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Empowering Tribal Communities: Regional Conference on Strengthening PESA Concludes

Ranchi: The second Two-Day Regional Conference on the Strengthening of Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act (PESA) concluded today in Ranchi, Jharkhand, with Secretary of the Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Vivek Bharadwaj, addressing the valedictory session. The conference aimed to enhance the implementation of PESA, focusing on the empowerment of tribal communities in Scheduled Areas.

In his address, Secretary Vivek Bharadwaj reiterated the government’s commitment to prioritizing schemes like PM–JANMAN Yojana in saturation mode, aligning with the Prime Minister’s vision. Emphasizing uninterrupted delivery of government scheme benefits to all eligible beneficiaries, he underscored the need for practical solutions and sensitivity in addressing challenges.

Reflecting on insights gathered during the conference, Bharadwaj highlighted the importance of regular communication and collaboration among various departments and stakeholders for effective PESA implementation. He announced plans for a National Conference on PESA in the presence of political leadership to further advance the PESA agenda.

Secretary Bharadwaj stressed the importance of effectively implementing and strengthening The Provisions of the Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act (PESA) and urged all participants to carry forward the work with a definitive strategy.

Recognizing the pivotal role of Gram Sabhas and public participation, he encouraged a collective strong will at the community level and emphasized learning from best practices for genuine empowerment of tribal communities. Bharadwaj called for proper resource utilization to propel development forward, emphasizing inclusivity and leaving no one behind in society. He acknowledged the crucial role of civil society organizations and NGOs in ensuring compliance with the PESA Act.

The concluding day of the conference featured engaging discussions on the role of non-government stakeholders in strengthening PESA implementation and the enforcement of the Forest Rights Act in PESA areas. The conference facilitated knowledge-sharing, fostering commitment towards achieving the objectives of PESA.

The conference, organized by the Ministry of Panchayati Raj, concluded with a resounding resolution to maintain momentum for the successful and effective implementation of PESA. Participants from Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, and Telangana left the valedictory session filled with enthusiasm, anticipating positive changes at the grassroots level as a result of their collective efforts. The conference’s success paves the way for further progress in PESA Act implementation.

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