The Meghalaya Peoples’ Human Rights Council (MPHRC) has strongly opposed the draft amendments to the Indian Forest Act (IFA) 1927.
The ministry of environment, forest and climate change (MoEFCC) has finalised the draft amendments of the Bill.
The MPHRC in a statement said this regressive draft amendment will create a catastrophe for the tribals and other traditional forest dwellers.
It will also have adverse negative impacts on climate for which the Meghalaya Government should also raise its strong opposition, the rights group said.
“The IFA draft amendments is like a whimsical ride of a colonial forester that sought to play down with many extremely repressive measures which is incongruous and if adopted, would result in further violation to the rights of tribal communities and their future generations,” Dino DG Dympep, chairman of MPHRC, said.
“The theme that runs throughout the draft amendments is to equate tribals with other communities in relation to their rights over the forests; the redefinition of the word ‘community’ is to deny the special status of tribals in relation to forests which is highly abhorrent,” he added.
The ministry of environment, forest and climate Change (MoEFCC) in March 2019, had proposed amendments to the over 90-year-old Indian Forest Act 1927 (IFA).