swedish International Develop- 
ment Agency), Coordinator, Bhubaneswar asked CENDERET to. study 
whether there was any viable future for shifting cultivation in Orissa. On 15st 
November 1988, the Director, Social Forestry Project, Orissa, gave the 
green signal to go ahead with the field study. 

A team of researchers were fielded and interviewed a sample of 400 
households who engage in Podu Chasa, in ten different locations in Orissa, 
covering Ganjam (2 cases), Kalahandi (2 cases), Keonjhar, Koraput 
(2 cases), Phulbani (2 cases) and Sundergarh districts. . 

On 10th December 1989 a provisional report was submitted to SIDA. 
The gist of the findings was that podu is less and less viable and that the 
future for the shifting. cultivators looks grim. 

SIDA, being interested in pragmatic action, then asked CENDERET 
to concentrate on what could be done, what viable alternatives seemed to 
be available, to replace shifting cultivation. It agreed to an extension of the 
research period, so that the researchers could come up with answers to this 
question. | 

On ist April, 1990, CENDERET submitted its final report to SIDA. 
The research findings were shared with the Forest Department at 
Bhubaneswar and in New Delhi. In order to share the findings more widely, 
SIDA requested that a summary be prepared for circulation amongst 
officials and NGOs in Orissa. CENDERET completed the assignment in the 
form of a working paper, which was ready by 31st August. It evoked a 
good deal of interest, and had to be re-printed. 

Dates, 15-16 October, were fixed for the Workshop, for officials 
connected with podu, especially the Forest Department, the Tribal Welfare 
Department, the Tribal and Harijan- Research cum: Training Institute, 
Anthropologists, who have studied the problem, and NGOs. The response 

was keen. The organisers had planned for 40 participants, but more than 
70 turned up. Their names are found in this document. The Workshop was 
held at Xavier Institute of Management. 


After a word of welcome by representatives of the two sponsoring 
agencies, Fr R D‘Souza sj, Director of Xavier Institute of Management, and 
Mr Anders Nystrom, the then Coordinator of SIDA, the workshop was 
inaugurated by Shri P.K. Mohanty, IAS, Secretary, Forestry, Animal 
Husbandry and Fisheries, Government of Orissa. A summary of the points 
made by him are found in Chapter Two. The Secretary was looking forward 
to new and fresh suggestions on how to tackle the problem of Podu Chasa 
and welcomed the cooperation of the NGOs. At present only 3% of podu 
cultivators are covered by official programmes. The field is therefore wide 
open for other agencies. 

Session One was devoted to a presentation of the findings of the 
CENDERET report and the recommendations of the Working Paper. This was 
done by Fr Paul Fernandes sj, Dr Latha Ravindran, Prof SP Das and 
Dr MVd Bogaert sj of CENDERET. 

When measured against the concern for people and concern for 
environment axes, Podu Chasa yields poor economic returns to people, and 
it contributes to the degradation of the environment. The cycle of recurring 
cultivation has become so short (3 to 5 years at best), as not to permit any 
respite to the bio-system to restore itself. The income that forest dwellers 
derive from minor forest produce does not make up for the deterioration in 
returns from Podu. 

Sessions Two and Three were devoted to group discussions on 
objectives and modalities of NGOs as catalytic agents towards alternatives, 
The participants were divided into four groups. Reports were presented at 
Session Four, next morning. 

Session Five and Six dealt with the problem of how to proceed in 
implementing alternatives. Session Five was presided over by 
Shri G. S. Padhy, Conservator of Forests. Experiences of the forest depart- 
ment and the NGOs showed that where people are left out from the 

( 6 ) 

designing and decision making process of a particular intervention, the 
project, however well conceived, almost always fails. People must be at the 
centre of the stage and make the decisions. 

Appropriate interventions to restore the environment to sustainability 
do require on the other hand technical knowledge about forests, trees, soil, 
water, contouring, which are usually not available with NGOs, except the 
better established ones. This information has to be obtained from official or 
technical agencies, or perhaps a special agency may have to be created to 
function as a resource centre for those taking up alternatives to shifting 

A disturbing finding is that extraneous factors, usually traders, induce 
the tribals to continue with shifting cultivation, because the former draw 
profit from the podu crops produced by the tribals, which they sell at a _ tidy 
profit. It has also been found again and again that where shifting cultivators 
have been given Jevel land with land pattas at the foot of the hills as part of 
earlier efforts to rehabilitate them, this land has passed into the hands of 
trader-moneylenders to whom the tribals are indebted to the point of 

In Session Six, Shri Ashoka Dalavai, Project Administrator, ITDA, 
Rayagada, explained how the concepts of mini-project planning and water 
shed management are suited to develop a system to contain shifting 
cultivation. The integral approach adopted in watershed management takes 
care of four systems at the same time: (i) the natural resource system, 
(ii) commercial development and interaction with the market, (iii) the 
physical system, consisting of roads and other infrastructures, and the 
(iv) Human Resources Development of the Shifting Cultivators. NGOs are 
suited to play a prominent role in the latter function, HRD. A more 
detailed note is found in Chapter Two. 

The Seventh and concluding Session elaborated a blueprint for 
follow-up action. Various desiderata were mentioned by both official 
representatives and NGO members. It was left to the organisers of the 
workshop to draft the conclusions and resolutions in a coherent manner, 
and see that they get the concurrence of the official agencies, as soon as 

( 7 ) 

The high attendance of NGOs and officials, till the end of the work- 
Shop, inspite of the fact that the Assembly was in session, showed the 
keenness with which the members saw their task. This was a first encounter 
of officials and non-officials within an academic setting. It is to be followed 
up by building up working relationships in the field. The ball has been set 


1. It remains for the official agencies and the NGOs to decide what 
concretely each is going to do, as an expression of the commitment which 
emerged at the workshop to work together. This can eventually be 
expressed in a written document, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) 
with the podu cultivators as suggested by the Secretary, Environment and 

Forests, Government of India (D.O. No. 6-21/89 F.P. dated 1 June 1990— 
See appendix 2). 

2. The report of the workshop, drawn up by the sponsoring 
agencies, and approved by the official agencies, should be in the hands of 
the participants as soon as possible, 

3. To facilitate work at field level, a Shifting Cultivation Manage- 

ment Cell, in short a Podu Cell, should become functional at State level as 
soon as possible. 

This body of persons, informal in nature, would consist of representa- 
tives of the Forest, Tribal Welfare and Revenue Departments, some NGOs, 
an anthropologist, members of CENDERET, of the OUAT and of a donor 

4. The hope was expressed that when issuing further official 
notifications about social forestry, and measures to contain shifting 
cultivation, the Government of Orissa would keep an account of the views 
and needs expressed in this report. 

The’ text of the conclusions and resolutions of the workshop are 
found in Chapter Two. 

Chapter 2 

In the present chapter, matters discussed during the workshop are 
given, but they have been summarised in the form of short notes. The 
chapter ends with the conclusions and resolutions of the workshop. 

1. Inaugural Speech by Shri PK Mohanty, IAS, Secretary, 
Forests, Animal Husbandry and_ Fisheries Departments, 
Government of Orissa. 

»« Podu Chasa has become a ‘burning’ issue for Orissa, literally and 
figuratively speaking. It is an old practice, and efforts to contain it, date back 
from practically since Independence. 

« The State has a recorded surface of 57,000 sq kms of forests, 
though in the field this is much less, This is the third largest cover in the 
country, and accounts for 9% of the total forested area of India. 

» According to satelite information, this area has depleted very 
rapidly. Between 1983 and 1987 alone nearly 6,000 sq kms, more than 
10% of the forest cover, has been lost. With a rate of 50,000 ha of 
replantation each year only, we do not match this deterioration. The survival 
rate of these plantations varies greatly. (In Keonjhar it reaches only 50%). 

« The scheduled tribes practising Podu are not really responsible 
for this destruction of forests, but they are made the scape goats. It is the 
greed of the urban dwellers, which impels the contractors to engage in 
illegal felling. The growing population also creates high biotic pressure. 

* The-Forest Policy of 1988 and other documents emerging from 
the Government in the recent past, show an altered approach, the revenue 
approach has been replaced by a concern for human resources development 
of the forest dwellers, The 1988 Policy explicitly mentions the shifting 
cultivators in section 4.7 and does so in an understanding manner. 

* Podu is a way of life for forest dwellers, a-method of combining 
agriculture with forestry, developed over the centuries. It was viable then, 
it no longer is today. A rough estimate States that 50% of forest cover in 
Orissa is subjected to shifting cultivation. Figures produced by the 


Agricultural Department speak of about 1.85 lakh hectares, cultivated by 
1.41 lakh podu families. The !TDA and ten Micro-projects, which attempt 
an integral approach to rehabilitation, have met with limited success. They 

cover only 5% of podu cultivators. So, we need assistance of other 

« The Forest Department has come up with two models for 
rehabilitation based on certain assumptions. 

Model I 

Itassumes that the podu cultivators can be weaned away from 
shifting cultivation immediately if given viable alternatives, in the form of 
Intensive plantation in their own habitat. Five hectares would be allotted per 
family, for rotation of energy crops and fast growing species on a seven 
year basis. Sisal would also be planted which provides a considerable 
amount of employment. Contour terracing would be done. This would 
provide 300 mandays per family per year, enough for not having to depend 
on podu. Food would be provided from the World Food Programme. The 
usufruct or products grown on the land would be with the podu family. 

Model Il 

Assumes that shifting cultivators cannot immediately give up their 
podu, and may be permitted to carry on with it in a limited manner for a 
period of another four years. Jn this case they are weaned away gradually. 
They would be provided with seven plots of land (of 1 ha each plot) for 
plantation of pollardable and quick growing species they could use for 
slash and burn. This would provide 300 mandays of work per year. The 
question is whether enough degraded forest land would be available to take 
care of 2 lakhs of families. In this case also, there would be no difficulty in 
assuring the usufructory rights to the shifting cultivators. 

* The podu cultivators should be consulted very soon, because 
micro plans are proposed to be implemented within the next two to three 

« Shri Mohanty was in favour of trying out these models, or other 
ones in two or three districts, with the help of NGOs, who can deliver the 
goods. If the experiment proves successful, the effort can be replicated in 
other districts. 

( 10 ) 

« Regarding Forest Committees, he remarked that six thousand 
village committees had been set up to protect the Reserved Forests in the 
State. The principle is being extended to the protected forests also. Some 
committees exist on paper while some are active. The committees have the 
duty to protect forest and the right to usufruct of firewood and small timber 
for genuine .domestic needs. If NGOs can help in activising all these forest 
committees, they would render a signal service. If found helpful, modifica- 
tions can be introduced in the manner in which they are constituted. An 
incentive scheme for Gram Panchayats for protection of forests is on the 

* Fresh suggestions and cooperation of the NGOs are welcome by 
the State Government. 

2. Main Findings of the CENDERET Report and Suggestions of the 
Working Paper by Paul Fernandes, Latha Ravindran, S P Das 
and MVd Bogaert. 

*« If we use aquadrant approach to situating problems of the 
shifting cultivators, by using concern for environment as the X axis and 
concern for people as the Y axis, we can only aim at placing a suitable 
development in the upper right hand quadrant: high concern for environ- 
ment and high concern for people. 


“y desirable situation 

concern for environment D 


( 11) 

Unfortunately, the field study of 400 families of shifting cultivators 
suggests that these forest dwellers have been reduced to the —— quadrant : 
low concern for environment, which they are destroying and low concern 
for people as well. All of them except a handful of families, are clearly 
below the poverty line, and they suffer from a guilt feeling, imposed on 
them from outside and interiorised, as if they are the destroyers of the 

Any meaningful programme has to lift them out from this —— 
situation to a + + situation. 

*« The first and foremost difficulty in podu containment, is that it 
very difficult, tf not impossible to find out how much area exactly is under 
podu in terms of acres or local measurements. 

« To compute the inputs and outputs from shifting cultivation has 
caused headaches to field researchers ever since the problem has been 
studied. CENDERET has adopted the method, scientifically justified and 
endorsed. by other scholars, of computing the two main ingredients, seed 
and labour, into monetary values by taking into account market prices of 
seeds and value of labour at prevailing market wage rates. Since mixed 
cropping is practised on routine basis, the labour input common to all crops 
was apportioned between crops considering the ratio of the value of 
specific crop to the total value of all crops put together. The total return 
from each crop, even though they may be retained for self-consumption is 
valued at the prevailing market price to estimate total monétary returns. 

When this method is applied, it is found that hardly 15% of all crops 
grown yield any positive returns to the shifting cultivators. 

In many cases it is observed that the worth of crop yield is less than 
one fourth of the worth of labour and effort tnvolved in producing it. 

Shifting. cultivators would earn more if they had been able to find 
daily labour. Yet they continue with shifting cultivation, because for them 
it is a question of subsistence and they see no other solution, they are 
cornered. Other benefits do accrue to the shifting cultivators, such as 
minor forest produce, collection of fuel from crop residue, etc. Even if this 
is taken into account, their situation is desperate. They are aware of it, and 

( 12 ) 

are willing to adopt alternatives, provided there is somebody, to show how, 
and to hold their hand. 

« How several voluntary organisations in the podu chasa region, are 
helping the shifting cultivators in their human resources development, and 
empowerment has been described in the panchashila of people’s develop- 
ment, mentioned in the working paper. (It is found in the appendix). It 
must not be forgotten that while on the one hand, the shifting cultivators 
are still said to destroy the forests, several groups have limited or stopped 
the practice altogether. A sign of hope in the forest situation, within the 
districts known for podu chasa, is that the forest protection movement 
-has been growing into a popular movement. Unfortunately it has not been 
properly documented till now, and therefore is not known within the State 
or in other parts of India, while the West Bengal and Gujarat cases are 
known all over the country. Whom to blame, except ourselves ? 

We can learn much from the pioneering experiences of the NGOs in 
Orissa, who have gone ahead in this direction, and some of which were 
represented at the workshop. 

* As regards patterns of intervention available to NGOs, they consist 
of two possible approaches: (they are not to be confused with the two 
models, developed by the Forest Department, mentioned earlier). 

Pattern |: NGOs as Interface 

As mentioned in D.O. letter no :6-21/89-F.P. of 1st June 1990, of 
the Secretary, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India, 
Section 3, voluntary agencies are associated at the interface between State 
Forest Departments, and possible other Departments, and the local village 
communities for revival, restoration and development of degraded forests. 

Under this arrangement, and in full understanding with the Forest 
Department or any other official agency, which functions as Lead Agency, 
the NGOs only look after the Human Resources Development aspects of the 
programme. This means taking the people through the panchashila of 
people’s. development, looking also after the monitoring of how people 
react to the inputs of the lead agency, and functioning as trainer agency, for 

( 13) 

whatever inputs the shifting cultivators need to adopt viable alternatives. 
What is meant by the panchashila is explained in Appendix No 7. 

Pattern {1 : The NGO as Lead Agency taking care of all 
aspects of rehabilitation of shifting cultivators 

This approach can be adopted by larger and better established NGOs, 
which besides the HRD aspects of Model I, take care of all economic, legal, 
technological aspects of rehabilitation as well, and function therefore as 
fullfledged Lead Agencies. 

It is desirable that some NGOs assume this role on a pilot basis. It 
would permit them to adopt and experiment with methods, that are 
alternatives to the methods adopted by the official agencies. 

The preferred approach would be the Watershed Management 
system. The NGOs could also experiment with such methods as the one 
developed by the Chakriya Vikas Pranali, in Palamau district of Bihar (see 
appendix 4), or SALT, as developed in the Philippines (see appendix 5) and 
also spread the participatory action research and development (PARD) 
method of involving the shifting cultivators deeply into the planning of 

3. A Note of Micro Level Planning .& Watershed. Management, 
as explained by Shri Ashoka Dalavai. 

Speaking on the basis of effective cooperation between the ITDA, 
Rayagada and Agragamee, at Kashipur in Koraput district, he explained 
micro-level planning as follows : 

*« It aims at the integrated development of both people and area, by 
restoring deteriorated environment to sustainability. It covers four aspects : 
Natural Resource Development, Commercial Development, Physical 
Development and Human Resources Development. 

i. Naturajl Resources Development. 

It aims at the development of podu land into agricultural land, by 
checking run off of water, soil erosion, and restoring biomass cover. This is 
done by watershed management, which looks at land management and 

( 14 ) 

water management, in an integrated manner, and also the introduction of 
agro-forestry, adopted to a particular watershed, taken as a unit. 

Contour bunding assumes an important role in this approach, bunds 
follow the contours and are adapted to the type of soil and slope of the 
land. The contour bunds are made of rocks, or are planted with soil fixing 
grasses, such as Sabai grass, or bushes and also subabul. Depending on the 
slope, each contour strip, bordered by a contour bund is planted with a 
mixture of forest crops, followed by horticulture, annua! crops, as one 
comes down the slope. Mixed cropping is adopted, and crops are rotated 
from contour to contour, year after year. In the lower slopes, fishery in 
paddy fields, sericulture, and animal husbandry are combined with fodder 
crop plantations. The speed of run off of water is controlled. The biomass 
on degraded hill slopes is restored, with the result that fields at the foot of 
the hills, also can again produce once more. To take care of excess run off, 
diversion drains are laid out, to collect rain water in ponds lower down the 

iii Commercial Development 

Care is taken that the farmers obtain a good price for their products 
in the market, and are not exploited by traders and middlemen. Group 
entrepreneurship plays a vital role here. Where possible, processing units 
are installed, for instance, to can fruit, so as to add value, and avoid 
flooding the market with excess products causing a crash in prices. The 
commercial development is specially adopted for the crops grown ina 
particular area. 

iii. Physical Development 

By this is meant the development of infrastructures, such as roads, 
drinking water, schools, dispensaries, banks, cooperatives, also proper legal 
tenure arrangements of land. 

iv. Human Resources Development 

It covers awareness promotion, education, training, instilling 
confidence, faith and organisational development amongst the people 
inhabiting the micro-plan area. 

