PESA Draft Rules : Jharkhand
Recently, the Jharkhand government published draft rules for public consultation to implement PESA in the state.
- The Provisions of the Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, commonly known as PESA, plays a crucial role in ensuring self-governance and empowerment for tribal communities residing in Scheduled Areas.
- PESA, enacted in 1996, aims to empower tribal communities living in Scheduled Areas through their own systems of self-government.
- It recognizes their traditional rights over natural resources, providing them with a platform to govern themselves.
- To ensure equitable representation and inclusivity, the draft rules have mandated eight standing committees to operate under the gram sabhas.
- Among these, the Education and Social Justice Committee will work towards the economic upliftment of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, and weaker sections, including specially-abled and primitive tribes.
- The draft rules emphasize gender and tribal representation within the gram sabhas.
- At least 50% of the members in the gram sabhas must be women, promoting women’s participation in decision-making processes.
- Additionally, a minimum of 40% of the members must belong to Scheduled Tribe (ST) communities, ensuring adequate representation and participation of tribal communities.