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Ministry of Panchayati Raj Hosts Second Regional Conference on Strengthening PESA in Ranchi

Ministry of Panchayati Raj Hosts Second Regional Conference on Strengthening PESA in Ranchi

Ranchi:  The Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Government of India, inaugurated the second Two-Day Regional Conference on Strengthening of PESA (Panchayats Extension to Scheduled Areas) at Ranchi, Jharkhand, with Secretary Vivek Bharadwaj leading the event. The conference aims to assess the progress of PESA Act implementation in designated areas, fostering collaboration and discussions among participating states for sustainable development in tribal communities.

In his address, Vivek Bharadwaj highlighted the pivotal role of Gram Sabhas empowered by the PESA Act in addressing social issues, managing natural resources, and fostering economic empowerment in a sustainable manner. He emphasized the efficient implementation of the PESA Act as a means to strengthen traditional lifestyles and mitigate societal issues. Bharadwaj commended the Ministry’s initiatives to collaborate with departments and stakeholders to enhance the Act’s effectiveness.

Encouraging participants to share their views, experiences, and suggestions, Vivek Bharadwaj aimed to create a collaborative atmosphere where diverse perspectives can contribute to comprehensive and effective strategies. The upcoming National Conference on PESA aims to consolidate insights from regional conferences held at Pune and Ranchi, streamlining and accelerating the PESA Act’s implementation.

The Ministry’s overarching objective is to raise awareness about the benefits of the PESA Act, empower Gram Sabhas, and extend these benefits to tribal communities as envisioned in the Act. Vivek Bharadwaj reiterated the Central Government’s commitment to supporting tribal communities in preserving their cultural heritage and achieving socio-economic development through PESA Act principles.

The Regional Conference, held on 4th and 5th March, 2024, featured notable attendees, including Dr. Chandra Shekhar Kumar, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Panchayati Raj; Dr. Rajeev Arun Ekka, Additional Chief Secretary, Department of Panchayati Raj, Government of Jharkhand; Smt. Mamta Varma, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Panchayati Raj; Jitendra Kumar Singh, Secretary, Department of Industries, Government of Jharkhand; and Smt. Nesha Oraon, Director, Department of Panchayati Raj, Government of Jharkhand.

Dr. C. S. Kumar, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Panchayati Raj, outlined the Ministry’s efforts, including the development of a monitoring portal to track PESA Act implementation. Dr. Rajeev Arun Ekka stressed the importance of traditional systems and expressed Jharkhand’s commitment to implementing the PESA Act effectively. Smt. Mamta Varma’s presentation emphasized compliance with PESA Rules and the significance of tools like Gram Manchitra for efficient planning.

The conference facilitated discussions among representatives from the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, State Departments of Panchayati Raj, NIRD&PR, SIRD&PRs, and other stakeholders. Representatives from participating states – Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, and Telangana – and civil society organizations actively participated in the conference, contributing to the shared vision for the sustainable development of tribal communities in Scheduled Areas.

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