( 15 ) 

It is particularly in this last area, that NGOs have an important role 
to play. HRD at grassroots level is carried out by village animators, under 
the supervision of an escorting NGO. They run night schools, and see that 
the village committees are active. 

One form of micro-level planning, and watershed management, as 
developed in the Philippines is called SALT, Sloping Agricultural Land 
Technology. Details about SALT are found in appendix 6. 

The Chakriya Vikas Pranali, is a simplified Indian variant, developed 
in the drought prone areas of Palamau district in Bihar. It can be adapted to 
the wetter hill areas of Orissa as well. Details are found in appendix 5. 

PARD, or Participatory Appraisal for Rural Development is a method 
to involve the shifting cultivators into the planning of alternatives and 
tapping the knowledge they have of their environment. 

4. Reports of the Four Work Groups 

Four issues were presented for discussion, one for each group : 

Group 1 

Issue for Discussion 

If you are willing to take up any measure to contain podu, have you 
ever tried to find out from the podu cultivators about their readiness to do 
away with ‘podu chasa’ ? Do you think they would readily give up such an 
age old tradition which is part and parcel of their culture ? 

CHAIRMAN : Mr Nityananda Patnaik 

Bonani Samall, Xavier Institute of Management (XIM), Bhubaneswar. 
Rajesh Mishra, XIM, Bhubaneswar. 

A Jagadananda Sahu, KMDS, Parlakhamundi, Ganjam. 

Ajit Bhartwar, Dy Director (M&E), Social Forestry Project, Orissa. 

Choudhury G Mishra, Conservator of Forests, Working Plan Circle, 

Santosh K Panda, Lokshakti, Balasore. 

Dilip Ch Samantaray, OSS!, Baramba, Cuttack. 
Chabila K Naik, TRUP, G Udaygiri, Phulbani. 
Parasbhai, PRDATA, G Udaygirl, Phulbani. 

O. Kundan Kumar, Rapporteur, SIDA, Bhubaneswar. 

Se aie ae ieee 

So eto 

Report of the Group 

The group feels that shifting cultivation is by no means inevitable. 
it could be stopped over the greatest part of those areas where it exists 
today, provided the current alternatives and approaches, and above all a 
strong will power and determination are adopted to bring this about. In fact 
in almost all regions where shifting cultivation is in vogue, a few of the 
more intelligent and industrious among the tribal people do cultivate a few 
plots of land in valley bottoms under irrigated conditions and permanent 
crop regime. The problem, therefore, now in many places like Bonai, Bamra 
and Pallahara and some areas in Phulbani, Gunpur and Parlakhamundi is not 

( 17 ) 

to persuade the tribals to give up shifting cultivation and take up settled 
agriculture, or any other income generating means of livelihood, but to cope 
with the rising expectations and achievement motivation for a _ better 
Standard of living. If this desire is not readily fulfilled, antagonism and 
frustration are inevitable. 

In many areas, particularly the tribal areas in Southern Orissa, there 
is a considerable cattle population. Large number of famished animals 
swarming over the lower slopes which have grazed them bare. Both cattle 
and buffaloes graze at higher altitudes also and even on hill tops. In this 
case stopping of shifting cultivation does not solve the problem. Unless 
grazing on hill slopes is restricted, the hill slopes would continue to be 
degraded by the continuous onslaught of cattle. 

For many tribal communities, like the Gonds and the Bhuyans, the 
axe-cultivation has become nothing more than a habit. It has no root in 
their legend and mythology. Its customs are no longer clear and mandatory. 
For example, the straw rolled lighted torch or fire from their dwelling house 
is used to light their podu clearings, instead of the sacred fire from the 
Mandaghar as is in the case of the Juang neighbours. The use of plough is 
not a taboo among them as is true in the case of Juangs and the Baigas. 
They are aware of the fact that shifting cultivation means poor living and 
that they would get nothing but advantage by abandoning it. 

Older people resist change and most doggedly stick to pre-agricul- 
tural level of technology. Therefore, the younger age groups who are 
generally more amenable to new ideas and changes should be tapped for 
transfer of technology and introduction of innovations in methods of 

A noticeable feature of the hill tracts, both in North and South Orissa, 
is the fine groves of Jackfruit and mango trees, and orchards of banana, 
pineapple and citrus plants, These plantations provide the tribals with a 
valuable cash crop as well as with a nourishing food. Introduction of 
improved practice in horticulture is one major way in which the economic 
condition of the people can improve. 

( 18 ) 

Another noticeable feature of certain tribal areas, particularly Ganjam 
Agency is terraced rice fields. The Saoras show great ingenuity, in contour 
bunding, water management and terracing. Paddy plants are transplanted 
in terraced fields under irrigated conditions with application of cowdung 
manure, and recently introduced fertiliser and pesticides. The Saoras should 
be provided with improved agricultural inputs and kept busy full time so 
that attention is slowly diverted from Bagada Chasa to wet cultivation. 

In areas like Keonjhar, Bonai, Bamra and Pallahara where the tribal 
people see material advantage of settled cultivation and diminished crop 
yield from the swiddens there has been a spectacular change in their 
outlook and a desire for settled cultivation has been created. In fact, the 
Juangs of Keonjhar in many villages have given up second year toila 
cultivation and have taken to paddy and wheat cultivation in valleys under 
irrigated conditions. It is a fact that in many areas, the non-tribal traders 
instigate the tribals to take up cultivation of turmeric and ginger in swiddens 
for the benefit of the traders themselves, and not of the growers. 

The problem in these areas is not so much of shifting cultivation as 
that of exploitation by local traders and money lenders. What is required for 
the economic development of the people is to bring about awareness 
among them about constitutional safeguards and protective legislation and 
strict enforcement of anti-exploitative measures. 

The problem of shifting cultivation is a matter of change in attitude. 
The tribal people in general have low need levels. So long as they have 
sufficient food for the day, they care little for tomorrow and they appear to 
lack the desire of self-improvement. This attitude should be changed if 
their economic condition is to be improved in the process of weaning them 
away from shifting cultivation. 

The tribal areas, particularly those located in hilltracts are most 
underdeveloped because of fack of infrastructural facilities. The middlemen 
and merchants take advantege of this situation and exploit the tribals by 
various: ways. It is necessary to develop roads in these areas and provide 
fair price shops wherever they are not available and rejuvenate the LAMPS 
wherever they are not functioning properly and have become defunct. 

( 19 ) 

Without educational improvement, no other improvement is possible. 
Schools should be established in villages where they are lacking, and made 
functional by meeting the deficiencies in teaching staff, in building and 
boarding facilities, Adult education programme and functional literacy is 
equally and in many respects more important than normal schooling and in 

this context educational component should form an integral part of all types 
of developmental programmes. 

Different tribal communities present different life styles due to 
difference in their social systems and cultural patterns, in their ecological 
setting and means of livelihood, degree of cultural contact and achievement 
motivation. Although area development approach is commendable, it should 
be followed with emphasis on the specific tribal community inhabiting the 
area, It means that based on the life style of the tribal groups, programmes 
of development should separately be planned for each ethnic group. 

The Area Development Approach with emphasis on Tribal Develop- 
ment will have the following components : 

1. Human Resource Development : Individual/family oriented 
benefit schemes, such as awareness building, educational improvement, 

development of skill for need based occupations and vocations, achieve- 
ment motivation, and development of material assets. 

2. Development of the area and _ inhabitants: Development of 
infrastructures (roads, schools, health centres, LAMPS, Banking system, 
markets, VLW/VAW headquarters, agricultural depots, progeny orchards, 
electricity, water supply, irrigation facilities, etc.). 

The shifting cultivators depend heavily on forests not only for land 
for cultivation, but also for earning subsidiary income through collection of 
minor forest produce or as wage earners in forestry activities. It is essential 
that their bias towards forestry and forest activities should be allowed to 
continue so that these resources could be conserved for mutual benefit. 

It is incumbent that the public distribution system, including LAMPS 
and marketing network should be streamlined so that the tribals get their 
daily necessities at a reasonable price and a fair price for their forest 

( 20 ) 

As the situation stands today, it is possible to do away with shifting 
cultivation. But the prosperity and happiness of the shifting cultivators that 
is envisaged to come about cannot be achieved unless all sources of 
exploitation are plugged. The lands possessed by the tribals in the valleys 
have passed into the hands of the liquor vendors and money lenders. The 
improvident habits, ignorance and illiteracy of the tribal people, often lead 
them to part with most of their agricultural and forest produce in repayment 
of debts at an exorbitant rate of interest. The cunning and rapacious 
sycophants and money lenders as well as traders are largely responsible for 
their misery and ruin. In this respect they are badly in need of vigorous 
protection vis-a-vis Government, until] they have advanced sufficiently to 
look after themselves—a matter of not less than two generations.. 

The sustainability of the success of our endeavour depends upon 
two factors: (1) involvement and participation of the target group and 
(2) spread of education and a broad perspective and awareness about various 
programmes of tribal development. Moreover, food and medical aid are. 
the prime necessities after that education. Without it, progress cannot be 
made. On it depends the future success of the tribal development schemes. 

The type of work which must be undertaken to accomplish the 
social and economic betterment of the tribal people and to wean them 
from the destructive cult of shifting cultivation is not one that can be 
conducted by a secretariat or from an office It can only be dealt with by 
practical workers in the field to whom responsibility together with adequate 
powers and discretion have been delegated. The personal touch is 
essential; red tapeism could ruin all chances of success. But the right type 
of worker is not easy to procure. He must be the essence of tact and discre- 
tion, at the same time be firm and persevering, and he must be selfless. 
The work will take him into the remote and unfrequented parts where he 
will often have to roughit out. He must, therefore, be imbued with the 
zeal of a missionary. He must watch to see that the tribals are not exploited 
by his subordinates, and, as far as possible, only men of proved integrity 
should be employed. Where thereis a tribal language, he should make it 
his business to learn it, for there is no better way to the heart of a tribal 
than through the knowledge of his language, even if it be only a smattering. 

( 21 ) 

Where do we find out this kind of persons ? They are found amidst us : 
voluntary workers of the so called tribe of NGOs. 

Absence of reliable anthropological, economic and statistic data on 
shifting cultivation, which varies from region to region and from tribe to 
tribe, is a major drawback in identifying the gravity and dimensions of the 
problem and designing solutions to tackle it. 

Absence of area-wise data on duration of bush-fallowing, cropping 
pattern and crop yield, extent of denudation, degradation and erosion, 
extent of damage caused to water regime, intensity of run off, nature of rock 
and vegetational cover is a serious drawback in deliniating the areas into 
different gradations on the basis of the extent of damage caused by the 
practice of shifting cultivation and in devising area specific means, which 
will help the soil to re-establish itself and vegetational type progress 
towards the climatic complex. 

Collection, analysis and tabulation of data gathered through 
schedules and questionnaires will be the work of either XIM or SIDA. There 
may be a special cell created to take up field work in different parts of the 
State and evolve techniques to show impact of works relating to shifting 
cultivation on the target group. It should be the work of the cell to devise 
monitoring and evaluation techniques, forms and questionnaires for data 

Group 2 

Issue for Discussion 
The second issue is concerned with chalking out a working relation- 
ship among NGOs, Forest and other related Government departments, 
Government scientists, environmentalists and village communities, in the 
form of a written memorandum of understanding. 
CHAIRMAN: Fr Augustin Karinkutiyil, Catholic Charities, Khurda Road, 
Anthia Madiath, Gram Vikas, Berhampur. 
AV Swamy, VISWAS, Khariar Road. 
J Parida, Jana Vikas 
KC Sahu, Ashwin Project, Keonjhar 
Dr SN Patra, OUAT, Bhubaneswar 
GC Padhy, Conservator of Forests, Forest Dept. 
BG Das, JAGARANA, Koraput. 
S Nayak, Gumusar Mahila Samiti 



Anders Nystrom, SIDA, Bhubaneswar 
10. SP Das, CENDERET, Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneswar 
11. Neera Mendiratta, SIDA, Bhubaneswar. 

Report of the Group 

It was necessary to have some conceptual clarity on the problem, 
alternatives and strategies to combat the problem of podu cultivation, before 
proceeding to discussion on Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). 

It was possible to discuss only an approach to MOU and broad 
guidelines to the same, details of which have to be worked out after the 
alternatives and strategy to deal with podu are clearly spelt out and the 
concerned agencies and group sit together. 

Shifting cultivation has now become _ both economically and 
ecologically unviable. However, the shifting cultivators are forced to 

( 23 ) 

continue with it, as part of their survival strategy in a situation of no 
alternatives. They need to have choices—viable alternatives to this 
degenerating system of podu cultivation. And _ in the shifting cultivator’s 
search for alternatives or even in recognition of need to search for 
alternatives, he needs to be assisted. 

Alternatives to podu cultivation have to be found in micro 
perspective. Primarily these alternatives should be forestry and agriculture 
based without requiring drastic changes in the tribals’ life pattern and their 
uprootment from their area. Suitable Jand policies and rights to tribals over 
the land are essential. 

Concerted efforts are required by Government and non-Governmental 
agencies, environmentalists and scientists to ameliorate the situation. The 
lead role in this case should be taken up by the NGOs with support from 
Government agencies and environmentalists. The arguments in support of 
NGOs playing the lead role were : 

a. The Government agencies by and large have failed to achieve a 
break-through till now. NGOs should be given a chance to play the role, 
they can fulfill. 

b. An NGO’s capabilities can determine the scope of their work and 
the operational area. However, the entire responsibility of implementation of 
strategies planned by them in consultation with the shifting cultivators 
and the Government agencies should be with the NGO. 

c. NGOs should be recognised as equal partners of Government 
agencies in development efforts. 

The importance of NGOs (especially focal NGOs, Youth clubs and 
Mahila Samities) role as interface between Government agencies and 
the local people is to be recognised. 

NGOs, if in the lead role, should undertake : 

a. Participation in Government policy making process and influenc- 
ing it (this process can be initiated at all levels through BLCC & 
DLCC, etc). 

b. Planning (of the project) involving both Government agencies 
and local people. 

( 24 ) 

c. Implementation. 

d. Monitoring & evaluation (Government agencies should also 
undertake monitoring and evaluation of NGOs’ work). 

e. Feedback to Government agencies. 

Government agencies’ role in the process should be : = 

a Framing suitable land policy; project formulation and guidelines 

b. Identification of NGOs. 

c. Responsibility delegation to NGOs. 

d. Monitoring & Evaluation 

In addition, the Government agencies should provide support to 
NGOs in the following form : 

a. Funding. 

b. Assistance in building NGOs’ infrastructure or lending its 
infrastructure for use of NGOs in some cases. 

c. Technical inputs. 

d. Policy-level support and willingness to fine-tune rules, regula- 
tions and project guidelines depending on feedback from NGOs. 

e. Access to information. 

A support should be available from Government officials, from 
Forest Department, ITDA, Soil and Water Conservation Dept, Social 
Forestry Project, Horticulture and Agriculture Dept. The idea of formulation 
of a support team can be explored. 

A forum at district level and State level should be provided for 
discussion amongst NGOs dealing with shifting cultivation, Government 
Agencies, environmentalists, anthropologists and sociologists. 

Accountability of NGOs to the Funding Agency and the local people 
should be clearly spelt out in the MOU. 
The Government Agency, who is primarily responsible for dealing 

with the problem, according to NGO representatives in the group, should 
be the Tribal Welfare Department or Forest Department. 

Group 3 


issue for Discussion 

How do you propose to carry out your role ? What policies are you 
going to follow and what are the strategies you are going to adopt ? What 
are the alternatives you find to be suitable in the areas of your operation ? 
The outcome of this discussion can take the form of a proposal drawn up 
for the use of agencies, Planning Commission, Wasteland Development 
Board, and so on. 


CHAIRMAN : Prof Radha Mohan, Sailabala Women’s College, Cuttack 
Hemant Nayak, Gumusar Mahila Sangathan, Phulbani 
TB Benarjeedas, REALS 
Bharati Ray, CENDERET, Bhubaneswar 
A. Mishra, NYSASDRI, Dhenkanal 
Sudhir Behera, SIDA, Bhubaneswar 
UN Behera, VARRAT, Koraput 
AK Bansal, Forest Department, Bhubaneswar 
MVd Bogaert sj, CENDERET, Bhubaneswar 
Badal Tah, ANKURAN, Narayanpatna 

. Kedarnath Ranjit, CYSD, Bhubaneswar 

_R Jamuda, Director, Tribal Welfare, Government of Orissa, 

SS Bie eae Se! Pe NS 

- © 

Report of the Group - 

1. To ensure people’s participation in identifying needs/problems, 
finding solutions, alternatives and implementation. 

2. Involvement of NGOs in planning and implementation of projects. 

3. To educate people and make them aware of different forces 

( 26 ) 

4. To strengthen community organisation and people's leadership 
into action through group spirit. 

5. People’s access to alternative/supplementary income sources like 
forest produce, etc. to be enhanced and Government monopoly replaced 
by a protective role. 

6. Cooperative society by women should be. encouraged to counter 
monopoly and other types of exploitation. Inculcation of women in the 
political process and empowerment. 

7. Interaction of different tribal groups of different areas (through 

8. There can be two broad based alternatives : (i) land based and 
(ii) non-land based. 

Land Based could be through horticulture, settled agriculture, etc. Non-/and 
Based could be through income generation activities like khali stitching, etc. 

