Neighbours who Refused to be Excluded: An Inter-village Conflict Arising from Exclusion of Traditional Users of Forests from JFM in Udaipur District, Rajasthan

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Books for Change


"This case documents a conflict between three villages: Kojon Ka Guda, Saharia and Padtal located 48kms from Udaipur city in Rajasthan. While Khojon Guda belonged to Bemla Panchayat, the two other villages belonged to Lalpur Panchayat. After coexisting peacefully for decades, the communities found themselves pitted against each other, when one of the villages started enclosing the forest that was traditionally common to all. The conflict can be attributed to the fact that two of the villages which had been traditional users of the forest were deprived of the opportunity to participate in the Joint Forest Management (JFM) programme because of the legal provisions in the programme. Also highlighted is the fact that the conflicts around natural resources need not always be centered on the resource itself. Underlying issues, at times, might have their origin in the existing socio-economic dynamics. "Seva Mandir, a non-governmental organisation working with tribal communities of Udaipur district, started working with Saharia village in 1979 through its non-formal education programme. Natural resource based interventions were launched in 1985. the conflict arose when a Forest Protection Committee (FPC), comprising of the people of Kojon Ka Guda, was formed under the JFM programme. The proposal was to enclose a 50ha patch of forestland. Traditionally all three villages were using this patch of forest but the usufruct rights and concessions as per the forest settlement records were with Kojon Ka Guda."



forests, community forestry, resource management, property rights, conflict