Union Minister for Tribal Affairs Shri Jual Oram has said that his Ministry will initiate new measures to ensure that money allotted to states under various tribal welfare schemes reaches the actual beneficiaries. Addressing a press conference in New Delhi today Shri Oram said that officials from National Commission for Scheduled Tribes and Tribal Affairs Ministry will visit various remote areas to personally ascertain the benefits accrued to tribals. The Minister said some independent agencies will also be involved in this task. The Tribal Affairs Minister also informed that post-matric scholarship for ST students will be released through DBT mode to ensure transparency and fast delivery. He said during the current financial year 20 new Ekalaya Model Residential Schools were opened and their total number has reached 213. Shri Oram said that allocation for Van Bandhu Kalyan Yojna (VBKY) in next year budget has been increased from Rs. 100 to Rs. 200 crore. He said blocks with very low female literacy rate have been selected for VBKY.
Shri Oram informed that his Ministry has recognised 14 NGOs as Established Voluntary Agencies (EVAs) out of more than 200 NGOs. A simplified sanctioning procedure is being envisaged for grants in aid to these EVAs. Guidelines are being revised with focus on outcome. Referring to the livelihood and skill development efforts of his Ministry, the Minister informed that an amount of Rs. 285 crore was spent during the current financial for skill development/vocation training of 80,000 tribal beneficiaries.
The Minister said Central TSP (Tribal Sub Plan) allocation to his Ministry increased by more than 20.15% from Rs. 19,979 crore to Rs.24,005 crore ensuring convergence of interventions of other Ministries/Departments. Ministry’s budgetary plan provisions have been enhanced from Rs.4550 crore to Rs. 4800 crore addressing critical gaps in implementation. Approximately one third of plan outlay has been year marked for education.
Referring to the implementation of Forest Rights Act 2006 the Minister said lagging states will be perused to improve their performance at par with better performing States. Giving an account of the progress made in implementation of FRA since 31.05.2014 till 31.12.2015. The Minister said total individual claims and community claims filed were 6.2 Lakhs and 0.30 lakhs. Out of this 2.57 lakhs individual titles and 0.18 lakhs community titled were distributed. The titles distributed covered an area of 34.2 lakh acres.
Underlining the importance of health related activities Shri Oram said three crore ST children across the country were screened for sickle cell anemia. He said Rs. 157 crore were released in 2015-16 for heath infrastructure and health centres. Funds were provided for training of 6100 GNM/ANM/ Paramedic/ Lab technician in 2015-16.