9. Checking exploitation and activising the policies. 

10. Training/workshop could be a continuous process where people 
themselves alongwith NGOs and Government officials take part. 

11. Frequent Government and NGO meets for exchange of ideas— 
preferably on site. 

42. Community ownership of land could be thought of along with 
common mode of utilisation. 

13. Information dissemination at all levels, especially of forest land 
amendments, new laws, issues. There is need for baseline information and 

14. Monitoring and supervision should be properly done— preferably 
by the persons who have taken part in the process of interaction/dialogue 
from the very beginning. 

15, Financial proposal is to be drawn up by each project or 
organisation basing itself on people’s needs and their capabilities. 

Group 4 

Issue for Discussion 

Do you think your anti podu operation would prove to be more 
successful if you make provision of your services to the people on condition 
that they would leave podu ? A discussion can be carried out regarding the 
pros and cons of this kind of a simulated situation. 


CHAIRMAN : Mr. Ashok Dalavai, ITDA, Rayagada 
Harishchandra Dash, SOLAR, Konark 
Saranga Samal, NYSASDRI 

Dinesh D’Silva, Samman, Berhampur 

D Barik, Darbar Sahitya Sansad 
Shankarsana Hota, PIPAR, Dhenkanal 
Durga Dash, PALISHREE, Gasiput 

GC Mallick, DNSS 

UN Behera, Varrat 

Arati Padhee, CENDERET, Bhubaneswar 
10. Mr Choudhury 

Report of the Group 

ht SY ee NS: 


The proposition whether anti-podu operation can be offered on the 
pre-condition that the people would stop podu practice presupposes that 
the podu cultivators have realised that podu chasa is both economically 
and ecologically non-viable. The question can be answered if 
we can study the level of awareness about PC and the range of 
alternative development strategies known to them. Against this background 
the known evidence indicates that podu cultivators in Orissa are not as yet 
prepared to be offered a conditional proposition. 

When we talk of conditional offer we are essentially talking of a 

market economy where the participants are highly aware and competitive. 
To cite an instance of the futility of such an offer the experience of Nepal, 

( 28 ) 

Tarai region can be quoted: when the Govt. of Nepal directed its podu 
cultivators to stop podu by a Government decree the people refused to 
comply. But the same people cooperated when the Government offered an 
alternative through horticultural plantation. 

There is always a resistance to change. The strategy for success lies 
in weakening this resistance and gaining the confidence of the clientele to 
a participatory approach to development. 

To do this, the following points have to be borne in mind : 

What is the tribals’ self-assessment of his situation ? 

What is his level of awareness ? Does he perceive podu as 
unproductive ? 

c. What is his level of response to new ideas ? 

What is his opinion about the delivery system—both Governmental and 
non-Governmental organisations ? 

e. Does he have any religious and cultural! relation with podu practice ? 

Various Government programmes have failed because the clientele 
was treated as the object and not the subject. The people have not been 
involved in planning and implementing the programmes. The_ tribal 
in particular has been treated as an ignorant and irrational being-who does 
not know what is good for him. Since the programmes have been 
imposed on him, the social protection expected from him has not come 
through, e.g. destruction of fruit bearing and well established orchards in 
DKDA, Chatikona area. Similar destructions have also been noticed in 
recent plantations by OTDP, Kashipur. 

Besides making the people feel that they decided the programme, 
their felt-needs should also be incorporated in the programme, e.g. ensuring 
food security in anti-podu operation through agro-forestry principle rather 
than substituting only perennial crops for animals. 

it is possible to make a conditional offer if the clientele can be 
befriended and its confidence elicited in the intentions and the ability of the 
delivery system. There are several such bright examples in both Government 

( 29 ) 

and non-Governmental sectors. The crisis of confidence between the people 
and the Government is the result of sloppy performance in the past. Such 
actions have produced negative results. 

When arange of development strategies are offered, the following 
issues may be considered : 

a. Teach the tribal to analyse his present situation in the context 
of economy and ecology. He should also be made to think as to what he 
can do for himself. 

b. As a group, the tribals live for today. The habit of saving to tide 
over future crisis or for future progress is absent. The solution lies in 
creating the saving habit amongst the tribals. This is capable of catalysing 
the process of thinking and finding new modes of podu. Presently the urge 
for saving which is fundamental to investment and income-generation is 
missing, e.g. out of 10 lakhs paid as wage arrears in Kashipur block, at 
least 5 lakhs went for liquor. 

Cc. The tribal should be informed that the yield potential of the 
natural resources on which he depends is declining due to defective 

d. Empower the tribals through conferring Ownership rights of 
resources, endowing them with improved tools and technology. Thirdly, 
education should be imparted to enable them the use such tools. 

e. Demonstrate to the tribal that the alternate strategy being offered 
to him is superior to his present situation and is economically and 
ecologically viable. 

If the people can be prepared as above, then it is possible to make a 
conditional offer, that our service is subject to their giving up podu chasa. 
Otherwise, it will be like putting the cart before the horse ! 

5. Conclusions and Resolutions of the Workshop 

1. In view of the great need to provide escorting services to more 
than 90% of podu families in Orissa, which remain uncovered by official 
programmes, and the positive encouragement of the Government of Orissa 

( 30 ) 

expressed by Shri PK Mohanty, IAS, Secretary, Forests, Animal Husbandry 
and Fisheries, the NGOs of Orissa present at the workshop unanimously 
accept that they are called upon to play an active role in helping shifting 
cultivators to find viable alternatives to podu chasa. 

This can be done by either cooperating with official agencies, where 
a programme is already functioning, or initiating a programme with a group 
which is not yet benefiting from such an intervention. 

2. The NGOs realise that they have to equip themselves for this 
task, and therefore want to learn from each other, especially from those 
agencies which have already gone ahead and gathered experience. They 
also expect that agencies at State level, such as OUAT, SIDA, CENDERET, 
the Forest Department, the Soil Conservation and Revenue Departments, 
will offer orientation programmes, and training in the technical aspects of 
micro planning and water shed management. 

They want to learn about Chakriya Vikas Pranali, SALT, and Partici- 

patory Appraisal Research and Development (PARD), preferably by seeing 
how these methods are applied in the field. 

3. Depending on the organisational ability and availability of 
technically qualified personnel, who can be recruited for the task, or 
consulted, the NGOs discern that there are different levels of involvement. 

The first level, for which NGOs are by their nature well suited is to 
take care of the Human Resource Development aspect by escorting shifting 
cultivators according to the Panchashila of Development. 

This can be done in projects which are already being run by the 
Forest Department, the ITDA, or other official agencies, provided the latter 
welcome such cooperation. The NGO can also initiate such a programme 
where none exists, especially with groups amongst whom they have been 
working already. This can be done in the expectation that when this HRD 
has sufficiently progressed, the NGO itself or another NGO or an official 
agency pursues the technical inputs of the search for viable alternatives 
to shifting cultivation. 

( 31) 

A second level of intervention, related to the first, but for which 
some technical skills are required, is to undertake the collection of data on 
extent of podu in an area, changes taking place, also to monitor and 
evaluate how programmes are faring, and finally, to offer training to 
shifting cultivators in managerial skills of mini-project administration, 
watershed management and technical skills about the soil, water and 
trees management. 

A third and deeper fevel of intervention occurs when an NGO 
assumes the role of lead agency, and besides the HRD aspects and 
activities involved in the second level, undertake the integral rehabilitation of 
the shifting cultivators taking care of the four faces of rehabilitation: 
(i) natural resources development, including mini-project planning and 
watershed management, (ii) Commercial resources, taking care that the 
interface with the market functions smoothly, (iii) physical development, 
assuring the other infrastructures, roads, drinking water, schools, health, 
function and (iv) human resources development. 

Only well established NGOs, with technical personnel amongst 
their staff, or recruited for the purpose can think of this third level of 

It would be desirable if some NGOs in Orissa undertake such 
work on pilot basis and try out methods of rehabilitation, such as Chakriya 
Vikas Pranali, Sloping Agricultural Land Technology (SALT), and other 
methods which have been documented by the ICAR. 

4. When choosing an area for adoption, the NGO and for that 

matter, the official agencies also, should pay attention to the following 
points : 

a. Avoid overlapping or duplicating efforts, or worse, working at 
cross purposes with other agencies. On the contrary, it is desirable to 
keep agencies in the neighbourhood informed of what one intends to do. 

b. The ‘natural’ unit for undertaking alternatives, is normally a 
watershed area, consisting of a tract of land, drained by a particular 

Stream, inhabited by a particular group of people, who engage in podu 

( 32 ) 

A water shed is a technical term and an NGO keen to help with 
alternatives will do well to consult a technical person who can establish 
the natural boundaries of the watershed in which the NGO wants to 

NGOs will do well not to overstretch themselves, but rather work 
in an intensive manner, till they find a formula which yields success. Let 
them not spread their efforts too thinly. 

c. The NGO must make up its mind whether it is taking up HRD, 
and data collection, monitoring and training, with an existing official 
programme, or whether it will take up an area, where no official programme 
is in progress. 

A clear understanding has to be arrived at with the other agency(ies) 
and with the people, before an intervention takes place. A memorandum of 
understanding can be drafted in written form. The Collector must be kept 

5. The intervening agency should first be convinced and then 
convince the people regarding the economic viability of alternatives. Unless 
this message is conveyed to the people, it will be difficult to motivate them 
to give up podu. 

The economics of various alternatives should therefore be worked. 
out in terms of economic returns (income per annum) and in terms of 
creation of employment (mandays per annum). 

One of technical agencies attached to the Podu Cell should help 
NGOs who seek help to work out these economics of alternatives. 

6. An intervention towards alternatives can only be effective if the 
agency initiating it has also been exposed to the technical aspects of the 
alternatives and is acquainted with mini-project planning and watershed: 
management. Grassroot workers have also to acquire a basic knowledge of 
soil, water, plant, trees, grasses management. Therefore orientation and. 
training need to be organised at two levels. 

( 33 ) 

a. For the NGOs and their Staff, an orientation to alternatives, 
watershed management, mini-project planning, technical aspects of soil, 
water, conservation, trees, grasses, etc. is necessary. These can be offered 
at State level in a series of five-day programmes, strung out over a period of 
six months to a year. 

b. For Grassroot Workers of the NGOs, some NGOs in various 
districts, where podu containment is going on, will have to be enabled to 
function as Village Forester Training Centres (VFTCs), and offer one week or 
longer programmes to grassroot workers deputed by the NGOs. These 
VFTCs will in turn need the technical assistance of the OUAT, retired 
foresters, the Podu Cell. Suitable material will have to be prepared in Oriya, 
or in tribal languages (Kul). 

7. A standardised form for collection of field data has to be evolved, 
in order to get an adequate view of the bench mark situation, before the 
intervention takes place, and then the subsequent changes that occur. 

These forms should be such that they can be understood and filled in 
by the NGOs and other agencies. 

In drafting the forms, other agencies will have to be consulted, 
including the Orissa Remote Sensing Application Centre (Orissa). 

8. In order to facilitate and animate the efforts of NGOs and official 
agencies towards alternatives, a Shifting Cultivation Management Cell, in 
short, a Podu Cell has to be set up at State level in the very near future. 

The task of this Cell is to make information available on technical, 
economic and other matters, to provide for suitable training, to put into 
place asystem of monitoring and evaluation, to maintain liaison between 
various agencies, official and non-official, and to share information about 
what happens with a wider audience. 

The Cell will have representatives of State departments concerned 
with podu, forest, agriculture, soil conservation, revenue, tribal welfare, 
some NGO representatives, an anthropologist, faculty members from OUAT 

( 34 } 
The Cell! will be informal in nature. 

9. To do full justice to the technical aspects of alternatives to 
shifting cultivation, however, more may be needed. A technical resource 
agency, similar to AFPRO or Bharatiya Agro-Industries Foundation (BAIF), 
Pune may be needed. AFPRO (Delhi) has developed competency in 
watershed management in dry areas of Maharashtra, and is consulted by 
official as well as non-official agencies. The BAIF has developed a model 
of its own for rehabilitating tribal people. 

Unless a sound resource centre is available for technical inputs 
in rehabilitation of podu chasa farmers, the efforts of the NGOs and of 
official agencies such as the ITDAs too, may remain amateurish in nature, 
and not really yield the results, that are hoped for. 

10. The NGOs who opt for alternatives to shifting cultivation 
obviously need funding for this work. Participants from NGOs were of 
unanimous opinion that such should not be routed through Government 
channels, but be provided directly. The money may be of Indian origin, but 
as the Forest Department in Orissa is obtaining funds for its Social Forestry 
Programme from a foreign donor agency, there ts no inhibition if the NGOs 
can also draw from this source, or other foreign.donors. 

11. Since women play such an important role in shifting cultivation, 
and in the alternatives to it also, special attention has to be paid to their 
views and interests. Income generation programmes for women may have 
to form an integral part of alternatives. to shifting cultivation. 

Care has to be taken that women have a decision taking structure of 
their own, if they cannot interact as equais with men, in the village forest 

12. As suggested by Shri PK Mohanty, at the inauguration, the 
NGOs will lend a willing hand to instill new life in the village forest 
committees which have already been set up by Government, for improve- 
ment of their functioning. 

( 35 ) 

These village committees should grow into the decision making foci 
where alternatives to pudu chasa and modalities are decided upon. 

13. Certain individuals in Orissa have established excellent rapport 
with the forest dwellers, and have in the past been instrumental in animating 
people’s movements towards forest protection, as in Kesharpur area of Puri 
district. Prof. Radha Mohan and a few other university teachers have played 
such a role. . 

The Government of Orissa is being requested to cede the services of 
these individuals, for the sake of setting into motion a forest protection 
movement amongst the shifting cultivators. It is felt: that the talents of 
these persons will be put to better use in such a situation, than if they 
remain limited to classroom teaching. 

14. One of the reasons why shifting cultivators have hesitated to 
adopt alternatives, is because there has been hesitation by Government to 
give them land pattas. The willingness of the Government to provide 
usufructory rights is a step in the right direction, but is it enough ? 

This is sure: as long as the highest instances in the Government 
of Orissa do not come out with a clear policy statement which assures land 
to the tiller, no efforts to find alternatives to shifting cultivation will find 
a lasting solution. 

The representatives of the NGOs at the workshop also requested the 
Government of Orissa to have a second look at adopting the plantation 
approach as an alternative to shifting cultivation and leasing large tracts 

of land to private industrialists. The long-term wisdom of such step can 
be doubted. 

If plantations are an answer, let them rather be controlled and 
managed by cooperative groups of rehabilitated shifting cultivators. 

From past experience, it is clear that once shifting cultivators give 
up podu chasa and take to settled agriculture, there is a great danger of 
their loosing Jand to traders and other interests. The NGOs have to pay 
very special attention, as part of their monitoring function (see point no. 3) 

( 36 ) 

to what happens in this respect, and take effective steps with the State 
authorities to prevent renewed alienation of tribal land. 

15. NGQs cannot be expected to be fully effective and up-to-date 
in their efforts, unless they are kept informed about changes in the 
Government policies, procedures, rules, facilities. 

Itis for the official departments to see that this is done. This can 
take place via the Podu Cell which can pass down the information to the 
NGOs. It also is desirable that at District Jevel, interaction between Govern- 
ment agencies and NGOs engaged in rehabilitation of shifting cultivators, be 
very intensive and they meet each other every two or three months in an 
informal manner. 

Se Shs. 






Mr Shanti Ranjan Behera 

Mr MC Das 

Dr Nityananda Patnaik 
Mr Durga Das 

Mr Harishchandra Dash 

Mr Bhagawan Patra 
Ms Sandhya Nayak 

Mr NR Das Patnaik 
Mr GC Sengupta 

Mr Dilip Samantaray 
Mr Sarangadhar Samal 
Mr AV Swamy 

Mr GC Mallick 

Mr Dinesh D’Silva 

Mr AJ Jagennath Raju 
Mr TB Bennarjeedas 
Dr SN Patra 

Mr Kedareswar 

Mr Duryadhan Barik 
Mr Santosh Kr Panda 
Mr Parasbhat 

Mr KC Sahoo 

Mr Kedarnath Ranjit 
Mr Badal Kr Tah 

Dr PK Das 

Ms Anthia Madiath 
Mr DN Rao 
Mr Shankarsana Hota 

SODA, Baripada 

NIPDIT, Phulbani 

SSADRI, Bhubaneswar 

Society for Leprosy 
Amelioration & Rehabilitation, 

Palli Unnayan Sewa Samiti, 
Naharkunta, Puri 

Gumusar Mahila Sangathan, 

VRO, Chandikhole 

Tagore Society for Rural 
Development, Bhubaneswar 
OSS!I, Baramba, Cuttack 
NYSASRI, Santhapur, Dhenkanal 
VISWAS, Khariar Rd, Kalahandi 
DNNS, Bahanga, Balasore 
SAMMAN, Berhampur 
KMDS, Parlakhemundi 
REALS, Dharmalaxmipuram 
OUAT, Bhubaneswar 

Darbar Sahitya Sansad, Arapada, 

Darbar Sahitya Sansad, Puri 
LOKSHAKTI, Balasore 
PRDATA, Phulbani 

Solar, Gopalpur Village 
CYSD, Bhubaneswar 
ANKURAN, Narayanpatna 
Orissa Environmental Society 

Gram Vikas, Berhampur 
Gram Vikas, Berhampur 
PIPAR, Dhenkanal 









Mr AK Bansal 
Mr Ashok Dalavai, IAS 
Dr KK Mohanty 

Mr B Choudhury 
Mr R Jamuda, IAS 

Mr UN Behera 

Ms Neera Mendiratta 
Mr Kundan Kumar 

Mr Siddhartha Sahu 

Fr Augustin Karinkutyil 
Mr C Nayak 

Mr J Parichha 

Mr Akshaya Kr Mishra 
Mr Bhajagovinda Das 
Mr J. Maharana 

Mr Sudhir Behera 
Mr GS Padhi 

Mr Nagendra Kr Acharya 
Mr LK Patnaik 
Mr S Bose 

Mr MF Ahmed 
Mr CG Mishra 

Mr M Sunil Kumar 
Mr Hemant Nayak’ 

Mr A Lugun, IFS 
Prof Radha Mohan 

Ms Binodini Hota 

( 38 ) 

IDC, Bhubaneswar 

ITDA, Rayagada 

Tribal & Harijan Research 

cum Training Institute, Bhubaneswar 
THRTI, Bhubaneswar 

Director, Tribal Welfare, 

VARRAT, Keonjhar 

SIDA, Bhubaneswar 

SIDA, Bhubaneswar 

World Vision of India, Bhubaneswar 
Catholic Charities, Khurda Rd, Jatni 
TRUP, G Udaygiri, Phulbani 

Jan Vikas, Baliguda, Phulbani 
NYSASDRI, Dhenkanal 
JAGARANA, Gudari, Koraput 
Banabasi Sewa Samiti, 

Baliguda, Phulbani 

SIDA, Bhubaneswar 

Conservator of Forest, 

Forest Department, Bhubaneswar 
AUHAS, Bhubaneswar 

Director, Social Forestry Project 
Joint Director, 

Social Forestry Project 

Regional Joint Director, 

social Forestry Project 
Conservator of Forest, 

Working Plan Circle, Orissa 
Lecturer, NISWASS, Bhubaneswar 
Gumusar Mahila Sangathan, 

Government of India 


Women’s Association for . 
Service & Employment, Sambalpur 















( 39 ) 

Mr Manoj Kr Pradhan 
Dr Ananta Sahoo 

Fr Romuald D’Souza 
Fr MVd Bogaert sj 
Prof SP Das 

Dr Latha Ravindran 
Fr Paul Fernandes sj 
Ms Bharati Ray 

Mis Arati Padhee 

Ms Bonani Samall 

Mr Sudhanshu Shekhar Singh 
Mr Rajesh Mishra 

Mr Prabhakar Senapati 

Mr DN Rao 

CPSW, Bhubaneswar 

THRTI, Bhubaneswar 

Xavier Institute of Management, 

CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
Xavier Institute of Management, 

CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
CENDERET, Xavier Institute of 
Management, Bhubaneswar 
REALS, Dharmalaxmipuram 


Official Documents 


National Forest Policy 1988. 

D.O. from the Secretary, Environment & Forests, Government of 
India, NO : 6-21/89-FP, dated 1st June 1990. 

Extracts from ‘Approach to the Eighth Five Year Plan 1990-95’, 

Government of Orissa, Forest, Fisheries & Animal Husbandry 
Department Resolutions of 1.8.88 and 11.12.90. 

‘How to do it’’ Documents 


Drought Proofing, through Chakriya Vikas Pranali. 
Sloping Agricultural Land Technology (SALT I, II, Hl). 7 
VANSDA, A Unique Mode of Tribal Rehabilitation. 

HRD for Alternatives to Shifting Cultivation, Extracts from the 
Working Paper 



Keeping People at the Centre of the Stage, Panchashila of People’s 

Coordination between Agencies, A Possible Pattern. 

Action Programme During the First Year of Operation. 



No. 3-1/86-FP 
Ministry of Environment and Forests 
(Department of Environment, Forests & Wildlife) 

Paryavaran Bhavan, CGO Complex, 
Lodi Road, New Delhi-110 003 

Dated the 7th December, 1988 
National Forest Policy. 1988 

1. Preamble 

1.1. In Resolution No. 13/52-F, dated the 12th May, 1952, the 
Government of India in the erstwhile Ministry of Food and Agriculture 
enunciated a Forest Policy to be followed in the management of State 
Forests in the country. However, over the years, forests in the country have 
suffered serious depletion. This ts attributable to relentless pressures arising 
from ever-increasing demand for fuelwood, fodder and timber, inadequacy 
of protection measures; diversion of forest lands to non-forest uses without 
ensuring compensatory afforestation and essential environmental safeguards; 
and the tendency to look upon forests as revenue earning resource. The 
need to review the situation and to evolve, for the future, a new strategy of 
forest conservation has become imperative. Conservation includes preserva- 
tion, maintenance, sustainable utilisation, restoration, and enhancement of 
the natura] environment. It has thus become necessary to review and revise 
the Nationai Forest Policy. 

2. Basic Objectives 

2.1. The basic objectives that should govern the National Forest 
Policy are the following : 

— Maintenance of environmental stability through preservation and, where 
necessary, restoration of the ecological balance that has been adversely 
disturbed by serious depletion of the forests of the country. 

( 42 ) 

— Conserving the natural heritage of the country by preserving the 
remaining natural forests with the vast variety of flora and fauna, which 
represent the remarkable biological diversity and genetic resources of 

the country. 

— Checking soil erosion and denudation in the catchment areas of rivers, 
lakes, reservoirs in the interest of soil and water conservation, for 
mitigating floods and droughts and for the retardation of siltation of 

— Checking the extension of sand-dunes in the desert areas of Rajasthan 
and along the coastal tracts. 

— Increasing substantially the forest/tree cover in the country through 
massive afforestation and social forestry programmes, especially on 
all denuded, degraded and unproductive lands, 

— Meeting the requirements of fuelwood, fodder, minor forest produce 
and small timber of the rural and tribal populations. 

— Increasing the productivity of forests to meet essential national needs. 

— Encouraging efficient utilisation of forest produce and maximising 
substitution of wood. 

— Creating a massive people’s movement with the involvement of women, 
for achieving these objectives and to minimise pressure on existing 

2.2. The principal aim of Forest Policy must be to ensure environ- 
mental stability and maintenance of ecological balance including 
atmospheric equilibrium which are vital for sustenance of all lifeforms, 
human, animal and plant. The derivation of direct economic benefit must 
be subordinated to this principal aim. 

3. Essentials of Forest Management 

3.1. Existing forests and forest lands should be fully protected and 
their productivity improved. Forest and vegetal cover should be increased 
rapidly on hill slopes, in catchment areas of rivers, lakes and reservoirs and 
ecean shores and on semi-arid, arid and desert tracts. 

( 43) 

3:2: Diversion of good and productive agricultural lands to forestry 
should be discouraged in view of the need for increased food production. 

3.3. For the conservation of total biological diversity, the network of 
national parks, sanctuaries, biosphere reserves and other protected areas 
should be strengthened and extended adequately. 

3.4. Provision of sufficient fodder, fuel and pasture, specially in 
areas adjoining forest, is necessary in order to prevent depletion of forests 
beyond the sustainable limit. Since fuelwood continues to be the 
predominant source of energy in rural areas, the programme of afforestation 
should be intensified with special emphasis on augmenting fuelwood 
production to meet the requirement of the rural people. 

3.5; Minor forest produce provides sustenance to tribal population 
and to other communities residing in and around the forests. Such produce 
should be protected, improved and their production enhanced with due 
regard to generation of employment and income. 

4. Strategy 


The national goal should be to have a minimum of one-third of the 
total land area of the country under forest or tree cover. In the hills and in 
mountainous regions, the aim should be to maintain two-third of the area 
under such cover in order to prevent erosion and land degradation and to 
ensure the stability of the fragile eco-system. 


4.2.1. A massive need-based and_ time-bound programme of 
afforestation and tree planting, with particular emphasis on fuelwood and 
fodder development, on all degraded and denuded lands in the country, 
whether forest or non-forest land, is a national imperative. 

4.2.2. It is necessary to encourage the planting of trees alongside of 
roads, railway lines, rivers and streams and canals, and on other unutilised 
lands under State/corporate, institutional or private ownership. Green belts 

( 44 ) 

should be raised in urban/industrial areas as well as in arid tracts. Such a 
programme will help to check erosion and desertification as well as improve 
the micro-climate. 

4.2.3. Village and community lands, including those on foreshores 
and environs of tanks, not required for other productive uses, should be 
taken up for the development of tree crops and fodder resources. Technical 
assistance and other inputs necessary for initiating such programmes should 
be provided by the Government. The revenues generated through such 
programmes should belong to the panchayats where the lands are vested in 
them; in all other cases, such revenues should be shared with the local 
communities in order to provide an incentive to them. The vesting, in 
individuals, particularly from the weaker sections (such as landless labour, 
small and marginal farmers, scheduled castes, tribals, women) of certain 
ownership rights over trees, could be considered, subject to appropriate 
regulations; beneficiaries would be entitled to usufruct and would in turn 
be responsible for their security and maintenance. 

4.2.4. Land laws should be so modified wherever necessary so as 
to facilitate and motivate individuals and institutions to undertake tree- 
farming and grow fodder plants, grasses and legumes on their own land. 
Wherever possible, degraded lands should be made available for this 
purpose either on lease or on the basis of a tree-patta scheme. Such leasing 
of the land should be subject to the land grant rules and land ceiling laws. 
Steps necessary to encourage them to do so must be taken. Appropriate 
regulations should govern the felling of trees on private holding. 


4.3.1. Schemes and projects which interfere with forests, that clothe 
steep slopes, catchments of rivers, lakes, and reservoirs, geologically 
unstable terrain and such other ecologically sensitive areas should be 
severely restricted. Tropical rain/moist forests, particularly in areas like 
Arunachal Pradesh, Kerala, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, should be totally 

4.3.2. No forest should be permitted to be worked without the 
Government having approved the management plan, which should be in a 

( 45 ) 

prescribed format and in keeping with the National Forest Policy. The 
Central Government should issue necessary guidelines to the State Govern- 
ment in this regard and monitor compliance. 

4.3.3. In order to meet the growing needs for essential goods and 
services which the forests provide, it is necessary to enhance forest cover 
and productivity of the forests through the application of scientific and 
technical inputs. Production forestry programmes, while aiming at enhancing 
the forest cover in the country, and meeting national needs, should also be 
Oriented to narrowing, by the turn of the century, the increasing gap 
between demand and supply of fuelwood. No such programme, however, 
should entail clear-felling of adequately stocked natural forests. Nor should 
exotic species be introduced, through public or private sources, unless 
long-term scientific trials undertaken by specialists in ecology, forestry and 
agriculture have established that they are suitable and have no adverse 
impact on native vegetation and environment. 

4.3.4. Rights and Concessions The rights and concessions, including grazing, should 
always remain related to the carrying capacity of forests. The capacity itself 
should be optimised by increased investment, silvicultural research and 
development of the area. Stall-feeding of cattle should be encouraged. The 
requirements of the community, which cannot be met by the rights and 
concessions so determined, should be met by development of social forestry 
outside the reserved forests. The holders of customary rights and concessions in forest 
areas should be motivated to identify themselves with the protection and 
development of forests from which they derive benefits. The rights and 
concessions from forests should primarily be for the bonafide use of the 
communities living within and around forest areas, specially the tribals. The life of tribals and other poor living within and near 
forests revolves around forests. The rights and concessions enjoyed by them 
should be fully protected. Their domestic requirements of fuelwood, fodder, 
minor forest produce and construction timber should be the first charge on 

( 46 ) 

forest produce. These and substitute materials should be made available 
through conveniently located depots at reasonable prices. Similar consideration should be given to scheduled castes 
and other poor living near forests. However, the area which such considera- 
tion should cover, would be determined by the carrying capacity of the 

forests. Wood is in short supply. The long-term solution for meeting 
the existing gap lies in increasing the productivity of forests, but to relieve 
the existing pressure on forests for the demands of railway sleepers, 
construction industry (particularly in the public sector), furniture and 
panelling, mine-pitprops, paper and paper board etc. substitution of wood 
needs to be taken recourse to. Similarly, on the front of domestic energy, 
fuelwood needs to be substituted as far as practicable with alternate sources 
like biogas, LPG and_ solar energy. Fuel-efficient ‘‘Chulhas” as a measure 
of conservation of fuelwood need to be popularised in rural areas. 


4.4.1. Forest land or land with tree cover should not be treated merely 
as a resource readily available to be utilised for various projects and 
programmes, but as a national asset which requires to be _ properly 
safeguarded for providing sustained benefits to the entire community. 
Diversion of forest land for any non-forest purpose should be subject to the 
most careful examinations by specialists from the standpoint of social and 
environmental costs and benefits. Construction of dams and reservoirs, 
mining and industrial development and expansion of agriculture should be 
consistent with the needs for conservation of trees and forests. Projects 
which involve such diversion should at least provide in their investment 
budget, funds for regeneration/compensatory afforestation. 

4.4.2. Beneficiaries, who are allowed mining and quarrying in forest 
land and in land covered by trees should be required to repair and 
re-vegetate the area in accordance with established forestry practices. No 
mining lease should be granted to any party, private or public, without a 
proper mine management plan appraised from the environmental angle and 
enforced by adequate machinery. 

( 47 ) 


Forest Management should take special care of the needs of wildlife 
conservation, and forest management plans should include prescriptions for 
this purpose. It is specially essential to provide for ‘corridors’ linking the 
protected areas in order to maintain genetic continuity between artificially 
separated sub-sections of migrant wildlife. 


Having regard to the symbiotic relationship between the tribal people 
and forests, a primary task of all agencies responsible for forest management, 
including the forest development corporations should be to associate the 
tribal people closely in the protection, regeneration and development of 
forests as well as to provide gainful employment to people living in and 
around the forest. While special attention to the following :— 

— Oneof the major causes for degradation of forest is illegal cutting and 
removal by contractors and their labour. In order to put an end to this 
practice, contractors should be replaced by institutions such as tribal 
cooperatives, labour cooperatives, government corporations, etc. as 
early as possible; 

— Protection, regeneration and optimum collection of minor forest produce 
along with institutional arrangements for the marketing of such produce; 

— Development of forest villages on par with revenue villages; 

— Family oriented schemes for improving the status of tribal beneficiaries; 

— Undertaking integrated area development programmes to meet the 
needs of the tribal economy in and around the forest areas, including 
the provision of alternative sources of domestic energy on a subsidised 
basis, to reduce pressure on the existing forest areas. 


Shifting cultivation is affecting the environment .and productivity of 
land adversely. Alternative avenues of income, suitably harmonised with the 
right land use practices, should be devised to discourage shifting cultivation. 

( 48 ) 

Efforts should be made to contain such cultivation within the area already 
affected, by propagating improved agricultural practices. Area already 
damaged by such cultivation should be rehabilitated through social forestry 
and energy plantations. 


4.8.1. Encroachment on forest lands has been on the increase. This 
trend has to be arrested and effective action taken to prevent its continu- 
ance. There should be no regularisation of existing encroachments. 

4.8.2. The incidence of forest fires in the country is high. Standing 
trees and fodder are destroyed on a large scale and natural regeneration 
annihilated by such fires. Special precautions should be taken during the 
fire season. Improved and modern management practices should be adopted 
to deal with forest fires. 

4.8.3. Grazing in forest areas should be regulated with the involve- 
ment of the community. Special conservation areas, young plantations and 
regeneration areas should be fully protected. Grazing and browsing in 
forest areas need to be controlled. Adequate grazing fees should be levied 
to discourage people in forest areas from maintaining large herds of non- 
essential livestock. 


The main considerations governing the establishment of forest-based 
industries and supply of raw material to them should be as follows : 

— As far as possible, a forest-based industry should raise the raw material 
needed for meeting its own requirements, preferably by establishment 
of a direct relationship between the factory and the individuals who 
can .grow the raw material by supporting the individuals with inputs 
including credit, constant technical advice and finally harvesting and 
transport services. 

— No forest-based enterprise, except that at the village or cottage level, 
should be permitted in the future unless it has been first cleared after a 
careful scrutiny with regard to assured availability of raw material, In 
any case, the fuel, fodder and timber requirements of the local 
population should not be sacrificed for this purpose, 

( 49 ) 

— Forest based industries must not only provide employment to local 
people on priority, but also involve them fully in raising trees and 
raw material. 

— Natural forests serve as a gene pool resource and help to maintain 
ecological balance. Such forests will not, therefore, be made available 
to industries for undertaking plantation and for any other activities. 

— Farmers, particularly small and marginal farmers would be encouraged 
to grow, on marginal/degraded lands available with them, wood species 
required for industries. These may also be grown along with fuel and 
fodder species on community lands not required for pasture purposes, 
and by Forest department/corporations on degraded forests, not 
earmarked for natural regeneration. 

— The practice of supply of forest produce to industry at concessional 
prices should cease. Industry should be encouraged to use alternative 
raw materials. Import of wood and wood products should be 

— The above considerations will however, be subject to the current policy 
relating to Jand ceiling and land-laws. 


Forest conservation programme cannot succeed without the willing 
support and cooperation of the people. It is essential, therefore, to inculcate 
in the people, a direct interest in forests, their development and _ conserva- 
tion, and to make them conscious of the value of trees, wild life and nature 
in general. This can be achieved through the involvement of educational 
institutions, right from the primary stage. Farmers and interested people 
should be provided opportunities through institutions like Krishi Vigyan 
Kendras, Trainers’ Training Centres to learn agrisilvicultural and _ silvicultural 
techniques to ensure optimum use of their land and water resources. Short 
term extension courses and lectures should be organised in order to educate 
farmers. For this purpose, it is essential that suitable programmes are 
propagated through mass media, audio-visual aids and the extension 

( 50 ) 


Forestry should be recognised both as a scientific discipline as well 
as a profession. Agriculture universities and institutions dedicated to the 
development of forestry education should formulate curricula and courses 
for imparting academic education and promoting post-graduate research 
and professional excellence, keeping in view the manpower needs of the 
country. Academic and professional qualifications in forestry should be kept 
In view for recruitment to the Indian Forest Service and the State Forest 
Service. Specialised and orientation courses for developing better manage- 
ment skills by inservice training need to be encouraged, taking into account 
the latest development in forestry and related disciplines. 


With the increasing recognition of the importance of forests for 
environmental health, energy and employment, emphasis must be laid on 
scientific forestry research, necessitating adequate strengthening of the 
research base as well as new priorities for action. Some broad priority areas 
of research and development needing special attention are :— 

i) Increasing the productivity of wood and other forest produce per unit 
of area per unit time by the application of modern scientific and 
technological methods. 

ji) Revegetation of barren/marginal/waste/mined lands and watershed 

iii) Effective conservation and management of existing forest resources 

(mainly natural forest eco-systems). 
iv) Research related to social forestry for rural/tribal development. 
v) Development of substitutes to replace wood and wood products. 
vi) Research related to wildlife and management of national parks and 



Government policies in personnel management for professional 
foresters and forest scientists should aim at enhancing their professional 
competence and status and attracting and retaining qualified and motivated 
personnel, keeping in view particularly the ardous nature of duties they have 
to perform, often in remote and inhospitable places. 

( 5st ) 


Inadequacy of data regarding forest resources is a matter of concern 
because this creates a false sense of complacency. Priority needs to be 
accorded to completing the survey of forest resources in the country on 
scientific lines and to updating information. For this purpose, periodical 
collection, collation and publication of reliable data on relevant aspects of 
forest management needs to be improved with recourse to modern 
technology and equipment. 


Appropriate legislation should be undertaken, supported by adequate 
infrastructure, at the Centre and State levels in order to implement the 
Policy effectively. 


The objectives of this revised Policy cannot be achieved without the 
investment of financial and other resources on a substantia! scale. Such 
investment is indeed fully justified considering the contribution of forests 
in maintaining essential ecological processes and life-support systems 
and in preserving genetic diversity. Forests should not be looked upon as a 
source of revenue. Forests are a renewable natural resource. They are a 
national asset to be protected and enhanced for the well-being of the 
people and the Nation. 

(K. P. Geethakrishnan) 
Secretary to the Government of India 


No. 6-21/89-F.P. 

Ministry of Environment and Forests 
Department of Environment, Forests and Wildlife 
Paryavaran Bhavan, C.G.O. Complex, B-Block 

Lodi Road, New Delhi 
Dated : tst June, 1990 


The Forest Secretaries 
(All States/UTs) 

Subject : Involvement of village communities and voluntary agencies for 
regeneration of degraded forest lands. 


The National Forest Policy, 1988 envisages people’s involvement in 
the development and protection of forests. The requirements of fuelwood, 
fodder and small timber such as house-building material, of the tribals and 
other villagers living in and near the forests, are to be treated as first charge 
on forest produce. The Policy document envisages it as one of the essentials 
of forest management that the forest communities should be motivated to 

identify themselves with the development and protection of forests from 
which they derive benefits. 

2. Ina D.O. Jetter, No. 1/1/88-TMA dated 13th January, 1989 to 
the Chief Secretary of your State, the need for working out the modalities 
for giving to the village communities, living close to the forest land, 
usufructory benefits to ensure their participation in the afforestation 
programme, was emphasized by Shri K.P. Geethakrishnan, the then 
Secretary (Environment and Forests). 

2. Committed voluntary agencies/NGOs, with proven track record, 
may prove particularly well suited for motivating and organising village 
communities for protection, afforestation and development of degraded 

( 53 ) 

forest land, especially in the vicinity of habitations. The State forest 
Departments/Social Forestry Organisations ought to take full advantage of 
their expertise and experience in this respect for building up meaningful 
people’s participation in protection and development of degraded forest 
lands. The voluntary agencies/NGOs may be associated as interface between 
State Forest Departments and the local village communities for revival, 
restoration and development of degraded forests in the manner suggested 
below :— 







The programme should be implemented under an arrangement 
between the Voluntary Agency/NGO, the village community 
(beneficiaries) and the State Forest Department. 

No ownership or lease rights over the forest land should be given to 
the beneficiaries or to the Voluntary Agency/NGO. Nor should the 
forest land be assigned in contravention of the provisions contained 
in the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980. 

The beneficiaries should be entitled to a share in usufructs to the 
extent and subject to the conditions prescribed by the State Govern- 
ment in this behalf. The Voluntary Agency/NGO should not be 
entitled to usufructory benefits. 

Access to forest land and usufructory benefits should be only to the 
beneficiaries who get organised into a village’ institution, specifically 
for forest regeneration and protection. This could be the Panchayat 
or the Cooperative of the village, with no restriction on membership. 
It could also be a Village Forest Committee. In no case should any 
access or tree pattas be given to individuals. 

The beneficiaries should be given usufructs like grasses, lops and 
tops of branches, and minor forest produce. If they successfully 
protect the forests, they may be given a portion of the proceeds from 

sale of trees when they mature. (The Government of West Bengal 

has issued orders to give 25% of the sale proceeds to the Village 
Forest Protection Committees. Similar norms may be. adopted by 
other States). 

Areas to be selected for the programme should be free from the 
claims (including: existing rights, - privileges, concessions) of any 





( 54 ) 

person who is not a beneficiary under the scheme. Alternatively, for 
a given site the selection of beneficiaries should be done in such a 
way that any one who has a claim to any forest produce from the 
selected site is not left out without being given full opportunity of 

The selected site should be worked in accordance with a Working 
Scheme, duly approved by the State Government. Such scheme may 
remain in operation for a period of 10 years and revised/renewed 
after that. The Working Scheme should be prepared in consultation 
with the beneficiaries. Apart from protection of the site, the said 
Scheme may prescribe requisite operations, eg. inducement to 
natural regeneration of existing root stock, seeding, gap filling, and 
wherever necessary, intensive planting, soil-moisture conservation 
measures etc. The Working Scheme should also prescribe other 
operations, eg. fire-protection, maintenance of boundaries, weeding, 
tending, cleaning, thinning etc. 

For raising nurseries, preparing land for planting and protecting the 
trees after planting, the beneficiaries should be paid by the Forest 
Department from the funds under the social forestry programme. 
However, the village community. may obtain funds from other 
Government agencies and sources for undertaking these activities. 

It should be ensured that there is no grazing at all in the forest land 
protected by the village community. Permission to cut and carry 
grass free of cost should be given so that stall feeding is promoted. 

No agriculture should be permitted on the forest land. 

Along with trees for fuel, fodder and timber, the village community 

may be permitted to plant such fruit trees as would fit in with the 
overall scheme of afforestation, Such as aonla, imli, mango, mahua, 
etc. as well as shrubs, legumes and grasses which would meet local 
needs, help soil and water conservation, and enrich the degraded 
soils/land. Even indigenous medicinal plants may be grown 
according to the requirement and preference of beneficiaries, 




( 55 ) 

Cutting of trees should not be permitted before they are ripe for 
harvesting. The forest department also should not cut the trees on 
the forest land being protected by the village communities except in 
the manner prescribed in the Working Scheme. In case of emergency 
needs, the village communities should be taken into confidence. 

The benefit of people’s participation should go to the village 
communities and not to commercial or other interests which may try 
to derive benefit in their names. The selection of beneficiaries should 
therefore, be done from only those families which are willing to 
participate through their personal efforts. 

The Forest Department should closely supervise the works. If the 
beneficiaries andfor the Voluntary Agency/NGO fail or neglect to 
protect the area from grazing, encroachment or do not perform the 
operations prescribed in the Working Scheme in a satisfactory 
manner, the usufructory benefits should be withdrawn without 
paying compensation to anyone for any work that might have been 
done prior to it. Suitable provisions in the Memorandum of Under- 
standing (MOU) for this purpose should be incorporated. 

Yours faithfully, 

(Mahesh Prasad) 
Secretary to the Government of India 

Copy for information and necessary action to :- 


Principal Chief Conservator of Forests/Chief Conservator of Forests 
(All States/UTs). 

Additional Secretary, National Wasteland Development Board, Ministry 
of Environment and Forests, New Delhi. 

Chief Conservator of Forests (Central) of all Regional Offices located 
at : Bhubaneswar, Bangalore, Bhopal, Shillong, Lucknow, Chandigarh. 

( 56 ) 

4. All DIGFs including N.W.D.B., New Delhi. 

5. All Officers of the Ministry of Environment and Forests. 

(K. M. Chadha) 
Joint Secretary to the Government of India 

Copy for information to the :- 

1. Secretary (Co-ordination), Cabinet Secretariat, Rashtrapati Bhavan, 
New Delhi. 

2. Secretary, Ministry of Welfare, New Delhi. 
3. Secretary, Department of Rural Development, New Delhi. 

(K. M. Chadha) 
Joint Secretary to the Government of:India 



1, On Tribal People 

55. The resource base and the social and cultural heritage of our 
Scheduled Tribe population is getting eroded through a combination of 
development interventions, commercial exploitation and ineffective - legal 
and administrative systems. The trend needs to be arrested as it can 
undermine the very survival of these communities. There is growing 
articulation and recognition of the fact that mega projects in irrigation, 
power and transport often disrupt the life and environment of a large 
number of Scheduled Tribal families, while the benefits of these projects 
mainly accrue to the populations in the plains. Measures for relief and 
rehabilitation in such cases have been neither imaginatively conceived nor 
wholeheartedly implemented. It is necessary that the planning and 
administrative machinery at different levels shows greater awareness and 
sensitivity to this dimension of development and takes steps to ensure that 
the lives of Scheduled Tribes are not disrupted in the name of national 
progress. More positively, programmes need to be devised with the ‘involve- 
ment of the Scheduled Tribes themselves in the light of their own order of 
priorities to remove economic, educational and social disparities to which 
they are subject. The lines of action here would include, besides access to 
minimum social services, assistance in scientific resource conservation, 
construction of small water harvesting and storage systems, restoration of 
their traditional rights to forest produce and direct links with market and 
strengthening of their traditional community organisations. 

2. On Environment and Forests 

78.. One consequence of pursuing development and_ adopting 
technologies without a coherent framework of social objectives has been 
large.scale ecologica! degradation and erosion of the natural resource base. 
Deforestation, desertification, pollution of the atmosphere and of the rivers, 
fast depletion of water tables, and destruction of top soil have all affected 
the very survival of our people. A great deal of public consciousness and 

( 58 ) 

debate have been generated on these issues. Several activist and concerned 
citizen groups have been focussing attention on what seems like a 
constantly deteriorating situation. Improvements in the standards and 
quality of life of the people have to be based on sustenance of life support 
systems through conservation and regeneration of the natural resource base. 
The present generation owes this not only to itself, but also to future 
generations and to myriad other species with which its survival its 
Organically and irrevocably linked. What is needed is an_ ecological 
imagination that informs development thinking. 

79. it will not be enough so assert this. There should be more 
rigorous scrutiny of the environmental impact of every development scheme, 
and ecologically sustainable development accepted as an end _ in itself. 
Mechanisms will have to be found by which the ecological consequences 
of development schemes become known to the public through an open door 
information system, the responses and concerns of affected people are 
discussed openly with the relevant authorities, and adequate safeguards to 
protect their interests built into the project before it is approved. And there 
will be need for sanctions against those responsible for violating ecological 
norms and ‘guidelines’. 

80. To sustain social and economic development, especially in rural 
areas, steps are necessary to protect the remaining forests and to enhance 
the biomass resources, especially through development of wastelands. 
Realisation of the full potential of forests and wastelands in a sustainable 
manner which has substantial employment potential would be a key element 
to the revitalisation of the rural economy. Sustainable management of 
forests would require an institutional framework which would facilitate 
people’s active involvement. Traditionally, management of forest resources 
has sought to exclude the people, and the emphasis was on policing the 
forests to prevent biotic interferences. Predictably, this did not have the 
desired effects and has alienated the people. This has been particularly true 
in respect of the tribal populations who‘have been traditionally dependent 
on minor forest produce. Indeed, they have a national interest in protecting. 
trees. Every efforts needs to be made to promote grassroot level 
participation in this task as part of a larger approach to the local area: 
planning and development. 



Dated, Bhubaneswar, the 1st August, 1988. 
No : 10F (Pron)-47/88/1 7 2 4 0 /FFAH., 
Sub : Protection of Reserve Forest Areas by the Community. 

The question of involving village communities for effective protection 
and conservation of Reserve Forests was, for sometime past, under the active 
consideration of Government. After careful appraisal, Government are of the 
view that the task of protecting forests is so urgent and so enormous that 
the rural community should be fully and actively involved in it. Accordingly; 
it has been decided that the following scheme of involving the rural 
community will be implemented in the State. Under this scheme, villagers 
will be assigned a specific role in the protection of Reserve Forests 
adjoining their villages and will, in return, be granted, under Section 24 of 
the Orissa Forest Act, 1972, certain concessions in the matter of meeting 
their Bonafide requirement of firewood and small timber. 

(1) The concerned Divisional Forest Officer shall assign the 
peripheral Reserve Forest areas to the adjoining villages according to the 
compartment line. The area in one compartment may cover one or more 
villages. Wherever the compartment line does not exist, natural boundary 
like nalfla, bridges, etc., will form the demarcation point. Reserve Forest 
area notified under Section 18(1) of the wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 will, 
however, be excluded from the purview of the assignment. 

(2) The concerned D. F. O. shafl constitute a Forest Protection 
Committée for each of the assigned villages. The Committee shall comprise 
the Sarpanch of the concerned Gram Panchayat, the Ward Members 
belonging to the village, the local Forester, Revenue Inspector, V.L.W, and 
such other. persons of. the said village. not exceeding three as may be 
nominated by the concerned Grama Panchayat. The total number of the 
members of: the Committee shall be atleast eight which shall, as far as: 
possible, include persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes or Tribes, 

( 60 ) 

women and landless categories. The Sarpanch of the Gram Panchayat and 
the loca! Forester shall be the Chairman and Convenor of the Committee 

(3) The villages, shall through the Forest Protection Committee, 
furnish an undertaking to the concerned D.F.O. for proper up-keep and 
maintenance of the assigned Reserve Forest areas. The assigned villages 
shall be responsible for fire protection and prevention of felings, thefts of 
forest produce and encroachments in the assigned Reserve Forest areas. 
The Forest Protection Committee shall be responsible for ensuring 
performance of the above functions by villagers of the assigned villages. 

(4) For performance of the duties enumerated in para-3, the 
villagers shall be entitled to obtain their bonafide requirement of small 
timber and firewood for house-hold consumption only and not for sale or 
barter. The Forest Protection Committee shall be responsible for proper 
distribution of small timber and firewood among the house-holds, keeping 
in view the following guidelines :- 

(a) The minimum requirements of the house-holds for building and 
agriculture purposes should be worked out by the Committee and 
the distribution made accordingly on the basis of available produce, 
before meeting their demand for other purposes. 

(b) As regards supply of firewood, the same shall be apportioned among 
the households keeping in view their real requirement as far as 

(5) Small timber and firewood shall be removed from the assigned 
Reserve Forest areas only in accordance with a permit issued by the two 
members of the Committee authorised for the purpose. The permit issued 
as above shall be valid only within the limits of the village boundary to 
which the household belongs. 

(6) .:The above scheme’ of assignment will come into force with 
effect from 2.10.88. In the intervening period, the D.F.Os. will assign 
specific Reserve Forest areas in the periphery to the adjoining villages and: 
constitute the Forest Protection Committee. 

( 61 ) 


Ordered that the Resolution be published in the Extraordinary issue 
of the Orissa Gazette. 

By. Order of the Governor 
P.K. Mohanty 
Secretary to Government. 

M. No: 17241|FFAH., Dated : 1.8.1988 

Copy forwarded to All Departments of Government/Principal Chief 
Conservator of Forests, Orissa/All Revenue Divisional Commissioners/All 
Collectors for information & necessary action. 

Sd/- J. K. Mohapatra 
Joint Secretary to Government. 

M. No : 17242{/FFAH., Dated : 1.8.1988 

Copy forwarded to All Conservator of Forests/All Divisional Forest 
Officers (Territorial) for’ information & necessary action. The’ Divisional 
Forest Officers are requested to assign specific Reserve Forest areas in -the 
periphery to the adjoining villages and constitute a Forest Protection 
Committee by. the end of September, 1988 without fail. 

Sd/- J. K. Mohapatra 
Joint Secretary to Government.: 

M. No : 17243/FFAH., Dated : 1.8.1988 

Copy forwarded to the Director of Printing, Stationery & Publications, 
Orissa, Cuttack with the request to publish it in the extraordinary issue of 
the Orissa Gazette. He is requested to send ‘200 copies of it to this 

Sd/- J. K. Mohapatra 
Joint Secretary to Government. 

( 62 ) 



Dated, Bhubaneswar the 13th October 1988 
No : 10F (Pron)-47/88] 23638/FFAH 

Sub : Protection of Reserve Forest Areas by the Community. 

A scheme for involving the rural community in the task of protecting 
reserve forests throughout the State has been enunciated by the Govern- 
ment in the Resolution No. 17240-FFAH., Dated, 1.8.88. Para-2 of the 
aforesaid Resolution envisages constitution of a village-level Forest 
Protection Committee comprising the Sarpanch of the concerned Gram 
Panchayat, the Ward Members belonging to the village and at the most 3 
other persons of the village, to be nominated by the concerned Gram 
Panchayat, as the non-official members. In addition, the local Forester, 
Revenue Inspector and the V. L. W. are to be included as official members. 

(2) After careful re-appraisal, it is now felt by the Government that the 
Committee should be constituted in consultation with the local villagers. 

(3) Therefore, in partial modification of para-2 of the aforesaid 
Resolution, it has been decided that the non-official members of the village 
level Forest Protection Committee may be selected by convening a meeting 
of the concerned villagers. However, the Sarpanch of the concerned Gram 
Panchayat and the Forester shall be the Chairman and Convenor of the 
Committee respectively. 


Ordered that the Resolution be published in the Extraordinary issue 
of the Orissa Gazette. 

By Order of the Governor 
P. K. Mohanty 
secretary to Government. 

( 63 ) 

M. No : 23639/FFAH., Dt. 13.10.88 

Copy forwarded to All Departments of Government/Principal Chief 
Conservator of Forests, Orissa/All Revenue Divisional Commissioners/All 
Collectors for information & necessary action. 

Sd/- J. K. Mohapatra 
Joint Secretary to Government. 

M. No : 23640/FFAH., Dated: 13.10.88 

Copy forwarded to All Conservators of Forests/All Divisional Forest 
Officers (Territorial) for information & necessary action. 

Sd/- J. K. Mohapatra 

Joint Secretary to Government. 

M, No : 23641 /FFAH., Dated : 13.10.88 

Copy forwarded to the Director of Printing, Stationery & Publications, 
Orissa, Cuttack with request to publish it in the extra-ordinary issue of the 
Orissa Gazette. He is requested to send 200 copies of it to this Department. 

Sd/- J. K. Mohapatra 
Joint Secretary to Government. 

( 64 ) 


No : 1 OF (Pron)-47/88] 27328/FFAH., Dated : 14.12.88 


Shri J. K. Mohapatra, IAS, 
Joint Secretary to Government. 


The Principal Chief:Conservator of:Forests;. 
Orissa, Cuttack. 

Sub : Protection of reserve forest areas by the community. 


| am directed to refer to your letter No. 23370/9F-Legal-65/88., 
dated 1st.December, 1988 say that the. adjoining. villagers assigned 
the functions.of. protection, up-keep and maintenance of the peripherial 
reserve. forest areas would be entitled to obtain their bonafide requirement 
of small! timber and firewood for house-hold consumption free of cost. They 
need not pay-royalty as prescribed in the ‘Rules on Schedule of Rates for 
Forest Produces. in Orissa, 1977’. This clarification may be brought to the 
notice of all concerned. 

Yours faithfully, 

Sd/- J. K. Mohapatra 
Joint Secretary to Government. 

( 65 ) 


No. 1 OF (Pron) 4{90/29525/FFAH., Bhubaneswar, Dated, 11.12.1990 

Sub: Protection of Reserved Forest and Protected Forest Areas by 
the Community and Enjoyment of certain usufructs by the: 

The question of involving village community for effective protection 
and conservation of Reserved Forest and Protected Forest was for some 
time past, under active consideration of Government. After careful 
consideration, Government are of the view that the task of protecting forest 
is sO urgent and enormous that the community should be fully and actively 
involved in it. Accordingly, it has been decided that the following scheme 
of involving the rural community will be implemented in the State. Under 
this Scheme, villagers will be assigned a specific role in the protection of 
Reserved Forest and Protected Forests adjoining their villages and will, in 
return, be granted under Section 24 of the Orissa Forest Act, 1972 certain 
concessions in Reserved Forest and taking into account prevalent practice 
and rights, if any, in respect of Protected Forest in the matter of meeting 
their bonafide requirement of firewood and small timber. 

(1) The concerned Divisional Forest Officer shall assign the peripheral 
Reserved Forest and Protected Forest area to the adjoining villages 
according to the compartment line. The area in one compartment may cover 
one or mora villages. Wherever the compartment line does not exist, natural 
boundary like nalla, bridges, etc. will form the demarcation point. Reserve 
Forest areas notified under Section 18 (1) of the Wild Life Protection Act 
1972 will, however be excluded from the purview of the assignment. 

(2) The concerned: Divisional Forest Officer shall constitute a Forest 
Protection Committee for each of the concerned villages in consultation 
with the local villagers. The Committee shall comprise the-Sarpanch of the 
concerned Gram Panchayat, the Ward Members belonging to the village, the 
local Forester, Revenue Inspector, V.L.W. and such other non-official 
members of the village. to be selected by convening a meeting of the 
concerned villagers. The total number of the members of the Committee 

( 66 ) 

shall be atleast 8 which shall, as far as possible, include women and 
persons belonging to the S.C. or S.T. and the landless, categories. The 
Sarpanch of the Gram Panchayat and the local Forester shail be the 
Chairman and convenor of the Committee respectively. 

(3) The villagers shall, through the Forest Protection Committee, furnish 
an undertaking to the concerned Divisional Forest Officer for proper 
up-keep and maintenance of the assigned Reserved Forest and Protected 
Forest areas. The assigned villages shall be responsible for fire fighting and 
prevention of illicit fellings, theft of forest produce and encroachment in the 
assigned Reserved Forest and Protected Forest areas. The Forest Protection 
Committee shall be responsible for ensuring performance of the above 
functions by villagers of the assigned villages. 

(4) For performance of the duties enumerated in para-3, the villagers 
shall be entitled to obtain their bonafide requirement of small timber and 
firewood for house-hold consumption only and not for sale or barter. 
The Forest Protection Committee shall be responsible for proper 
distribution of small timber and firewood among the house-holds, keeping 
in view the following guidelines: 

(a) The minimum requirements of the house-hold for building and 
agriculture purposes should be worked out by the Committee and 
the distribution made accordingly on the basis of available produce, 
before meeting their demand for other purposes. 

(b) As regards supply of firewood, the same shall be apportioned among 
the households keeping in view their real requirement as far as 

(5) Small timber and firewood shall be removed from assigned Reserved 
Forest areas and Protected Forest areas only in accordance with a permit. 
issued by the two members of the Committee authorised for the purpose. The, 
permit issued as above shall be valid only within the limits of the village 
boundary to which the household belongs. 

(6) This supersedes this Department’s Resolution No. 17240/FFAH., 
dated 1.8.88 and No. 23638/FFAH., dated 13.10.88. 

( 67 ) 


Ordered that the Resolution published in the next ordinary issue of 
the Orissa Gazette. 

By Order of the Governor 
P. K. Mohanty 
Secretary to Government. 

Memo No. 29526/FFAH., Bhubaneswar, dated 17.12.90 

Copy forwarded to all Departments of Government/Principal Chief 
Conservator of Forests, Orissa/All Revenue Divisional Commissioner/All 
Collectors for information and necessary action. 

Under Secretary to Government. 

Memo No, 29527/FFAH., Bhubaneswar, dated 11.12.90 

Copy forwarded to All Conservator of Forests/All Divisional Forest 
Officers (Territorial) for information and necessary action. 

Under Secretary to Government. 

Memo No. 29528/FFAH., Bhubaneswar, dated 11.72.90 

Copy forwarded to the Director of Printing, Stationery and Publication, 
Orissa, Cuttack with the request to publish it in the extraordinary issue of 
the Orissa Gazette. He is requested to send 200 copies of it to this 

Under Secretary to Government. 






All protect, All receive, All pay with pride to keep the cycle of Village/ 
School fund and employment moving round the year with no 
subsequent fund from outside. 

Using rain as it falls and where it falls, and not permitting even a drop 
to go outside the village limit as surface flow. 

Multi-layered planting system to expose unrealised potential of mother 
earth, rain, sun, land and human brains and bodies. 

Acceptable sharing system as under :— 
10% Kalyan Kosh for other school/villages 
30% to students and teachers of Chakriya Vikas Pranali 
30% to land owner (Govt./ Private) 

remaining 30% to Village Development Fund. 

Conversion of basic goods into meaningful Secondary products to 
promote rural employment right in the village only as far as practicable, 

Marketing infrastructure. 


Take village/village tola/school-as unit. 
Select some stipendary students to start with. 

Arrange some stipend from the working system itself in the Shortest 
Possible time. 



( 69 ) 

Pool land and form a block. 

Make small plots (3’ x 3’ or 5° x 5’) with ridges 1’ to 14’ high on all 
sides depending on topography. 

Plant root, fruit, fuel, fodder, timber, vegetable trees, commercial grasses 
depending on soil and socio-economic need of the people. 

Make suitable Nurseries. 

Make (a) Tanks in Series, (b) Tank within tank, (c) Tanks by the side of 
Streams 10’ deeper than the stream-level. 

Constitute effective “Sahyogi Samaj”. 

All disputes to be settled right in the villages. 

Introduce apart from 1:1:1 sharing system, 2:1 and 1:2 (in school). 
Commonise “300 Pranali” everywhere. 

Open account system with Social audit. 

10% of all emoiuments to form part of village-fund 

Monitor dynamic changes in the attitude of all towards mother-earth, 
having hidden potency to sustain all 

Dak Bunglow Road, 
P.O. Daltonganj-822101 (Palamu) Bihar. 



“Oe 4 
, ¢ Ha pe es 

ed (as sid AN NT ENS Nein Maa n i ae ome 
SALT-1 is an agroforesiry Ar wilh agricultural and ARE ; _ 

forestry crops al a percentaqe ratio of 75 : 25. The experience of, A dh pe v Pry =~ 
the Mindanao Baplist Rural Lile Centre in Bansalan Davao dele! re Wy ry aie 
Sur, shows lhat this lechnology can help reduce soil erosion by Muy ry, 
four times, increases com yield by live times and income by six — Renate 

=; 1 
SALT-1. Sa ee UD, faheyy 

Salt is a simple, applicable, low cost and timely method of farming the uplands. This 
technology was developed for farmers with few tools, small capital and little learning in agri- 
culture. A farmer can integrate his traditional farming practices in the SALT system. 



If farmers leave the SALT farm like some tribal groups do, the nitrogen-fixing trees 
(NF Ts) will continue to grow and overshadow the crop area. By the time the land is reverted 
to cultivation, the soil has already been enriched by the large amount of leaves fromthe NFTs 
and there is no erosion to contend with. In addition, the trees may be harvested for firewood 
or charcoal as additional source of income. Findings of MBRLC show that a hectare of SALT 
farm can.provide an income of P1,300/ha/mo as against the P200/ha/mo in hillside farms of 

corn cultivated the traditional way. 

Here’s how to put SALT-1 in your hillyland : 

LINES. After you have found and marked the con- 
tour lines, plow and harrow them ready for plant- 
ing. The width of each contour line to be prepared 
should be one meter. 

line, make two furrows one-half meter apart. Plant 
at least 2-3 seeds per hill at a distance of one- 
fourth inch between hills. Cover the seeds firmly 
with soil. Examples of NFTs are Flamengia 
congesta, Gliricidia sepium (madre de cacao or 
kakawate), Leucaena diversifolia (acid-tolerant 
ipil-ipil}, and the Desmodium (rensonii). 

ALTERNATELY. The space of land between the 
thick rows of NFTs where the crops are planted is 
called a strip. If you wish to prepare the soil for 
planting before the nitrogen-fixing trees are fully 
grown, do it alternately, on strips 2, 4, 6, 8 and so 
on. Alternate cultivation will prevent erosion be- 
cause the unplowed strips will hold the soil in 

nent crops may be planted at the same time the 
seeds of NFTs are sown. Only the spots for piant- 
ing are cleared and dug; later, only ring weeding is 
employed until the NFTs are large enough to hold 
the soil so full cultivation can begin. 

plant short and medium-term crops between strips 
of permanent crops as a source of food and regu- 
lar income while waiting for the permanent crops 
to bear fruits. Suggested short- and medium-term 
crops are pineapple, ginger, gabi, castor, bean, 
camote, peanut, mung bean, melon, sorghum, com, 
upland rice, etc. To avoid shading, short plants are 
planted away from the tall ones. 

( 72 ) 

REGULARLY. About once a month or when they 
begin to shade your crops, the continuously grow- 
ing NFTs are cut downto 1 m. Cutleaves and twigs 
are always piled at the base of the crops. They 
serve as an excellent organic fertilizer. This way, 
only a minima! amount of commercial fertilizer 
(about 1/4 of the total fertilizer requirements) can 
be used if you so desire. Gradually decrease the 
use of commercial fertilizer if your crops already 
look healthy and productive. 

CROPS. A good way of crop rotation is to plant 
grains (corn, upland rice, sorghum, etc.), tubers 
(camote, cassava, gabi, etc.) and other crops 
(pineapple, castor, bean, etc.) on strips where Jeg- 
umes (mung bean, bush sitao, peanut, etc.) were 
previously planted and vice versa. This practice 
will help maintain the fertility and good condition 
of your soil. Other management practices in crop 
growing like weeding and pest and insect control, 
should be done regularly. 

ree from providing you with adequate food and suffi- 
ae 7 yo. cient income, an even more important benefit of 
(Yovent f "3 : using SALT is the control of soil erosion. This is 
GROUN af" done by the double thick rows of NFTs and the 
: natural terraces being formed along the contour 
lines of the hill. As you go on farming the sloping 
land, keep gathering and piling up straw, stalks, 
twigs, branches, leaves, rocks and stones at the 
base of the rows of NFTs. By doing this regularly, 
you can build strong, permanent, naturally green 
and beautiful terraces which will reliably anchor 
your precious soil in its right place. 


Agroforestry Technology Information Kit 

TECHNOLOGY (SALT-2) mii) ii 

aes Suess PUOIE Byrd) e. ye waver i respi Fe 

=> =. fy, a STs 4) pes a x 

Sere CUS 
pes roe 3 = ae! a end 


SALT- a iS a goat- aren eins cans a sie use of 40% 

for agriculture, 20% of forestry and 40% for Ivestock Expert- 
ences of the Mindanao Baptist Rural Life Centre in Bansalan, > 
Davao del Sur, tend to show that this technology can minimize aie ‘Fe 
erosion, improve soil fertility and provide a regular decent in- a Sel Zs 
come in all upland family. This information material will guide ee 
on how to establish SALT-2. Bored erin 8: 

Among others, the uplander badly needs food, wood and animal products, like meat and 
milk. SALT-2 is an agro-silvi-pastural scheme that attempts to meet these needs with focus on 
goat-raising. Although a goat is small, it can produce as much as two liters of milk everyday if 
it is purebred and its nutritional requirements are met. No wonder the goat is called “a poor 
man’s cow". Here is how to put up SALT-2 in your small farm. 


Cultivate the contour fines thoroughly, forming 
raised beds, about 1 m wide. Make two furrows 
spaced 1/2 m apart on each contour line. Plant 
thickly your nitrogen-fixing multipurpose tree and 
shrub species (NF-MPTSS) on the furrows. Plant 
NF-MPTSS also on the uppermost part and along 
the borders of your land. Apart from conserving 
the soil, they will provide additional forage. 

( 74 ) 

erie Grow your food and cash crops on the upper half 
ach, “h SHORT TERM «| of the farm so that loosened soil due to cultivation 
a = is caught at the lower half by the forage crops. To 
avoid further disturbance of the soil, plant 3/4 of 
the agricultural area to long-term crops and the 
remaining 1/4 to short-term ones. 



project with 12 does and a buck needs a total land 
area of about 3/4 hectare. Half of the area is de- 
voted to forage crops and this need to be estab- 
lished 6-8 months before bringing in the goats. 
Plant only palatable, proteinous, fast-coppicing 
and high-yielding forage crops. A suggested com- 
position of forage crops is 50% Desmodium ren- 
sonii, 25% Flamengia congesta, 20% Gliricidia 
sepium and 5% napier and other grasses. Establish 
them at the beginning of the rainy season in rows 
of 1/2 m at 1/2 ft distance between hills with 1-2 

=| STEP 5 : LOCATE THE GOAT BARN. Build the 
barn at the middie of the farm between the bound- 
ary of the forage and foodcrops. This will save 
r| tirne and labour in hauling manure out to the farm 
and in carrying forage to your goats. Provide 
floor space of 20-25 sq. ft./goat using local materi- 
als. For convenient manure removal, the floor is 
raised about 4 ft above the ground with floor slots 
nailed, 1/2 inch apart. Essential divisions and fix- 
tures in your goat house are kids’ separation pen, 
milking stanchion, milkroom, storeroom, feed 
trough, grass rack, waterer and salt trough. 

YY ff, WLM 
ggg ‘ 

( 75 ) 

TIME. Do this only when your forage garden has 
been fully csiamisned and you af@ corain it is 
already capable of supplying sufficient feeds. This 
should be about 6-8 months after planting your 
forage crops. The recommended breeds are either 
the purebreds, crossbreds or upgrades ot Nubian, 
Alpine andLa Mancha. Without these breeds, start 
with the biggest and healthiest goat you can i: =» 
Agood stocking rate is 1 buck :.12 does per 1/2-3/ 
4 hectare of a well-developed agroferest farm. 

Your goats essentially need concentrates (high- 
energy feeds) and forage (high- fibre feeds) daily. 
A milking doe weighing about 50 kg and giving 1 
liter of milk a day needs 1 kg of concentrate and 5 
kg of forage per day. Give the feeds inthe morning 
and in the afternoon. A good concentrate consists 
of 18% first class rice bran, 23% corn grain or rice 
middlings, 21% copra meal, 36% ipil-ipil leaf meal, 
1% salt, and 1% limestone. A good forage is a 
mixture of 50% D. rensonii, 25% Flamengia, 20% 
Gliricidia, and 5% napier and other grasses. Pro- 
vide your goats with salt and plenty of fresh water 

STEP 8 : BREED THE GOATS. Earlier breeding 
will stunt the animal. A doe should not be bred until 
she weighs 45-50 kg or is about 10-12 months of 
age. It is best to breed the doe in the second day 
of the heat period because conception ts usually 
more successful at this time. If it does not become 
pregnant after being bred over three heat peri- 
ods, cull it or place tt under close observation if it 
is avaluable breeding animal. 

Do not delay marketing your agriculture, forestry 
and livestock products. Milk your goats dally, 
pasteurize the. milk and dispose it immediately. 
‘Goats are to be marketed at the age of 10-12 
months or when weighing from 35-55 kg. 

( 76 ) 

Cut your hedgerows 1/2-1 m fromthe ground when 
they begin to shade the field crops. Replant miss- 
ing: hills of the hedgerows, weed and clean the 
crops and spray with chemicals only if necessary. 
Deworming of goats, hoof trimming, disbudding, 
castration and spreading manure to the farm for 
fertilizer are some of the necessary routine prac- 
lices to be done in the SALT-2 farm. 

o- a \ 
aon “4 ee 
A —_ jos 
ern ae TREE RING 


A = / enone ee 

a (3) + 7 Z | on, 

3 WRAL. 


(1) HOLD 

aa) 4) PULL OUT (5) te 




CLEAN waren ) = e 





Agroforestry Technology Information Kit 


yt fi maak 
Sprit i a ARS 

Ph my PNG HEN we 

if LAM ayy" Wi 4 i SS 

| Wee FN 4, SPS sees 

SALT-3 is a scail scale een integrated with food > 

production. The farm 1s devoted to about 40% agniculture and aa oo 

60% forestry. This “food-wood" intercropping as designed in the i i iis 

Mindanao Baptist Rural Lile Centre in Bansalan, Davao del oUF, I Wi Mt 

shows that it can effectively conserve the soil, thereoy providing || Na i 

abindant food, wood and income to the hillyland farmer. This all I) eu i hi iy fae Nh 


formation material will guide you on how to establish SALT-3. ins at 


Deforestation, soil erosion and inappropriate farming technologies are the three major 
causes of low farm productivity, thus the manifold poverty in the uplands. Agroforestry is 
fast becoming one of the sustainable alternatives to sufficient food production and income 
generation for the uplands. SALT-3 is a variant of agroforestry and here is how to put it upin 
your hillyland. 

ERY. Ensure sufficient supply of planting materi- 
als for your agroforest farm by setting up your 
own nursery. A nursery of about 10° x 25° can 
sufficiently meet the needs of a 2-hectare agro- 
forest farm. 

Establish your nursery where it is accessible, 
with the following fixtures : potting shed, trans- 
plant shed, seedbeds, etc. Basic equipments like 
sprinklers, shovel, spade should also be available. 

( 78 ) 

LINGS. For better growth and field survival, the 
production of healthy and vigorous planting 
stock is necessary. 

@ Sow the seeds. Most forest tree seeds are 
hard to germinate so they need scarification 
either by mechanical or hot water treatment. 
The most common problem encountered in 
seed germination is damping off and insect 
defoliators. Sterilize the soil before sowing 
the seeds to avoid damping off. Use chemicals 
when necessary. 

The seedbeds ortransplant beds must be kept 
moist at all times. Mulch and shade the plants. 

@ Transplant. Prune the roots of species that 
can be outplanted bare root (mahogany, teak, 
etc.). Do not allow weeds to compete with your 
transplant. Fertilizer may be applied in con- 
junction with watering long before transplant- 
ing. Dissolve complete fertilizer (14-14-14 or 
15-15-15) at the rate of 10 g/li water. 

Harden off seedlings by gradually exposing them to more adverse conditions obtaining 
in the field. Do this 3-6 months before transplanting. Seedlings ready to be planted should 
have sturdy, well-developed crowns and many fine, fibrous lateral roots. 

preferred short-term crops, on every first and 
second strips. A strip is a 4-5 m alley created be- 
tween contour hedgerows. Depending on their 
Suitability to your farm, plant long-term crops like 
citrus, coffee, cacao, banana, black pepper, etc. 
on every third strip. Then intercrop them with fruit 
trees, like rambutan, durian, lanzones, guava, si- 
niguelas, duhat, etc. following appropriate plant- 
ing distances. 

The earlier you establish your food and cash 
crops, the better off you will be in meeting your 
immediate needs. 

( 79 ) 

Follow SALT-1 steps in establishing your food 

WOOD CROPS. Locate the woodiot at the upper 
half of the project so that the agricultural compo- 
nent on the lower portion will benefit from the 
conserved moisture and nutriants from the wood 

On areas.with steep slope and with erodible 
soil, extra care must be exercised so as not to 
induce soil erosion when clearing the area. You 
canuse either partial or complete removal of vege- 
tation whichever is more favorable to you. Avoid 

of soil rehabilttation, firewood production and timber growing, you Can maximize the use of 
land space by following the high density strategy of establishing small-scale woodlots. 

As jointly designed by representative foresters, agriculturists, farmers and countryside 
developers consulted by MBRLC in developing SALT-3 (2-hectares), the following were 
recommended : 

= ie 
eS 4 de, (\ Wi ls 
o un 0 oP cB epge-— me — 
B : 
.Y \ 


vee ANN nh 

bie »e 

ia Y c 
ssn | Smale eis 



(AINTERCROPPED |p partan | y 

( 80 ) 



Rain tree (S. saman) 1/4 1x1im 8x8m . Long term 
| (15-25 years) 
2 Rattan (C. merilli)as inintercrop: 1/4 8x8m 8x8m : Longterm 

with rain tree 

Narra (P. indicus) 1/8 2x2m 4x4m —— Longterm 

Katuray (S. sesoan) as intercrop 1/4 1x1m 1x1im Short term 
with narra and mahogany (1-5 years) 

Mahogany (S. macrophylla) 1/8 2x2m 4x4m Longterm 

1/16 exem 2x2m ‘i Medumterm 
(6-14 years) 

ems =o me 

A. auriculiforais 

7. A mangum 1/16 2x2m 4x4m Medium term 

me ee 

P. dulce & formosa mixed 1/8 1xim 1x1m_; Short term 

eer 1/4 

1x1m 1x1m °' Shortterm 

10. Bamboo (botany variety) on border 8m ' 8m Longterm 
between| between 
hills hills ! 
11. Hedgerows or agriculture 1/4 46m Long term 
component apart ee 

Started as early as the beginning or up to the 
middle of the rainy season so that seedlings can 
get established prior to the dry season. 

You can also follow the contour when out- 
planting although it is not so imperative. Take care 
not to break the earth-bail when setting the seed- 
ling into the planting hole. The upper part of the 
earth-ball should be level or slightly deeper than 
the edge of the hole. Soil is filled into the spaces 
and tamped firmly all around. 

( 81 ) 

For fast recovery of the seedlings in degraded sites apply basal application of 50-100 g 
of complete fertilizer (14-14-14) mixed withurea (46-0-0) at 50: 50 ratio. Mulch your seedlings 
to insure higher linability. 

dle a Short- and medium-term food and cash crops can 

be interplanted in your forestry component during 
the first 2 years. Long-term ones like black pepper 
and rattan can be incorporated at the beginning 
pn a oy : of the second year. You can even raise poultry 

Y (goose, turkey, muscovy) and small livestock (pref- 

Wt, ae Ho \s erably sheep) underneath the tree crops dunng 

the following years. 

a oS 
ey vy 

For effective soil management, see to it that 
non-legume short-term crops are replaced by fe- 
guminous ones and vice versa in every cropping. 

from regular ring-weeding and liberation cutting, 
improve the stand of your trees. Remove the mal- 
formed trees. Replant the missing hills if you feel 
the replanted trees can still catch up. 

However, replanting is laborious and expen- 
sive and should be done only to maintain required 
spacing or density. This is also performed when 
mortality is more than 30%. 

PRODUCTS REGULARLY. Timely harvesting of 
crops saves waste, All households and useful 
products must be gathered, processed and mar- 
keted. In the forestry components -- forage from 
tree prunings, fuelwood and roundwood from thin- 
nings commence during the second yéar. Thin out 
regularly your forestry area until the timber crop 
spacing requirement is complied with. 

| iy = 



( 82 ) 

Here is a suggested schedule of harvesting your forest trees, patterned alter the 
MBLRC plan. 



Seshania sesban 

S. sesban 

Leucaena diversifolia 
Samanea saman 
Pithecelobium dulce 

Acacia mangium 
A. aunculiformis 


A. auriculiformis 

A mangum 
Narra, mahogany 

Narra, mahogany 
S. saman 





’ Selective 






leaves for feeds, etc. 

Fuelwood and light 
construction, etc. 

Light construction 
furniture, etc. 

Fuelwood and light 
construction, etc. 

Timber and furniture 



The Vansda Model of Tribal Rehabilitation has not only given a new 
direction for thought and action, but has also held out the promise of its 
possible replication in other parts of the country. Experience gained at 
Vansda has clearly shown that the deprived, the dispossessed, the 
landless and the jobless, whose number is legion, want to be and need 
to be rehabiljtated in their own natural environment and are anxious to be 
able to make a decent living onthe strength of natural resources within 
their vicinity and within their reach, 

Dr. Manibhai Desai 
President, BAIF 

Kamdhenu, Senapati Bapat Marg. 

Pune-411016, Maharashtra, India 

Telephone : 52621/22/23, Telex : 0145-283 

Telegram : BAIFON 

“Adivasis’’ (the tribals) are the earliest inhabitants of the land. 
However, in most places, the march of progress has left them far behind. 
Tribals in India have long been victims of exploitation, poverty, disease and 

The Setting 

Vansda Block in Valsad District of Gujarat is a predominantly tribal 
area characterized by an undulating hilly terrain and heavy seasonal 
rainfall. The tribal families have either small holdings of land or are landless. 
They mostly cultivate one rainfed crop, and after harvest there are no 
opportunities for gainful activity. Survival has become a hand-to-mouth 
struggle, a clash between ecology and existence. Large number of adivasi 
families have to migrate seasonally after every monsoon to nearby towns in 
search of work. It is a vicious cycle. Faced with a meaningless life, the 
tribals take to drink not for pleasure, but to forget. It is against this setting, 
that in 1982, BAIF initiated a programme for tribal rehabilitation. 

( 84 ) 

Programme Approach 

BAIF believes in working for the development of the rural poor 
through establishing a meaningful and rewarding relationship between the 
five basic resources-Land. Water, Vegetation, Livestock, and MAN. BAIF is 
committed to use Science and Technology to help improve livelihood and 
the socioeconomic status of the rural poor. Fully aware that if the tribal 
families continued to consume liquor, these very aims and objectives would 
be defeated, BAIF made it very clear that giving up drink and working hard 
are the two pre-requisites for joining the programme. 

Salient Features of BAIF’s Approach 
« Operating with the family as a unit. 
# Establishing a strong rapport with the participating families. 

« Developing confidence in the tribals about their own capabilities and 

« Providing strong techno-managerial inputs. 

« Strong bias on activities for the welfare of women and children. 

The Start 

The beginning was slow and hesitant. Only 42 families joined the 
programme initially. The others waited and watched. When they saw that 
the participating families were not only developing their own assets in the 
form of fruit and forestry plantations, but also received wage support, so 
that they had no more need to migrate, the initial hesitation and scepticism 
thawed. The number of participating families crossed 5000 in about five 

Programme Components 

Set upon the task of converting wastelands into orchards, each 
family works on one acre of land. For those, who are landless, the Govern- 
ment has alloted one acre of wasteland on usufruct basis. The wastelands 
are surveyed and a land treatment plan is prepared. 

( 85 ) 

On each plot of land, the tribal family works throughout the year 
to take up measures such as land shaping, contour marking, bunding, 
terracing, livehedge fencing, digging plots, plantation of trees, aftercare and 
soon. Fruit trees like mangoes, guava, papaya are planted in each WADI 
(orchard). Subabul, Eucalyptus, Casuarina and Bamboo are also planted to 
provide fuel, fodder and timber, Vegetables are cultivated as intercrops. Each 
tribal family is now developing a wadi full of fruits and forest trees and 
intercrops. The entire wasteland is being transformed into a productive 

‘A’ Frame 

The A frame is a simple device made of three bamboo poles shaped 
like an “A” and is used to mark contours on the hill slopes with remarkable 
speed and ease. Tribal youth are trained in assembling and using the A 
frame. These ‘barefoot technicians’ then move from plot to plot marking 
contours. It is an instance of introducing appropriate technology and 
teaching the unlettered tribals to use it effectively. 

Water is the lifeline of such a programme. Acute scarcity of water 
during summer led to a novel system to harvest runoff water after monsoon. 
The streams (na//ahs) are plugged by temporary check bunds erected by 
using old gunny bags filled with sand or silt. This low cost technique is 
labour intensive, speedy and simple. Thus, water pondages are created all 
along the nallahs, providing life saving water for critical irrigation. 

fand surveys were followed by design and installation of decentra- 
lised small scale lift irrigation schemes in large numbers. A pumpset was 
installed at every check bund, and pipelines were laid. The water flowing in 
the nallahs was thus carried to each plot being developed by the tribals. 
Simultaneously, a scheme for providing drinking water through borewells 
was initiated in each village. 


‘Wav/j' is a typical tribal custom under which the income earned by 
the women is retained by them and men have no claim to it. BAIF identified 
wavij as the most potent intervention to involve women and ensure them 

( 86 ) 

a steady income. The task of raising nurseries was therefore entrusted to 
women. They were helped in procuring polythene bags and seeds and 
trained in all aspects of nursery raising. This programme not only provides 
thousands of seedlings for future plantations, but also income for the 
women. Cultivation of vegetables has also become an important Wav/i 
activity. Alongwith additional income from vegetable sale, it helps in an 
improved diet. A_ significant feature of the programme is extensive 
use of handpumps and borewells for raising nurseries and vegetables. 

Mango Grafting 

The backbone of the programme is horticulture. Plantation of graft 
varieties of mangoes had to face the bottlenecks of unavailability of large 
number of grafted saplings, high price, costly transportation etc. A group of 
tribal youth was trained in the technique of stone grafting and softwood 
grafting. Each group of 20 tribal families selects one young boy who 
is trained in this technique. This has slashed the costs of mango grafts to 
just ten percent of the market price. 

Health Programme 

The health programme at Vansda was launched with the objective 
of providing primary health care servicen, especially to children and mothers. 
Various programme components include vaccination of children, growth 
monitoring, antenatal care, provision of good quality drinking water, health 
education, etc. 

Community health workers have been trained in delivery of primary 
health care. They are responsible for recording health information and 
disease incidence in their own villages. They are supported by a mobile 
health team consisting of a doctor and paramedica! staff. Training of village 
midwives and village women is an important part of the programme. 

Ayojan Samiti 

An “Ayojan Samiti’’-the planning committee-has been formed of 
one man and one woman representative for every 20 families. The members 
of the Ayojan Samiti meet every month to plan and monitor the programme 

( 87 ) 

at each stage. This helps the tribals to take initiative and solve problems at 
the local level. 

The Impact 

Vansda is blooming. The wadis are full of lush green trees and 
vegetables. There is prosperity and happiness. 

The tribal poor have shown that given an opportunity to improve 
their living condition and economic status, they can work hard and stay 
clear of self-destroying addictions. Vansda was once a wasteland. The 
programme was aimed at two goals: of providing year round gainful self- 
employment and putting a stop to migration. Forest trees, fruit trees. and 
food crops make a three tier cropping system, the result of which has been 
bountiful. The main objective was not merely to provide sustainable 
livelihood, but to ensure an improved quality of life blended with a sound 
value system, 

The tribal communities have evolved a way of life, which on one hand 
is woven around forest ecology and forest resources and on the other, 
ensures that forests are protected against depradation by man. and nature. 
The loca! tribal communities thus have a symbiotic relationship with forests. 
A wise use of this life style through such a rehabilitation programme will 
help achieve total development through simultaneous development of 
forests and wastelands. 

Today, Vansda has become the symbol of a new awakening. The 
success of this unique and bold experiment has thrown up interesting 
possibilities of extension of this programme to other parts of the country. 
Vansda symbolises BAIF’s unique model of tribal rehabilitation. 



1. People at the Centre of the Stage : 

If there is anything we can learn from earlier efforts to find alternat- 
ives to shifting cultivation, it is that nobody else, however qualified and 
powerful, can make decisions ‘for’ the people and expect the latter to 
to implement them. The shifting cultivators themselves must be the centre 
stage actors in the changes that are being visualised. 

(a) In their case, one deals with decisions where the acceptability of the 
decision is far more important than the technical quality, though the fatter 
must, of course. be given attention also. 

All other agencies, that have a role to play in the development of 
the alternatives, including the administration, the Forest Department, the 
NGOs are only enablers. These agencies can create at macro and micro 
level, the structures and climate, legal, administrative, financial, technical 
and human which facilitate appropriate decision making by the shifting 
cultivators, or at Jeast avoid creating obstructions to the process, 

(b) What is by all means to be avoided, is to make people feel bad or guilty 
about shifting cultivation, because this only arouses their defences, and 
condemns the programme to certain failure. It will also create a wrong 
‘social contract or understanding’ between the shifting cultivators and the 
enabling agencies. Besides, it would be unfair and unjust towards them. 

For centuries, shifting cultivation has proved to be a sustainable and 
viable manner of combining agriculture and forestry, ecological balance was 
maintained. It was only when larger forces, eSpecially increase jn 
population, beyond the comprehension of tribal people began to impinge 
on the forests, that the system lost its balance. The problem was not of 

their making. 

Shifting cultivation forms the core of the culture of many tribes, 
including their religious beliefs. To attack the practice directly would create 

( 89 ) 

serious problems in the tribal psyche. Words like anti-podu and others 
which carry negative connotations, must be avoided, 

The remark of Verrier Elwin in a Philosophy for NEFA, still carries 
relevance : 

“The correct approach to the problem of shifting cultivation lies in 
accepting it not as a necessary evil, but recognising it as a way of 
life; not condemning it as an evil practice, but regarding it as a 
cultural practice evolved as it reflects the physiological character of 
the land. For too long shifting cultivation has been condemned out 
of hand as a curse to be ashamed of.... This attitude endangers an 
inferiority complex and an unhealthy atmosphere for launching of 
any development scheme to improve the present practices”. 

(c) This involves that one should not aim for a total replacement of 
shifting cultivation, but permit its practise on a restricted area of village 
territory, so as to meet the symbolical, cultural, religious and culinary needs 
of a people’s ethnic identity. 

2. The Panchashila of People’s Empowerement & Action : 

If one takes seriously what has just been affirmed, i. e. that the 
shifting cultivators themselves have to be the centre stage actors in the 
process of change, and make decisions, because it wil! be their risk, their 
rewards, their pride, one cannot immediately introduce alternatives to shifting 
cultivation, however appropriate these may be in the eyes of the agencies, 
including the catalytic agent, in this case the NGO. The shifting cultivators 
have to go through a process of preparation, faster or slower, according to 
the circumstances. 

This is called the panchashila of people’s development and consists 
of five steps interconnected, though the sequence in which they take place, 
can be altered. The five steps are: 

* People’s Awakening 
« Education 

« Organisation 

( 90 ) 

« Empowerement 
*« Action 

People’s action comes logically only as the fifth step. One might feel 
impatient at this, and adopt a crash programme approach. Experience in 
tribal areas, however, demonstrates that where one allows enough time for 
the panchashila to work as a leaven, there subsequent adoption to change is 
easier, and free from difficulties that crash programmes usually bring along. 
A word on each of the five steps : 

(a) PEOPLE’S AWAKENING: The shifting cultivators are already aware 
that theirs is a loosing battle if they persist in shifting cultivation only. What 
needs to be done is to awaken them to the alternatives that are viable, and 
to the possibility of containing podu to a great extent. The most important 
factor, perhaps, is that they have hope in the future and self-confidence 
that they can reach somewhere. 

Since most groups have already taken to alternatives, there is a 
possibility for promoting horizontal learning. In this approach, people are 
not told something from above, but acquire new knowledge and awareness 
by visiting neighbouring groups, who have already gone ahead in the 
transition. Representatives of groups can be taken to neighbouring districts 
within that state, in order to talk with shifting cultivators, who had adopted 
horticulture, terrace cultivation, other innovations and see for themselves. 

Participatory appraisal for rural development, a new method to enable 
villagers to share their own knowledge, seems also to offer considerable 
possibilities for awakening, education and planning, in fact in the whole 
panchashila which is discussed here. It is being promoted by MYRADA, 
Bangalore, and Robert Chambers, at present at ASCI. Hyderabad. 

Melas and yatras where large numbers of people hear messages of 
alternatives to shifting cultivation, street plays, are good also. If an 
opportunity is given for representatives of groups to speak in public in their 
own tribal/regional Janguage, eg. Kui in Phulbani district, the message of 
containing podu and restoring forests to health will get across more easily. 
There are hills in Orissa where years ago, one village has stopped podu and 

-( 91 ) 

has protected the regenerating forest, while the neighbouring village has 
carried on and has omy barren land to show. The difference is there to see. 
However, it is only:when within a Jarger context one village talks to 
another, that positive results and breakthroughs can be expected. 

Awakening is a first step, and has in most cases already started. It 

should not make people feel guilty, but confident that if they do something 

~ together, they can achieve their goal. Let the unit be the same watershed, or 

-ea hill slope, because groups depend very much on what others are doing. 

The basic «unit of the awakening process is the settlement of households 
living in close proximity with one another. 

- Awakening is then an unfreezing process, of deeply encrusted views 
and convictions. It can never be stopped, but must go on indefinitely. 

« (b) PEOPLE’S EDUCATION : In this step groups who have grown in 
consciousness are provided with information on what alternatives are 
available and could be tried out. This ‘education’ is closely related with 
awakening, of course. The spoken word, especially when uttered in a 
panchayat, by individuals whom people trust, has more effect than any 
audio-visual! means. The spoken word can easily be supplemented with 
audio-visuals, but the latter may easily distract tribal groups as entertain- 
ment, rather then education. 

The education we speak of here is, of course, non-formal. What 
people learn from each other. Very essential is the wavelength on which the 
animator or speaker is with the particular group, whether he or she adopts a 
negative looking-down-upon attitude, or radiates good will, belief in people 
and commitment, to what he or she says. Participatory appraisal for Rural 
Development (PARD) has an important role to play in Education. 

Education will have to be carried on beyond these initial steps, podu 
chasa groups have to continue to be supplied with information on 
alternatives, but also about health, nutrition, market prices, use of compost, 
fruits that can be grown, irrigation, rearing of animals. 

\t order to raise the productivity of land being used by ex-shifting 
cultivators, in such a manner that the land yields enough for a sustainable 

( 92 ) 

rural economy, technical education will have te be provided. This could be 
done in the form of extension programme by young men and women 
trained in village forest training centres (VFTC) run by NGOs in Orissa. 
Ordinary villagers, men and women, also could be deputed for one week 
exposure courses in such centres, eg. for inputs on bee keeping, poultry, 
leaf plate making, mushroom cultivation, etc. 

To do justice to its educational task, the sponsoring agency will need 
some field workers who have acquired sound basic knowledge on the 
alternatives that are technically possible, and on innovations that are taking 
place in the field of agriculture. 

(c) PEOPLE’S ORGANISATION : This would refer to the Village Forest 
Protection Committees of which already hundreds exist in Orissa, whether 
formally recognised or not. Such organisations are close to the traditional 
way in which tribal society has organised itself to cope with problems. 
Such committees should operate first of all at primary settlement level, i.e. 
the people who have practised podu in a specific area of forest. Such 
committees can be federated into a local federation covering a watershed, 
or hillslope, so that differences can be amicably settled, or contractors and 
persons from outside who come and disturb the existing arrangements, can 
be dealt with. 

-How these committees are constituted should be left to the people, 
rather than prescribed from above. The village forest committee appointed 
by the Government under the Social Forestry Programme in Orissa have not 
been a success because they were constituted from above. In such a case 
there is a danger that members of the local elite, who are more vocal, 
educated and cleverer than the common folk, soon appropriate the benefits 
of organisation themselves, 

A problem needing attention is how to organise women. They play a 
vital role in the protection and regeneration of forests, more than men. Yet 
in traditional social structures, they are by custom, expected to keep quiet. 
What women can do, once their creative power is released, has been 
demonstrated by the case of Bankura and other districts in West Bengal. 

( 93) 

(d) PEOPLE’S EMPOWEREMENT : A group cannot undertake action with 
regard to its own members, disciplining for instance erring persons, or 
vis-a-vis the outside world, unless it has power, the ability to influence the 
behaviour of others towards a desirable end, 

As has been’ proved from the case of the Village Forest 
Protection Committee in West Bengal, groups must not only have informal 
power, but power recognised by the State, if they are to be in a position to 
protect their assets against intruders, contractors, erring fower functionaries, 

Psychologically also, the feeling that one has power, is a deep 
motivating drive, and lends dignity to the individual and his colleagues. 

Empowerement naturally arises out of organisation, and also out of 

recognition of such power, by authorities and other groups. It is then 
called bargaining power. 

(e) PEOPLE’S ACTION : When people have proceeded that far in the 
panchashila, they are ready to take decisions and to implement actions 
which will restore their environment to sustainability. 

If enabling agencies have had patience till that moment, and 
concrete interventions, at least major ones, are undertaken only at that 
moment, such interventions will be appropriated and interiorised by the 
people as their own, and executed because these are their own decisions, 
not those of somebody else. 

The panchashijJa should really never be stopped. Increasingly complex 
challenges of management of resources, the generation of savings and 
credit, other challenges demand people’s attention. Matters cannot be 
entrusted to office bearers exclusively, lest the latter become negligent or 
embezzle the money or cheat members in other ways. Constant watchfulness 
is a necessity. 

3. NGOs as Catalytic Agents 

What assurance is there that NGOs in Orissa will be more effective 
than other agencies, which have tried their hand earlier, and have met only 

( 94 ) 

with partial success ? This is one point to be pondered by any NGO which 
volunteers to take up the challenge. 

What role do the NGOs have to play ? This is the second point. 

Lastly, what conditions have to be fulfilled if an NGO is to succeed 
in this task, and achieve a breakthrough towards a popular movement ? 

(a) CAN NGOs DELIVER THE GOODS : Points in favour of NGOs are. : 
That in podu chasa the human aspect is the most vital one, and only when 
the people make their own decisions, one can expect lasting results. Many 
of the shifting cultivators, however, are at a still relatively primitive level! of 
culture, their experience in interacting with the outside world has not been 
encouraging, and by nature they shy away from contact. In short a highly 
vulnerable population. Whenever success was attained with them, it was 
because of the commitment and sincerity of the anthropologists or officers, 
who identified closely with them. The NGOs are better suited than official 
agencies to create this type of encouraging climate with the shifting 

In the solution suggested here, the process of development is put 
upside down : people as central decision makers, all other agencies 
functioning as enablers. This role is one with which most official agencies 
are likely to have difficulties, as it goes against their bureaucratic nature. 
For NGOs, however, this is really nothing new. NGOs have the liberty of 
movement, to adjust themselves to the needs of the people, and have 
greater manoeuverability than official agencies. 

Finally, those NGOs in Orissa, which have already worked in the 
area of alternatives to shifting cultivation, have won the confidence of the 
people, and achieved relative success. 

There are also doubts : While NGOs are usually at home in promoting 
the panchashila of development, will they deliver the goods when it comes 
to the implementation of people’s action ? Only NGOs with a certain 
organisational strength, adequate staff including professionals working at 
field level, a good accounting system, credibility in the eyes ef tke 

( 95 ) 

administration, can attempt the task. Not just any NGO should rush into 
this field, where angels fear to tread | 

While there may be nothing wrong with the NGO itself, what assurance 
is there that officials of the Government agencies whose help will have to 
be enlisted, revenue, irrigation. soil conservation, forest, education, will be 
more obliging than they have been towards ITDA ? Jealousy is a factor that 
can boycott genuine efforts. The denial of opportunities to extract bribes, 
that existed earlier may make lower functionaries non-cooperative. The 
danger of obstructions by functionaries must be kept in mind. 

Through a hot line approach with the highest administration in the 
State, this problem can be solved at policy level. If, however, the staff of 
departments operating at block level are not cooperative with the NGOs, 
no power from higher up can do much about this. Only people’s power 
could, but by nature, shifting cultivators are not inclined, nor do they have 
the time to demonstrate in front of the office of the BDO, or the Collector, 


This roJe can be cut down into several tasks: 

« First, there is the promotion of the panchashila which has already 
been explained, and which is relatively easy for NGOs. 

« Secondly, the NGO has to sit down with the shifting cultivators 
and plan in detail, what can be done. Decision making has to be left to 
them and can be promoted through the PARD method. In this process, the 
NGOs must see to it that enough alternatives are aired, so that shifting 
cultivators can make a well reasoned choice. 

« The third task is interaction with Government and _ infrastructural 
agencies. Initially, the people hesitate very much and need a lot of 
encouragement and support ‘from the back’. The best policy is to depend 
on the Government and its agencies as little as possible; The latter can 
give advice and must see that its functionaries do not obstruct the work 
carried out by the NGOs. 

( 96 ) 

« A fourth task is to see that the bolts and nuts of implementation 
are properly fixed, well oiled, and to remove irritants that are bound to 
arise. Constant watchfulness is needed. 

« A fifth is to see that the other basic services are in place, and 
function, such as drinking water, education, health, income generation, 
training schemes, child welfare, women development. Also the starting of a 
saving-cum-credit scheme. 

* A sixth task, which follows logically is to see that a proper 
monitoring system, participatory in nature, of course, is put in place and 
begins to function as a matter of routine. An immense effort against rural 
immobility is required. 

« The seventh task is to plan for withdrawal of the NGO, and 
promote self-reliance of the group, within a period of, say, five years. 

« A series of other tasks, looking towards the wider world, are to be 
executed; such as : public relations with other agencies of the delivery 
system, receiving visitors, documentation of what is happening and_ sharing 
it with others, networking with other groups. 

escorting shifting cultivators in finding alternatives involves a major 
corporate commitment and should not be taken up lightly by an NGO. The 
organisation will have to do the following : 

« Sit down and list its organisational strengths and weaknesses and 
see whether it can take up the task and do justice to it. 

*» Make a corporate commitment, knowing fully well that it may 
involve a time period of five years or more. 

« As a follow-up to the analysis of organisational strengths and 
weaknesses, remove weaknesses, such as absence of qualified staff, 
improving the financial and accounting system of the organisation, bring 
about a greater sharing of ideas in case there are fissiparous tendencies, 
setting up a proper monitoring system, if this has not been done earlier, 

( 97 ) 

providing training to personne! in new methods such as PARD, and in 
technical aspects of agro-forestry, etc. 

» Discuss the proposed programme with a group of shifting 
cultivators, and come to an understanding, expressed possibly in a 
memorandum of understanding, spelling out mutual responsibilities and 

In order to assure intensive interaction during the initial period, the 
group of shifting cultivators may be rather small, inhabiting one area, so 
that personal contact is possible. A group of 150 to 200 families, perhaps. 
Later on, if the initial experiment proves successful, the message will begin 
to spread by itself, and to snowball. The initial thrust should not be blunt 
because it is too ambitious. 

x Come to an understanding with SIDA, or other agency and enter 
into a contract, covering financial matters and a system of monitoring and 
reporting progress. The funds are released as fees, and not as a grant, 
falling under the FCRA rules. SIDA, however, plans to conduct a few pilot 
projects with selected NGOs only. If the project proves viable and more 
NGOs come forward, alternative arrangements will be needed. 

« Appoint a project officer, an experienced young professional to 
work on a full time basis in the venture, and provide him with the means to 
do justice to the task, such as transport and supporting staff. To take care 
of the interests of women, a lady project officer may be needed quite early 
in the project also. 

Work out a cost estimate of how much it will cost to rehabilitate one 
family of shifting cultivators. This is meeded to later on measure the 
effectiveness of the programme. Under the ITDA, Rs. 30,000/- is provided 
per family. 

» Enter into relationship with NGOs in Orissa, engaged in the same 
type of work, and sharing information with them, organising common 
training programmes, exchanging documentation, skill, information. 

( 98 ) 

« Originally, only three or four NGOs may be selected for under- 
taking this work as pilot projects. If these first efforts succeed, more NGOs 
may be given an opportunity to share in the work. Only then, can the 
triggering of into a mass movement be expected. If the efforts spread, NGOs 
in the district engaging in podu containment, may have to form a 
consortium for interaction with the district administration, banks, and 
infrastructural agencies. 



A variety of enabling agencies, have to coordinate, and provide inputs 
for the success of the programme. Coordination is absolutely vital. This has 
to take place at three levels : local/agency level, district level and state 

1. Locat/Agency Level 

The project officer placed by the NGO as animator of a project is the 
primary coordinator. It is his task to see that inputs from official, non-official 
agencies, needed for the project, are provided at block level. He interacts on 
almost daily basis with the local DFO or Ranger of the Forest Department, 
and also with the BDO. 

He or the NGOs office keeps up correspondence with the local 
agencies, and maintains documentation including an account of day-to-day 

If he encounters difficulties, he informs the NGO to which he 
belongs. and the fatter can, if need be, contact the Collector, or other 
relevant authority for the speedy removal of snags and irritants. 

As a matter of routine, a monthly coordinating meeting must be held 
at block level with representatives of all infrastructural agencies, also banks, 
to review the progress of the work. The BDO can be asked to preside at this 
meeting. Minutes are kept by the project officer or the leader of the 
escorting NGO. 

At local agency level, coordination deals primarily with activities, and 
day-to-day problems of administration. It’s the locus where real action takes 
place and results must show. 

2. District Level 

A similar process takes place at district level, but in this case the 
initiative and driving force behind coordination is the leader of the NGO, 
which does the escorting. He interacts with the DFO, with the Collector, 
with district heads and infrastructural agencies, and if need be, also with 

( 100 ) 

other NGOs working in the district and who can provide assistance, for 
instance in training. 

A monthly rhythm of meetings can be established as a routine. The 
leader of the NGO functions as secretary of the consortium. The Collector 
functions as the Chairperson. If the latteris absent, however, the meeting 
is not postponed, but another member functions as chairperson. 

The monthly progress of the project is reviewed on the basis of 
documentation from the field. The project officer should also attend this 
meeting. Minutes are kept of these meetings, and circulated as soon as 
possible amongst the participant agencies. 

At district level, good coordination will concentrate on the building 
up of sound policies of implementation. 

3. State Level 

At highest level SIDA, or other donor agency, takes the initiative of 
coordinating with highest state officials, especially those of Forest 

Meetings are held on the occasion of routine consultations and 
reviews twice a year. They are meant to review the progress of the scheme 
on the basis of monthly reports sent from the NGOs and from the field 
projects. The leaders of the NGOs escorting projects, are invited to these 

Such coordination meetings must remove major obstacles from the 
implementation of the projects, declde on broad strategies, and develop 
policy at state level. 

The Coordinator of SIDA functions as secretary of such meetings. 
The Chief Secretary, Additional Chief Secretary or another senior govern- 
ment official functions as Chairman. Minutes are kept of the meetings and 
are circulated among relevant departments and also to the district level 

lf meetings of this coordination system at three levels, are held at 
regular intervals, the monitoring needs of the project will be taken care of 
as well. 


( 101 

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